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Fovea Gold Member Nikonian since 26th Sep 2002Fri 10-Jun-11 07:11 PM
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"PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"


Colombo, LK
          

Compatibility of the Nikon dedicate PW radios (FlexTT5 & MiniTT1)
with Sekonic light meters with radio triggers seems to be a topic
both PW and Sekonic trying to avoid. Being two products of the same
company they can easily rectify this by coming out with a clear set
of instructions and capabilities. While using a light meter and
triggering via the light meter in CLS/TTL mode is fruitless, setting
the light output manually via an on camera commander like SB800/900
/SU800 or AC3 and triggering the whole lighting rig via the light
meter to take measurements would be super convenient.

With this in mind I browsed the web for hours and finally decided to
buy an RT-32 module for my Sekonic L-758D to convert it to a
L-758DR. I already had recently purchased set of Nikon compatible PW
radios (4 x Flex units and a Mini TT1)

After receiving RT-32 I sat down and played for some time to set up
the whole system and to find out answers to following questions.

My test set up
Nikon SB800 on a PW FlexTT5
Nikon SB600 on a PW FlexTT5
Nikon D300 with SU-800/SB800 attached via a Mini TT1/FlexTT5
Sekonic L-758DR
PocketWizard Utility to make changed to radio specs and channels.

The questions I had,
1. Can L-758 fire the speedlights on FlexTT5?
2. Can L-758 fire the speedlights on FlexTT5 while maintaining
the light output values specified via SU-800/SB800?
3. How to set up the PW radios and speedlights to be fired via
L-758DR while maintaining their maximum capabilities?

Here’s what I’ve found out.

1.Yes, L-758 could fire the SB800 on TT5 provided that,
a. The TT5 was preconfigured to receive the trigger
signal from L-758 via a standard channel. (Standard as opposed to a
Control TL channel)

b. The speedlight on TT5 was in a mode other than the
TTL mode i.e. M/AA/A.

This mode requires manual adjustment of speedlights, and renders the
master unit on top of on camera PW transmitter useless. (Just like
old PWs)


Those two point pretty much answer the second question…….

2. L-758DR cannot fire speedlights on remote TT5s while
maintaining the light output values specified via an on camera
commander.

Once the initial disappointment had faded, behaviour of this whole
rig made sense. But to be absolutely sure I retested the whole
thing, this time with a FlexTT5 between the camera and the
SU-800/SB800.

The rationale for changing the Mini with a TT5 was to make sure that
the transmitter attached to SU-800 had the RECEIVEING capabilities
to receive the firing signal from the Light meter. MiniTT1, being
just a transmitter didn’t have that capability built into it.

Results, as I anticipated were same as that for Mini!

Nikon master units (SU-800/SB800/SB900) are unable to trigger remote
speedlights without directly sitting on and communicating with a
compatible camera except in SU-4 mode. All PW transmitter radios
does, by sliding between a camera and a master unit, is transmitting
the signal via radio waves to a remote PW receivers to fire
speedlights attached to them according to the instruction sent by
the radio attached to the camera and the master unit.

Generation, calculation and relaying of this vital light output
information as far as I can perceive cannot happen without the
camera communicating with a master unit on top of it. This
communication, as I understand happens at the time of shutter
release; meaning, Nikon master unit functions (i.e. light output
information) cannot be generated by triggering via L-758DR, as
L-758DR signal does not activate the shutter release function.

Just to make sure that was the case (and for the fun of it) I changed
the standard receiving channel of the on camera FlexTT5 to match to
L-758DR, and matched the transmission channel of on Camera FlexTT5
to receiving FlexTT5’s receiving channel. These test were repeated
with on camera TT5 and receiver TT5 channels in standard and
controlTL modes, with hot shoe function enabled and disabled, with
same results.

So here are the conclusions…
1.Speedlights on Flex TT5s can be triggered via a compatible
Sekonic Light meters
2. Light output control modes (M,AA,A) via a compatible Nikon
master unit on a compatible Nikon camera CANNOT be activated by
triggering the setup with a Sekonic Light meter.

I don’t think this will ever be achieved without triggering the
shutter release. If Sekonic/PocketWizard can delve into the depth of
Nikons and find a way rectify this or at least to fire the shutter
via the light meter, I’m ready to pay for it.

Since PW FlexTT5 and MiniTT1 has two configuration settings, one can
be configured to work with the light meter and the other can be left
alone to control via a master unit.


How configure the PW FlexTT5 & MiniTT1 to work with light meter

In this example C1 is configured (left alone) to control light output
via a (SU800/SB800/900/AC3)
C2 configured to be fired via a compatible light meter.

1. Start with your light meter – select a channel to trigger
your radios (I’ve selected 32)
2. Now connect remote FlexTT5 to a computer running PW utility



3. Note configuration C1 is selected; in the lower Receive panel select ‘ControlTL for Receive Channel’ (this is the factory default
for C1, leave it alone)

4. Now Select Configuration C2




On the Receive panel deselect the “Use ControlTL for Receive Channel”
check box; this activates the lower drop down menu for using
standard channels and disables the using control channelTL channel
drop down menu.

5. Select the same channel you’ve selected on your light meter (32)
6. Leave alone other settings.
7. Now connect the Transmitter (MiniTT1 or FlexTT5) to your computer



Note configuration C1 is selected and the transmission channels match
the receiving channels of remote FlexTT5 you’ve already configured.

