Metz 60 CT-4

Discussion in 'Lighting Equipment' started by vcakic, Jan 4, 2010.

  1. Hi all,
    I've got a Metz in question in excellent condition, with powerpack etc. I also have a very rudimetary manual with it. I want to use this flash in manual mode, but it seems it's giving me the same output whatever I do.
    I have followed a manual, turn the big white wheel on "M", locked it, and tried to set the strength with the large wheel on top of the head (outer one), but it makes no difference.. same strength.
    I've tried to fiddle with ISO knob next to white one, tried other one on top of the flash- same..
    Am I missing something - something else switched on/off? I know this thing can do manual!!
    It is in such a good condition it's unlikely to be broken.
    Any suggestions?
     
  2. I'm pretty sure that with these Metz flashes M just gives you full power. Basically what I do with mine is set my D300 on manual, chose an aperture, say F8, then justset the same aperture on the Flash, point the flash at what you're shooting and it should deliver the right amount of light.
    I've checked this out by firing straight at my Sekonic flash meter and the reading shows the same as the aperture set on top of the flash unit.
    If you need the full manual you can grab it from the Metz site, try this:
    http://www.metzflash.co.uk/pdffiles/60_CT-4GB.pdf
     
  3. That's the manual I have, but thanks for the link. I'm pretty sure it can do manual, it says even in the manual that it blasts full power UNLESS partial light output has not been adjusted (M 1/2 - M 1/256) which corresponds the values of the top dial.
    Anyway, I want to use it with variable power and off camera to have more control with light modifiers.
     
  4. Unless you're doing something weird, what you describe should have worked. I just took out my 60, set it up and tested some of the partial power settings. Set the big white dial to M (the other windows are not even lit up when the dial is set to M and have no effect). Set the big dial on the head to a partial power setting, and that's it. The ISO dial on the head is not connected electronically (I think) since it does not control anything. It is merely there so you can figure subject distances for the ISO you are using. I assume you are testing it with the open flash button, which should work.
    If you aren't getting a difference in power output, something is broken. It should work even if the wide angle diffuser is on, or the secondary reflector.
    How are you determining the output? Meter? I'd test with a meter, although you can tell by just looking at the light.
     
  5. It looks like it is broken.
    I did what you did Nadine (from the start) and everything corresponds to your settings but no diff. I'm testing it with camera's histogram, it shows no changes.
    "I assume you are testing it with the open flash button, which should work." - what's "open flash button"?
     
  6. It's the little black button on the handle, all the way to the right. I was thinking that if you were testing it with it connected to a camera, with a module or extension unit, something else might be going on. I know that if the electronic connection between a Canon flash and camera or hotshoe isn't right, the flash fires full power. This should not be the case with the Metz, however, always best to check.
    Also--just to be sure, you are in a darker environment where flash will definitely make a difference in the histograms? Also, you don't see differences in just looking at the light--on a wall or something?
     
  7. Just realized that if you are looking at histograms, you have the flash connected to the camera, so my question is, how is it connected? By sync cord into the camera body directly? do you have a module and extension connected? Test the unit with the open flash button and just look at the light output. In a darkened environment, you should be able to see the differences. Also, you can 'hear' the difference too. At 1/256th, you can hear the cut off control pretty quick.
     
  8. It's connected to a radio trigger (I've tried with optical slave as well) so it doesn't get any influences from the camera. I've set up a camera to a tripod to see if it has even a slight changes. It would be a big difference between 1/2 and 1/256..
    Even the sound (flash pop) is the same every time, be it with a flash button or with a trigger.
     
  9. So, if you used the open flash button to test (no outside influence) and you don't visually see any difference in light output or hear any difference in the 'pop' when you change the partial power settings, I would conclude there is something wrong with the flash. Unfortunately, Bogen (the distributors) charges a lot to fix these. I don't know of any other places but try an online search.
     
  10. Have you tested the auto thyristor function? It isn't as precise, but you 'could' work with the auto settings even within a slave, off camera triggered system.
     
