Canon 550EX as slave to an AlienBee

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by dlegaspi, Oct 24, 2003.

  1. hello.

    has anyone tried to use the Canon 550 EX as a *wireless slave flash*
    to an AlienBees (or any other brand for that matter) strobe? i know i
    can use the AlienBee as the slave...i've tried that and it worked...i
    assumed that vice-versa should work as well...am i wrong in the
    assumption? or is my flash broken?


    thanks.
     
  2. Yes, it can be done. However, you will need a hotshoe optical slave trigger compatible with the 550EX. (The 550EX only responds to coded, pulsed flash signals; it does not have an optical slave trigger built in.)

    Set your 550EX to slave mode. Then hold down the MODE button for several seconds until the M starts flashing. You are now in manual slave mode and the 550EX will not emit a preflash. Finally, set the desired proportional output (from 1/1 to 1/128).
     
  3. As Bill says, the 550EX doesn't have the ability to do this by itself. But it can be done with the right optical slave attached. All the usual ones that I have tried cause the Speedlite to lock up after each flash, requiring you press the "open flash button", or turning it off/on, to be able to get just one more flash. That's anoying. The one slave that does work with all Canon Speedlites is the Ikelite Light-Link TTL Slave. You can use it to trigger the 550EX (or any E, EZ, or EX series Speedlite) in wireless TTL mode, with another appropriate flash, or as a manual slave if you put the 550EX in manual mode.

    BTW, having a generic optical slave built in is one feature that the Sigma EF-500 Super has that none of the Canon's do.
     
  4. The 550EX only responds to coded, pulsed flash signals; it does not have an optical slave trigger built in.

    oh man that sucks. now i have to cough up additional dough for an optical slave...

    BTW, having a generic optical slave built in is one feature that the Sigma EF-500 Super has that none of the Canon's do. oh man that sucks even more.

    thanks for info guys. i'll check out the Ikelite thingy then...
     
  5. eek! the Ikelite Light-Link TTL Slave costs $90?!
     
  6. The Ikelite "Litelink" is more than just a slave trigger. It is designed for use with a TTL dedicated flash unit and is available for Canon or Nikon. It is designed to trigger the "slave" flash attached to it when the on-camera flash fires and shut off when the on-camera flash is quenched by the camera's TTL circuitry. In that way, you get TTL auto exposure with multiple flash units.

    It does not work with E-TTL flash but should work with the 550EX in manual mode. Newer ones for Canon have a 2-position switch; in one position, the flash may lock up after firing but in the other it will work OK. It uses a 9 volt battery and has a 1/4-20 threaded hole on the bottom for mounting on a tripod or light stand.
     
  7. The Sigma EF Super 500 DG has the optical slave built in and only half the price.....sorry had to throw my two cents in.
     

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