AF-540FGZ, Problem with wireless mode on MZ-S & ist D


Link Posted 08/01/2009 - 03:32
Have used an AF-360FGZ wirelessly many times in the past with no problems in conjunction with an MZ-S and Duracell nickel metal hydride rechargeables. The only times it failed to fire was when the batteries were running low.

6 months ago I started using an AF-540FGZ with the MZ-S, but only a few times wirelessly. It has worked faultlessly when on the camera, but recently when really needing it to shoot wirelessly some close ups of flowers the flash was inconsistent, firing sometimes but mostly not.

I re-charged batteries, checking their voltages, checked camera & flash settings, ensured I was on the same channel (1), all to no avail. Have had similar results with an ist D, but it tends to fire the flash a little more consistently.

At other times it is fine and is able to fire even when the pop up flash is not in the line of sight of the sensor on the front of the flash!

Does anyone have any clues?


Link Posted 08/01/2009 - 09:33
The wireless P-TTL works something like this:
* Pop-up sends a signal burst of light to the flash
* Flash responds with a test burst
* Camera sees remote flash and calculates exposure
* Main pop-up flash fires and remote fires.

Problems with wireless are normally down to:
- Remote not "seeing" the pop-up flash (check the front red area of the flash)
- Camera not "seeing" the remote flash.
- Ambient light too bright (and "hiding" the synchronisation flash messages)

Hope that helps (a bit!)
(For gallery, tips and links)


Link Posted 08/01/2009 - 10:57
I can't get wireless to work consistently (or at all) when it's *very* bright outside - not usually a problem in the UK though!
Joining the Q


Link Posted 08/01/2009 - 13:18
Thanks Matt,

I was already aware of the points you make and thanks also to you hefty 1,

The situations that I have had problems were firstly;

1) in a shaded forest area on an overcast day with my 100mm Macro lens 3-4 inches away from the subject and the flash head pointed directly at the subject with the flash body turned with the sensor directly in front of the pop up flash (which did fire each time) only an inch or two away. I'm sure the flash fired for the first three frames (haven't got the prints back yet) and I distinctly remeber hearing the whine of the main capacitor recharging after a successful discharge. I then changed films and the flash wouldn't fire, even with the ist D.

2) out in the subdued early morning light, lightly overcast.

Whilst messing around this morning indoors, I'm sure I breifly had a situation where neither the MZ-S or the ist D would fire either the AF-360FGZ or the AF-540FGZ!!!!!!!

Do you think I could clarify or replicate the problem? not on your life! At various times during the day I kept trying the two flashes with three different bodies in different lighting including outside in bright overcast conditions with the flashes pointed away from the camera bodies and the backs of the flashes facing the pop up flash. Every single time, the flashes fired!

As I said before, I'd never had any problems of note with the AF-360FGZ in many different situations.

I was hoping that I'd been missing something glaringly obvious or quirky like having to point the Duracell batteries northwards whilst inserting them into the flash!

I'm still frustrated, but more importantly, open to ideas or suggestions.



Link Posted 08/01/2009 - 13:26
As the problems are with the AF540, maybe your AF540 has an intermittent fault?
Have you checked that it's on "Slave 1", and the correct channel?
(ie P-TTL slave. The "Slave 2" mode would still partially work as a dumb slave.)
Not sure what else to check
(For gallery, tips and links)


Link Posted 14/01/2009 - 13:45
Thanks for the thoughts fella's, sorry about the delay, have had computer problems.

Matt, I had double checked "Slave 1" and "Channel 1" set. As you say, maybe it's an intermittent fault.


Add a Comment
You must be registered or logged-in to comment.