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Strobe not synching


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#1 Rainer

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 01:55 PM

Recently acquired a pair of Inon Z240s for our Nikon D7000 (Aquatica housing). The seller included a pair of Toslink cables (with ends to mate to the strobes). I hooked everything together and took a test photo into a mirror. Only the right strobe is showing as firing in the photograph, even though both strobes clearly do fire. The left strobe is obviously firing too early or too late (I'm assuming probably the latter). I've jiggled the connectors, but can't seem to find an obvious solution.

Any suggestions greatly appreciated. Would love to get this fixed today if at all possible, as we were hoping to dive tomorrow.

Thanks!

Edited by Rainer, 28 September 2012 - 02:24 PM.


#2 bvanant

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 04:20 PM

Are you shooting manual or TTL. If TTL and the strobes are pointing at each other and you have focus assist on the strobes may be shooting each other in the foot. Do they work individually i.e. if you have only one turned on does it fire correctly?
Bill

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#3 JimSwims

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 04:21 PM

Hi Rainer,

my guess would be you need to set the ACC button correctly as well as check you have correct flash setting on D7000.

Have a read of Reefs helpful info page about it- http://www.reefphoto.com/kb.php?id=7

I also found this thread very helpful when I first started with my D90- http://wetpixel.com/...pic=32409&st=20

Have you tried also swapping the cables about to eliminate any faults with one of them?

Cheers,
Jim.

Edited by JimSwims, 28 September 2012 - 04:24 PM.

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#4 Rainer

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 04:47 PM

Thanks for the suggestions!

Here's what I've tried:

Shooting TTL (both strobes), focus assist lights off, both strobes fire, but only the right strobe syncs.
Shooting TTL with only the left strobe on, it fires, but it does not sync.
Shooting manual on the left strobe (and with either the left strobe on or off in TTL), both fire *and* both sync.

So what could be accounting for the left strobe not synching in TTL?

Are you shooting manual or TTL. If TTL and the strobes are pointing at each other and you have focus assist on the strobes may be shooting each other in the foot. Do they work individually i.e. if you have only one turned on does it fire correctly?
Bill



#5 Rainer

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 04:51 PM

Thanks, Jim.

I'll go try switching the cables in a minutes.

The ACC stuff is as clear as mud. My strobes have the dial type switch. What setting do I want ("up" or "down")? Right now both are up (i.e. not depressed). Is that correct?

Thanks!

Hi Rainer,

my guess would be you need to set the ACC button correctly as well as check you have correct flash setting on D7000.

Have a read of Reefs helpful info page about it- http://www.reefphoto.com/kb.php?id=7

I also found this thread very helpful when I first started with my D90- http://wetpixel.com/...pic=32409&st=20

Have you tried also swapping the cables about to eliminate any faults with one of them?

Cheers,
Jim.



#6 Rainer

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 04:58 PM

I'll go try switching the cables in a minutes.


Well, that's a no go. The two strobes have different optical connectors, so the two cables cannot be swapped.

#7 JimSwims

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 05:34 PM

Hmmmm Posted Image So are your two Z240 strobes different type models? There is a black sticker next to optical connection that has
the strobes details on it. I tend to doubt it would be but I wonder if that could that be the cause?

1. What flash setting do you have on camera? You want it on TTL.

2. Are the strobes set to exactly same setting? Left top dial STTL, Right top set to B, Bottom left Up(mine works fine set down too).

Are the Optic fibre cables clear at the ends? You could try re-cutting the end that fits to housing making sure you use a fresh
blade for a clean cut.

If one strobe is functioning correctly then it should be an issue with the second strobe or its connection.

Cheers,
Jim.

My photostream on Flickr My gallery on Redbubble

D90 in Nexus; 60mm, Woody's Diopter, 105mm, SubSee +5 & +10 magnifiers, 10-17mm, Kenko 1.4 TC, 10-24mm, 18-55mm & Inon Z240 strobes.


#8 Rainer

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Posted 28 September 2012 - 05:44 PM

Hmmmm Posted Image So are your two Z240 strobes different type models? There is a black sticker next to optical connection that has
the strobes details on it. I tend to doubt it would be but I wonder if that could that be the cause?


One is a IV, the other *was* a III, but had the internals upgraded to a IV (according to the seller and included paperwork).

