Older Flashguns.


vic cross

Link Posted 25/11/2018 - 15:16
To all you tech. guys.
Although I have both the 540fgz and the 540fgzii guns I also have my old af280t and two af400t Hammerhead guns and a Hot Shoe Grip. I used these wired together on my Z1p and 645 cameras.
K3ii and K1 Operators Manuals state. Quote "Do not combine with accessories that have a different number of contacts, such as Hot Shoe Grip as a malfunction MAY occur."
These old accessories have only 3 contacts and the cameras have 4 contacts.
My question is. Has anyone tried or used any of these old guns on a modern camera and if so did they do any harm or cause a malfunction?.
C'mon you boffins one of you out there should know something.
CHEERS Vic.
Born again biker with lots of Pentax bits. Every day I wake up is a good day. I'm so old I don't even buy green bananas.

pschlute

Link Posted 25/11/2018 - 15:47
Cannot advise regarding the contacts i am afraid. But as far as usability goes those are all TTL flashguns and wont work with the P-TTL system that the modern (post *istDS) digital cameras use. Manual may work, as long as you don't blow yourself up first !

Nigel should be along soon to give you a certain answer.
Peter



My Flickr page

Kim C

Link Posted 25/11/2018 - 15:48
Hi, Yes, I have all those and use the newer guns on the grips. But, you need to remember the functions you will get. If you use the 280T or 400T on any of the K DSLR's, they will effectively be fully manual guns. There is no TTL. You could use them on the green or red auto settings.

If you want to use the newer guns on the grip to get the flash away from the camera, you have 2 options. On the APS cameras, use it pop up flash as a trigger and use the main gun in wireless mode. On the K1 use a short 5P synch cable connected directly to the flashgun and to a Hot Shoe adapter F on the camera

McGregNi

Link Posted 25/11/2018 - 18:07
I certainly concur with the points already made, although I think Vic has already been using his P-TTL flashes wirelessly.

I'm not experienced with film era Pentax flash gear generally, but I recommend the reviews of the equipment on PentaxForums by the user "Stevebrot", who certainly is the expert.

He encouraged me to try an AF280T I have, and it does work beautifully on the DSLRs in it's Red or Green Auto mode. Use manual camera mode and refer to the user manual for the steps to control the flash output automatically (involves setting the ISO on the flash and reading off the aperture to use).

It's a great flash to use with Manual aperture lenses (just like the AF-540FGZ with it's A mode, although the older one is not so easy to use), but it's very accurate and you adjust the brightness by "fooling" it with incorrect ISO or aperture settings.

Be careful not to tighten the hotshoe screw thingy much ....i found it gets stuck, so just go gently.
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 25/11/2018 - 18:08

Kim C

Link Posted 25/11/2018 - 18:13
I think in a way it is a shame Pentax dropped the TTL and went P-TTL. I know it is progress but the AF400 with 2 AF280's makes a very good studio setup and the exposures were always spot on with both the film cameras and the ist DSLR's. It's the main reason I never thought of getting rid of the istD. If you use 2 guns together in auto, It is better to double the ISO on the guns that you have set on the camera. It should give the right exposure then even if the guns are bounced as long as the sensor if pointed forward. Both need to be on either red or green and not a mix. You may also need to adjust the exposure slightly when mixing the 400 with a 280.

Don

Link Posted 25/11/2018 - 19:08
vic cross wrote:
To all you tech. guys.
Although I have both the 540fgz and the 540fgzii guns I also have my old af280t and two af400t Hammerhead guns and a Hot Shoe Grip. I used these wired together on my Z1p and 645 cameras.
K3ii and K1 Operators Manuals state. Quote "Do not combine with accessories that have a different number of contacts, such as Hot Shoe Grip as a malfunction MAY occur."
These old accessories have only 3 contacts and the cameras have 4 contacts.
My question is. Has anyone tried or used any of these old guns on a modern camera and if so did they do any harm or cause a malfunction?.
C'mon you boffins one of you out there should know something.
CHEERS Vic.

I mixed new and old flashguns all the time.
the only reliable methods were everything on manual, or mixing manual and "auto" (no ttl or p-ttl) using optical slaves and or radio slaves and had no issues mixing old vivitar 283's, 285's, 2800's with newer strobes and studio lighting... but always on "A" settings or full manual.. I didn't have to worry about voltages or anything else on the old viv's because I primarily used them with optical wein peanut slaves... or voltage safe hot shoe adapters connected to Elinchrom radio slaves. on camera either the elincrome transmitter or a modern flash set to a or manual.

a flashmeter is the best tool to have if you go that route
Fired many shots. Didn't kill anything.
Last Edited by Don on 25/11/2018 - 19:10

McGregNi

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 07:45
Yes, regarding bouncing, I also have found that in Auto mode I open up one stop, or increase ISO on the camera 1 stop, to get good exposures.

