Budget solution to K20D and Old Vivitars


layingback

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 14:33
I have 2 original Vivitar flashes: 283 and 285. Can't remember when exactly I bought them, but I believe that the 285 was new to the market then. Both "Made in Japan" so probably both sporting trigger voltages that would make your hair curl! I also have 2 optical triggers, plus most of the accessory items for both (lenes, camera brackets, stand mounts, bounce cards, etc.), all from the original period.

So after much reading I appear to have 3 or 4 reasonabe options without splashing out oodles of money for a P-TTL flash. But even these solutions won't be budget level if I get it wrong, so looking to see if anyone has actual experience of these (or other recommendations) in what I think is my order of preference:

0. Fix to K20D firmware to turn off P-TTL pre-flash on pop-up flash: No chance!

1. Cheap radio trigger sets.
+: avoid long PC cord
-: anyone proven they can handle 300V+? If so which models?

2. YN460II to use on camera.
+: 3rd flash, higher GN than pop-up, can be used on camera on own
-: picked on price, is it any good?.

3. Newer 283/285HV to use as master.
+: no new flash to learn
-: they're getting expensive even used.

4. Pentax 240z to use on camera.
-: low guide number so no other use than as trigger.

5. Mod 1 or both Vivitars to low V.
+: no new kit to look after
-: I know about capacitors
( but they may be fully dissipated after 10 years... )

TIA!
My PENTAX Page

gartmore

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 15:00
Cheap radio triggers, simple solution!

All this talk of high trigger voltages and I have never met anyone who has lost equipment because of it.
Ken
“We must avoid however, snapping away, shooting quickly and without thought, overloading ourselves with unnecessary images that clutter our memory and diminish the clarity of the whole.” - Henri Cartier-Bresson -
Last Edited by gartmore on 01/06/2010 - 15:02

Mannesty

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 15:47
Have you considered any of these Wein safe-synch products?
Peter E Smith

My flickr Photostream

Anvh

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 17:23
gartmore wrote:
Cheap radio triggers, simple solution!

I had the same thought, Cactus V4 are rated up to 300 volt which would be enough.

Here is a list of trigger voltage link
Depending the type of 285 it should work on Pentax without a problem, it looks like you have to knowledge to check it.

Pentax don't want to give a rating but from topics on Pentaxforums.com it seems like Pentax has said that it is confirm with the ISO for the hotshoe and that one is rated for 24 volt.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
Last Edited by Anvh on 01/06/2010 - 17:24

MrCynical

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 22:07
Old Vivitar flashes are one of the categories with a reputation for trigger voltages high enough to fry a K20D, let alone a radio trigger. I'd be very, very wary of using any of them on-camera.
Last Edited by MrCynical on 01/06/2010 - 22:15

haydnw

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 22:11
I would measure the trigger voltages of your Vivitars before going to any further expense - my 283 is below 10 volts and I'd happily use it on any of my DSLRs.
Haydn

link
Samsung GX1S, Nikon D300, Zenith 12XP, Olympus OM10, Holga 120N

johnriley

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 22:23
We measured two seemingly identical Vivitar 283s and one was less than 10V but the other was 288V. It seems several manufacturers made the 283 over a period of time and the details changed.
Best regards, John

layingback

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 22:32
Thanks for the feedback.

haydnw wrote:
I would measure the trigger voltages of your Vivitars before going to any further expense.

I can, but I'm pretty sure these will be the worse case scenario ones - they are very, very early units (I've had them from new). But if I'm going to take the mod route, I don't really want to charge them up right now!

So I just wondered if anyone had already confirmed that the cheap radio triggers - actually the receivers - can actually stand up to the V onslaught. I see that Cactus V2's are listed as suitable for 12v trigger only, as indeed are the 4-channel cheap copies which look like the V2's.

But what about the newer 16 channel cheap triggers, which appear to share the same 2.4GHz 16 channel radio system as the V4's? Has anyone on this forum used them with "Made in Japan" Viv's?
My PENTAX Page

Anvh

Link Posted 01/06/2010 - 22:57
layingback wrote:
But what about the newer 16 channel cheap triggers, which appear to share the same 2.4GHz 16 channel radio system as the V4's? Has anyone on this forum used them with "Made in Japan" Viv's?

I already said they go up to 300 volt, I've them and it's in the manual
It's also on their site link
Quote:
Receiver:
Flash voltage handling: up to 300 volts

I haven't used them with any old flash so can't comfirm they are 300volt proof but well they claim they are. I had a little chat with them and they are very helpful and friendly so I wouldn't worry much about it in terms of warranty, they said I could send back my units and they would refund them over a minor issue that I had.
The unit didn't work correctly with the AF540FGZ, most probably AF540FGZ fault though .

Oh I never had a sync/trigger problem with mine units, they never miss a trigger so far.
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
Last Edited by Anvh on 01/06/2010 - 22:59

layingback

Link Posted 02/06/2010 - 10:45
Sorry, I didn't explain myself clearly enough clearly.

I understand now from your earlier post, thanks, that the Catcus V4's will do the job. 300V is slightly higher than worse case scenario for old 283/285's. But at the price of Catcus's I might as well buy a new flashgun!

What I was referring too as "cheap radio triggers" were the sub-20 GBP incl. shipping jobs advertised on ebay from China, HK and even UK, and previously if I am to understand older forum posts correctly, previously sold by Pentax User here on this site.
My PENTAX Page

mikew

Link Posted 02/06/2010 - 11:27
I use the cheap Chinese wireless triggers with my K20D and Viv 283. I use radio for the Viv then an optical trigger on the other old flashgun I have.
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You can see some of my shots at my Flickr account.

Aero

Link Posted 02/06/2010 - 14:59
I was planning on getting a Wein Safe Sync for my venerable 283 but, looking at the prices and seeing Mike's comment, the answer seems to be a cheap radio unit. After all, the worst that happen is that it will fry is the radio receiver.

Al

mikew

Link Posted 02/06/2010 - 15:12
My Viv has 300v trigger voltage and fries nothing. YMMV.
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You can see some of my shots at my Flickr account.

layingback

Link Posted 02/06/2010 - 22:32
mikew doesn't say which trigger...

But today's research has revealed some more data, which I'll share for benefit of others.

The new 2.4GHz 16 channel RF-602 units are not spec'd for over 12V, and at least 1 poster out there is convinced that they do fail catastrophically.

The Yongnuo CTR-301 does handle 300V, spec says so, and various report successful use over long periods see this link. Also the YN-04 II is compatible per the same link.

Yongnuo PT-04 is not.

Here are a couple of links with lists of all cheap triggers link link

Although having looked at the YN-460II flash, I'm toying with getting that instead. I believe I can use on camera, and then use my Viv's with my existing optical triggers. Plus it has pre-flash aware optical trigger built in, so perhaps can be used triggered by the pop-up in P-TTL mode? Has a swivel head which is better than either Viv's (when camera rotated for portrait) and comes with an OmniBounce look-a-like, but it would need a PC socket added to use off camera - or a cheap radio trigger!
My PENTAX Page

Anvh

Link Posted 02/06/2010 - 22:40
There is a YN560 on the way link
Stefan


K10D, K5
DA* 16-50, DA* 50-135, D-FA 100 Macro, DA 40 Ltd, DA 18-55
AF-540FGZ
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