1. What flash setting do you have on camera? You want it on TTL.


It's on TTL.

2. Are the strobes set to exactly same setting? Left top dial STTL, Right top set to B, Bottom left Up(mine works fine set down too).


They're both the same. Left top dial STTL, right top set to 2 (10 o'clock; I tried other settings here and get the same result).

Are the Optic fibre cables clear at the ends? You could try re-cutting the end that fits to housing making sure you use a fresh
blade for a clean cut.


I recut the end to the housing earlier today. Should I try recutting the strobe end as well?

If one strobe is functioning correctly then it should be an issue with the second strobe or its connection.


What do you make of it working in manual mode (synching), but not in TTL?

#9 JimSwims

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 05:10 AM

One is a IV, the other *was* a III, but had the internals upgraded to a IV (according to the seller and included paperwork).

What do you make of it working in manual mode (synching), but not in TTL?


Is it the upgraded Type 3 that is missing sync, could it be worth contacting the seller about your issue?

If you can re-cut the strobe end of the cables then why not I guess. Are the housing cable connections clean,
no sand or salt build up in one?

Would be best to stick to having the Right Top dial set to A, B or C while you are going through the process of elimination.

Really hope you get to the bottom of this, I think I'm just about out of ideas.

Cheers,
Jim.

Edited by JimSwims, 29 September 2012 - 05:14 AM.

My photostream on Flickr My gallery on Redbubble

D90 in Nexus; 60mm, Woody's Diopter, 105mm, SubSee +5 & +10 magnifiers, 10-17mm, Kenko 1.4 TC, 10-24mm, 18-55mm & Inon Z240 strobes.


#10 Rainer

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 05:37 AM

Is it the upgraded Type 3 that is missing sync, could it be worth contacting the seller about your issue?


Indeed it is. I'll drop him a line. I do believe he said he'd used it without problems, though.

If you can re-cut the strobe end of the cables then why not I guess. Are the housing cable connections clean,
no sand or salt build up in one?


I went ahead and cut the strobe side as well. Still the same issue.

Would be best to stick to having the Right Top dial set to A, B or C while you are going through the process of elimination.


Haven't even gotten around to trying to really understand how the compensation knob works. I'll keep it straight up (B) for the rest of my testing, but any advice on how to use it if I can get things working? Is A darker and C lighter? What about the many other positions?

Really hope you get to the bottom of this, I think I'm just about out of ideas.


Very much appreciate your many suggestions, Jim.

If anyone else has ideas, I'm all ears!

#11 bvanant

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 11:05 AM

If I understand it right, with all the buttons set the same, one strobe syncs TTL fine with either of two cables (I was unaware that the type 4 connector was different than the type III, are you sure they are really different) and the other strobe doesn't sync TTL at all with the either cable. And the push-in for the preflash is the same for both? In that case, it would appear to be a strobe problem, not a cable or camera problem.
I would ask the seller if he was running it "fine" in TTL or only in manual.

Bill

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#12 Rainer

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 11:20 AM

The connectors on the strobes (the "bulbous light" part at the bottom) is indeed different on the two strobs. The 4 has a very little light, while the 3 has a much fatter and longer one. Not sure if this is standard.

Basically both strobes seem to fire (sync) fine in manual, but only the right (4) one works in STTL. The left (3 converted to 4) one doesn't sync in STTL. Again, I can't try the strobes with different cables since the two I have are specific to the individual strobes.

I'm still very unclear how I should be setting the ACC dial. Can someone confirm if it should be up (non-depressed) or down (depressed) for what I'm trying to do??? [I have tried it both up and down for what it's worth; doesn't seem to make a difference.]

I've written the seller. Hopefully he has some suggestions...

Thanks, again, Bill.

If I understand it right, with all the buttons set the same, one strobe syncs TTL fine with either of two cables (I was unaware that the type 4 connector was different than the type III, are you sure they are really different) and the other strobe doesn't sync TTL at all with the either cable. And the push-in for the preflash is the same for both? In that case, it would appear to be a strobe problem, not a cable or camera problem.
I would ask the seller if he was running it "fine" in TTL or only in manual.

