I have been using my Nikon SB800 on my D40 for a while. these
days when I have used both for a while, the camera stops
communicating with the flash. When I shoot in auto mode,
instead of the SB800 going off, the built in flash pops up. I
have cleaned the contacts and that does not help. If I leave
both off for a while and resume shooting, they both
communicate but will loose that after somw time.
I wonder if anyone has encountered this and how it was
resolved. I need any suggestions or solutions.
Just a guess, but the batteries get worn out after a time of use? My SB600 does this and other weird actions when batteries are low. If I put it down for a while and come back to it, all is well, then it starts acting up again. All is resolved if I put fresh batteries in. My SB800's don't do this.
Thanks for your contributions. My SB800 is always properly seated in the hotshoe and locked. I use Alkaline batteries and a fresh set does not help when this problem starts. When I leave both camera and flash in off position for a while, the come up without issues but resume after a while.
I had seen a post somewhere that suggested cleaning the contacts. I did that but did that after I had had both camera and flash off for a while. The problem returned after a while, meaning that it was not contact problem. My big concerb is that in the waiting time, I'd have missed some good shots.
I wonder if anyone else has encountered this and how he got round it.
If you're seeing this shutdown after the SB800 has seen some rapid use, enough to really heat up the internal circuits, it could be thermal shutdown. Cooling down some would then allow normal operation again.
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The side rails that hold the SB-900/800/700/600/400 down are some times lose and with a bump could cause the flash to move. You may need to have these rails bent down a little or use a metal shim to make a tighter contact.
One of the 3 outer contacts is the communication pin that indicates to the camera that there is an active Speedlight mounted. So if your pop-up raises when a flash is seated, either the flash has shut down or the contact to this pin has been broken.
You might want to touch the Speedlight to see if it hot or open the battery compartment and see if the batteries are hot. If they are hot, you are probably having a thermal shut down. Adding a fifth battery or power pack increases the chances of overheating the SB-800.