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flash sync remotes

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    21 Feb 2010 - 10:13 AM

    hi all, whats the up and up on camera sync coards verses remote syncs? ebay have a few on that are 2.4 gigahertze etc.. and the odd one that'll trigger via the flash or the radio?(shutter/flash remote).

    any bads i should be aware of or places to buy etc...tight budget.

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    AnthonyM  9388 forum posts United States2 Constructive Critique Points
    21 Feb 2010 - 3:16 PM

    Coards - 100% reliable until they break. Limited length. Hazard of tripping over them.
    IR - limited distance. Ambient light can interfere with communication. Generally line-of-sight.
    Flash Sync - same issues as IR. But probably the cheapest as most flash have this built in.
    Radio - great range. Works through walls and around corners. Generally Expensive.

    You're on a tight budget, so maybe this won't apply, but I would be wary of Elinchrom Skyport remotes. They are cheaper than PocketWizards, but a lot more then the Chinese eBay remotes.

    The product is not that great (about on par with Chinese eBay remotes that you can get for 1/10th the price of the Skyports). Also, Elichrom as a company seems to have really gone downhill with regards to products and support.

    Spent four+ months to resolve an issue when I first got them (sometimes waited four weeks for s response), eventually got blown off with the issue not resolved.
    Less than two years later they died. Elinchrom initially refused to repair under warranty -- said they had one year warranty. After explaining that their own documentation included with the remotes states two years, they still wanted proof and requested that I FAX their own document back to them!

    Eventually, they agreed, but six weeks later I received my "repaired" remotes. Now they would not even turn on!

    So again, I await Elinchrom to deal with the problem. (had issues with their strobes as well)
    Support can be arrogant, snobbish and unwilling to help.

    Anyway, the Cactus brand of remotes are decent for the price.
    If you do not need long distance capability (>10-20 meters) I think they work well.

    cameracat  108578 forum posts Norfolk Island61 Constructive Critique Points
    21 Feb 2010 - 3:17 PM

    Bottom line, Sync cables are messy, There is always a danger of getting tangled up in them and pulling your light stand/flashgun set up over.

    Then there is the length thing, Just how long a cable do buy....!

    Using a flash to fire another flash relies on line of sight between the triggering flash and the slave, Works well in a room where even bounced light will trigger the slave.

    However the flash types can become unreliable in daylight/outdoor situations.

    The RF remotes are probably the best of all, No cables, No reliance on line of sight, No problems with ambient light conditions.

    The eBay ones are not bad at all, Specially for the price, Just make sure that if your looking to trigger a " Speedlight/Flashgun " You get the sort that have a " Hotshoe " mount, Some of them are flashgun brand specific, Some just fire of the centre pin.

    EDIT:Ooppss, Seems Anthony beat me to it.....Sad

    Quote: I would be wary of Elinchrom Skyport

    I'd second that, Although we have Elinchrom Skyports, And so far they have been very reliable, I'm not overly impressed with the biuld quality, That said they where loads cheaper than " Pocket Wizards " However if I was in the market for expensive remotes today, I'd probably have a close look at " Bowens Units " .

    That said I have a set of cheap eBay remotes, Kept as back-up for the Skyports, To date I can't fault them, As they always work when tested, But as yet they have not done a great deal of work.

    Last Modified By cameracat at 21 Feb 2010 - 3:25 PM
    21 Feb 2010 - 11:40 PM

    hmmm thank you guys...thoughts i'd had about a cord etc, ty.

    22 Feb 2010 - 12:41 AM

    hmm intresting........


    AnthonyM  9388 forum posts United States2 Constructive Critique Points
    23 Feb 2010 - 1:29 AM

    Just to add my most recent development...

    Elinchrom returned my receiver repaired.
    Unfortunately they lost my transmitter.

    So I now await their third attempt to get me a working set of remotes.

    I've been communicating directly with the director of customer service, and she was to be following up with the progress personally.

    What a dung-heap of a company.

    1 Mar 2010 - 12:41 PM

    it's trange that even though total quolity managment has been in play for 20 years (and exselling) companies still fail to be of any use......weird. ok they get one sale, but **** they lose something like 16 odd from one bad item.(and those never return so theyre giving their biznes away).

    in a word...twats! dont give um your money.

    1 Mar 2010 - 12:58 PM

    Cheapy ebay jobs work well for me - I keep breaking them (my fault) but they're so cheap I always have spare units.

    Just bought a set of smaller, lower profile ones which arrived not working Sad The ones I'd been using up until now were the tall ones with a hinged bracket. By the time you put a flash, a brolly bracket and a brolly on top, you're pretty much guaranteed the receiver's hinged bracket will fail....

    Thus the low profile units - 30 delivered (+ 5 to return non-working transmitter, + two weeks wait for replacement....).

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