Bill



#13 Rainer

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 02:06 PM

More "mirror tests":

-Strobes set to M, camera set to TTL: both strobes sync
-Strobes set to STTL, camera set to TTL: only the right strobe syncs (i.e. "the problem"), but both fire
-Strobes set to M, camera set to M flash (1/10 power or higher): both strobes sync
-Strobes set to M, camera set to M flash (less than 1/10 power): only the right strobe fires (the left doesn't even fire, nevermind sync)
-Strobes set to STTL, camera set to M flash (1/64 power or higher): both strobes sync (image is blown out)
-Strobes set to STTL, camera set to M flash (less than 1/64 power): only the right strobe fires (the left doesn't even fire, nevermind sync)

#14 johnjvv

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 03:22 PM

Give it a try without the sync cables attached to the strobes...ie take your camera out of the housing and expose the sensor that the FO cable fixes to...take a pic pointing your camera flash to the strobe sensors. Run your test again.

If you get the same results then you'll know for sure that it is not a cable issue or vice versa....

Edited by johnjvv, 29 September 2012 - 03:27 PM.


#15 johnjvv

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Posted 29 September 2012 - 03:26 PM

Also what is your camera shutter speed?

#16 Lwang

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 12:23 AM

can you decrease the shutter speed until the point you do see both strobe light up in the mirror?

Also, does it happen when using other cameras? Maybe something with a simple pre-flash?

#17 JimSwims

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 05:57 AM

can you decrease the shutter speed until the point you do see both strobe light up in the mirror?

Also, does it happen when using other cameras? Maybe something with a simple pre-flash?


Strobe should be syncing no matter what the shutter speed, it isn't going to be too fast with the cameras
flash popped up. This strobe should work perfectly fine with a D7000 if it is functioning correctly.

Inon introduced a smaller optical sensor with the S2000 in 2009. This upgrade came out on the Z240 and
D2000 strobes soon after(Type 4).

The fact that one strobe functions correctly whilst the other doesn't does point to it being an issue with the
2nd strobe.

Rainer if you haven't already I'd test using only the problematic unit and have a go with the Bottom Right
switch locked down; ACC disabled.

One other thing, you haven't got the cameras flash set to Red eye reduction have you? Check the info
window on top, there is a little square in the top left. If you see an eye icon in that then you'll want to switch
that off.


Cheers,
Jim.

My photostream on Flickr My gallery on Redbubble

D90 in Nexus; 60mm, Woody's Diopter, 105mm, SubSee +5 & +10 magnifiers, 10-17mm, Kenko 1.4 TC, 10-24mm, 18-55mm & Inon Z240 strobes.


#18 Rainer

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:38 AM

I'll try this in a moment and post results. Thanks!

Give it a try without the sync cables attached to the strobes...ie take your camera out of the housing and expose the sensor that the FO cable fixes to...take a pic pointing your camera flash to the strobe sensors. Run your test again.

If you get the same results then you'll know for sure that it is not a cable issue or vice versa....


I've tried everything from 1/30 to 1/125. Same result (no sync on the one strobe) every time in STTL.

Also what is your camera shutter speed?



#19 Rainer

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:40 AM

I don't see it at 1/10, but it's obviously there at 1". Not sure what that shows, though.

Don't have another DSLR here to test it with.

can you decrease the shutter speed until the point you do see both strobe light up in the mirror?

Also, does it happen when using other cameras? Maybe something with a simple pre-flash?



#20 Rainer

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Posted 30 September 2012 - 11:47 AM

Strobe should be syncing no matter what the shutter speed, it isn't going to be too fast with the cameras
flash popped up. This strobe should work perfectly fine with a D7000 if it is functioning correctly.

Inon introduced a smaller optical sensor with the S2000 in 2009. This upgrade came out on the Z240 and
D2000 strobes soon after(Type 4).

The fact that one strobe functions correctly whilst the other doesn't does point to it being an issue with the
2nd strobe.


The problematic strobe definitely has the larger optical sensor.

Rainer if you haven't already I'd test using only the problematic unit and have a go with the Bottom Right
switch locked down; ACC disabled.


Do I usually want ACC disabled? The dial is not depressed on the strobe that appears to be working. I'll try more trouble shooting with the problematic one with the switch locked down.

One other thing, you haven't got the cameras flash set to Red eye reduction have you? Check the info
window on top, there is a little square in the top left. If you see an eye icon in that then you'll want to switch
that off.


Just checked. Nope, red eye reduction isn't on. Any other settings you can think of that I should check?

Thanks, Jim!