  11. I came to the same conclusion, but being in Europe, maybe I can get it serviced for not too much. I would hate to loose it, they are very reliable(!) and powerfull flashes.
    Anyway, thank you for your help, very kind.
    V
     
  12. I will get a lightmeter tomorrow and see if I can play with auto settings to cheat it. Great idea!
     
  13. If you try to use the auto thyristor settings, I'd make a 'hood' for the thyristor eye, so it is less prone to see another flash's light and be fooled. You know, of course, that to comp auto thyristor, you can use the ISO control--first window on the right on the handle. I've made hoods out of that foam art material stuff--black, of course, and use velcro to attach over the eye. Or set up a gobo.
    You can test the auto thyristor by hooking the flash up to the camera via a sync cord. Don't need a light meter, although that is, of course, the best.
     
  14. If I could cheat that sensor to give me the same readings all the time, it would be solved. I would just change other settings and have variations. If not, that gobo thing should help.
    The thing is, I want to adjust the light to my aperture not viceversa.. you know what I mean.
     
  15. Sure, you can adjust the light to your aperture, it just isn't as easy as with manual partial power, although that often needs adjustment after a test as well. You got to chimp more and possibly fiddle with the ISO dial more, since whatever the eye sees can change with a scene change, and another flash's light can affect the eye.
     
  16. Hi - One thing you can check is that the sensor eye for return light on the flash is not blocked possibly with a hair, dust or dirt. It will give out full power each time with no variation as it relies on "feedback" of light to manage output. If you turn the dial to "Winder" mode, this should reduce the output considerably. If these dont work you have a problem.
    Secondly you must use a Wein Safe Synch if you use the flash directly attached to your camera as these units especially produce enough power to floor a horse. Digital camera voltages are much lower.
     
  17. According to my manual,the 60 CT4 trigger voltage is approximately 9volts.
     
  18. Peter--Vanja is talking about partial power in manual flash mode, not about auto thyristor, so the sensor eye being blocked has nothing to do with his problem. Also, 60CT-4 is said to have 5V sync, according to the following, and even if it didn't, Vanja is using it off camera.
    http://www.botzilla.com/photo/strobeVolts.html
    And--Ian has 9 volts in his manual. Most very recent DSLRs can handle up to 250 volts.
     
  19. Vanja, I have about 6 Metz 60 CT4's and have been using them for about 20 years. I have a couple of faulty ones that do the same as yours, ie. they only shoot at full power. This is probably a fault in the power/battery unit.
    I'm sure you've been doing all the right things in terms of operating the flash but some times they are just faulty, like yours!
    JJ
     
  20. This is probably a fault in the power/battery unit.​
    A flash tube, when triggered, will continue to draw current until there is no more charge left in the capacitor.
    In order to deliver other than full power requires a couple of thyristors in the high voltage circuit. The first is (almost) permanently on and is wired in series with the flash tube and the second one turns off the first when the correct amount of power has been delivered. I suspect that it is one of these two thyristors at fault. Either the first one is shorted out and conducts continuously or the second one is open circuit and cannot turn off the first.
     
  21. Update:
    I've borrowed a lightmeter and a second head. So my finding is: my flash only goes full power, the other one gives me the same values when on full power, but it (borrowed one) does go manually down to 1/256. The wheel for manual power on my flash turns much more freely than on the other one wich works.
    I'll see if I can cheat its sensor..
     
  22. The wheel for manual power on my flash turns much more freely than on the other one wich works.​
    Perhaps the wheel is turning but it isn't turning the actual power control inside (switch or potentiometer).
     
  23. It sounds as if it is not working properly. It might be an easy fix, but then again it might not. Given the age of the flash, it will be your call whether to get it fixed or try and find another one in good shape on Fleabay or KEH.
     
  24. I've tried to fool it, but I guess it's smarter than me, even broken..
    I've replaced the top of the heads between them (to see if the wheel is to blame) and it's still the same. So it's not wheel either..
    I guess it's time to search for somebody who knows about Metz electronics.
     
  25. Ditto on finding a Metz expert : The first of my two 60CT's also has this Full Power only fault. So it does'nt sound an uncommon problem..
     

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