Olympus C-5050 and INON Z-220 Focus Light/Aiming Laser


After spending two weeks at Wakatobi (see http://echeng.com/travel/wakatobi/) shooting with my Olympus C-5050z/PT-015 and the onboard flash, I realized my shots were very limited without a strobe. While many of my macro or closer shots came out nicely, anything further than about 2 feet went blue/green. This had to change for the next trip.

After some research and expert advice (thanks Eric : ), I purchased an Inon Z-220 strobe. Aside from its small size, light weight and wide, powerful coverage, I was also psyched about the focus light and aiming laser. However, upon unpacking it and reading the manuals I was disappointed to find out that the 5050 wouldn't enable these functions. Interestingly, the strobe does have an optical sensor that will enable both functions on half button pushes of other cameras. I saw this as a challenge.


I knew that my Oly 5050 lit the focus LED in dark situations and wondered if I could mount a fiber optic cable to route this light from the camera's LED to the strobe's optical sensor to activate the focus light and laser. I figured that if I could fashion some kind of mount that would hold the fiber optic cable in place directly in front of the LED, I could leverage this camera feature and