Cactus RF60 UK availability?


McGregNi

Link Posted 16/05/2014 - 02:09
I found the review on the other Pentax site very good and informative ... link, looks like a well made quality item. I prefer manual flash techniques, even for on-camera work, so the lack of P-TTL with this unit is not a concern. In fact I think in many cases it is better and more consistent. The radio controlled slaving & syncing would be useful and allow expanding of techniques and flash system over time.

But a websearch has failed to find any available in the UK. I wonder if anyone has any knowledge of this and where to look to source one, and any experience of the flash on Pentax?
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver

dougf8

Link Posted 16/05/2014 - 07:45

RalphHardwick

Link Posted 16/05/2014 - 08:02
Nigel
I use the Cactus V5 triggers and find them to be good quality and very reliable. I'm interested in this flash as well as the V6 trigger.
As far as I know they are only available from www.gadgetinfinity.com. This is where I got my triggers from and the service was pretty good.
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McGregNi

Link Posted 16/05/2014 - 08:54
Ralph, thanks for that link, I'll check out the prices and also the specs for this flash. Thanks also dougf8 for that forum link which has some good information.

I'm interested in trying this flash as a single on-camera solution at first, thinking of building into a small system with a couple more in future. I'm assuming it has an on-board flash measuring sensor in order to work without P-TTL, but I'll have to find some details or an operating manual. I'll update on anything I find out.
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver

dougf8

Link Posted 16/05/2014 - 09:16
Nigel, I'll be interested in any more info you find out. This is on my "next" please list. Cheers
Lurking is shirking.!
Last Edited by dougf8 on 16/05/2014 - 09:17

Fletcher8

Link Posted 16/05/2014 - 19:02
My Cactus V6 triggers arrived a few days ago, early days but they work very well with the Metz flashes I have, being able to control the power of a flash or group of flashes from the camera is a god send for Pentax users who want to use flash off camera.

I am going to order the Cactus radio flashes next week, they are a bargain in terms of price and I am sure their performance won't be a disappointment.

Ordering from Gadget Infinity the items take about 4 to 5 days express shipping and about 15 days normal delivery.
Fletcher8.
Last Edited by Fletcher8 on 16/05/2014 - 19:04

McGregNi

Link Posted 17/05/2014 - 04:17
Thanks for that info Fletcher8. I was thinking of trying one just as a normal flashgun to start with, with a view to adding another 1 or 2 to start a little system and learn about studio-type lighting more. It looks like they can attach to a stand easily.

But would I be losing much without P-TTL? Would I be right in assuming the Cactus gun would have a sensor for determining correct flash exposure, similar to the older Pentax types before TTL was introduced? I like manual flash working but I'd like the gun to help me. I wonder if it will give you correct distance and/or power settings if you input aperture & iso? The online info I've seen doesn't offer any detail about this sort of standard flash control - mostly it talks about the radio transmitter and slave control features. I'll have to find a manual online.

Also I'm assuming there's no data link to the camera, only flash triggering,so you'd need to dial in the settings presumably. .... update - just found the PDF manual online, so a bit of reading to do!
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver
Last Edited by McGregNi on 17/05/2014 - 04:22

McGregNi

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 15:12
Update - I've looked through the PDF manual, and it does not appear that the front sensor on the flash unit is an actual light measuring / flash output cutoff type (like the old pre-TTL Pentax units). It looks like the sensor on the Cactus is only for remote sensoring and triggering from a master flash.

So its seems to be an all-manual operation. There are no inputs on the flash for telling it aperture or ISO, so it can not give any distance information or set its power output automatically. I must admit, these were the things I was hoping for. Even in manual I would like a bit of help, even just to speed things up a bit at the start.

You can control the zoom head and the power output directly on the flash. Apart from that the various functions relate to the rather sophisticated radio control wireless system and the various channels to choose. HSS is available and for multiple lights as well.

So I am left wondering if it really is an ideal gun to get for single unit operation, either on the hotshoe or off?
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver
Last Edited by McGregNi on 20/05/2014 - 15:13

RalphHardwick

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 15:55
Nigel
If you want P-TTL 'on camera' then your options are severely limited. Obviously the FGZ540 or 360 will work but I'm not familiar with any 3rd party options (not that I've looked). I bought a 540 on offer from Jessops and one more and a 360 secondhand to build a 'system'

If you want to use the R60 'off camera' you will need a triggering device anyway. I understand that the Cactus V6 Transceiver can relay P-TTL info to the R60 flash unit and so may be worth looking at in addition to the flash.