PW MiniTT1 & FlexTT5 radios send two signals at the same time, one in
control TL and another in standard to fire old PWs.

8. Now select configuration C2 on the transmitter



Leave the ControlTL Transmit priority at X-Sync selected if you want
the transmitter to send the ControlTL signal as well, or else
deselect it.

9. Select standard channel from the lower drop down menu to
match the channel of the remote receiver in C2 configuration (same
channel you selected in your light meter)
Now you are configured to use C1 with master Nikon controller and C2
to fire attached speedlights via the light meter.

To fire the attached flash via the light meter in C2 configuration speedlight needs to be set to M mode to control the light output
manually from the speedlight itself.

Hope this information will help those who had the same questions. As
for me I’m happy to have gained to ability fire the flash via the
light meter.
























Regards
Dinil




Struck by Light - Blog & Gallery
Visible Range - Photography & Beyond

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberFri 10-Jun-11 08:37 PM
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#1. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 0


Powder Springs, US
          

Dinil,

This topic really consternates me. We know that iTTL/CLS/CTL are automated metering systems. The camera does the metering. Why do you want to use a light meter?

The instant you introduce the light meter, you are shifting to manual mode and why spend all the money on CTL, if you don't want to use it? As you indicated, you can configure the FlexTTL5 units to behave like PW Plus units. So there you have the manual mode as you want it.

Don't get me wrong, I do use my L-358 to meter my studio setups, but I'm not using CLS/CTL. That defeats the purpose. You either need to go manual or go auto and there's really no practical reason for a light meter in automatic metering modes.

I'm sure that MAC and PW are equally consternated. Once you get your settings right in CTL, you don't need to meter with the Sekonics. For instance I dial -.4 for my key light and -1.4 for my fill light when I want a 3:1 ratio and I get what I want without getting my Sekonic out.

The BEAUTY of CTL is that you don't need a handheld meter when you learn how to use CTL.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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Fovea Gold Member Nikonian since 26th Sep 2002Sat 11-Jun-11 02:18 PM
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#2. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 1


Colombo, LK
          

Hi Scott
I wholeheartedly agree with most of the things you've said!
As I've mentioned in another thread, I never even think of taking the Sekonic out when I'm in TTL/CLS mode. When we ask our cameras to decide the exposure for us there's absolutely nothing to measure manually - so I completely agree.

Having said and agreed with that, I have a slightly different point of view with regards to how the Nikon Master units function and how we can use them, so please don't get consternated and kindly let me explain the method in my madness

Once I do, if you (or anybody else for that matter) feel that I'm missing the point, please feel free to let me know and be kind enough to explain. As you know I'm very new to flash photography!
____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

As we know Nikon on camera master units in manual mode provide us with the capability of changing the light output of remote speedlights by specifying the value on the master unit. It is this particular mode and function that I'm talking about.

When the FlexTT5 is configured the way I have indicated (PW Plus II mode), the on camera master is unable to remotely set the mode or the light output of speedlights on remote FlesTT5, but when the TT5 is configured to work via controlTL channels (with the on camera master on manual mode), power output of the remote units can be specified via the on camera master unit.
The difference is you don't have to walk to each of your remote speedlights to press the buttons to specify the light output.

Now you may ask why I want to do that and mess with a light meter when I can easily change the lighting ratio in iTTL mode via controlTL channels by dialing in values on the master unit as you've explained above.

I'll give you an example....

Let's say my key light is this with an SB800 or couple of SB600s in it, and I'm using a reflector as the fill light; here the only way I can control the fill, and hence the ratio, is by altering the distance of the reflector from the key light and the subject. The only way I can measure this, is by using a light meter. Since there's no speedlight acting as the fill, iTTL cannot do the job for me in this scenario.

Now, if I'm firing my remote FlexTT5 in softbox via a ControlTL channel I can easily set the light output in manual mode via the SU800 on my camera+Mini combo and achieve everything I mentioned above. But I have to fire the shutter to get each and every meter reading. If I don't want to fire the shutter there's no way I can manually set the light output via SU800 (I know it's digital and cost nothing - but when you are learning and experimenting you end up with an "intolerable" number of blank frames)

As the alternative, going PW Plus II mode to fire via Sekonic involves lowering the light stand, opening the softbox, manually setting the flash output (sometimes detaching it to do so) and repositioning everything. If MAC and PW can somehow find a way to store the last specified values in the camera transmitter and transmit them to remote FlexTT5 units by triggering the unit via Sekonic, I think that would be wonderful. If that involves redesigning the RT-32 module to include ControlTL channels, as mentioned before, I'm ready to pay for it.

Regards
Dinil




Struck by Light - Blog & Gallery
Visible Range - Photography & Beyond

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberSat 11-Jun-11 03:52 PM
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#3. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 2


Powder Springs, US
          

Hi Dinil,

>
>As we know Nikon on camera master units in manual mode
>provide us with the capability of changing the light output of
>remote speedlights by specifying the value on the master
>unit
. It is this particular mode and function that I'm
>talking about.
>
>When the FlexTT5 is configured the way I have indicated (PW
>Plus II mode), the on camera master is unable to remotely set
>the mode or the light output of speedlights on remote FlesTT5,
>but when the TT5 is configured to work via controlTL channels
>(with the on camera master on manual mode), power output of
>the remote units can be specified via the on camera master
>unit.
>The difference is you don't have to walk to each of your
>remote speedlights to press the buttons to specify the light
>output.

