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TTL budget speedlites?

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by Zancrow, Nov 23, 2014.

  1. Zancrow

    Zancrow Mu-43 Regular

    148
    Jul 16, 2014
    Hello, I was wondering if there are any budget speedlite options so I could start practicing some off-camera flash photography with the e-m1.
     
  2. Paul80

    Paul80 Mu-43 Veteran

    254
    Jul 6, 2014
    Depends on your budget.

    Panasonic 220 or the Olympus 36 can be picked up for under £50 on eBay and both will work in TTL Mode with a off camera cord.

    You can also look at the offerings from the likes of Metz and Nissin but the will cost more, and if you want wire-less rather than wired then the costs go higher.

    What do you want to photograph, a light just for macro use is quite different to a light for portraits.

    What do you want to photograph and what's your buget.

    Paul
     
  3. Just Jim

    Just Jim Mu-43 Top Veteran

    941
    Oct 20, 2011
    I'd learn manual first, that way you'll learn how light behaves... a light meter like a Sekonic 358 and a couple Yongnuo flashes, plus PC cables are just about perfect for learning on the cheap. Then move into radio and TTL as they both have their own quirks to learn, you can get cheap dumb fire triggers if you like manual. Then decide if you even want to deal with the quirks of TTL.
     
  4. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    "off camera" and "TTL" really don't play very well together. Learn here: http://www.strobist.blogspot.com/ Also probably some ideas here: www.mu-43.com/showthread.php?t=70255

    My TTL flash is a Metz 48AF-1, which works fine. I scored it on eBay for about $80 IIRC but that was a fairly lucky price.

    Edit: IMO a flash meter is entirely optional, almost an unnecessary luxury. With digital it is easy enough to take two or three test shots to dial in the aperture you need. I have one because it came in a package of equipment I bought but I rarely use it. If/when you get to the point where you are figuring lighting ratios then you might decide you need one. A Gossen Luna-Pro F is a nice older meter that is relatively inexpensive on eBay. The Sekonic L-358 that JustJim mentions is expensive, but a beauty.
     
  5. Zancrow

    Zancrow Mu-43 Regular

    148
    Jul 16, 2014
    Sorry for the late response guys. Thank for your help, appreciated it. A friend of mine is selling me a couple of his canon speedlites for cheap (430's) and just needed to know if they would work with some triggers. if so which ones would you reccomend?
     
  6. DaveEP

    DaveEP Mu-43 Top Veteran

    683
    Sep 20, 2014
    York, UK
    The 430s aren't going to work in TTL mode on the EM1. End of story.

    Canon flashes require the Canon proprietary connections. The 430s (as I remember) were also automatic only and don't have the possibility of manual control, you needed to step up to the 580 for that. It's possible be remembering wrong though.

    For TTL:

    Olympus / Panasonic (more expensive)
    Metz
    Nissin i40

    To get these off camera you can fire them via the optical slave modes.

    For TTL use a TTL cord, they're cheap and reliable.

    For manual:
    Yongnuo 560III or IV with 560TX as the transmitter.
     
  7. Petrochemist

    Petrochemist Mu-43 Top Veteran

    651
    Mar 21, 2013
    N Essex, UK
    Mike
    My experience using a Pentax TTL flash off camera for macro, was exectly the oposite. Not having TTL would have made the setting of flash power very awkward when flash subject distance varies significantly, and so does the degree of lighting needed. P-TTL calculated it all without any difficulty.

    I see no reason why µ4/3 TTL should be any different, due to the way TTL flashes work there should be no problems unless the camera & flash can't communicate. (Most remote systems don't support TTL)
    I can however see potential issues if you try to use more than 1 TTL flash at the same time (fairly common for strobists). There MAY be advanced TTL systems that can cope with multiple flashes, but I'd expect it to be more challenging.
     
  8. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 1, 2010
    USA
    If DaveEP is correct and they have no manual mode, then there is nothing you can do to use them. M43 and Canon TTL are incompatible

    I wasn't considering that special case when I generalized. I can see that with bellow factors, moving subjects, etc. where TTL might be a help. That said, if the subject is static, IMO it would be simple enough to close in on an aperture setting with two or three test shots and some experience. So for me, a manual-only strobe would still be fine. YMMV
     
  9. DaveEP

    DaveEP Mu-43 Top Veteran

    683
    Sep 20, 2014
    York, UK
    I just checked and I am wrong - the 430 added manual mode from 1/64 to 1/1, but even so, that's not going to give you any TTL controls.
     
  10. Petrochemist

    Petrochemist Mu-43 Top Veteran

    651
    Mar 21, 2013
    N Essex, UK
    Mike
    With static subject & flash, you can indeed home in using multiple shots - but TTL does this for you. :)
     
  11. Zancrow

    Zancrow Mu-43 Regular

    148
    Jul 16, 2014
    Yeah, I figured I couldn't use TTL with the canon flashes.
     
  12. inkista

    inkista Mu-43 Veteran

    332
    Jan 13, 2012
    San Diego, CA
    Just me, but don't bother with the 430EXs unless you've also got a Canon camera. Say goodbye to TTL and FP/HSS, and go with YN-560III flashes and a YN-560-TX dedicated transmitter for the hotshoe. While you won't have TTL or HSS, you will have the ability to remotely control the power/zoom on the flashes from the camera. YN-560IIIs are about US$70 apiece on Amazon; the TX unit is about $50.

    You could get the 430EXs and have remote power control with either the Cactus V6 triggers, or Yongnuo YN-622Cs paired with a YN-622C-TX on-camera transmitter, but function-wise, you won't get much more than the YN-560 combo nets you.

    I use YN-622Cs and a YN-622C-TX and have remote zoom/power control from my GX-7, but I also shoot with a 5DMkII and 50D and my flashes are the 580EXII and YN-568EX [Canon version], where, if I use that gear, I'll also get eTTL, HSS, Gr mode (ability to mix M/eTTL/MULTI modes and turn groups on/off), 2nd curtain, and full access to the custom functions menus, etc. from the camera body, so it's a very different kettle of fish for me, and worth the additional cost.
     
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