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The ultimate DIY Led trigger (Olympus)

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Hi All, I've been working on it for quite a long time now, and I managed to break 3 flashes until now, but now it is 99% working, so I'm happy to share my DIY.


So I have the Olympus OMD EM1, with the Olympus housing, I wanted to have a Led trigger, that will NOT have batteries (powered from the camera) and will work with TTL and I will be able to adjust the intensity from the camera itself.


So It wasn't easy... I have to research a lot of LEDs different sizes colors and wavelengths, wanted it to work with any fiberoptic out there... not to have to change anything in my setup.


So to make a long story short, it is working!


I will share the process in general now, and then I promised a good friend to do the same for him, so during that, I will upload some more detailed process.


the process was to take an FL-LM2 (Olympus original flash) I bought few of those cheap online:



took it apart, and then with the help of this post:



I changed the capacitor to a 1uf, removed all the flash tube board.


Now the 5V that I get from the camera is from the accessory port, I knew which pin is the 5V, so I connected a wire to the 5V pin, now that I have 5V and LEDs, all is left is to trigger them.


LEDs that worked the best for me where (believe me it wasn't easy to find the correct LEDs that will work every time):



then I disconnected the 750K ohm surface mount resistor (marked as 753 on the board). and connected the negative of the LED to the IGBT marked as p4006 on the board.


so Yeah this is not the best way to light a LED 5V and high current, but since it is very very short pulses it is fine.


Now the LED were working good, but when I put them back in the case and the housing it wasn't firing, the distance + the reflective sticker in the housing and the fiberoptics had too much attenuation and it didn't fire the flashes.


So I have to 3d print a part, to have the LEDs placed inside the housing in the correct place, and now it is great!


I will upload the detailed how to when I will make a new one + the STL of the 3d printed file so anyone could do it.


In the end, the cost to do so will be 30$ flash, 6$ for 100 LEDs, time and a 3d printer.


I'm attaching a photo of how it looks + a video of the final result.



Edited by AYahoo
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Good point. Although did anyone recognise the genius of Da Vinci immediately? :P

It is pretty amazing - but, yeah, odd that going back as far 2018 no replies.  

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i think the main issue is that there are a lot of steps that many of don't have the tools for. I make lots of UW gizmos but don't have access (anymore) to any surface mount component tools and getting some of the surface mount parts off of the board with a traditional soldering iron is painful. Also having to 3-d print the housing is a problem. Using the flash as is but at very low power works fine  for most of us. 



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AYahoo has replaced the xenon flash and battery of an Olympus flash/Olympus OM-D E-M1 camera with two ultra bright LEDs powered by the camera's battery, mounted in a new, printed housing, while retaining strobe's TTL function. 
However, as AYahoo notes, replacing the Xenon flash tube with LEDs had been done previously (1), while retaining the strobe's battery. What is novel is that Ayahoo powered the LED's with the Olympus camera's battery.  However, his rationale and description for this are less than clear, lacking in details.
To me, it does seem that all this work, just to use the camera's battery to trigger two LEDs, is hardly worth it. 

Also, if one shoots Manual, one can build a simple LED trigger for less than $10 (2, 3).

This LED Flash Trigger has a hot shoe plug, a 3 V coin 2032 battery and holder, a 1 Ohm resistor, two deep red 5 mm LEDs, and a 6 V Shottky diode to prevent "ringing". One can make this trigger for under $10, it is a simple version of the Subal LED strobe manual trigger. 
 A retainer can be made of plastic to hold the LEDs in place (4). 
3D printed LED Retainer 
- - -
1. LED Modified Olympus Flash 
2. DIY Hot Shoe Plug.
3. Super bright, deep red 630 nm, 5 mm LEDs are available from Superbrightleds.com and Ledsupply.com 


Edited by Kraken de Mabini

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