In practice, I don't see the difference between dialing in -1 compensation or 1/2 power, so I am happy staying in iTTL mode, especially if you are flying your equipment high.

>Now you may ask why I want to do that and mess with a light
>meter when I can easily change the lighting ratio in iTTL mode
>via controlTL channels by dialing in values on the master unit
>as you've explained above.
>
>I'll give you an example....
>
>Let's say my key light is
>this
>with an SB800 or couple of SB600s in it, and I'm using a
>reflector as the fill light; here the only way I can control
>the fill, and hence the ratio, is by altering the distance of
>the reflector from the key light and the subject. The only way
>I can measure this, is by using a light meter. Since there's
>no speedlight acting as the fill, iTTL cannot do the job for
>me in this scenario.

Actually, a calibration target is probably more accurate than a light meter. When you face it towards the reflector, it can be positioned so as not to see the light that is illuminating the reflector. Reflectors are kind of voodoo anyway, because metering them will meter some of the contributing light, unless you know of a way to block the source light from the meter without blocking it from the reflector. I think the target would be more accurate by knife edging it to the source light.

>Now, if I'm firing my remote FlexTT5 in softbox via a
>ControlTL channel I can easily set the light output in
>manual mode via the SU800 on my camera+Mini combo and
>achieve everything I mentioned above. But I have to fire the
>shutter to get each and every meter reading. If I don't want
>to fire the shutter there's no way I can manually set the
>light output via SU800 (I know it's digital and cost nothing -
>but when you are learning and experimenting you end up with an
>"intolerable" number of blank frames)

That's why I don't understand why you don't stick with iTTL and dialing in compensation. It gets you in the ballpark and minimizes adjustments. OTOH, in manual mode, light meter or not, you need to come up with an initial setting based on the guide number. If you don't, you will be making a lot of adjustments.

>As the alternative, going PW Plus II mode to fire via Sekonic
>involves lowering the light stand, opening the softbox,
>manually setting the flash output (sometimes detaching it to
>do so) and repositioning everything. If MAC and PW can somehow
>find a way to store the last specified values in the camera
>transmitter and transmit them to remote FlexTT5 units by
>triggering the unit via Sekonic, I think that would be
>wonderful. If that involves redesigning the RT-32 module to
>include ControlTL channels, as mentioned before, I'm ready to
>pay for it.
>

That's why I'd stick to iTTL, or you could get a softbox where the speedlight is outside. I think the Lastolites are like that.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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hujiie Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Apr 2009Sun 12-Jun-11 06:12 PM
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#4. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 3


US
          

I do not understand why this thread became so biased and rather cynical.
Dinil’s concerns are valid and TTL (or with calibration chart) is not the perfect flash solutions for all flash photography. In certain applications and effects, especially ones requires precise control, it is normal to think and to use flash meter with manual flash.

New PW system offers:
(1) TTL
(2) On camera adjustments to remote flash units with Flex
(3) Hypersync
(4) Eliminating the line of the sights’ problems

Though channel synchronization with Sekonic meters are not perfect, this system offers more than just TTL and sometimes other functions are more useful.

www.hitoshiujiie.com/photography.html

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberSun 12-Jun-11 07:35 PM
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#5. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 4


Powder Springs, US
          

Not trying to be cynical. It is what it is. I'm just saying that it was not intended for flash meters, I don't believe. I also think that exposure compensation can achieve the same thing as manual adjustments, if your goal is to adjust the flash power without being able to get at your flash head.

I don't see much difference between running back and forth to the lights to adjust them manually and running back and forth to the camera (with the exception to units that you cannot get to).

You could put your flash meter in cordless mode and work around the situation if you have heads that you cannot get to. OTHO, I really don't see calibration targets as being a bad work around. You could set everything up in manual mode without ever leaving the camera.

I guess the perceived drawback is that you have to trigger the camera and I don't know that any new radio module could get around that, since the camera has to be in control.






Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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HBB Moderator Hal is an expert in several areas, including CLS Awarded for his excellent article contributions to the Resources. Charter MemberSun 12-Jun-11 11:26 PM
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#6. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 5


Phoenix, US
          

Scott:

Another perspective ...

As you know, I had a set of the Nikon PW units for a few weeks to test them. When I agreed to test them for the MAC Group, I already owned six PW Plus II units and seven MultiMax units.

You may also remember that I use my herd of twelve SB800s in manual mode most of the time for several reasons:

1) I have more than three remote groups of subjects, often some distance apart in a night scene.

2) TTL still works on reflected light and the problem of underexposing bright white objects like patrol cars, and over exposing dark colored objects like police officers in dark blue/black uniforms. Incident illumination measurement is often faster and more accurate. Triggering all twelve of the SB800s with either a hand-held PW (that is why I have thirteen of them) for an incident reading is very straight forward. If I want to get into the quad frequencies, I have still more options.

Given these, and other related issues, I find manual mode using the SB800s in SU-4 mode with the PW Plus II and MultiMax units to be the best work flow for my needs.

