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Housed Nikon SB 5000 - anyone using this setup?

nikon strobe housed underwater

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#1 louisemurray


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Posted 20 June 2019 - 06:34 AM

Curiuos to know if anyone out there is using Nikon SB 5000 in a housing?


Louise Murray

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#2 Algwyn



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Posted 20 June 2019 - 02:29 PM



Not with a SB 5000, but with a SB 800. Connected to housing with a Nikonos 5 cable.


Great thing is that you get all the power of Nikon TTL system. The camera recognise the flash and you get the full benefits of the direct communication between the camera and flash.


Weakness is that this TTL system only support a single flash with a wired connection.

To get two flashes you have to either:

  • use a third party system to split the TTL signal to two flashes 
  • switch to manual flash

In both cases, you loses the benefits of the native communication between the Nikon Flash and Camera.


In Nikon TTL system, secondary flashes are designed to be commanded by the Master flash through light signal.

This doesn't really work well in a housing underwater, especially with housing like the Subal, with hides the light flash sensor inside the housing.


You could try to use an UW strobe which can be commanded as slave through a light sensor. However this is less reliable than using fiber optics.


Given that a flash housing like Subal's are about as expensive than a Retra strobe ... I gave up trying to tinker a way to make this work.

But for those who are interested in tinkering, there could be a way to make this work with a custom fiber optic rigs to transmit the light signal between the Master and slave flashes.


Many would say that you don't need TTL, and that they are using their UW strobes in manual. In that case there is little benefit using a Nikon SB 5000 in a housing.


The flash housing is also quite big and heavy compared to a strobe. When traveling this is a big disadvantages.


This is why I've stopped using this housing and switched to UW strobes.

Edited by Algwyn, 20 June 2019 - 02:35 PM.

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