Canon Flash: EC vs FEC

What is EC? What is FEC? It’s alphabet soup that stands for Exposure Compensation and Flash Exposure Compensation. This is used to differentiate what photographers do on the camera vs what photographers do on the flash. The Nikon world is completely different from the Canon world.

In the Nikon world, the formula is: EC + FEC = Total Exposure Compensation. An Exposure compensation of -2 on the camera and a Flash Exposure Compensation of +2 = -2 …

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External Flash Meter

Last night after dinner, Anon from Ymous fame, knocked on my door to ask for help. He’s the “senior photographer” at his photo club, so he can’t ask for help there. His wife bought him an external flash meter for his birthday. I haven’t used one of these, a Gossen, from the late 70s, that’s the late 1970s.

Anon tried the Sekonic flash meter with his Nikon D700 and his SB800 …

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Canon 580EX II Flash Failures

Canon Rumors, you follow them right? has published a blog post: 580EX II Faulty by Design. Pocket Wizard is having many problems with the Canon 7D and the 580EXII. So they commissioned an “independent” study that found faults with the 580EXII flash design, especially when using the High Speed Synchronization.

Their conclusions are:

It appears that some combination of elements comes together to create the risk and increased probability of an IGBT failure within the …

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Canon 7D: C.Fn I - 7 — Flash Sync Speed in Av Mode

There are 2 kinds of photographers:

  1. The aperture priority photographers
  2. The shutter priority photographers

The manual photographers do not count, they are so rare that they are lobbying for being listed under the Endangered Species Act.

Like the vast majority of the photographers, I’m an aperture priority photographer. To my shock and dismay, when I first hooked my flash to my Canon 7D, the flash worked but the shutter staid open “forever” seconds…

I …

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Some of the Secrets from the Flash World

I’ve been reading “Speedliter’s Handbook” from Syl Arena. Reading is nothing, the most important part is actually trying and experimenting. Here are my discoveries from some of these experiments.

Secret #1 of when using the flash

The shutter speed controls the ambient light when using the flash. The Canon 7D has a sync speed of up to 1/250th of a second with the flash. At short range, the flash is the main …

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Canon: Number Of Flashes 580EXII Before Thermal Shutdown

Canon’s manual for the 580EXII flash says:

Cautions for firing continuous flashes

  • To avoid overheating and degrading the flash head, do not fire more than 20 continuous flashes. After 20 continuous flashes, allow a rest time of at least 10 min.

  • If you fire more than 20 continuous flashes and then fire more flashes in short intervals, the inner overheating prevention function may be activated to make the recycling time about 8 to 20 …

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Canon: Flash Exposure Compensation

Sometimes, I wish Canon had a flash system as simple as Nikon’s. I’m not saying that it’s bad, under-powered, I’m saying is not as sophisticated or as flexible as Nikon’s. When dealing with flash, you must deal with exposure compensation. Exposure compensation is topic that you have to feel, there are no hard rules.

  • The exposure compensation does NOT work in manual mode.
  • The flash exposure compensation does NOT work …
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Canon: Flash Guide Numbers

Not only Canon flashes, but all brands express the power power of their flashes with the Guide Number. Canon numbers their flashes with the guide number. The guide number is the distance at a specific ISO at a specific zoom head position.

Why is the Guide Number so important?

  1. It allows us to calculate the right exposure. Without the right guide number, no correct exposure. It’s that simple.
  2. It allows us to compare different …
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Non Canon Flash Not Working

I have this old, very old flash. It used to be the standard, the work horse of all professional photographers in the 70s. Yes, that’s the 1970s. Every professional photographer had a Vivitar 283 flash. That was before the Canon EOS Speedlites or the Nikon Creative Lighting System.

I got a few photos in the manual mode, it worked. But when I switched to the Live View mode, it stopped working. The flash didn …

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Canon 7D: Remote Wireless Flash

For the first time, Canon has finally introduced a camera that can operate other eTTL flashes wirelessly without having a separate master flash mounted on the camera. The small built-in flash can be used as a “controller”. The pop-up flash will control either the 4xx, the 5xx series or many other compatible flashes like the Metz flashes.

All the flashes must be within a clear line of sight. The pop-up flash will do a “pre-flash …

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Canon 7D: Flash & Shutter Speed

My preferred mode is Aperture Mode. It’s from all these years when the cameras only had aperture priority or manual mode. I’m not saying it’s better, I’m just saying that’s how I think.

Not long after buying my Canon 7D, I bought a Canon 580EXII flash. Load the camera, load the batteries, a couple of test shots. No problem, it seems to be working. Then I turned around, took another …

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