Given my investment in the Plus II and MultiMax units, I did not see enough of an advantage to switch to the new Nikon PW units. I don't mind walking to each remote unit to change the power level. I often have to make slight adjustments to the officers, vehicles, K9 dogs, etc. at the same time.

As I suspect we would all agree, the Nikon CLS system has its advantages and disadvantges. I ought to know, being one of the early users of multiple groups of remote SB800s in CLS IR mode, and probably the only Nikonian with twelve SB800 units and lots of experience. That said, manual mode also has its advantages and disadvantages. To each his own.

Regards,

HBB in Phoenix, Arizona
Nikonian Team Member

Photography is a journey with no conceivable destination.

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberMon 13-Jun-11 12:18 AM
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#7. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 6


Powder Springs, US
          

Hal,

I agree, but I did miss out on this and should not have.

>2) TTL still works on reflected light

That can be a problem. The lazy side of me checks the camera monitor and histogram in the studio, because it's easier (for me, emphasis added) than messing with a meter and I can stay at the camera. But I still like using a target.

I don't say that in a flip way either. My L-358 is one of my favorite tools and I wish it were CLS/CTL compatible.

Did you ever discover whether the Sekonic could trigger the camera and get the CTL to work? I know you can do that with relay and the Plus/Max units, but I wonder what would happen with CTL. Maybe I need to buy a camera cable, but that would not eliminate the need to take a picture and Dinil does not want that.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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hujiie Silver Member Nikonian since 10th Apr 2009Mon 13-Jun-11 02:09 AM
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#8. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 7


US
          

I believe that we all have own techniques and workflows including how you use the equipment. If the tools offer multiple functions, those should be equally respected whether you think some are right or wrong. It applies to any creative process that your STYLES and AESTHECICS control the final look of your production and alternately, control the usage of any equipment.

www.hitoshiujiie.com/photography.html

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberMon 13-Jun-11 02:24 AM
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#9. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 8


Powder Springs, US
          

I agree, but unfortunately radio light metering is not one of it's multiple functions. The hitch is that the camera is required to fire for iTTL/ CLS to function. CTL was intended to remove the IR limitation of CLS. Yes hypersync is added candy, but not it's main purpose.

I'm not finding fault with the desire for it to do more. I'm just acknowledging that it wasn't intended for that.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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Fovea Gold Member Nikonian since 26th Sep 2002Wed 15-Jun-11 05:40 PM
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#11. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 4


Colombo, LK
          

Hi Hitoshi
>> and sometimes other functions are more useful

Agreed! and that's why I'm asking for more!

Regards
Dinil




Struck by Light - Blog & Gallery
Visible Range - Photography & Beyond

  

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Fovea Gold Member Nikonian since 26th Sep 2002Wed 15-Jun-11 05:32 PM
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#10. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 3


Colombo, LK
          

Scott

>In practice, I don't see the difference between dialing in -1 compensation or 1/2 power, so I am happy staying in iTTL mode, especially if you are flying your equipment high.

There we are Scott, this is exactly the point. To dial -1 I have be in TTL, which means I have to do it your way. I clearly understand your point about letting iTTL handle the lighting ratio, but in my very limited experience I haven't seen iTTL producing the ratios I want though it nails the exposure whenever the set up is simple. Though I could never measure the ratios in iTTL due to preflashes, the look has always been different to the look of "measured" lighting!


>That's why I don't understand why you don't stick with iTTL and dialing in compensation. It gets you in the ballpark and minimizes adjustments. OTOH, in manual mode, light meter or not, you need to come up with an initial setting based on the guide number. If you don't, you will be making a lot of adjustments.

Firstly, because of the reason stated above, secondly because I don't trust it all the time, and finally because I like to learn how to do everything manually.
To get the initial setting right I measure it. In my Yashika and Metz days with no zooming flash heads (I'm not gen Y ) like everybody else I used to do it in my head to set the aperture. With current zoom heads and changing effective guide numbers it's bit difficult but not impossible.

>or you could get a softbox where the speedlight is outside. I think the Lastolites are like that

May be if it is cheap, I already have the Apollo JS -Thanks for the tip!

Regards
Dinil




Struck by Light - Blog & Gallery
Visible Range - Photography & Beyond

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberWed 15-Jun-11 06:13 PM
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#12. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 10


Powder Springs, US
          

It's your flying lights that made me see why you wanted to adjust from the camera position. Alas, you cannot and stay in manual CLS. You have to go straight manual.

The reason CLS iTTL doesn't get you where you want, is due to each light being metered separately. When you set your aperture to f/8.0 say and you have a key light an fill both set to 0 compensation, they are both set for f/8.00. Where they overlap, it will be one stop over.

Therefore you have to pretty much set all your lights to underexpose so that the areas that are critical with overlaping lights are properly exposed. That's why I try to establish the proper settings for a studio shot in terms of compensation and not f stop.

Obviously, this does not account for high or low key scenarios. So I chimp, because I can.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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Fovea Gold Member Nikonian since 26th Sep 2002Wed 15-Jun-11 07:55 PM
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#13. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 12


Colombo, LK
          

>It's your flying lights that made me see why you wanted to
>adjust from the camera position. Alas, you cannot and stay in
>manual CLS. You have to go straight manual.

