Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes
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Old 05-23-2008   #1
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Default Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Hello folks, I just got a set of Pocket Wizard Plus II's and may or may not have a problem with them. I did do a search, but it didn't turn up anything (both here and
through google).

I hooked one up to my Sigma EF-500 DG Super using a hotshoe adapter - this is the
same setup I used previously with my cheap ebay hong kong remote triggers I'm
replacing. I set the sigma in slave mode at 1/128th power.
I put the other PW on my camera. Both PW's are set just like the manual says.

When I press the shutter, the flash does go, but it flashes a couple of times. The same
thing happens when I hit the test button on either PW.
Note that if I hit the test button on the hot shoe adaptor, I do get multiple flashes
until I release the button, so I guess this means the PW's are triggering the flash
for a good while - by eye, it's seems to be about 1/3 of a second.

I know that if my flash was set to a high enough power that this wouldn't happen since
the PW's trigger would be gone before the flash recharged.

I couldn't find any specs on the PW for how long this trigger should last, but for a device
that claims 12 fps, I would have expected a shorter duration of the trigger.

Does anyone have a similuar setup, and if so, is this normal? Or do I have questionable
new PW's?

Thanks in advance for any help,
Richard.

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Old 05-23-2008   #2
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

I'm a Canon 580EX guy but by chance is the Sigma in ttl mode. If so switch it to manual. Would possibly be helpful to know what system it is for. Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sigma.

Here are all the PDF's for the various models.
Sigma - Flashes
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Old 05-23-2008   #3
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Sorry, I should have mentioned that, it's for Canon, though a similar issue might
happen for other mngr cameras with a similar flash.
My sigma seems to have only one mode it will tricker from the center contact, and
that's in non-ettl slave mode. The flash has been this way since I got it, which has
been a few years now.

This seems to be a simple case of a long trigger duration. I've swapped the two
PW's, and get the same behaviour.
This could be more of an issue with the Sigma than the PW's, that's why I'm hoping
someone with similar gear can confirm or deny this behavior.
Even at higher settings on the sigma, I get the same behavior, but with the added
problem of it using more power, and causing longer recharge times and of course
draining the batteries quicker.

Anyone with Canon, PW and Sigma flash that has ran into this, or can test it?
Thanks,
Richard.
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Old 05-23-2008   #4
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

I just tested the PW's with my Alien Bee's and they work just fine, so I'm pretty sure
this is an issue with my Sigma flash. Would be nice to know if this is just my flash,
or all of the same model.
It seems that in non-ttl slave mode, as long as the contacts are held, the sigma
will continue to flash (no, it's not in the multi-flash mode), while most flashes will
flash just once until the trigger is released and triggered again.

Richard.
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Old 05-24-2008   #5
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

PW trigger as long as the button, or their contact is closed. ( I think)

Your camera will only trigger the PW as long as it's shutter is open.

Glenn
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Old 05-24-2008   #6
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Quote:
Originally Posted by grsphoto View Post
PW trigger as long as the button, or their contact is closed. ( I think)

Your camera will only trigger the PW as long as it's shutter is open.

Glenn
Hi Glenn, thanks for the reply, my tests with the PW I have shows differently - it indicates the PW trigger is longer for a single shutter contact, it's just that most
flashes do seem to look for the contacts to open again before responding again, and
this is were this mode with the sigma's differs.
I'm pretty sure my PW's are fine, it's just the way the sigma is designed. I did pull
out another beat up sigma I have and it shows the same behavior.

Richard.
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Old 05-24-2008   #7
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Quote:
Originally Posted by rgbii View Post
I just tested the PW's with my Alien Bee's and they work just fine, so I'm pretty sure
this is an issue with my Sigma flash. Would be nice to know if this is just my flash,
or all of the same model.
It seems that in non-ttl slave mode, as long as the contacts are held, the sigma
will continue to flash (no, it's not in the multi-flash mode), while most flashes will
flash just once until the trigger is released and triggered again.

