simple but effective ?

Wireless Design and Protocol Discussion

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simple but effective ?

Postby Rudeofus » Sun Sep 30, 2007 6:16 pm

I just wanted to throw a very simple idea how to control remote flashes at this forum: Extending the range/coverage of wireless IR triggered flashes with polymer fibers. It's neither fancy nor geeky but may well solve the flash related problems of some of us around here ...

So far we (and others before us) came up with four ways of transfering flash trigger from camera to remote flashes
  1. Wires connecting camera and flash
  2. IR pulses
  3. RF wireless
  4. ultra sound
None of these has made us really happy, because
  1. wires are tedious (think of wedding photographers)
  2. IR is patented, unreliable, easily shaded off by gobo/umbrella/light box/IR photo diode on flash pointing in wrong direction/photographer too far away
  3. wireless is complicated, patented, needs FCC approval, not all that reliable unless done well (see cactus vs. pocketwizards).
  4. ultra sound needs big transmitters and is not fast enough for communicating anything but flash triggers in the given time frame. Certainly no support for anything TTL like.

Polymer fibers are cheap, can be easily cut to size and attached close to the IR photo diode of the flash, the other end can be pointed anywhere or could go around walls if needed. Since the fiber just transports the flash light of the master flash, it would transparently support automatic flash exposure protocols like E-TTL, iTTL and whatever-TTL ... the camera pointing end of the fiber doesn't have to be attached to the master flash directly (unless we want 100 m range), it may suffice to have it point at the master from 1-2 m away.

I guess I'll order some and try it out next week ...
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Postby seaton » Thu Oct 04, 2007 8:29 am

Sounds a great alternative, however for me I don't want cables etc everywhere, fine for the studio I guess.
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Postby MQ » Thu Oct 04, 2007 8:35 am

seaton wrote:Sounds a great alternative, however for me I don't want cables etc everywhere, fine for the studio I guess.

No way. I went first IR and then poverty wizards in the studio
because of all the tripwires in half dark.

Not to speak of cable wear, PC connector wear and all those
other colorful problems attached to cables.
If you are not part of the solution,
you are part of the problem.
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