Why was max. synch. spped lowered?

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by keith_lubow, Aug 17, 2006.

  1. Hello,

    Just wondering why the maximum flash synch speed was lowered to '250 on the 1D
    Mark II, when it was '500 on the first generation 1D. This really stinks.

    Thanks,

    Keith
     
  2. The II uses a CMOS sensor; the original used CCD. From what I've been told, the max X-sync speed of the original was done in part using an electronic shutter, which can be done with CCD but not CMOS and therefore is not possible with the II.
    Perhaps someone with more authoritative knowledge can correct me if I'm wrong here.
     
  3. Yep, that's it.

    Sheesh, it's only a stop. I lived fine with 1/60 and 1/125 max sync for years and it didn't
    bother or prevent me from getting the pictures I wanted.
     
  4. thanks.

    I do/did fine with my Canon F-1's and FTb's '60 synch speed as well. When I find myself wanting to use '500 is when I sometimes want to take a picture of a person and show only the strobe light, and no ambient light, and also when I am shooting with flash in daylight and I want the background soft (mostly sports).

    Thanks,

    Keith
     
  5. ... and also when I am shooting with flash in daylight and I want the background soft (mostly sports).
    Wouldn't high-speed synch work for you in that circumstance? Agreed, you lose flash power, but probably not a lot if you shift from 1/250 to 1/500.
     
  6. No curtain shutter can do a true 1/500 X-Sync. You'd need a leaf shutter to achieve that.
     
  7. It's really fine, I was just wondering why. Often times I find myself wishing I could use '500, but like I said, I survived with '60 for years, so I will survive now. I just viewed the '500 synch speed as one of the strong points of the 1D, and used it at that setting quite often the times that I shot with the pool 1Ds. I have had the Mark II-N for a little while now, and ran into my first situation where I wanted '500 synch just today. I overlooked that spec. before I bought.

    I'll just have to bust out my Class FP bulbs...

    Keith
     
  8. High Speed Sync flash has a maximum range that is essentially inversely dependent on the strength of the ambient light - quite independent of exposure or ISO settings - since effectively it is providing a continuous light during the exposure, so its effect on a scene is similar to using a very low power floodlight. As such, it is only really useable for portrait photography from a few feet in order to use a wider aperture to blur the background than is possible at max X sync while providing some fill. It won't help with sports photography, unless the sport is arm wrestling or similarly static.
     
  9. Chalk me up as another person who likes/needs a high sync speed on his cameras. I'll admit that I'm happy with 1/250 though. What cheeses me off is the fact that Canon dropped the sync speed to 1/200th of a second on the 5D. Oh well, I'm sure they had their reasons. As was stated above, it's not the end of the world...
     
  10. Mark - Flash is used all the time with high synch speeds in sports photography. Obviously it won't help for track and field or the like, where the athletes are out of range of the strobe, but it works fine on anything that is in range.

    Keith
     
  11. I think the smaller the sensor the easier it is to achieve higher sync speed. The shutter has to cover less distance in the same amount of time. This is probably why the 5D has a sync of 1/200, versus 1/250 on the 20D.
     
  12. As a rule of thumb, the HSS range is about 1/3rd of the range you have shooting at max X sync when using flash as fill. Note that even with "normal" flash, since the ambient exposure is defined by the ambient light, the distance is independent of ISO, since if you increase ISO, you have to use an offsetting narrower aperture because you can't reduce the ambient exposure by using a higher shutter speed than max X sync - whereas a darker ambient light allows the use of a wider aperture at max X sync, increasing flash range.

    In the manual for the 580EX, Canon actually comments that HSS is really only suitable for flash fill portraiture work at wide apertures. You have to look at a 550EX manual to get a table of guide numbers for different shutter speeds with HSS. In "sunny 16" conditions, HSS range is less than 2m - not great for sports.
     
  13. As a rule of thumb, the HSS range is about 1/3rd of the range you have shooting at max X sync when using flash as fill. Note that even with "normal" flash, since the ambient exposure is defined by the ambient light, the distance is independent of ISO, since if you increase ISO, you have to use an offsetting narrower aperture because you can't reduce the ambient exposure by using a higher shutter speed than max X sync - whereas a darker ambient light allows the use of a wider aperture at max X sync, increasing flash range.

    In the manual for the 580EX, Canon actually comments that HSS is really only suitable for flash fill portraiture work at wide apertures. You have to look at a 550EX manual to get a table of guide numbers for different shutter speeds with HSS. In "sunny 16" conditions, HSS range is less than 2m - not great for sports.

    Mark, my flash has nothing at all to do with the exposure setting I use on the camera. Rather, it is an addition. I do not have it set to adjust off of TTL or on fill flash mode, nor do I ever set it up like this for anything. I set the shutter speed to the highest synch speed available, manually change apertures to set exposure, and let the flash fire away manually on top of the available light, lowering flash power when needed. This is quite common, and it makes a nice difference, and it works just like any fill flash I have ever used.

    The reason I miss the '500 speed synch is because it was nice being able to go one aperture wider with the 1D in the same situations.

    Keith
     
  14. Keith - my comments were directed at Mark Chappel's post. You have been using max X sync- and I agree that 1/500th (or higher, as in the case with several Nikon models with CCD sensors used with a 3rd party flash, where any shutter speed can be used so long as the flash duration is short enough to get enough light - Nikon's dedicated flashes only allow a max X sync of 1/500th) adds flexibility. High Speed Sync however is the equivalent of using FP bulbs:

    http://photonotes.org/articles/eos-flash/#fp

    N.B. there is a typo - range is reduced TO rather than BY one third, as consulting the tables of guide numbers for a 550EX will verify.

    See also:

    http://www.eosdoc.com/manuals/?q=Flash+Curves

    and note that the measurements were taken with a camera with a max X sync of 1/125th.
     
  15. Mark, ah, I see after rereading a little more carefully and searching through my manual that we were talking about different things. You were talking about a very specific use of the term "HSS", which is using speeds above max. synch. speed. When I used the term high speed synch, I was simply refering generally to anything above the '60 synch speed that I was used to using for so long. I was confused as to why you were saying that '125, '250, and '500 (and the in betweens) would cut off any light if the camera was designed to synch at those speeds. Sorry for the confusion.

    keith
     
  16. As such, it is only really useable for portrait photography from a few feet in order to use a wider aperture to blur the background than is possible at max X sync while providing some fill.
    Um... no. I sometimes use it for flying birds. This elegant tern, for example, was photographed at 1/1000 at f8 (ISO 400) with a 500 mm lens from perhaps 12 meters (35-40 feet). Most of the light on the bird came from the flash; comparable shots taken a few seconds earlier without the flash were badly underexposed.
    [​IMG]
     

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