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Basic Flash question

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  #1  
Old 29-08-09, 10:01
David Smith David Smith is offline  
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Default Basic Flash question

Years ago (in the days of film!!!) my camera (Minolta 7000i) had a 'setting' when using external flash units.

I now have a Canon 40D and (because it was cheap) the Canon 550EX flash unit which I have never used.

Going to a wedding I want to take 'inside' shots but with the ladies probably wearing 'big hats' outside would also like to try 'fill in'........I'm just a family guest not THE photographer!!
I am trying to understand the instructions but they seem more like computer instructions

Is it possible to give me some simple basic guidelines for best/easiest settings
Thanks
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Old 29-08-09, 17:07
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David, for outdoor fill-in shots, there will be a setting on the camera called slow-synch flash, or similar. This is the one you should be using for these outdoor shots. Leave the flash in E-TTL (or whatever mode Canon call their pre-flash TTL mode).

For your indoor stuff, on-camera flash will make everyone look like cardboard cut-outs. You can try either slow synch indoor, depending on how much light there is, or you could switch to fully manual (camera nad flashgun) and do some quick test shots to get the balance between ambient light and the flash lifghting. This will be ok if the interior lighting levels do not change, but as it appears you're not too comfortable with flash, so it may be worth doing some experiments indoors with the family at home before hand to learn how to balance the two light sources.

A longer shutter speed will give more balance to the ambient light levels, but may result in blur due to subject movement, a higher flash power setting will give more balance to the flash lighting, but may result in cardboard cutout effect.

Practice at home using the different modes, and varying the flash compensation setting. It costs nothing to try, and you'll learn a lot in the process. Get comfortable with what you're doing before the big day, even if you are only doing this as a guest.

Duncan

Hope this helps.
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Old 29-08-09, 23:51
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andy153 andy153 is offline  
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Hi David, I'm a Nikon man, but looking at your set up I think this link will answer your question, Remember you can bounce this flash and if you have not got a diffuser, a white handkerchief fastened over the flash head with a rubber band is almost as good.

LINKhttp://photonotes.org/articles/eos-flash/
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Old 30-08-09, 11:09
David Smith David Smith is offline  
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Thank you for that advice.

Andy-I have copied that link and will 'wade' through it.

Duncan-you advise
, there will be a setting on the camera called slow-synch flash, or similar. This is the one you should be using for these outdoor shots. Leave the flash in E-TTL (or whatever mode Canon call their pre-flash TTL mode).

I have gone 'into' the camera settings and it is already pre-set to "shutter sync-1st curtain". I can't find anything mentioning 'slow sync'

On the mode dial I have the choice of 'A-DEP' 'M' 'AV' 'TV' or 'P' (plus the normal scene modes and 'flash off'
I understand that 'P' will automatically fire the flash at full power and choose the correct speed but which setting will change it to 'fill in flash' ???

Any help for this confused 'technophobe' appreciated
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Old 31-08-09, 08:25
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Fill in flash will be selected when you set to slow-synch. If someone out there with a Canon can tell David how to get slow synch mode on the camera it would be appreciated.
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Old 01-09-09, 18:03
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David Smith View Post
I have gone 'into' the camera settings and it is already pre-set to "shutter sync-1st curtain". I can't find anything mentioning 'slow sync'

On the mode dial I have the choice of 'A-DEP' 'M' 'AV' 'TV' or 'P' (plus the normal scene modes and 'flash off'
Look at page 99 of the manual. It looks like you can only do slow speed sync in Av mode, (daft system if you ask me). Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
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