>I have a D5300 and am looking at purchasing an SB-700 >speedlight. > >What I would like to know (in simple terms, I am getting >confused by all the jargon of masters, commanders, etc) is >... > >Can I trigger the SB-700 remotely from the D5300? By remotely, >I mean without a cable or any other accessories.
If you don't mind using Manual flash control: Yes! You must set the built-in Speedlight to Manual flash mode. Then set the remote SB-700 in SU-4 (optical slave mode). Then the remote SB-700 will fire when the built-in Speedlight fires. For consistant results you should use Manual exposure mode and Manual ISO.
If you want to use P, S, A, Auto, or any of the Scene exposure modes and i-TTL flash control: No! You will need an SC-17 (discontinued), SC-28, or SC-29 TTL extension cord to connect the SB-700 to the cameras hotshoe. For wireless i-TTL flash control you will need two Speedlights; 1 SB-700, SB-800, SB-900, SB=910, or SU-800 in the cameras hotshoe set in Commander mode and a Remote SB-600, SB-700, SB-800, SB-900, or SB-910 in Remote mode.
The SU-800 isn't a flash but it is a commander and it's cheaper than another flash. You then could get into the whole Nikon system. Hot Shoe cords are a way to do it as well. Just getting the flash off the camera can add a lot.
>So, I could still use TTL if I hooked the flash up via one of >the cables you mentioned and then continue to shoot in P, A, >S, etc?
Yes! When the Speedlight is connected via an SC-17, SC-28, or SC-29 TTL extension cord you will have full i-TTL flash control just like the Speedlight was directly in the cameras hotshoe.
>I might just try and track down an SB-400 and dip my toe in >first.
Keep in mind that the SB-400 does not have wireless capability as a remote or a commander and will only work when it is attached to the cameras hotshoe directly or via a TTL extension cord. While it is very compact, it is only a little more powerful than the built-in Speedlight.