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Small but fun stuff for my Olympus EM-5

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by James23p, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. James23p

    James23p Mu-43 Regular

    99
    Jul 25, 2015
    James
    Trying to complete my Oly small system I needed a small but proper flash. I decided on the Metz mecablitz 26 AF-1 it is small and that is good on the EM-5 yet fairly powerful and yes it can bounce. Plus I can use it is a slave buy using the small Olympus flash as a trigger.

    Next I got a remote cable this was a very inexpensive but great addition to my kit and it allows me to play with Live Bulb. :dance3:

    Last I got a semi custom bidirectional Arca Swiss plate making it easier to mount on my Markins ballheads _1050496.
     
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  2. pake

    pake Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 14, 2010
    Finland
    Teemu
    How fast can you take the next shot with the Mecablitz? I need a better flash than the E-M5 kit flash and its reload cycle should be much faster...
     
  3. James23p

    James23p Mu-43 Regular

    99
    Jul 25, 2015
    James
    Initially it takes a few seconds to charge up from start up but once you are past the initial start up it is very quick actually it seems you have to take several in a row before you notice any delay if you are just taking one or two shots its instant. Now I am using lithium AAA and I tried rechargeable and they where also very fast , I here it is a bit slower with normal batteries.

    Once thing I noticed it says 24-85mm in 35mm terms when using my 17 f2.8(35mm terms) I need to use the wide angle diffuser if I don't the light is a bit uneven when using my 14-42R II I find that I need the WA diffuser until I reach 25mm and when I say 25mm I mean 25mm in M4/3 not in 35mm terms so my thoughts are even though there is a 2x crop factor the flash works best in actual lens focal length not the 35mm FoV equivalent, hope that made sense. But truthfully it is only really noticeable when you have a large area of white wall etc.

    Last it works great in slave mode the EM-5 supplied flash triggers it with no problem and you can control all functions from the EM-5 including Exposure Flash compensation.

    It has a built in video light that has two settings I have not used it but its there and it also doubles as an AF assist lamp that is much better than the one on the body and yes it works perfectly no issues.

    Build is good I love the over all feel it is a bit loose in the hot shoe but it has a very secure locking pin so no issues of it falling out and no issues with communication with the camera. The only thing is the flash extender for 85mm is a bit tricky to snap on but works well.

    All in all this is a huge step up from the supplied flash especially since it sits so far above the lens axis and for $129 USD you can't beat it. Now if you are looking for a flash to use for serious inside use then you will need to move up to the next series like the 44 AF Metz, Nissin i40 or the Oly SB600FLR these three are a lot more powerful with swivel bounce capability the 26 does not swivel just 4 bounce positions. All in all a great replacement for the supplied flash with more power and features and that all important slave function I love shooting off camera with the flash mounted on a tripod.

    Oh and it has a mini usb port for firmware updates mine came with the latest version that is huge on a inexpensive small flash.

    Jim

    Here's a shot in the bounce mode in a dark room of my baby Winter the flash lit up the scene and managed not to blow out her white coat. _1030493.
     
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  4. pake

    pake Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 14, 2010
    Finland
    Teemu
    I'd mainly use it for macro shots and I do have diffusers for that kind of use already. Looks and sounds promising. I'll have to look into it properly later... Thanks for the comments!
     
  5. Holoholo55

    Holoholo55 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 13, 2014
    Honolulu, HI
    Walter
    Interesting. I'd seen some rather negative comments on some websites about this flash, so I'm interested in how it holds up over the longer term. Keep it coming!

    Thanks
     
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  6. James23p

    James23p Mu-43 Regular

    99
    Jul 25, 2015
    James
    Walter when researching I saw a fair mix of positive and negative some killed it some loved it on BH site it was a mixed bag of good and bad. DPreview has a review that is fairly positive and seems to hit the same issues I have. One of these is not using the WA diffuser at 25mm and lower and I mean native focal length not the 2x crop factor if it is a 17 or 25mm lens use it even though in 35mm terms its a 35 or 50 FoV. It seems that when not used on my 17 f2.8 it is uneven with a dark band at the bottom unless bounced of coarse, when the WA diffuser is used I get nice even light. This by no means is a heavy duty flash it is well built but the battery door is a bit fiddly and the 85mm extender is not the easiest to put on at first but both seem after a bit to work just fine the 4 different positions click in very nice with a firm click and no movement at all. The salve function is spot on my EM-5 and the small supplied flash set it off every time with very nice results. Last I mentioned this it does wobble a bit in the hot shoe but it has a very good locking pin so no worries this might bother some not me my SB-600 always wobbled a bit on my D700 but not on my D600. Just for giggles I put this on my D600 to see if it wobbled and it was sung as can be.

    I will try to do a proper review with some shots in all 4 positions and some slave shots.

    Jim
     
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  7. Growltiger

    Growltiger Mu-43 Top Veteran

    648
    Mar 26, 2014
    UK
    I use the Nissin i40 (Olympus version obviously) which works very well. It is still quite small and is remarkably powerful for its size. And it is cheap.
     
  8. James23p

    James23p Mu-43 Regular

    99
    Jul 25, 2015
    James
    I looked at the Nissin it is indeed a great flash but it's a bit large to put in a pocket due to its head design and it was a 130$ more or double the price I paid $129 the Nissin was $269 just a bit out of my budget. I've used the Nikon version on my D600 when a friend let me use his I do like the analog interface.

    But from all accounts it a great flash.

    Jim
     
  9. Growltiger

    Growltiger Mu-43 Top Veteran

    648
    Mar 26, 2014
    UK
    I paid £144 for the Nissin, which is currently equal to US$204. Usually things cost a lot more here than in the US, so perhaps I got lucky.
     
  10. James23p

    James23p Mu-43 Regular

    99
    Jul 25, 2015
    James
    Sale maybe both Adorama and BH list it at 269$. If I ever need a full fledged flash it would be high on my list.

    Jim
     
  11. James23p

    James23p Mu-43 Regular

    99
    Jul 25, 2015
    James
    For anyone curious what the Metz 26 AF-1 looks like on the EM-5 here's a quick shot.

    Jim

    DSCN2067.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2016
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