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550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 06:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Problem: I'm shooting a 10D in Manual Mode with an ST-E2 (IR transmitter) mounted on the shoe. I'm using a 550EX slaved and in Manual Mode as a backlight source and, with its flash, to optically fire one or two monolights. (Note: I cover 4 of the 5 contacts on the camera's shoe to disable the ST-E2's pre-flash.)

Everything works fine until i want to use a shutter speed faster than 1/100.

Here's what I'm doing: I set the 550EX to High-Speed Synch (simultaneously depressing the "+" and "-" buttons), then I switch the 550 to Slave and set it to "M" by holding down the "Mode" button. The High-Speed synch icon remains evident on the LCD. I also depress the ST-E2's High-Speed synch button and it's indicator light lights. The camera is set to "M" but the flash still will not synch at shutter speeds above 1/100...

...and I've been to the manuals but I still can't figure the darn problem out!

Help and/or suggestions are appreciated cuz I'm starting to think I'm going to have forget about using the ST-E2 as a transmitter and break down get myself either a Wein IR or a PocketWizard Radio kit or similar. Which also will probly mean my 550 will be rendered effectively useless as a "porty" for a lot of location work.
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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 06:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm pretty sure you won't be able to do that without the flash being able to talk to the camera. As you know, covering those terminals prevents that. Just going from memory here but I believe that the reason you can use a shutter speed over 1/200 is because the flash fires multiple times that correspond to the position of the shutter blades.

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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 07:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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yeah, i'm thinking you're right. disabling the ETTL pre-flash is probly also disabling the high-speed synch capapability, even tho there's no setting on the camera itself that puts anything into high-synch mode.
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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 08:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If your main concern is disabling the pre-flash you can do that with custom function 3 (I think, or #2) in the flash itself. It changes it from E-TTL to TTL.

Paul
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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 08:30 PM   #5 (permalink)
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thanks, paul. but since there's no way to disable pre=flash on the ST-E2, its still gonna send out a pre-flash IR beam which is gonna sometimes trip the optical slave on the monolights which then won't synch.

the ST-E2 is a pathetic and miserable IR transmitter as IR transmitters go. Its range is quite limited and the line-of-sight is very narrow. but if i do what you suggest, i *know* the freakin ST-E2 is suddenly going to get more efficient at triggering the monolights, albeit they'll be triggered by the pre-flash and they'll be effectively rendered useless.

sometimes ya can't win for tryin'!
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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 09:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Yeah, you're right. I remember now. Several years ago I tried to use my ST-E2 to trigger my studio strobes.

One other thing I recall doing. I put a couple of layers of an ND filter over a slave so it would ignore the pre-flash which is 1/10th power. Can't recall why I did that but it worked. I tried every which way to use my 550's as studio lights just because I'm hard-headed. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]

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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 09:53 PM   #7 (permalink)
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[ QUOTE ]
I tried every which way to use my 550's as studio lights just because I'm hard-headed.

[/ QUOTE ]

i know whatcha mean. i'm a member of the hard headed club too.... in fact, i think i'm the grand high exalted mystic ruler of my local chapter.

plus maybe we try hard to use them cuz they ain't exactly cheap!
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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-16-2005, 10:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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This may be a dumb question, but if it works below 1/100 why go above?

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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-17-2005, 01:18 AM   #9 (permalink)
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well, i think these might be a few reasons: i might want to stop some action (which ain't gonna get stopped at 1/100 or below); it gives me more control of DOF, i.e., by varying the shutter speed to get to an aperture i want to shoot at (rather than maybe having to change the ISO cuz i'm stuck at 1/100 or below); i might be shooting exterior daylight where there's a lot of bright ambient and i want to use fill flash (to knock out some shadows), and i might want to do this without going to small apertures (cuz i still might want short DOF).

i guess its all about having options.
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Re: 550EX, Canon 10D, and High-Speed Synch
Old 02-17-2005, 07:48 AM   #10 (permalink)
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All good and valid reasons... but if you are using non-speedlights ( external mono lights) the fastest you can go is 1/200 anyway ( the 10D external sync speed)

As for stopping action... your flash fires at 1/500 to 1/3000 of a second.. your action will be stopped no matter what shutter speed you use. You just have to worry about ambient vs flash light... if your flash is f11 and your ambient is f2, very little of the ambient will be registered

If you are working in a (reasonably) low ambient light situation with flash, your shutter speed doesn't matter... it doesn't effect DOF ( f11 at 1/30 will be f 11 at 1/100)... when you have a lot of ambient light you will just have to turn up the flash to get above it.

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