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Fiber Optic Cables or Sync Cords

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#1 shawngir



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Posted 11 April 2013 - 07:27 AM

I been browsing the forum and seen a couple threads where the author mentions they switched from Sync Cords to Fiber Optic cables.  


Why would one would want to do this switch?  I never been that successful when Fiber Optic cables.

#2 Stewart L. Sy

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Posted 11 April 2013 - 09:08 AM

I switched my Aquatica 7D from N5 to FO mainly for increased reliability.  Sync cords can (and in my case) fail a couple of times over the years. Spares are relatively expensive to carry. FO Cords are cheaper and lighter (great for the traveling photog where these days, it's like every ounce counts).  I had a guest on my trip last year accidentally yank out the hotshoe wires of his housing.  I had a spare set of optical bulkheads and cables so we swapped his electrical cords to FO and he's not looked back.   You also remove a potential source of failure since there is no electrical contact between the strobe and housing, easy enough to see a kink in an FO cable, not so easy with electrical cords unless you bring a multimeter with you on a trip.


Another benefit is that FO users gain back TTL (assuming their strobes support DS-TTL and it's various versions). However, the camera does slow down, in TTL, you 'll wait for the on camera flash to recharge, even shooting in manual mode with the flash turned all the way down, the 7D went from 8FPS down to 3fps.  Not a big deal really when shooting UW.


One is limited to maximum sync speed of the camera, whereas on electrical cords, you can fire at any shutter speed.  Handy on those cameras (like the 7D) that can actually sync at 1/320th when the shot is a vertical.


Horses for courses....if N5 works for you, then leave it alone, but there are lots of benefits (and a few minor drawbacks) with FO strobe triggering.





Edited by Stewart L. Sy, 11 April 2013 - 09:08 AM.

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