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antonello
14th of January 2008 (Mon), 23:59
I had this flash for a quick test and I ended up buying one.
It's not an AUTO Thyristor flash but canon dedicated, so basically E-TTL (and manual of course).
What made me buy it was the clarity and speed. The light is more uniform than the 580II at the corners in particular. Close ups are fine, where the 580II sometimes overexposes (ghost faces).
It's smaller than the 580 but still substantial, but much lighter (you can actually feel the difference right away).

No problem with the exposures but the build is all "plastic fantastic". Plus the LCD is dark (you can barely read the menu, and the text is also small). Like all the other metz you can select the "extended" zoom range, forcing the head to read 35mm when it's actually 50mm. But with this new 48 I can actually see the advantages. (more uniform light at the corners).

It's also quite powerful GN 48 and when bounced the recycling is very good . It comes with the bouncing card as well.

I'll post pictures and more notes later on, since I just got it.

from the first shots it looks as good as the 580II and the Metz 58, very close to the bigger ones also in terms of power bouncing 90 degrees off the ceiling.

Again the menu is difficult to read (and also difficult to understand being the text so small and dark) but the most important feature (+/- FEC) can be adjusted with two buttons (+ and -) always ON and ready. Which is great. But still the value will be difficult to read...

It's a good value for a pretty good flash. I'll keep it and maybe replace the 580II with it.

potnuser
15th of January 2008 (Tue), 19:50
you may want to check out this article http://photo.greenlightstreet.com/www/index.php?/publisher/articleview/frmArticleID/2/
probable head locking issues when used with a diffuser.

antonello
15th of January 2008 (Tue), 23:20
the head moves easily (OK too easily LOL) , I see the point the reviewer is making and it's all true but it won't be a problem after all in my opinion. It will hold a diffuser. It's also true that the head of the Metz 58 got "loose" a bit more just after a couple of months use so in the long run it may become a problem.

The LCD gets on my nerves actually. I need glasses to read it. And my sight is just fine LOL

Another issue is the choice that Metz made to have the user pressing two buttons simultaneously to select the main menu: it's a pain and most of the time won't work with the risk to change the +/- EV instead.

I had a friend's 430EX for a quick comparison and I can confirm that the Metz is indeed more powerful but it's bigger (the head of the Metz is a little bigger but the body is almost as big as the 580EXII)

The batteries have a red ring where the plus supposed to go, and that's nice. But changing the batteries won't be as easy as the canons: two batteries are difficult to come out because the door will keep them from sliding) and you need to help'em with something. Another bad design.

http://www.imagingphotographics.com/metz_red_battery.jpg

But the pictures are great. Maybe (maybe) that's the most important thing to consider, after all?

I still believe that it's a better flash compared to the 430
. But the 430 is better built, no doubt about it. The Metz has lots of "good intentions" but the built is all plastic (the canons are made of plastic too, but of better quality).

side by side against the canon 580II
http://imagingphotographics.com/metz_580.jpg



the AF assist is very small (will only cover the center point) but gets the job done very well.



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nadtz
16th of January 2008 (Wed), 08:06
I've had a metz 54 MZ4 for ~2 years now and have been very happy with it after dealing with canons flashes. Metz just needs to get the SCA update out for the 40d!

antonello
18th of January 2008 (Fri), 05:21
what's wrong with the SCA (3102-m3?) and the 40D?
if Metz will make a 58 with a SCA I'd be very happy : right now I can't use the flash in AUTO and AV because it locks the default shutter speed at 1/250 with my old 1Ds. With the 54 I needed the 3102-m1 for that. But I thought that the 3102-m3 was fine with the 20D/30D and the 40D as well...