I’ve had my TT1 trigger by Pocketwizard for about twelve months now and in that time I’ve probably used it three times. Mainly because I keep forgetting to turn the bloody thing off after I’ve used it and the battery is dead by the time I next come to shoot. Since I bought it I’ve also got my hands on a Canon 5D Mark II, which is what I used to shoot in Portugal. I didn’t take the TT1 with me on the trip (because the battery was flat) and I couldn’t help but miss the 250th sync speed that my 40D offers when shooting in the glorious sunshine of the Algarve. I mostly got around that by shooting available light which was a new experience for me when it comes to shooting bikes as previously I’d say 95% of my MTB and BMX shots would have been lit with strobes in some way.
Anyway, today I had a scout around the interwebular network to find out how fast my 5D could sync with the Mini TT1 sat on it’s head. I’m not sure if I’m just looking in the wrong places, but there seemed to be very little information on what settings yielded the best results (I guess because it’s so dependent on what strobes you’re using). Anyway, this is my effort to change that – at least for you guys who shoot with Nikon SB24′s…
First of all I updated my unit to the latest firmware – version 5. Then going on recommendation from a thread on Flickr, I changed my HyperSync Offset to -1875 and disabled High Speed Sync.
These were the results with the SB24 firing right at my white wall at full power:
Then I switched to 1/2 power:
I’ll apologise now for the incredibly boring nature of this visuals in this blog post – you should definitely go check out my portfolio after you’ve read this – it kicks the sh*t outta these white boxes.
Onwards and upwards, 1/4 power captain!
Moving on to 1/8th power:
Basically it’s telling me that on full and half power I can shoot anywhere up to 1/400th without banding and then moving up to 1/500th places the smallest amount of banding at the bottom of the frame. On 1/4 and 1/8th power at 1/320th it places it at the top.
This is certainly very good news indeed for me and will be very useful when shooting action sports in bright daylight. In Portugal I found myself struggling to maintain detail in the bright blue sky, especially when shooting backlit – shots like the one above. The beauty of using high speed sync for this type of work is that I don’t have to worry about the portions of the image that fall in to the area of banding as 9/10 times they aren’t being lit by the strobes anyway. I tend to use the little SB24′s to make the riders ‘pop’ from the frame a little more by shooting half a stop above the ambient.
I’ll write up how I get on with my findings when I put them in to practice, but I hope this is of use to you guys shooting with the 5D Mark II and if you’ve got any suggestions or better results then let me know in the comments below.