Yep! that sucks! especially when your models are the impatient wife and the two year old daughter!


>The reason CLS iTTL doesn't get you where you want, is due to
>each light being metered separately. When you set your
>aperture to f/8.0 say and you have a key light an fill both
>set to 0 compensation, they are both set for f/8.00. Where
>they overlap, it will be one stop over.
>
>Therefore you have to pretty much set all your lights to
>underexpose so that the areas that are critical with
>overlaping lights are properly exposed. That's why I try to
>establish the proper settings for a studio shot in terms of
>compensation and not f stop.

Cool! Now I'm learning! will do another set of tests tomorrow if I find my models in an agreeable mood

>
>Obviously, this does not account for high or low key
>scenarios. So I chimp, because I can.

LOL

Regards
Dinil




Struck by Light - Blog & Gallery
Visible Range - Photography & Beyond

  

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raylaw Registered since 31st Jan 2007Wed 01-Feb-12 12:49 AM
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#14. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 0


US
          

Thank you for your explanation. There was a slight difference in the menus and I see Europe rather than US in the top of the menu. However, they are basically the same. I have gone over and over with this and a Youtube explanation and I can not get my flashes to fire with the L-758DR. I do not know if I am missing something. Do the units need to somehow communicate with each other prior to attempting to get the flashes to fire? Learn/Test? TTL works on C1, but I can not get the flashes to work, or trigger with the light meter.

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberWed 01-Feb-12 01:41 AM
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#15. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 14


Powder Springs, US
          

Ray,

The FlexTT5 units can receive CTL or Standard ( legacy ) channels, but not both. Sekonic meters transmit Standard signals. Therefore you must go into the utilities and set the FlexTT5 units to Standard.

An alternative would be to use a MiniTT1 with an AC3 in it and take it off camera to your metering position. Then place your Sekonic in cordless mode. Turn groups on and off on the AC3, leaving the group(s) to meter on. Trigger the group with the MiniTT1 test button and get your reading. This way CTL will determine the exposure and you can get a reading.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Sat 04-Feb-12 01:40 PM
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#17. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 15


US
          

"An alternative would be to use a MiniTT1 with an AC3 in it and take it off camera to your metering position. Then place your Sekonic in cordless mode. "

Would it work to use an SU-800 in place of the AC3 at the metering position, or does the SU-800 need to be triggered by the camera?

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sl33py Silver Member Nikonian since 24th Apr 2008Sun 05-Feb-12 08:10 PM
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#18. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 17


US
          

>Would it work to use an SU-800 in place of the AC3 at the
>metering position, or does the SU-800 need to be triggered by
>the camera?

I think it should work off camera.

I don't have a SU-800, but used two SB-800's connected then not connected to camera. I saw a video on using the SB900 as master w/ the PW's:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sta1bIZhJ-I

I was able to trigger w/ the PW off camera so believe this should work for you. but don't have enough SB's to reproduce like he does in the vid.

Didn't spend a ton of time testing, so someone may have more experience and can chime in.

HTH!

Rob

  

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Mon 06-Feb-12 09:15 PM
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#19. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 18


US
          

Thank you for the post. One think I just noticed watching this video is that the SU-800 in manual mode does not allow you to adjust in 1/3 stop increments, yet the SB-900 does! I've never used the SB-900 as a commander before. Glad I saw this. That would be an argument to buy the PW controller.

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberTue 07-Feb-12 12:19 AM
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#20. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 19


Powder Springs, US
          

The AC3 is relatively inexpensive and very small too. If you don't need an on camera flash, it is a pleasure to use.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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raylaw Registered since 31st Jan 2007Thu 09-Feb-12 07:29 PM
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#21. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 15


US
          

>Ray,
>
>The FlexTT5 units can receive CTL or Standard ( legacy )
>channels, but not both. Sekonic meters transmit Standard
>signals. Therefore you must go into the utilities and set the
>FlexTT5 units to Standard.
>

I did, in many different configurations - including the suggested one here. I did an exhaustive search on this problem and found that the problem is with the SB-900. I do not know about the SB-910. The problem appears to be when you turn the FlexTT5 on the flash's mode changes from "M" to "M-FP". In this mode the Sekonic will not trigger the flash. The following link describes this problem, but in following the suggestions there I could not get my flash to register "M" only. Has anyone been able to get thier SB-900 to trigger from a Sekonic on the FlexTT5?

http://www.flickr.com/groups/strobist/discuss/72157625611010792/

>An alternative would be to use a MiniTT1 with an AC3 in it and
>take it off camera to your metering position. Then place your
>Sekonic in cordless mode. Turn groups on and off on the AC3,
>leaving the group(s) to meter on. Trigger the group with the
>MiniTT1 test button and get your reading. This way CTL will
>determine the exposure and you can get a reading.

It would be nice to leave the MiniTT1 on camera while getting readings, but it looks like I cannot have this alternate unless I have a fix for this problem. I have not got a AC3 yet, because I like using my SU-800 to control iTTL from the camera. I guess I will have to spring for the AC3 to meter manual and control it from the AC3. I have done some preliminary tests and the SU-800 works to control the lights from the MiniTT1. You have to leave the flash in TTL mode to do this. It is somewhat cumbersome carrying the pocketwizard and MiniTT1 with a SU-800 attached to it, so I will spring for the AC3. I will be getting more studio lights that will require the AC3 anyway.

