Nikon CLS and a cheap TTL slave flash!

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Jun 15, 2011
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But you can trigger them through CLS and the built in on camera flash?

Yes. Here is an article that talks about this very subject: http://dpanswers.com/content/nikon_flash_models.php

I believe there have even been some additional Yongnuo flashes released recently that are compatible with Nikon CLS as well. As remote flashes, not sure if any would work as commander flashes. I believe the YN550EX is one of the new ones. Not sure what others. Lately it seems Yongnuo is introducing a new flash or trigger every other day! Tough to keep up with all of them as they have similar sounding model numbers and they're all the way over in China. Hard to get any concrete info on what does what and so on. I think eBay and Amazon have been the typical places to find these flashes for sale. I would say do your research before buying and be sure to be thorough! Once you are narrowed down to a flash or two you're mulling over, check YouTube and other online forums/sites for hands on reviews! Good luck. Be sure and keep us posted. My flashes are set to arrive this week!
 
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Yes. Here is an article that talks about this very subject: http://dpanswers.com/content/nikon_flash_models.php

I believe there have even been some additional Yongnuo flashes released recently that are compatible with Nikon CLS as well. As remote flashes, not sure if any would work as commander flashes. I believe the YN550EX is one of the new ones. Not sure what others. Lately it seems Yongnuo is introducing a new flash or trigger every other day! Tough to keep up with all of them as they have similar sounding model numbers and they're all the way over in China. Hard to get any concrete info on what does what and so on. I think eBay and Amazon have been the typical places to find these flashes for sale. I would say do your research before buying and be sure to be thorough! Once you are narrowed down to a flash or two you're mulling over, check YouTube and other online forums/sites for hands on reviews! Good luck. Be sure and keep us posted. My flashes are set to arrive this week!
Thanks so much. This is helpful. Please keep us posted as to how you like yours!
 
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Wow. Awesome article. I probably should have ordered the YN565Ex. But at the time I was thinking how I'd never need to put them "on camera". I didn't consider the fact that the YN560EX also won't work (TTL anyway) on a radio trigger such as the Phottix Odin or PW flex.
Don't forget, "on camera" also refers to corded off camera in situations such as: mounted above on a flash frame, hand held in specific angles, part of a macro lighting rig, and most importantly inside a small softbox where the infrared signal can't be picked up.
 
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The YN-560EX's arrived today! I'm happy to report they are everything I hoped they would be.

I went ahead and threw my SB-910 on the D3 in "commander" mode and I set my SB-600 to group A and each of the two YN-560EX's to groups B and C. I set them each on their stands, side by side, and started shooting against a reflective wall to observe the flash patterns.

The results were outstanding. All the flashes worked together wonderfully. I first set them all on TTL and did various shots adjusting EV +/- for each group intermittently. Then I tried alternating each individual group to "off" to ensure the flashes would NOT fire when they aren't supposed to. I wrapped up by setting all my groups to manual and adjusting the output for each flash/group individually. I examined my shots to verify they were all doing what I was telling them to.... Results: 100% accuracy!

I'm pretty stoked now. Can't wait to set these up at a wedding reception or do some location portraits soon to really put then through the paces. Now I'm looking forward to the incoming SU-800 so I won't have to "sacrifice" the SB-910 as commander anymore!
 
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You're right on with that.

I would actually like to own a Lumopro flash. I've thought about it many times and I even contacted MPEX (Lumopro retailer) once and asked for a coupon or discount code. But they will not budge on that price. So, consequently, every time I'm close to trying one of theirs to see what all the hype is about, I wind up with more Yongnuo flashes because, to me it's a PROVEN winner, and I can buy 2-3 units to Lumopro's 1!

Lumopro's newest, the LP180 is $200! That's a simple manual flash that, on paper, is not even as feature-packed as the YN-560ii ($65). The OTHER widely known pure manual flash has always been the Vivitar 285. While not quite AS robust as they used to be they're still very solid performers and priced well under a $100.

If Lumopro ever wants a bigger share of the market they're gonna have to come down to earth on that price, or allow more than one single retailer to sell them in the US!
I have always bought used and have 2 SB800's and 2 Vivitar 285 HV's. It has been fun using CLS as main and fill lighting with the Nikon flashes and using the 285's with zebra flash optical slaves as background and/or rim lighting. Of course the the 285's have to be manually set, but they were cheap and work well. In a controlled environment of course.
 
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I have always bought used and have 2 SB800's and 2 Vivitar 285 HV's. It has been fun using CLS as main and fill lighting with the Nikon flashes and using the 285's with zebra flash optical slaves as background and/or rim lighting. Of course the the 285's have to be manually set, but they were cheap and work well. In a controlled environment of course.

I've used basically the same set up you described before. Works well if you're the only photographer present. The problem is at a wedding reception you end up with everyone else triggering your slave flashes with their cameras. Frustrating and quite unacceptable from a professional standpoint.

