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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #1
especht
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Default 580EX II Recycle Time

Hello!

I recently purchased a 580EX II for my 50D and would like to primarily use it for fill flash in outdoor portraits.

When I first begin shooting, the flash fires very consistently and the recycle time is great. No waiting time is required between shots. After about 50 photos, the recycle time becomes very noticeable, approximately 4-6 seconds. After 100 shots, it is really noticeable.

I am using the Nimh batteries that came with the flash and bougt 8 additional Nimh batteries for when the recycle time becomes very slow. After switching batteries, I experience the same thing as mentioned above.

After consulting with my manuals and other specifications, I saw that I should be getting approximately 400 photos per battery life.

Is there a certain setup on the 580 that could give me faster recycle time? Is there batteries that could give me faster recycle time? Any help or insight would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance!
Eric
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #2
Firotechnics
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

It all depends on what batteries your using there is a test thread some where but i can't seem to find it. I know someone else will post the link. To keep your recycle time up you could by the external battery pack, or bump up your iso and shoot at a lower flash power.
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #3
gonzogolf
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

That battery life estimate is also loosely based on type of use. If you are shooting in low ambient light your flash is putting out more light and probably using the focus assist beam more which would drain the batteries quicker than using it as fill on a cloudy day. Try this, get yourself a set of lithium batteries, do a shoot similar to those you tested the nimh batteries with. If the lithium drain similarly then you might have a flash issue. If not, you might consider changing your battery setup. Keep in mind that NIMH batteries dont store well, they lose charge fairly rapidly stored unused. Also all NIMH batteries are not created equal, a lot of bargain brands are rate their potential much higher than it is.
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #4
bbvdm
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

You mention "no waiting time is required between shots". Are you constantly shooting with flash? If so, the flash will heat up and automatically slow down. Eventually, it will stop altogether. The manual states you should let the flash rest after so many consecutive shots.
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #5
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

This may help:

http://photography-on-the.net/forum/...d.php?t=677074
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #6
especht
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

Quote:
Originally Posted by bbvdm View Post
You mention "no waiting time is required between shots". Are you constantly shooting with flash?
It is pretty steady shooting. There is a line of individuals waiting to get their photo taken. I try to take two photos of each as they come through the line. At the beginning of the shoot, the recycle time was working great. After about 75 shots, I was waiting a little longer. Then it got progressively longer as the shoot went on.
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #7
gonzogolf
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

Quote:
Originally Posted by especht View Post
It is pretty steady shooting. There is a line of individuals waiting to get their photo taken. I try to take two photos of each as they come through the line. At the beginning of the shoot, the recycle time was working great. After about 75 shots, I was waiting a little longer. Then it got progressively longer as the shoot went on.

Then you are just wearing your batteries down.
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Old 25th of August 2009 (Tue)   #8
[Hyuni]
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

I just popped close to 300 shots with my 580EXII this past weekend for a photoshoot with my eneloops that weren't fully charged (completely forgot to charge them before shoot) but I was amazed to see they had survived the shoot in style!

I didn't notice any long recycle times and they are still going strong now, without recharge! (better charge them tonight though, just in case)

btw, I shot ETTL and there was decent, but not enough adequate light.
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #9
especht
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

Could somebody please share how to setup the 580 for flash fill use? I do not really need a bright flash, but rather a setup that provides enough flash for filling in shadows on the face (for example, shadows created by a hat).
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #10
lefturn99
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

One way to extend your flash life is to boost the ISO a little.

I'm still learning about ETTL II but I think I read that if you use Av mode it will default to fill. If not, decrease the flash exposure compensation. The less light, the longer the batteries will last.
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #11
especht
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

Quote:
Originally Posted by lefturn99 View Post
One way to extend your flash life is to boost the ISO a little.

I'm still learning about ETTL II but I think I read that if you use Av mode it will default to fill. If not, decrease the flash exposure compensation. The less light, the longer the batteries will last.
Great, thanks a lot!
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #12
gonzogolf
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

Quote:
Originally Posted by lefturn99 View Post
One way to extend your flash life is to boost the ISO a little.

I'm still learning about ETTL II but I think I read that if you use Av mode it will default to fill. If not, decrease the flash exposure compensation. The less light, the longer the batteries will last.
Don't decrease the flash exposure compensation at the expense of exposing the image properly just to save batteries. What would be the point in that?
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #13
lefturn99
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzogolf View Post
Don't decrease the flash exposure compensation at the expense of exposing the image properly just to save batteries. What would be the point in that?
He was also asking about using the flash for fill. I was addressing that. Of course I was not suggesting making the batteries last longer by underexposing the image.
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #14
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

I had similar problem but not to tune of 50 shots (seems awfully low) - I'm guessing, the type of battery you are using plus lighting conditions will have a big affect. I use 2700mAH rechargeables. Today, I also use Canon's battery pack - now I just have to be careful to not overheat/burnout flash.
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Old 26th of August 2009 (Wed)   #15
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Default Re: 580EX II Recycle Time

ISO100/F8 will wear the batteries down quickly. Raise your iso, open up the lens, and use the shutter speed to limit ambient light entering the flash.

Get a CP-E4 battery pack if you need faster recharge speeds, but be careful not to burn out the flash head - though it has protection. Get a good battery charger and some of the Powerex cells linked from that page on amazon if you want good batteries, or get some of the low discharge cells if they suit you better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by especht View Post
Could somebody please share how to setup the 580 for flash fill use? I do not really need a bright flash, but rather a setup that provides enough flash for filling in shadows on the face (for example, shadows created by a hat).

Av mode, FEC to -1 or 0.
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