Thanks for all of your help with this problem. If someone got their SB-900 to work from the Sekonic - how?

Ray

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odds Silver Member Nikonian since 19th Feb 2009Thu 09-Feb-12 11:00 PM
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#22. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 21
Thu 09-Feb-12 11:42 PM by odds

Sandnes, NO
          

>Thanks for all of your help with this problem. If someone got
>their SB-900 to work from the Sekonic - how?

I see the same "FP" problem as you have described. The following procedure appears to work:

1) Connect the FlexTT5 to the PC and start the PW Utility program.
I have version 1.35

2) Verify the Firmware version on the FlexTT5.
I have version 3.003 (v3 build 3)

3) Select the Update pane and click "Factory Reset", confirm and wait until utility is ready for next command

4) Select the "Settings" pane, then "Configuration C2" and "Misc"

5) Tick the "Basic Trigger" box

6) Select "Channel"

7) Set "Standard Receive Channel" to 12 (for some reason channel 32 does not work with my L-758DR, so try 12)

8) Click "Apply Changes", confirm and wait until done.

9) Disconnect FlexTT5 from PC

10) Mount the SB-900 on the FlexTT5

11) Switch on the SB-900 and set it to Manual mode

12) Turn on the FlexTT5 to "C2"

13) Turn on the L-758DR

14) Select the radio transmit mode (lightning bolt + T on my L-758DR)

15) Select channel 12 and press the trigger button to finalize channel selection

16) Press the trigger button to test.

That works over here, and I have now repeated the procedure many times over from step 1 and selecting a channel in the lower range (1-16) in steps 7 and 15.

I did the corresponding setup on my MiniTT1 and I can trigger the SB-900 using the MiniTT1 Test button and using the L-758DR, and it triggers by the camera shutter (MiniTT1 on camera).

Hope this may get you closer to a working solution.

--
Odd S.

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberFri 10-Feb-12 12:31 AM
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#23. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 22


Powder Springs, US
          

I don't think you need basic trigger. Like Dinil shows above, just disable CTL on the FlexTT5 in receive mode and select your Sekonic channel.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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odds Silver Member Nikonian since 19th Feb 2009Fri 10-Feb-12 01:00 AM
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#26. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 23
Fri 10-Feb-12 01:02 AM by odds

Sandnes, NO
          

>I don't think you need basic trigger.

Scott,
there may very well be several ways to do this. I tried the procedure described by Dinil without success.

The only way I could get the SB-900 to switch the "FP" indicator off was by keeping the FlexTT5 connected to the PC. Then I could trigger the SB-900 from my L-758DR. Pulling the USB plug brought the "FP" indicator, and the SB-900 could no longer be triggered from the meter.

I can not tell where or why Dinil's procedure fails for some of us.

--
Odd S.

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberFri 10-Feb-12 09:28 AM
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#27. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 26


Powder Springs, US
          

It is normal for the flash to switch from TTL to TTL-FP when the flash's FlexTT5 is turned on. When I use the sleep function, the TTL-FP switches to TTL when the PW timer plays out and the flash timer kicks in. PW support says it should display TTL-FP when you turn the radio on.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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raylaw Registered since 31st Jan 2007Fri 10-Feb-12 02:10 PM
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#28. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 27


US
          

>It is normal for the flash to switch from TTL to TTL-FP when
>the flash's FlexTT5 is turned on. When I use the sleep
>function, the TTL-FP switches to TTL when the PW timer plays
>out and the flash timer kicks in. PW support says it should
>display TTL-FP when you turn the radio on.

That is alright when you are using the TTL mode setting. However, when you are setting the mode to manual and trying to use your light meter to trigger the flash you need to set the flash mode to manual. The problem, at least with the SB-900, was that if you do not have the settings correct on the FlexTT5 when you turn it on after setting the flash to manual the "M" switches to "M-FP" and the light meter will not trigger the flash at this setting.

If you are using TTL you can not trigger the flashes with the light meter. You will have to trigger it with another MiniTT1 or FlexTT5 via camera or the "test" button.

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberFri 10-Feb-12 05:48 PM
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#30. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 28


Powder Springs, US
          

So far, I believe, PW only supports manual mode on the flash when you are shooting in HyperSync mode. I think the best solution is to set the Sekonic to cordless mode and trigger the flashes with the PW transmitter via the AC3 or another (speedlight/SU800 maybe?).

Sekonic wireless just doesn't play nicely with the system. I don't have to muck with any of the settings that I normally want to use. I just carry the diminutive MiniTT1 with AC3 around to trigger my groups and set the L-358 to cordless mode.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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raylaw Registered since 31st Jan 2007Fri 10-Feb-12 12:32 AM
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#24. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 22


US
          

>Hope this may get you closer to a working solution.
>
>--
>Odd S.
>
>

Thank you, thank you, and thank you again!

Everything works great with this set up. Where I was going wrong was not setting the "Basic Trigger" in the Misc area and apparently using channel 32. With these settings the strobe does not switch from "M" to M-FP" when the FlexTT5 is turned on.

One more time, thank you.

