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FORUMS General Gear Talk Flash and Studio Lighting 
Thread started 27 Jun 2012 (Wednesday) 22:37
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OK, these Speedlites SUCK!

 
JLP520
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Jun 27, 2012 22:37 |  #1

Bought a couple of 430EX II's a few days back (thought the portability factor would be worth it)...Mixed 'em up with the Alien Bee 800's after an intensive photo shoot of 200+ shots I got a less than a 20% consistency in the lighting of the Speedlites...But the Bees were spot on EVERY time...even when being used as an optical slave....When they fired they were perfect...But 20% is totally unacceptable...Those cheap a$$ canon flashes will be returned tomorrow and 2 more Bees will be added to the growing hive...Done ranting now...Thanks for being on the other end of my **** session. :p


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MetalRain
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Jun 27, 2012 22:50 |  #2

Do you understand the correct usage of the 430's and that they are two totally different types of flashes? What do you mean 20% consistency? Like, 20% of the time they fired?


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JLP520
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Jun 27, 2012 23:01 as a reply to  @ MetalRain's post |  #3

Yep...20% firing...and even less of the time at the settings set for them. What do you mean "correct usage"...You set... they should work...they don't.


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questionmarc
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Jun 27, 2012 23:28 |  #4

if you opitically triggered them did you make sure that the sensors were facing you?

and it really depends if you are using them outside or indside

if you had triggers that would help

and you need to remember that 430's do not produce the same flash duration as the the AB - they will take more time to recycle

im sure it's just you needing to learn how to use both at once


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JLP520
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Jun 27, 2012 23:41 as a reply to  @ questionmarc's post |  #5

Fired (at least tried to) with the 7D pop up in manual A:B mode both speedlites set at 1/2 power...sometimes they fired...most times they didn't. Even when they did fire most shots were very underexposed due to not firing at the right power...when they did work, the light was perfect...Just not consistent ...and I was not rapid firing either... several seconds between shots...But the Bees fired every time...???


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Jun 28, 2012 00:03 |  #6

Were you in ETTL mode?


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Jun 28, 2012 00:16 |  #7

I presume the 430EXs were powered with AA alkaline cells, in which case the FLASH RECYCLE time is going to be 3 sec., while the AC powered studio lights recycle in 1 sec. So if you fire too rapidly, the AB800 will fire but the 430EXs would not be ready to respond.

[edit: Oops. I just read a later followup post, "I was not rapid firing either... several seconds between shots"]


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emdzey01
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Jun 28, 2012 00:56 |  #8

You say you're in A:B mode (which is a speedlite ratio mode) but you say you're firing at 1/2 power? I don't get it.

Would you care to share your whole setup (what triggers for the Bees, what setting on the camera and on the flash, etc). We might be able to help you figure out the problem instead of blaming the equipment. If the camera position and flash position doesnt change and the off-camera speedlights don't fire consistently even with several seconds of recycling, there has to be a setting that needs to be addressed.


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drvnbysound
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Jun 28, 2012 07:20 |  #9

emdzey01 wrote in post #14642644 (external link)
You say you're in A:B mode (which is a speedlite ratio mode) but you say you're firing at 1/2 power? I don't get it.

Would you care to share your whole setup (what triggers for the Bees, what setting on the camera and on the flash, etc). We might be able to help you figure out the problem instead of blaming the equipment. If the camera position and flash position doesnt change and the off-camera speedlights don't fire consistently even with several seconds of recycling, there has to be a setting that needs to be addressed.

+1. There seems to be some conflicting information... if the OP is using the popup from the 7D, wouldn't the AB's be firing during the pre-flash of the popup??

There is some good information on the Canon optical system here: https://photography-on-the.net …/showthread.php​?t=1199306

I only use Speedlites, and while I don't use the Canon optical system often, I've never had an issue with the firing with the optical system or radio triggers... The only time I've had a 'misfire' was when the batteries in the flash were dead.


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amirg
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Jun 28, 2012 08:56 as a reply to  @ drvnbysound's post |  #10

I have never had a misfire with speedlites but then again I don't use Canon's IR wireless systems that much. Even for indoors shooting I much prefer radio triggers.


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OneyedJack
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Jun 28, 2012 16:56 |  #11

Guessing here.....

I suppose the OP could be firing the AB with a PC cord (to prevent the optical slave from responding to the pop up flash pre fires) and triggering the speedlites with the pop-up flash. My guess is the pop up flash is sometimes being over-powered when the AB fires.

The only way I see this combination working reliably is to use radio triggers or to use optical slaves on the speedlites.


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msowsun
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Jun 28, 2012 17:05 |  #12

Mixing two different types of lighting systems can be tricky. Sounds like user error to me. Tell us more about how you triggered the Canon 430EX's and how you triggered the AB's.

If you used an optical trigger to fire the AB's, the 7D pop-up flash(Canon wireless system), will cause any other optical trigger to fire at the wrong time. That will also cause problems with the Canon wireless commands.


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chrisandaivi
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Jun 28, 2012 17:06 |  #13

user error, have you read the manual?


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Jun 28, 2012 17:11 |  #14

Use good quality rechargeable batteries, the speedlights suck lots of juice. Regular alkaline will wear down quickly increasing the recycle time to 5 or more seconds very quickly.


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Jun 28, 2012 17:27 |  #15

facepalm*


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