Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Unbalanced Q - Part 1 (with an External Flash)

(Above: Pentax AF200S put onto the Q - Click to Enlarge.)

Everything has got so unbalanced when the something is attached on the Q. But in order to get rid of the annoying P-TTL of the Q, an external auto flash unit with built-in flash exposure meter and control is required! ;-D

Now, there is no more annoying pre-flash and picture taking is just instantaneous, i.e., without any delay just because of the pre-flash. The exposure is more consistent and accurate, too. The same applies when the same "obsolete" thing is attached on my K-5! Amazing enough?

Look at the above gear photo at the right, you can see a working combination of the settings in both the camera and on the flash, for instance.

But there is a bug of the Q's firmware actually (I have updated to the latest version already). That is, the built-in flash is still firing when an external flash gun is attached. So, I've tried to set the custom function No. 10 of "not discharge flash" when the "flash is retracted". However, by doing so, the external flash will NOT be fired then!? So, what I have to do is to set "no flash" for the built-in flash but with the custom function No. 10 set at default (i.e., discharge flash when retracted) then it finally works! :-o

Even more unfortunately, the behaviour of the Q with the later generation of the Pentax auto-focus dedicated flash units (which are with four pins at the hot-shoe) is even more helpless. It is because the external flash will NOT be discharged even when the built-in flash function is set at "no flash". So, the tiny little built-in flash must be discharged at the same time with the large external flash. The worst thing is that the external flash has to wait the little P-TTL flash to complete its pre-flash before both can fire altogether! Otherwise, in all other circumstances, both flash units are turned off no matter how the user sets the Q and his original *Pentax* flash! >:-(

Btw, for a list of downloadable user manuals of those old and new Pentax flash units, the following official link can be visited:-

Last but not least, as for the flash trigger voltage of my AF200S, it is measured to be +2 Volt with flesh Alkaline batteries inserted. It is also worth noting that it is mentioned in the Pentax Q manual that flash unit with a negative trigger voltage could not be used with the camera. So, mine should be very safe to use! :-)


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Pathetic Canon's External Auto Saves the Pathetic TTL of Pentax!

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