Ray

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odds Silver Member Nikonian since 19th Feb 2009Fri 10-Feb-12 11:33 PM
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#31. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 24


Sandnes, NO
          

>Where I was going wrong was not setting the "Basic Trigger" in the
>Misc area and apparently using channel 32.


Ray,
the channel 32 (or rather the high number channels 17-32) was where I failed to do things properly. I am now sure I must have had a mismatch between the group (A, B or C) on the FlexTT5s and the group setting on the L-758DR. I probably had the meter set to trigger group D, which a FlexTT5 can of course not respond to.

You probably figured all this out already, if not you may want to try this:

Reconfigure the PW units as before, but select a high number channel (17-32), say 32 or 22. Set SB-900 to Manual and FlexTT5 to group A.

Enter radio trigger mode on the the L-758DR and select the same high number channel. Cycle through the buttons ISO1, ISO2, MID.TONE and M.CLEAR on the meter until four hyphens "----" appear to the left of the blinking channel number. Then press the ISO1 button and look for "A---" in the display. Press the trigger button to set channel/group and return to normal operating mode. When I do this, I can trigger FlexTT5s set to group A. That was what I expected to find yesterday, but I must have introduced some mismatch.

I have still not been able to make it work without "Misc" "Basic Trigger". When I do a Factory Reset on a FlexTT5 and only uncheck the "Use ContrlTL for Receive Channel" as demonstrated in a YouTube video by a guy called Zack, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOOq3sX6Ki4&feature=related , it does not work for me as shown in the video, not with a SB-900 on the FlexTT5.

Browsing through comments posted to that video, it seems that more people could not make it work. Some postings indicate that it works with SB-800 but not with SB-900, and the symptoms described fit what I see with SB-900.

Now, Zack does not mention nor show a SB-900 in that video. When I read Dinil's posting again, I observe that SB-900 does indeed not appear in his test setup. May be I have been reading more into his posting than what he actually puts forward. On the other hand, Dinil mentions the SB-900 a few times.

I guess I will just stick to the "Misc" "Basic Trigger" in combination with a high channel number (17-32) as I prefer to have the group control offered by those channels.

--
Odd S.

  

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odds Silver Member Nikonian since 19th Feb 2009Sun 12-Feb-12 11:40 AM
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#32. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 24


Sandnes, NO
          

>Where I was going wrong was not setting the "Basic Trigger" in the
>Misc area


Some more speculations on what I consider slightly strange matter.

Are the observed differences caused by a feature differece between the Mac version and the Windows version of the PocketWizard Utility version 1.35?

Hypothesis: The "Basic Trigger" must be on AND the "Use ControlTL for Receive Channel" must be off (the settings presumed being mutually exlusive) when triggering with a L-758DR.

Observation on Windows, going from Factory Reset: When "Basic Trigger" is turned ON, the "Use ControlTL for Receive Channel" is forced OFF by the utility. The reverse is not true. When turning OFF "Use ControlTL for Receive Channel", the "Basic Trigger" remains OFF. Obviously, either the hypothesis is wrong or there is a bug in the PW Utility for Windows.

Dinil's screen dumps and the computer screen shown in the YouTube video appear to originate from a Mac version of the utility.

I have two questions:

Does the hypothesis hold true for a Mac? (or: is Basic Trigger forced ON when following the Dinil or Zack procedure?)

In what situations would the state "Use ControlTL for Receive Channel"=OFF and the "Basic Trigger"=OFF make sense?

--
Odd S.

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberMon 13-Feb-12 02:21 AM
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#33. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 32


Powder Springs, US
          

You can note that Dinil's post was before the current firmware. His screen shpts indicate that he was using version 2 at the time and we're at something like 3.003 now. There were big changes going from 2 to 3.

The computer platform better not make a difference.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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sl33py Silver Member Nikonian since 24th Apr 2008Mon 13-Feb-12 10:04 PM
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#34. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 33
Mon 13-Feb-12 10:05 PM by sl33py

US
          

>
>The computer platform better not make a difference.
>

It Does.

I did mine off of Dinil's post and version to version no difference (in advanced mode).

Comparing with the same utility on my PC now:


VS - Dinil's screenshot on Mac:


DIFFERENCE!

I like the interface on my mac better, but i just installed to check so haven't gone through any updates or configuration changes.

HTH!

Rob

  

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberMon 13-Feb-12 10:45 PM
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#35. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 34
Tue 14-Feb-12 12:23 PM by ScottChapin

Powder Springs, US
          

Rob,

The only similarities that I can confirm here is that the Utility versions are the same. Yes we are still on version 1.35. The difference is the firmware, not the utilities. I believe that running different firmware versions in the same utility version will reveal differences.

Edited to add: You have to plug a radio in and navigate to Settings>Configuration C1>Channel, in order to compare applea to apples. You are comparing the start up screen to a configuration screen. Configuration screens do not come up, unless a radio is plugged in. I wish that weren't necessary.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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sl33py Silver Member Nikonian since 24th Apr 2008Thu 02-Feb-12 08:59 PM
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#16. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 14


US
          

Ray - i think you need to click the "advanced" menu box in the lower left of the utility. That will give you the additional menu items you see in his screenshots above.

I configured per Fovea's instructions last night and on C2 my 758DR is triggering 100%.

Thank you Fovea for the tutorial! I agree with what you are asking for it to do - i too wish it were a bit more seamlessly integrated.

