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studio lights flash but camera doesn't show it (I figured it out)

Discussion in 'Nikon DX DSLR Forum' started by Beth, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. Beth


    Nov 13, 2006
    I'm hoping this is my ignorance and not my camera.

    I have a D50 that I have been using for studio shots with 2 Alien Bees. Never a problem. My camera is linked to the lights with a cord and a Wein hot shoe flash trigger.

    I tried the same setup with my new D80 and I either get a weird half black- half underexposed picture or sometimes it looks as if the flash didn't go off at all (but it is going off).

    I've tried changing shutter speed, using the flash command mode, changing the sync speed. I shoot in manual mode - usually F8 and 1/500.

    Any ideas or do I send it back?
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 15, 2007
  2. Shoot Manual and check the max shutter speed for flash with your camera. I doubt it's 1/500, probably more like 1/250. That's probably it, the half-frame thing is a dead give-away.

    But I could be wrong because I don't own a D80
  3. Beth


    Nov 13, 2006
    Thanks for replying, Woody.

    I've taken it all the way down to 1/60 and still no luck. I'm just so bewildered because I never had this problem with my D50.

    Sometimes it doesn't give me the half-black frame but it never catches the flash. I can unhook from the D80 and use the D50 and everything is fine.
  4. Geez, that's weird.

    I know it's not cool to cross post, but you would probably get more response if you posted the Pro Photography Lighting and Studio Equipment forum. It sure sounds to me like your shutter isn't open when the lights flash... why is the mystery.

    Have you tried using the camera's built-in flash to trigger the ABs? I'd try that just for the heck of it. If that works the problem is probably with your connection. Perhaps the Wein unit isn't compatible with the D80.

    If you don't know how to trigger the ABs with your camera flash PM me and I'll walk you through it over the phone.

    Sorry I can't be of more help.
  5. Beth


    Nov 13, 2006
    Woody, I think it's fixed. I did some more research in the manual and found a setting called auto FP that needed to be turned on so that it will automatically sync with shutter speeds above 1/200. My D50 doesn't have that.

    It stinks to be so unskilled :( 

    Thanks so much for taking the time to try and help me figure it out.
  6. Yea... there was something weird like that with my D100 too. Being "unskilled" has nothing to do with it... these cameras use complex gadgetry to simplify their operation.

    Anyway, glad you figured it out... amazing things those manuals.
  7. mugman


    Dec 2, 2006
    Hmm, I would have thought if using 1/60 sec you wouldn't have to use any special flash mode :Confused:

    You sure that's all you changed?
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