Personally I tend to use OCF in manual mode and don't really have too many issues. In many ways I prefer it. I use the Cactus V5 triggers along with the 2 FGZ540s and 1 FGZ360. However I have only used these in very controlled (studio) conditions and not out in the field.

For P-TTL I have tried using the pentax wireless system via the pop up flash but haven't been very successful. Recently I read somewhere that the K5 variants weren't good with P-TTL but the K3 is better. so perhaps I will have another try.

I am considering the R60 and the V6 as this does seem to offer a remote P-TTL option but I have other priorities on my 'spending' list at the moment.
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CaptureLight Ltd
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"I carry a camera to capture memories and the occasional photograph worthy of sharing"

Gravelrash

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 16:05
I was looking at the Cacti but due to limited availability got a pair Aputure Trigmaster Plus II's. Ace piece of kit and I was attracted by the 1km range!!! (with one as a relay at 500m) haha. Also liked the use of AA batteries, which is what all my other kit uses and keeps it simple.

Take a look if you're in the market. Beautifully made, the pair came in their own case and very nice to work with.

When I get around to playing more I'll give some detailed info. Just thought I'd mention them before you splash out. They're about 70 a pair (but you'll need 3 to fire a flash a kilometer away muhaha
Steve

Sometimes I'm serious and sometimes not, but I consider sarcasm an artform. Which is it today?

RalphHardwick

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 16:11
Can you actually see a flashgun 1k away and even if you can what would you be taking a picture of at that distance that needed flash
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CaptureLight Ltd
flickr
"I carry a camera to capture memories and the occasional photograph worthy of sharing"

Gravelrash

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 17:06
You completely miss the point Ralph...it sounds REALLY COOL haha
Steve

Sometimes I'm serious and sometimes not, but I consider sarcasm an artform. Which is it today?

McGregNi

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 18:05
Thanks Ralph & Steve. I am going to start a thread soon about manual flash working on Pentax, with a view to developing some practical tips & tricks .... this would seem to be necessary if using the Cactus as a single unit.

The Cactus system appears to offer a great value start to a small multi-light setup. I am wondering if the single unit may not be versatile enough for quick and easy use?

I believe the Metz products offer full P-TTL. They may also offer auto-flash (through their own sensor) which would be goo to have. I believe the latest Pentax models have removed this front sensor (its now an LCD light) so we won't have any auto control with manual lenses - I believe the previous generation of Pentax flashes did retain this option?

However, its only fair to also point out that the latest Pentax models have got some tasty new features including a video light and a front secondary flash for fill provided by the front LCD. the 360 adds more degress of bounce and twist as well.
My Guides to the Pentax Digital Camera Flash Lighting System : Download here from the PentaxForums Homepage Article .... link
Pentax K7 with BG-4 Grip / Samyang 14mm f2.8 ED AS IF UMC / DA18-55mm f3.5-5.6 AL WR / SMC A28mm f2.8 / D FA 28-105mm / SMC F35-70 f3.5-4.5 / SMC A50mm f1.7 / Tamron AF70-300mm f4-5.6 Di LD macro / SMC M75-150mm f4.0 / Tamron Adaptall (CT-135) 135mm f2.8 / Asahi Takumar-A 2X tele-converter / Pentax AF-540FGZ (I & II) Flashes / Cactus RF60/X Flashes & V6/V6II Transceiver
Last Edited by McGregNi on 20/05/2014 - 18:13

Class_A

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 18:57
RalphHardwick wrote:
I understand that the Cactus V6 Transceiver can relay P-TTL info to the R60 flash unit and so may be worth looking at in addition to the flash.

The V6 does not relay any P-TTL information.

It only uses the TTL protocol of the flash in order to support remote power control.

Class_A

Link Posted 20/05/2014 - 19:01
McGregNi wrote:
The Cactus system appears to offer a great value start to a small multi-light setup. I am wondering if the single unit may not be versatile enough for quick and easy use?

What makes you think that?

Unlike the Godox FT-16s which has some real usability issues, the Cactus V6 supports up to four groups very well.

The V6 does not support automatic exposure support, but for manual power level control the usability is really good (I could think of alternative ways of providing control, but it becomes a matter of preference at some point).
Last Edited by Class_A on 20/05/2014 - 19:05
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