Ray - does this get you squared away and your DR triggering the flashes?

GL!

Rob

  

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raylaw Registered since 31st Jan 2007Fri 10-Feb-12 12:36 AM
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#25. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 16


US
          

>Ray - i think you need to click the "advanced" menu
>box in the lower left of the utility. That will give you the
>additional menu items you see in his screenshots above.
>

I had that checked. The apparent difference is I have a US version and Fovea has a Europe version. There are apparent differences in layout.

>I configured per Fovea's instructions last night and on C2 my
>758DR is triggering 100%.
>
>Thank you Fovea for the tutorial! I agree with what you are
>asking for it to do - i too wish it were a bit more seamlessly
>integrated.
>
>Ray - does this get you squared away and your DR triggering
>the flashes?
>
>GL!
>
>Rob

I worked it out with assistance from odds.

Ray

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johnrjury Registered since 12th Sep 2009Fri 10-Feb-12 02:52 PM
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#29. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 0


Waterlooville, GB
          

Hi Dinhil
Your post is almost 8 months old now, but I fully appreciate your suggestions and methods thank you.
Using current "workaround" methods I am able to use my Sekonic L-358 with the Flex TT5's, Mini TT1 and AC3 to (a) control my speed lights (b) trigger speedlights and (c) remotely trigger my camera and speedlights .
More importantly however, I understand that an updated Sekonic RT-32 module is due this year that will work without the need to adapt configurations.

John Jury

  

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Tue 14-Feb-12 12:05 PM
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#36. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 29


US
          

>Hi Dinhil
>Your post is almost 8 months old now, but I fully appreciate
>your suggestions and methods thank you.
>Using current "workaround" methods I am able to use
>my Sekonic L-358 with the Flex TT5's, Mini TT1 and AC3 to (a)
>control my speed lights (b) trigger speedlights
> and (c) remotely trigger my camera and
>speedlights .
>More importantly however, I understand that an updated Sekonic
>RT-32 module is due this year that will work without the need
>to adapt configurations.
>

I have just purchased the L-758DR and a PW setup (due to arrive today). Do you know whether these issues have been fixed yet to avoid the workaround?

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Sun 19-Feb-12 04:55 PM
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#37. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 29


US
          

Even in the meter was able to trigger the controlTL channel, you would still need to walk back to the camera to make adjustments to the lighting ratios. So, at the very minimum, as Scott describes, you need it carry the AC3 attached to the miniTT1 if you want to meter and make changes in the scene location. Since the mini allows you to control the groups in both manual and iTTL mode AND allows you to turn off the the groups independently AND allows you to fire from the test button on the miniTT1, then the limitations of the meter are mitigated. The only downside is the need to reattach the the mini back to the camera. My unresolved question is whether it is necessary to turn the camera and the mini off before reattaching (suspect so) and the power back up in the right order (top down) and then perform a configuration shot at 125th shutter speed, and then dialing in the desired camera settings determined from metering the scene. Any thoughts on ths?

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberSun 19-Feb-12 08:14 PM
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#38. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 37


Powder Springs, US
          

I don't think you would have to change the settings that you had set at the subject position. It would probably be risky not to turn the camera, camera's radio, and camera's flash (if using) off; then setup and power on from the top down. You would probably need the test shot too.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Sun 19-Feb-12 08:40 PM
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#39. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 38


US
          

Thanks, Scott. I have another issue that I need help with. I have just setup a new L-758DR and for some reason, it will not allow me to switch between shutter priority (T) and aperture priority (F) modes. I am holding down the mode button while turning the jog wheel as per instructions. (F) is never highlighted to select. It simple rotates through the various metering modes and channel selection. Any ideas? If necessary, is there a way to perform a factory reset in case I messed something up by mistake?

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberSun 19-Feb-12 10:07 PM
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#40. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 39


Powder Springs, US
          

I have the L-358 and here is my guess:

You are trying to select something other than the default value "T" in either cord, cordless, or transmitter mode. In those modes, you select the shutter speed and the meter selects the aperture. At least that makes sense to me and is so on my L-358.

EV an Aperture can only be selected in ambient mode.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Sun 19-Feb-12 10:42 PM
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#41. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 40


US
          

That does make sense, however, I still am having trouble. Here's what I am doing:

1. Hold the mode button down
2. Turn the jog wheel until ambient icon is selected.
3. Take a reading
4.Hold the mode button down and turn the job wheel to try to highlight (F). Never does.

I know this seems basic, but I cannot for the life of me figure this out. Can you walk me through this?

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todcolbert Registered since 25th Aug 2011Sun 19-Feb-12 10:58 PM
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#42. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 41


US
          

I figured this out. I had inadvertently changed the meter in the custom settings are to only allow shutter priority. It works fine now. Wow, that was a headache! Thanks for your help, though!

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ScottChapin Moderator Awarded for his high level skills in various areas, including Aviation and Birds Photography Charter MemberMon 20-Feb-12 01:36 AM
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#43. "RE: PocketWizard FlexTT5 & MiniTT1, with Sekonic L-758DR"
In response to Reply # 42


Powder Springs, US
          

Ah....I don't think that is an L-358 feature. I can enable or disable EV mode, but not F mode.

Scott Chapin
Powder Springs, GA, USA
Nikonians Team Member

  

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