Also, these YN-560EX flashes are just as dirt cheap as the Vivitar 285HV's! I got em for $81 a piece with free shipping. And they're perfect for remote CLS flashes. Any other operation (besides your Nikon or Canon AWL) on these flashes is manual. Nonetheless they're a great value!
 
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Let's say I wanted to trigger my off camera sb800 with the on camera flash in commander mode. If I had a Yongnuo 560 could it be set to ignore the pre flash and fire the same time as the Sb800. I have an fl-36 Olympus flash that works in slave mode, but using my on camera flash as the trigger it fires on the preflash and not with my sb800. I ordered the LumoPro hot shoe translator kit to fire my sb800, so I can use my Olympus flash but it hasn't arrived yet.
 
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Let's say I wanted to trigger my off camera sb800 with the on camera flash in commander mode. If I had a Yongnuo 560 could it be set to ignore the pre flash and fire the same time as the Sb800. I have an fl-36 Olympus flash that works in slave mode, but using my on camera flash as the trigger it fires on the preflash and not with my sb800. I ordered the LumoPro hot shoe translator kit to fire my sb800, so I can use my Olympus flash but it hasn't arrived yet.

First off there are several "560" Yongnuos. And yes they ALL can be set to ignore pre-flashes and used manually that way (such as "in addition" to your CLS system).

The plain original YN-560, the YN-560ii and the YN-560iii.... They're all plain manual flashes (with various features like LCD screen etc).

The "YN-560EX" though has a TTL function as well. So not only can it be used as a manual slave flash (and it CAN ignore preflash)... It also can be used as "part of" your CLS. You can assign it a channel number and a group in the flash menu, and it will operate just exactly like your SB-800 does when you use your camera's built in flash as a commander.
 
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I've used basically the same set up you described before. Works well if you're the only photographer present. The problem is at a wedding reception you end up with everyone else triggering your slave flashes with their cameras. Frustrating and quite unacceptable from a professional standpoint.

Also, these YN-560EX flashes are just as dirt cheap as the Vivitar 285HV's! I got em for $81 a piece with free shipping. And they're perfect for remote CLS flashes. Any other operation (besides your Nikon or Canon AWL) on these flashes is manual. Nonetheless they're a great value!
I gotta agree with someone else setting off your flashes and $81 each I gotta check that out. You ordering from China? Any problems?
 
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I gotta agree with someone else setting off your flashes and $81 each I gotta check that out. You ordering from China? Any problems?

Yeah, I ordered on eBay from seller "jianisi-equipment". They came from China but they arrived pretty fast. I had to put in a "make offer" bid to get that price but that was after talking to the seller. They said $81 each (2 for $162) was the lowest they'd go. Good luck!
 
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First off there are several "560" Yongnuos. And yes they ALL can be set to ignore pre-flashes and used manually that way (such as "in addition" to your CLS system).

The plain original YN-560, the YN-560ii and the YN-560iii.... They're all plain manual flashes (with various features like LCD screen etc).

The "YN-560EX" though has a TTL function as well. So not only can it be used as a manual slave flash (and it CAN ignore preflash)... It also can be used as "part of" your CLS. You can assign it a channel number and a group in the flash menu, and it will operate just exactly like your SB-800 does when you use your camera's built in flash as a commander.
Thank you so much. Can you adjust their power through CLS using the menu on the camera?
 
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Nikon for the demands of the paid professional. Yongnuos for the rest-of-us. I like to make Nikon Yenvious whenever possible. :smuggrin:

I know plenty of professionals who rely on Yongnuo flashes and triggers in their business. I shoot professionally and I've used Yongnuo flashes for lots of weddings and portrait sessions!

But I agree, everyone should have at least one dedicated flash that's the same name brand as their system. Nikon for Nikon shooters, Canon for Canon shooters etc. If nothing else it gives you a reference point to work from to ensure all your third party flashes operate correctly. And plus you know can alway rely on your dedicated Nikon flash if all else fails!
 
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Let me add to this discussion...I have two YN560EX's and one SB800, and, I have to tell you, the 560EX's get all the work on remote trigger strobist style shoots...they have been rock solid in a year's worth of use, and I am recommending them to all my photographer friends who ask...
 
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Let me add to this discussion...I have two YN560EX's and one SB800, and, I have to tell you, the 560EX's get all the work on remote trigger strobist style shoots...they have been rock solid in a year's worth of use, and I am recommending them to all my photographer friends who ask...

I totally agree. I've been putting mine thru the paces as well lately and they're solid performers for what they cost!

The ONLY thing I might have done differently would have been to spend the additional $15 to $20 per unit and gotten the 565EX 's instead. That way if I ever decide to go "RF" wireless TTL, such as with YN-622n or Phottix Oden etc I'd still have full TTL function. As it is these flashes are only TTL when used as remote flashes in Nikon or Canon's advanced wireless lighting (AWL) systems.
 
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