Canon Speedlite flash compensation

Discussion in 'Lighting' started by Gary Holliday, Sep 3, 2007.

  1. Gary Holliday

    Gary Holliday Member

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    I was wondering if the Canon 550 EX Speedlite in ETTL mode is reliable enough?

    I'll be using an EOS 3 in manual mode, with a Minolta IVF for metering an outdoor wedding in mainly bright conditions.

    With the 550EX in ETTL mode, do I need to use flash compensation for accurate results?
     
  2. bjorke

    bjorke Member

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    I like mine a lot, I have a 550 and 580.

    The flash is solid, but LEARN TO USE IT - practice before the wedding to avoid bad surprises or fumbling. The 550 in particular has one of the weirdest interfaces ever, and tweaking modes and compensations around is rather less than intuitive for me (the 580 is vastly improved in this regard).
     
  3. Troy

    Troy Subscriber

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    I use mine everyday for my job at a newspaper —*two of them in fact. They are rock solid-and right-on 95% of the time. But, like bjorke says, test them and learn the quirks before a wedding. For instance, I almost always use mine in ETTL mode but with the compensation dialed back by a half a stop in an upright position with an omni bounce attached because that's the way I like it.
     
  4. Gary Holliday

    Gary Holliday Member

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    Troy, - 1/2 FEC, position the flash upright, the stofen diffuser will direct enough light forwards? I think I will run off a quick slide film to see how the flash cuts off when faced with white dresses.
     
  5. Troy

    Troy Subscriber

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    The omni bounce sends light up toward a ceiling that may, or may not, be there and also sends some forward in a semi-wraparound kind of bare-bulb way. It's even better with an off-shoe cord that'll let you get the flash up and off to the side a bit. This is all assuming you have enough ambient illumination to make an exposure in the first place of course.
     
  6. bjorke

    bjorke Member

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    test test test!

    white dress + black suit == worst possible case for TTL metering

    if your minolta can flash-meter (I have sekonic, what do I know?), or you're willing to do the math, use manual if you can.

    (that said, there are some people who shoot weddings -- well -- with ETTL. I'm just not a trusting sort of person)