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RC Mode with FL-300R on E-PL5 a problem?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by Dogman, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. Dogman

    Dogman Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Dec 23, 2012
    Maryland
    I tried using an FL-300R flash on my E-PL5 in RC mode to wirelessly trigger an FL-36R flash. It doesn't seem to work. I sent the flash back for a replacement, but the replacement does the same thing. I called Olympus, and they couldn't figure it out. They took out a case number and are investigating it themselves.

    Question: Are there any E-PL5 users that are able to use an FL-300R on-camera in RC mode to trigger an FL-36R off-camera?
     
  2. Crigstar

    Crigstar New to Mu-43

    7
    May 20, 2012
    Houston TX USA
    Tony
    I've not tried the PL-5 but I have no problems with a PL-1 and OM-D. I assume you have the group and channel matching? Also, it is imperative that the body of the remote flash be positioned so that it can receive the light from the master flash. For me, that normally requires that the body of the 36R be rotated to face the camera.
     
  3. vinay

    vinay Mu-43 Regular

    137
    Mar 18, 2012
    Toronto
    what doesn't seem to work exactly? It won't fire?
     
  4. Dogman

    Dogman Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Dec 23, 2012
    Maryland
    Yes, I've tried everything according to the instruction manuals. I should point out that when I use the accessory pop-up flash on the E-PL5, it does trigger the FL-36R flash in RC mode. I'm quite familiar with using remote flashes wirelessly and have used flash triggers (both radio and IR waves) for many years.

    Maybe it's a glitch with the E-PL5 camera; maybe it's with the FL-300. Or, maybe it's the combination of both. That's what I'm trying to figure out. So far, no one has responded that they got the FL-300R flash on an E-PL5 to trigger an FL-36R in RC mode.
     
  5. Dogman

    Dogman Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Dec 23, 2012
    Maryland
    When the FL-300R on-camera fires in RC mode, it won't set off the FL-36R flash off-camera.

    Also, when I use the FL-36R in manual slave mode (SL), the FL-300R will set off the FL-36R, but they are not in synch (the flash from the FL-36R does not appear in the image).
     
  6. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada

    No glitch at all. Sorry, but you're simply not doing it right. :D

    The clip-on flash is your Remote Commander. The FL-300R does not operate as a remote commander. To use RC mode, you need to use the clip-on flash.

    Manual SL will operate the flash as a dumb slave, which will trigger off any flash including the FL-300R or the clip-on... or your colleague's Canikon, your studio strobes, etc. You need your trigger flash however to be set to a mode (like Manual) with no pre-flash, otherwise the pre-flash will set off your optical slaves. This is probably what's happening when you set off the FL-36R out of sync with your FL-300R.

    So if you want to trigger your FL-36R with your FL-300R, you're best to leave them both in manual. If you want to use your clip-on flash for RC mode and take full control of your remote flash units through the in-camera menu, then take both FL-300R and FL-36R off-camera. You can control them in the same group, or you can set one to Group A and one to Group B and fire them off with different settings (press and hold the Mode button to get into the settings menu to set the flash group).

    The clip-on flash will only send control signals to the remote flashes before the capture is actually taken and the flash are set off, so it will not affect your image. However, this (or any kind of TTL flash) is not a good way to go if you're shooting anything with movement and action, as there is a slight delay before shutter opening, while the flash signals are being sent. If you are shooting action with flash, use manual power.

    Your equipment is behaving exactly the way it was made to.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  7. Dogman

    Dogman Mu-43 Regular

    172
    Dec 23, 2012
    Maryland
    Ned, you're absolutely correct. I just talked to Olympus tech support, and they confirmed that the FL-300R cannot be used as the commander (aka master) to trigger a FL-36R flash in RC mode. That is very disappointing. This fact isn't even mentioned in the instruction manual much less in the advertisements. The clip-on flash, however, can be used as the commander.

    The problem with using the clip-on flash on the E-PL5 is that it leaves a huge shadow in any macro shots using the 12-50 or 60mm lens. Olympus suggested using an FL-600R as the commander. Ridiculous...it's probably larger than the camera.
     
  8. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    The clip-on shouldn't leave a shadow if it's in RC Mode, but if it is then just use a card to direct the light up. It's not part of your lighting, and the sensor on the FL-36R is very sensitive. If you don't mind manual flash, try dialing down your hotshoe flash to 1/64th manual power and setting your FL-36R off-camera to Manual SL. If that still leaves a shadow, then take a white business card and stick it under the hotshoe flash angled up... or use the FL-300R as your hotshoe flash and direct it away. If you're in an enclosed room, the FL-36R will very easily pick up a very weak flash signal to trigger off of.