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Trafalgar Law

Help: Sea&Sea YS-01 Struggling to fire (Sometimes not firing)

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Hi. I have an RX100 rig with this setup

  • Sony RX100 Mark IV Camera
  • Sony Housing
  • Sea&Sea YS-01 Strobe (A) (Used for a few trips, maybe a few hundred fired) (Original version, not a Solis)
  • Sea&Sea fiber optic cable (A)
  • Sea&Sea YS-01 Strobe (B) (Second hand, but never used) (Original version, not a Solis)
  • Sea&Sea fiber optic cable (B) (newer version with larger springy thing)
  • Eneloop Ni-MH rechargeable batteries (white ones)

This is my settings on my camera

  • M mode 1/200, F-11, ISO-200
  • Flash mode: fill-flash
  • Flash Comp.: -3.0
  • Red eye: Off

Settings on strobes

  • Mode: M (double flash icon)
  • Power: 1/2

My problem is,  the firing rate of strobe (A) is around 33%, while the newer strobe (B) always fires (100%). At first I'm not quite sure if I shoot too fast, but I have tried waiting for 5 seconds but strobe (A) still struggle to fire. The official spec from Sea&Sea states that the recycle time of full power for Ni-MH batteries is only 1.9 second. I have tried to swap sockets & fiber cables, but things are still the same, which (I think) confirm that my housing and both fiber cables are fine.

Any tips? Thanks for your reply.

 

Edited by Trafalgar Law
add recycle time spec

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You say the firing rate for "A" is 33% do you mean it only fires one in 3 times and B fires everytime?. 

Have you tried running a cable from camera to strobe B and a cable from strobe A to strobe B so B triggers A?  I believe there is a socket in strobe front panel to allow this connection.

Have you tried 1/4 power?  does it improve strobe A at all?  I would suggest with a 1" sensor camera you don't need f11 - f5.6 is equivalent to about f16 on a full frame camera for depth of field.  You should be able to use 1/4 power at f8 or 1/8 power at f5.6.

 

 

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1 hour ago, ChrisRoss said:

You say the firing rate for "A" is 33% do you mean it only fires one in 3 times and B fires everytime?. 

Have you tried running a cable from camera to strobe B and a cable from strobe A to strobe B so B triggers A?  I believe there is a socket in strobe front panel to allow this connection.

Have you tried 1/4 power?  does it improve strobe A at all?  I would suggest with a 1" sensor camera you don't need f11 - f5.6 is equivalent to about f16 on a full frame camera for depth of field.  You should be able to use 1/4 power at f8 or 1/8 power at f5.6.

 

 

Hi Chris,

  • Yes, Strobe A fires just once out of 3 times, while B fires every time.
  • Haven't tried cable from strobe B to A since I shot wide and cable is too short.  I am at home now, nowhere near water, but will definitely try it.
  • I tried 1/4, 1/1, and something in between as well, the result is the same. Didn't try 1/8.
  • Thank you for the tips. Will definitely try suggested F stop next time!

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I use a pair of YS-01 strobes now on a Nikon (w/flash trigger) and previously on the same Sony (via nauticam).  With the Sony, I would use the TTL setting on the strobes, though to my recollection the strobes never actually fired in TTL mode (red light, not green) but full-dumped except as adjusted on the strobe output dial.

I always had flash compensation at zero.

It's worth noting that in the three YS-01 strobes I've owned, they've all had... peculiarities.  One didn't propogate signal to a secondary.  Another doesn't fire beneath 3/4 power (the dial is broken?).  Yet another won't turn on unless I "bump" it after inserting batteries.  And they're all *very* sensitive to the cable used for LED triggers.

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Update: I have tried suggested cases, here are the results

Cable from camera to strobe B, and cable from strobe B to strobe A (This is a little tricky since I'll need to set strobe A to single flash mode)

  • At every cases, strobe B fires every time.
  • At 1/4 power and stronger, strobe A still fires once out of 3 times.
  • At 1/8 power and lower, strobe A improves and fires 10 out of 10 times.

Then, I rearrange the cable to normal position (camera to A & camera to B)

  • At 1/8 power and lower, A fires 10 out of 10 times. Mmm.
  • Slowly adjust the dial up to 1/1 power, strobe A struggle again and fire once out of 3 times.
  • Output light of both strobes are the same, so both dials should be fine
  • I noticed that the red ready light of both strobes come back quickly at very close time, around 1 second as per the spec. However, A still not firing.

Oh my poor strobe A.

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7 minutes ago, Trafalgar Law said:

Update: I have tried suggested cases, here are the results

Cable from camera to strobe B, and cable from strobe B to strobe A (This is a little tricky since I'll need to set strobe A to single flash mode)

  • At every cases, strobe B fires every time.
  • At 1/4 power and stronger, strobe A still fires once out of 3 times.
  • At 1/8 power and lower, strobe A improves and fires 10 out of 10 times.

Then, I rearrange the cable to normal position (camera to A & camera to B)

  • At 1/8 power and lower, A fires 10 out of 10 times. Mmm.
  • Slowly adjust the dial up to 1/1 power, strobe A struggle again and fire once out of 3 times.
  • Output light of both strobes are the same, so both dials should be fine
  • I noticed that the red ready light of both strobes come back quickly at very close time, around 1 second as per the spec. However, A still not firing.

Oh my poor strobe A.

Try swapping batteries to rule-out that possibility and see if the results are replicated. 

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Sounds like strobe A is slow to recharge or perhaps is firing at higher power than strobe B on the same setting the fact it works well at 1/8 power indicates the problem is that it has not recharged enough to flash again.   How long between shots? 

You could test this out by taking two shots of something at the same settings one shot each with strobe A & strobe B, both in manual on the same power taking care to have them in the same position.  You are looking to see if the image is brighter when illuminated by Strobe A compared to B on 1/2 and 1/4 power settings.  If the images are the same Strobe A is slower to recharge if Stobe A is brighter it's pitting out more power on any given setting and taking longer to recharge because it has used more of the stored energy.

 

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Thanks everyone.

I've already sent it back to local dealer. Can't do any more tests.

Unfortunately the dealer in my country can only do simple diagnosis, but can't disassemble it here. I will know the result within a few days. If it turns out to be too fishy, the strobe will needed to be sent back to HQ in Japan for further analysis. That case, I expected a few weeks for reply.

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Hi,
had some troubles firing S&S strobes, still have a pair of YS250 pro, as they have an in and out socket, i run a wire cable in strobe A and then a fibre cable to strobe B. For wide angle, i have made myself a "connector" to use 2 of the cables to get the strobes wide enought away from the housing. Simply a piece of black plastic you drill a fitting hole in, or if you find a pipe with the exact diameter inside to put the plugs in.

They do great strobes, but the ignition is a bit to hard...

Have Inons as well, easy to fire!!!

Regards,
Wolfgang

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