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Digital SLR & TTL


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#1 bobjarman

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 05:24 AM

Does the fuji have TTL hardwired strobe capability?

Given the difference in the way strobes and digital work, do you think the day will come when Canon and Nikon will either offer their flash technology or someone will backwards engineer a system whereby digital SLR's will function identically to film SLR's underwater?

After my Belize trip, and looking at the slides I got, I really have decided that I love the results of dual hardwired ttl strobes with FEL lock and flash exposure comp modes. But after shooting digital for two years on land, I forgot how much I hate dealing with slides.

So what do you think...is it coming, or is the different flash metering style so different that we will have to choose?

#2 bvanant

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 08:41 AM

I will make a guess, at least about Canon. The Canon folks have shown no interest in allowing folks who shoot digital and film to use the lowest common denominator in strobes. On the digital bodies you shoot either manual or one of the EX compatible strobes. If I were a manufacturer of housings and strobes and I really wanted to differentiate myself from the pack, I would make a strobe that did the E-TTL stuff and passed the electronic signal to camera. In other words, send out the whole pre-flash sequence then set the appropriate shutter speed or aperture, then fire the strobe at the appropriate power.
That's what I would do, but maybe the underwater strobe guys don't have the resources to make that happen, I don't understand why they haven't jumped on the bandwagon.
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#3 CDesperado

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 12:49 PM

Brilliantly stated Bob... anyone out there with any business sense at all would have to see the tremendous sales opportunity here. I think the reason this has been a lesser issue is possibly because most professional or semi-professional topside photographers use studio lighting (or an amateur equivalent) and most true amateurs dont understand enough about photography to understand when TTL works best and when it doesnt, so the manufacturers assume the former do not use TTL and the latter either do not use it or do not need it.

Additionally, top-side photography provides much more latitude towards adjusting your light, where as TTL can become crucial with underwater photography. (I am currently facing a huge dilemna related to TTL and digital... choosing between the camera I want (D10) and a camera that supports TTL (S2).)

I am curious about Canon's and Nikon's take on this issue. I wonder if we could get someone from there to comment?

#4 craig

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:30 PM

(I am currently facing a huge dilemna related to TTL and digital... choosing between the camera I want (D10) and a camera that supports TTL (S2).)

I felt that way, too, but I found out quickly that TTL was the least of my worries. Now the thought doesn't cross my mind.

I think you should be most concerned with which housing you want rather than which camera goes in it. It's the housing that you operate after all, and all three cameras are capable of excellent results. If the housing you like best supports multiple bodies then you can choose. Lens choices are important, too. You have to consider the pros and cons of each rig as a system, and TTL is only one factor. The S2 offers greater resolving power than the Canon, and in my mind that's more important than TTL (I don't own either one).
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#5 ikelite

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 01:47 PM

The Fuji S2 Pro is based on a Nikon F80 / N80 camera body, utilizes Nikkor lenses, and is the only digital SLR that provides TTL capability with all of our TTL SubStrobes for a complete system of proven components. Following URL describes some of the idiosyncrasies of strobes for digital cameras:

http://www.ikelite.c...efinitions.html

#6 marriard

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Posted 24 June 2003 - 04:08 PM

Does the fuji have TTL hardwired strobe capability?    

Yes, I have full TTL capabilities on my Fuji S2Pro with dual Ikelite SubStrobe 200s.

I use it sparingly, but it is nice to have.

M

#7 CDesperado

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 05:15 AM

I felt that way, too, but I found out quickly that TTL was the least of my worries.  Now the thought doesn't cross my mind.

I must admit, I am somewhat torn over the loss of TTL. Initially, I will be using the digital to shoot only macro and am wondering whether TTL will be that important anyway. I figure a dozen test shots will enable me to find the "sweet spot" of light that I need in terms of the appropriate strobe power to use.

I have heard a lot of people are using a very reduced amount of power when shooting dual strobes with digital... somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/4 or 1/8 power.

Obviously the sweet spot would change somewhat depending on the subject.

#8 craig

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 05:58 AM

I don't feel it's important but others disagree. With a housed SLR, you'll want some strobe power for macro. I use two moderate power strobes and typically operate them between half and full power. Wide angle is a different story. Without TTL you will want strobes that give you reasonable control over power.
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#9 marriard

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Posted 25 June 2003 - 08:49 AM

I must admit, I am somewhat torn over the loss of TTL. Initially, I will be using the digital to shoot only macro and am wondering whether TTL will be that important anyway. I figure a dozen test shots will enable me to find the "sweet spot" of light that I need in terms of the appropriate strobe power to use.

I have heard a lot of people are using a very reduced amount of power when shooting dual strobes with digital... somewhere in the neighborhood of 1/4 or 1/8 power.

Obviously the sweet spot would change somewhat depending on the subject.

Marcro shooting can require some pretty hefty blasts of strobe power. Light falls off real quickly with true macro photography.

Also because of subject matter, size, distance from subject, color of subjects, shooting up/down, etc, etc, etc, a sweet spot is gong to be different for each different subject.

One thing TTL can do for a new shooter is give you a better chance of lighting a subject reasonably well on each shot. That can be a big deal especially when starting out.

M

#10 CDesperado

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 05:56 AM

This is one of the things that interests me the most about moving to digital - some people say they use smaller degrees of light power from their strobes and others say they use full power.

I am forced to wonder if the former group are using very powerful strobes (powerful enough for wide angle for example) and the latter group are using smaller, much less powerful strobes, which would be why they use their strobes at "full" or "half" power.

Regardless, I am eagerly awaiting the decision I will make and the opportunity to shoot digital because it will give me an opportunity for so much more compositional creativity. I plan on shooting many many test shots to determine which strobe settings work most effectively between dark and light backgrounds and I will use that as a barometer in the field (hopefully with good results!)

#11 craig

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 07:04 AM

Low light requirements are more associated with digital P&S cameras with their limited apertures for macro. A digital SLR with an ISO of 100 at f/22 needs the same range of strobe power as a 35mm film camera would. Since you stated an interest in the 10D and S2, you should be considering the same kinds of strobe power as a film SLR would use.

I don't use big strobes (around 100 watt-seconds) but I find them adequate for wide angle.
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#12 marriard

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Posted 26 June 2003 - 09:09 AM

Regardless, I am eagerly awaiting the decision I will make and the opportunity to shoot digital because it will give me an opportunity for so much more compositional creativity. I plan on shooting many many test shots to determine which strobe settings work most effectively between dark and light backgrounds and I will use that as a barometer in the field (hopefully with good results!)

Wide angle - Strobe power has limited effect on background colors - especially open water. The background color is more effected by f/stop & shutter speed. Your strobes will light up the foreground subject only. So you will find that the strobe settings will vary more on distance to the subject at various f/stops. Shutter speeds matter less as they are normally longer than the actual strobe dump. I love days when the water is an f8 & 1/90sec day - that is bright blue with good sunlight...

Macro is a whole different stroy as the background is likely to be within the strobes dump area, so everything is effected. That means you have to be thinking about your subject and background when it comes to lighting the image. Also light can fall off real quick with macro because you tend to use much smaller f stops (f13-f32 on a DSLR) so you can get far more details and try and maximize depth of field on a small subject than you would do with wide angle. That means you need more power - I regularly use MUCH more strobe power on macro shots than I do on wide-angle.

M