Tumax: a cheaper non-OEM external flash for G5?

Discussion in 'Panasonic Cameras' started by drdtyc, Nov 11, 2013.

  1. drdtyc

    drdtyc Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Apr 28, 2013
    Are there any G5 users using the following Tumax TTL flash with their G5?

    More details: http://dpanswers.com/roztr/flash_show.php?id=47&pid=ROD980AFZ

    User Manual of the flash: http://dpanswers.com/manuals/tumax_dpt386afz_man.pdf

    Googling the above re-badged models gives an price range of $100-$120.
    Given the features and selling price, quite a good value if this flash works with the G5.
     
  2. STR

    STR Mu-43 Veteran

    222
    May 16, 2013
    I have the Vivitar DF-383-OP. I've used it with the G5 and GH3. The TTL works, as does the flash zoom when locked in forward mode. It's a little big, and is a lot more balanced on the GH3, but given that comparable models are 50-100% more expensive...eh. I deal with it. Unlike what that review says, the foot is metal, as is the locking ring. There are no issues with MY buttons, but it is loud. The flash zoom particularly, but it has capacitor whine as well. Neither bother me, the latter is even useful. Once it gets to a high enough tone, or stops whining, I know it's charged for another shot without having to check the status light.

    Recycle time is ~3 seconds with fresh batteries and a 1/4 power discharge or less (which is pretty typical of my TTL use). Full power recycle time is 5-8 seconds.

    Amazon Link
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/customer-m...4VMCY/ref=cm_ciu_pdp_images_3?ie=UTF8&index=3
    There's some buyer-submitted photos showing the DF-383-OP, including a side-by-side with the Nissin Di466 FT, the other M43 TTL flash in this price range. The Nissin is better balanced on the G5, but doesn't swivel horizontally.
     
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  3. drdtyc

    drdtyc Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Apr 28, 2013
    @STR,

    Thanks for sharing your experience of using the flash with a G5.
    This gives me some comfort to purchase one and try it out myself.
     
  4. yehuda

    yehuda Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Mar 14, 2013
    If you don't mind losing the swivel head (but you still have the bounce and adequate gn) I recommend the metz 24 af1 or the knock iff such as the polaroid pl-108af.
    I own both and they're excellent indoors, balance well, meter well and I hardly ever use the larger metz 50 and 44 because the smaller ones are just fine for most of my stuff.
     
  5. STR

    STR Mu-43 Veteran

    222
    May 16, 2013
    The Nissin and Vivitar are better than the Metz 24 because the former two take 4xAA batteries, and thus recycles twice as fast as the Metz, which has only two AAs. The Metz is a bit cheaper, but you get what you pay for. Not that it's a bad product, just a lower capability unit, which can be the right choice if you're okay with its limits.
     
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  6. yehuda

    yehuda Mu-43 Veteran

    200
    Mar 14, 2013
    I don't know how much experience you have with the metz 24... it's not that slow to recycle. I think any sensible photographer who doesn't spray away and shoots in good timing does not require the flash to recycle like a machine gun.
    The 2 aa batteries is yet another advantage - smaller flash weight and even more so when comparing with battteries loaded.
    The m43 are small. Anything larger than the 24 is very ungainly. But to each his own choice. Cheers, Yehuda
     
  7. alex66

    alex66 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    715
    Jul 23, 2010
    I had the Canon fit Jessops version a few years ago, it was an OK flash did the TTL thing and it had a manual over ride with power setting too. But as with many lower cost flash guns it always felt not well made though but it cost me £15ish so I was not worried about it so much. Now I only have experiance with some of the older Metz units and if the build quality is the same as it was I would go for the Metz even if it was less powerfull. Although I have a couple of compatible guns for my Nikons (again sillt cheep) I would go for one or two of the low cost adjustable units Yongnuo I think of the bay a cheep set of triggers RF602 and a cheep stand and brolly. With that set up yu can do a lot more than with some of the simpler TTL units, there are a lot of tutorials on the web to get you set up. Also as they are low enough trigger voltage you can use them as an old school manual flash in a push. Personally I do not or would not go all out on TTL type flash guns now unless they can do the wireless TTL thing but you can almost buy a complete set of low cost (Chinese) studio strobes for that and the ones I have have taken a battering over the last 5 years.
     
  8. drdtyc

    drdtyc Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Apr 28, 2013
    Tumax has a couple of newer models DPT586AFZ and DPT588AFZ that can do wireless TTL as well as HSS/FP. They are re-badged as Vivitar DF-483 (Canon and Nikon versions only) and Cactus AF50 (Pentax, Canon, Nikon, Sony and Panny/Oly versions).

    http://www.itumax.com/DPT5Series.html

    The ebay price is around $140 - $150.

    I do not need wireless TTL nor HSS/FP for my hobby, though.
     
  9. STR

    STR Mu-43 Veteran

    222
    May 16, 2013
    There's no magic to flashes, they're fairly simply things. You have three basic choices when picking one: power (GN), recycle time, and small size (dictated mainly by the number of batteries). Metz, for their 24 model, picked small size and recycle time. Tumax went for power (GN of 38 vs 24 for the Metz) and recycle time on this model. Nissin went for intermediate power (GN33), fast recycle and intermediate speed.