Richard.
Well so much for my idea. I was suspecting you were getting pre-flash from ttl mode. Good luck on finding the problem. You might give a look at Strobist site. Someone may have encountered the same thing there.
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Old 05-24-2008   #8
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Here is more information on your radio system, Perhaps there is something in theses specs that can help you troubleshoot the problem. If you figure it out a telephone call to the manufacturer will probably settle the matter. I have spoken to them in the past and the are extremely helpful. All the information should be on the instructions packed with the unit.

Pocket Wizard Pocketwizard Plus II Transceiver










Pocket Wizard Pocketwizard Plus II Transceiver




Faster, smarter and easier to use, just connect the Plus II to your camera and/or flash and you are wireless-ready. The Plus II offers all the popular features of the successful PocketWizard Plus Transmitter/Receiver system, but that's where the similarity ends. The Plus II offers the latest innovation in wireless triggering for remote cameras and flash units at an amazingly affordable price. Current PocketWizard owners will also appreciate that it's compatible with all PocketWizard radios past and present; it is also part of the PocketWizard Wireless Freedom system.

The PocketWizard Plus II is the first radio triggering system to offer Auto-Sensing Transceiver Technology. This technology analyzes the status of the miniphone jacks, camera hot shoe or the TEST button to determine which mode (Transmit or Receive) to set. By default, the Plus II is always in Receiver mode unless it senses a trigger pulse from a camera's hot shoe, then it quickly switches to a Transmitter. For shooting situations that may require the Auto-Sensing disabled, simply set the selector switch to "LOCAL" and the Plus II will only receive radio signals.

Since the Plus II is a Transceiver, there's no need to worry about how many Transmitters or Receivers to bring with you on the shoot because it's all-in-one. The Plus II is so simple yet advanced; utilizing its new powerful microprocessor it will automatically trigger a camera and remote flash within 10 microseconds (1/100th of a millisecond) with its built-in Auto-Relay mode. Photographers can remotely trigger their cameras and the camera-mounted Plus II automatically relays the triggering signal to a remote flash. With the Plus II's fast switching speed, there's no loss of camera shutter speed performance or triggering delays. The Plus II also sports the fastest triggering speed in its class, at an amazing 12 fps; it can outpace the fastest available DSLRs.

The Plus II also offers PocketWizard's bulletproof, "best in the biz" reliable triggering with a range of up to 1600 feet away at synch speeds of 1/250 (focal) or 1/500 (Leaf shutter). Four selectable channels provide secure triggering and choosing which zone to trigger (on camera flash, remote flash or both) is as easy as sliding a switch. The New PocketWizard Plus II offers great flexibility and ease-of-use for photographers who demand a reliable wireless solution that they can just plug in, turn it on and shoot. In addition, the Plus II comes complete with various mounting solutions, PC-1 synch cable and batteries. A wide range of camera and flash triggering cables and adapters along with a 3-year warranty makes the PocketWizard Plus II the perfect choice for reliable wireless radio triggering.


Key Features


Auto-Sensing Transceiver Technology
Automatically Transmits or Receives radio signal.
Auto-Relay mode
Wirelessly triggers a remote camera and flash simultaneously.
Fast Triggering Speed
Up to 12 frames per second.
Four 16-bit digitally coded channels
Provides the most reliable triggering performance.
Wirelessly Triggers Cameras and Flash
1600 foot triggering range
Compatibility
Works with all PocketWizards and
PocketWizard Wireless Freedom products.

PS- I have underlined the feature that may not be compatible with your camera.





Good Luck! Ed
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Old 05-25-2008   #9
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Thnx Ed for your work in sharing all of this information with us. I am giving you a K for your hard work in making sure this is clear and understandable for those of us who are new or unfamiliar to wireless transmitters.
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Old 05-25-2008   #10
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Default Re: Pocket wizard Plus II and multiple flashes

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed Shapiro View Post
<snip>
PS- I have underlined the feature that may not be compatible with your camera.
Hi Ed, thanks for all the info, but it's not a problem with the camera, it's with the flash,
and it seems to be the flash that's at fault.
As you can see from my first post, I've already read the part about 12 FPS for the PWs.

Thanks again everyone,
Richard.


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