Hey guys, I'm new here, so forgive me if I'm posting at the wrong place.
I have a Canon 5d mk2 and have been using my 430ex speedlight for a couple years now. It suits me well, but now I'm really looking forward to using it off camera. This is very new to me and I don't know how it works yet, I've been searching and searching and each info I read makes me more confused. I just need to know what gear I should look for considering I want:
- To use the speedlight alone, with no other flash
- To be able to shoot outdoors with it. I don't need a great reach because the flash will never be very far from the camera, but it might be behind it sometimes (I read something about "Radio Flash" working better for that = ?? )
- Supporting TTL
- I don't want anything crazy expensive, neither something too cheap and unreliable. I need something reasonable that gets the job done
I read about radioflash, triggers, receivers, transmitters.. I'm so confused!!
If anyone can help me saying what's the product (and brand?) I should be looking at, I'll be VERY thankful!
Cheap Chinese manufacture, so be aware of build quality and copy consistency issues, as well as YN's tendency to make early adopters their beta testers, but you might want to consider the YN-622c radio triggers.
Most radio triggers that are cheap won't do TTL.
And if you don't want line of sight or range issues, you want radio triggers.
The Yongnuo YN-622c triggers are new, but only cost about $85 a pair. You need one on the camera hotshoe to act as a transmitter to tell the flash to fire. You need one on the flash hotshoe to act as a receiver, so the flash can "hear" the signal to fire.
You could also look at Phottix Odins or Pixel Kings, or the PocketWizard FlexTT5 and Mini TT1, but they will be more expensive, and you should also be thinking about future expansion to a multilight setup.
If you want off camera TTL, you are narrowing down your potential options (and also increasing the price). You will need a transmitter unit for your camera (sits in the hotshoe) and a receiver unit for each flash you want to use off camera. The nice thing is that if you only plan on using one flash, TTL transmitters are sold in pairs (transmitter/receiver), so you don't have to worry about buying multiple items to start out.
I personally have the Pixel Kings and use them with both a 60D and 5dm2 in combination with a 430exii. Pocket wizards are the brand known for reliability, but I've had great results with the PK's.
With all of this said, I don't use them nearly as much as I do my manual triggers.
So far, this discussion is about wireless only. (I also use wireless and I'm a fan.) However, there's also a wired option.
If what you'd like to shoot is stationary (portraits, indoors, quasi-studio), then there is a wired option that works very well. For about $65(?) you can get a 33' cord which keeps all E-TTL functionality and makes the flash really easy to work with (even from the camera for many functions). Now being the proud owner of 6 wireless triggers and 3 flash units, I still use the long cord a lot. (www.ocfgear.com).