M6ttl/SF20 for retards

Discussion in 'Leica and Rangefinders' started by harry_france|1, Jan 16, 2002.

  1. Hi.I have just bought an M6 ttl and SF20 flash.I have slight learning difficulties(not a joke!) and am trouble understanding the instructions for the flash.What I need is a step by step guide on how to use it for fill-in.I am talking-

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    1.turn on flash

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    2.select ttl..........etc,etc.

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    Can anyone help?
     
  2. 1. Turn on Flash.
    2. Select TTL mode.
    3. Check (or set) ISO/Film Speed dial on camera.
    4. Set shutter speed to 1/50 or below.
    5. Set correct aperture as indicated by light meter.
    6. Shoot!
     
  3. What you'll need as well are two essential items:

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    1) Lutz's new diffuser for the SF 20 (and maybe practice using the
    sling)
    2) TTL sync cable (Contax or Nikon)

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    ...unless you like the "red eye" effect.
     
  4. The most important step was left out, for fill-in you want the flash
    to put out less light than for a full-flash exposure. Step 6 is: set
    a -1 to -2 stop compensation on the SF20, depending on how subtle or
    not subtle you want the fill to be.
     
  5. The SF20 is sold with a diffuser panel. I leave it on the flash all
    the time. It helps to create a soft and even illumination.
     
  6. Why does the red arrow flash in the viewfinder?
     
  7. Harry,

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    The SF20 can occasionally get into a confused state if it doesn't
    sense the M6 TTL properly, or if the M6's battery is dead. Assuming a
    fresh battery in the M6 TTL, here is the full sequence of steps:

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    1. Make sure flash and camera are turned off, then

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    2. mount the flash unit and secure the locking collar,

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    3. set the desired mode on the SF20 - normally TTL

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    4. make sure the proper ISO is set on the M6

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    5. turn on the SF20

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    6. turn on the camera by rotating the speed dial to the 1/50 sync speed

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    7. the SF20 will flash "A"

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    8. partially depress the M6 shutter release (as you would for taking a
    meter reading)

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    9. the SF20's display will change to show the ISO setting of the camera

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    10. set your preferred aperture on the camera (e.g. f/4 for moderately
    shallow DOF)

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    11. touch the aperture button on the SF20, and using the +/- buttons,
    adjust the aperture setting to match what you set on the camera. The
    SF20 will display the maximum working distance for that aperture.

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    12. If using the SF20 for fill flash with strong ambient light, adjust
    the exposure compensation by pressing the button below the +/-
    triangle on the SF20, then the minus button to reach the desired -EV
    setting. (As mentioned, something in the range of -1 to -2 usually
    works well for fill flash.)

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    13. Proceed with taking your pictures.

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    14. The red lighning bolt in the display should stay on after the
    exposure. That tells you that the proper exposure was achieved with
    the flash. If the red indicator is off after the exposure, the shot
    will likely be underexposed - recheck the distance and/or aperture and
    try again with a reduced distance or larger aperture.

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    15. After 3 minutes of inactivity, the display on the SF20 goes blank
    to save the battery. Lightly depressing the shutter release button
    will re-activate everything.
     
  8. Oh, one more thing. If the red lightning bolt is slowly flashing on
    and off, that means that the flash hasn't fully charged yet. Once it
    charges, the lightning bolt will change to a steady display. If it
    continues to blink slowly, it is likely that the battery in the flash
    is too weak to fully charge the flash. Turn everything off, and
    replace the battery in the flash.
     
  9. If you are working in any appreciable ambient light at all, make sure
    that the sync speed of 1/50th and the aperture you choose are not
    making a combination that would result in over exposure, exclusive of
    the flash. This is easier than you might think if you are using fast
    film. The flash part of the exposure might be fine, but if it is in
    the middle of a washed out background, the effect won't be that
    great.
     
  10. Thank you so much guys,especially Ralph.I am slightly dyslexic and
    charts and things can be a bit of a problem.When I bought the SF20 I
    found the manual very hard to follow.I havn't used it for months and
    went back to using an old vivitar.I knew it was simple to use,but I
    just couldn't do it.........Thank you again.
     
  11. You're welcome, Harry. We'll expect to see some SF20 shots soon. (lol)
     
  12. I recently acquired an SF20 also. From what I understand, you don't
    need to set the aperture on the flash. It is just there as a
    distance guide. I have enjoyed the flash, and am now glad I got the
    M6TTL over the Classic. I think it is keen the way the SF20
    essentially automates exposure.
     

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