Where Auto mode falls down compared to P-TTL is that there is no way to isolate flash exposure control from ambient exposure control, because it involves ISO or aperture changes ..... If we are already at max sync then the ambient exposure changes also, so fine exposure balancing becomes difficult. Below max sync then we can compensate with shutter speed changes each time, but this is all rather fiddly.

Of course for low light or studio work then the ambient settings won't matter, assuming you only want flash lightning.
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

vic cross

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 08:27
Good morning people. Thank you for your answers. I understand that it would all be on manual. That isn't the main question. The main question was. Has anyone fitted the 280 or the 400 or the Hot Shoe Grip direct to a modern K camera without any malfunction happening or damage to the camera. It seems Don & Nigel may have done so. Someone please confirm that it is safe to do so. All the rest I understand.
CHEERS Vic.
Born again biker with lots of Pentax bits. Every day I wake up is a good day. I'm so old I don't even buy green bananas.

McGregNi

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 08:36
The flashes are ok on the hotshoe directly Vic. In practice, with the AF280T at least, I have to say that Auto mode is actually preferable to Manual, because the manual options are so limited (2 levels only).
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

vic cross

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 10:24
Thanks Nigel. That's all I wanted to know. The manual says. A malfunction MAY occur. That's what I was worried about. On my 645 I used the Hot Shoe Grip with the 280 on top and had the two 400's hard wired to the Grip and set to each side. I then used my Sekonic meter in the flash mode to get the correct exposure. Nowadays of course with digital you can just check the picture on the screen to check the exposure and alter it to what you want. "SIMPLES"
CHEERS Vic.
Born again biker with lots of Pentax bits. Every day I wake up is a good day. I'm so old I don't even buy green bananas.

McGregNi

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 12:58
Ok Vic, hope it all works out... Let us know, and let's see some photos resulting when you can.
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

vic cross

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 15:28
Hi Nigel. I've been on a few sites and learnt how to check the voltage on the guns. My280 reads 7.25volts. That should be OK. However when I tried my 400's with brand new batteries neither of them would come to life. I haven't used them for years but they were OK when I last used them. What can go wrong just sitting in a big camera box doing nothing????????????????????.
Ah well I'll just have to have another look sometime and make sure the contacts are clean. Although they look clean now a good clean with some spirit might do the job. Later.
Thanks to all for your input.
CHEERS Vic.
Born again biker with lots of Pentax bits. Every day I wake up is a good day. I'm so old I don't even buy green bananas.

Chrism8

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 15:34
The capacitors can die, the manufacturers do recommend you fire them up and discharge them a few times every few months if they are not being used regularly.
Chris

www.chrismillsphotography.co.uk

" A Hangover is something that occupies the Head you neglected to use the night before".

-------------------------------------------------------------
K1 - Pentax 100 Macro F2.8 - Sigma 85mm F1.4, Pentax 150 -450 F4.5 / 5.6

Pentax FA 24 - 70 F2.8, Sigma 100-300 F4, Samyang 14mm F2.8, Sigma 70-200 F2.8,

K5iis - Sigma 17 - 70 F2.8, Sigma 70 - 300 F3.5/F5.6, Sigma 18 - 200 F3.6 / F4.5.

vic cross

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 16:36
Hi Chris. Does that mean that they are like the parrot. Dead. Deceased. They are no more. Gone to the great flashgun home in the sky??????????????????????
OR, can something be done to fix them?????????????????????
CHEERS Vic.
Born again biker with lots of Pentax bits. Every day I wake up is a good day. I'm so old I don't even buy green bananas.

Chrism8

Link Posted 26/11/2018 - 16:43
Hi Vic,

I have read on other forums it's worth preserving with trying to charge them, they may recover. Try leaving them on charge till the batteries run out of charge then drop a fresh set in as soon as poss.
Chris

www.chrismillsphotography.co.uk

" A Hangover is something that occupies the Head you neglected to use the night before".

-------------------------------------------------------------
K1 - Pentax 100 Macro F2.8 - Sigma 85mm F1.4, Pentax 150 -450 F4.5 / 5.6

Pentax FA 24 - 70 F2.8, Sigma 100-300 F4, Samyang 14mm F2.8, Sigma 70-200 F2.8,

K5iis - Sigma 17 - 70 F2.8, Sigma 70 - 300 F3.5/F5.6, Sigma 18 - 200 F3.6 / F4.5.
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