Flash units and the Canon 300D (Original Rebel)

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by John Ortt, Nov 1, 2005.

  1. John Ortt

    John Ortt Guest

    Hi All,

    I have had my Canon EOS 300D for almost two years now and on the whole am
    very happy with it.
    My one criticism is that my night-time and evening shots are never as good
    as I would like.I have tried a variety of methods both manual and auto such
    as changing the iso and the shutter times and using nighttime portrait mode.
    I basically just think the on-board flash isn't powerful enough to
    illuminate beyond a few feet.
    I was going to purchase a flashgun to try to solve this problem but I have
    heard the 300D is very poor with flash units.

    In short I want to know how the 300D is affected and whether it is worth
    purchasing a flash atall?

    Would I be better saving up for a new body (eg. a 20D) prior to purchasing a
    Flash?

    My budget would be up to £200 but obviously the less I need to spend the
    better.

    Thanks in advance,

    John
     
    John Ortt, Nov 1, 2005
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. "John Ortt" <> wrote in message
    news:4367654b$...
    > Hi All,
    >
    > I have had my Canon EOS 300D for almost two years now and on the whole am
    > very happy with it.
    > My one criticism is that my night-time and evening shots are never as good
    > as I would like.I have tried a variety of methods both manual and auto
    > such as changing the iso and the shutter times and using nighttime
    > portrait mode.
    > I basically just think the on-board flash isn't powerful enough to
    > illuminate beyond a few feet.
    > I was going to purchase a flashgun to try to solve this problem but I have
    > heard the 300D is very poor with flash units.
    >
    > In short I want to know how the 300D is affected and whether it is worth
    > purchasing a flash atall?
    >
    > Would I be better saving up for a new body (eg. a 20D) prior to purchasing
    > a Flash?
    >
    > My budget would be up to £200 but obviously the less I need to spend the
    > better.



    Most definitely worth getting a flash unit. You can go as simple as the
    Canon EX420 to as complex as the EX580, it depends on your needs. From your
    post I suspect the EX420 would suit your needs just fine. I have one and I
    like it a lot. Its simple and it tilts and swivels. Also do yourself a
    favor and get a Sto-Fen Omnibounce. This helps defuse the flash and cut
    down on shadows etc.

    EX420:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...436&is=USA&addedTroughType=categoryNavigation

    Sto-Fen:
    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/con...s&Q=&sku=216907&is=REG&addedTroughType=search

    BTW: based on your budget I think you should be able to afford just about
    all the Canon flashes.
    --

    Rob
    "A disturbing new study finds that studies are disturbing"
     
    Robert R Kircher, Jr., Nov 1, 2005
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. John Ortt

    Shawn Hirn Guest

    In article <4367654b$>,
    "John Ortt" <> wrote:

    > Hi All,
    >
    > I have had my Canon EOS 300D for almost two years now and on the whole am
    > very happy with it.
    > My one criticism is that my night-time and evening shots are never as good
    > as I would like.I have tried a variety of methods both manual and auto such
    > as changing the iso and the shutter times and using nighttime portrait mode.
    > I basically just think the on-board flash isn't powerful enough to
    > illuminate beyond a few feet.
    > I was going to purchase a flashgun to try to solve this problem but I have
    > heard the 300D is very poor with flash units.
    >
    > In short I want to know how the 300D is affected and whether it is worth
    > purchasing a flash atall?
    >
    > Would I be better saving up for a new body (eg. a 20D) prior to purchasing a
    > Flash?
    >
    > My budget would be up to £200 but obviously the less I need to spend the
    > better.


    I have a 300D with a Canon flash and I get some pretty good results with
    it at night. Buying a new camera body will not help because that's not
    the limiting factor. The problem is probably your lenses and your
    relying on the camera's built-in flash. I suggest that before you buy
    another camera, you invest in a faster lens and an external flash. For
    low-light photography, I get great results with Canon's bottom of the
    line f1.8 50MM fixed focus lens with my external flash unit.
     
    Shawn Hirn, Nov 1, 2005
    #3
  4. John Ortt

    Bill Funk Guest

    On Tue, 1 Nov 2005 13:04:40 -0000, "John Ortt"
    <> wrote:

    >Hi All,
    >
    >I have had my Canon EOS 300D for almost two years now and on the whole am
    >very happy with it.
    >My one criticism is that my night-time and evening shots are never as good
    >as I would like.I have tried a variety of methods both manual and auto such
    >as changing the iso and the shutter times and using nighttime portrait mode.
    >I basically just think the on-board flash isn't powerful enough to
    >illuminate beyond a few feet.
    >I was going to purchase a flashgun to try to solve this problem but I have
    >heard the 300D is very poor with flash units.


    I don't know where you heard this.
    Perhaps from someone who bought a poor flash choice?
    >
    >In short I want to know how the 300D is affected and whether it is worth
    >purchasing a flash atall?


    A decent flash is usually a good purchase. With the DRebel/300D, it's
    definitely a good thing.
    I have a Sigma EF-500 DG Super, and for my use, it works very well.
    Less $$ than a genuine Canon flash, and does very much the same thing.

    >
    >Would I be better saving up for a new body (eg. a 20D) prior to purchasing a
    >Flash?


    Why? The flash on the 20D isn't much better. And a 20D + Flash is far
    more money than a flash for your 300D.
    >
    >My budget would be up to £200 but obviously the less I need to spend the
    >better.


    Obviously. That goes for most of us. :)

    >
    >Thanks in advance,
    >
    >John
    >


    --
    Bill Funk
    Replace "g" with "a"
    funktionality.blogspot.com
     
    Bill Funk, Nov 1, 2005
    #4
  5. In article <4367654b$> "John Ortt" <> writes:
    $I basically just think the on-board flash isn't powerful enough to
    $illuminate beyond a few feet.

    Yes, the pop-up flash isn't terribly powerful. If you're using
    a kit lens, that's also part of the problem; kit lenses are slow
    and rob you of flash range.

    $I was going to purchase a flashgun to try to solve this problem but I have
    $heard the 300D is very poor with flash units.

    Yes, the newer models, such as the 350D, include an improved flash
    metering system. And yes, the 300D lacks flash exposure compensation,
    which is a useful feature (and which you can add by downloading hacked
    firmware). But "very poor" is a bit of an exaggeration.

    $In short I want to know how the 300D is affected and whether it is worth
    $purchasing a flash atall?

    It is. In addition to more power, you also get (depending on
    what flash unit you pick) other benefits. By moving the flash farther
    from the lens, you reduce the likelihood of red-eye (without needing
    to shine a bright light into the subject's eyes before taking the
    picture. If the flash head tilts and/or swivels, you can bounce the
    flash (when a suitable surface, such as a white ceiling, is
    available), which produces softer lighting than the harsh
    deer-in-the-headlights look so common from direct flash. If you
    go to a higher-end flash unit, you may also get lots of manual
    control, the ability to do fancy lighting effects with multiple
    flash units, and so on.

    $Would I be better saving up for a new body (eg. a 20D) prior to purchasing a
    $Flash?

    The 20D has a lot to recommend it over the 300D, including better
    flash metering. The question is whether the price you'd pay for the
    upgrade, which would surely be more than the price of a flash, would
    get you more useful stuff than the flash would.
    --
    Stephen M. Dunn <>
    >>>----------------> http://www.stevedunn.ca/ <----------------<<<

    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    Say hi to my cat -- http://www.stevedunn.ca/photos/toby/
     
    Stephen M. Dunn, Nov 2, 2005
    #5
  6. John Ortt

    John Ortt Guest

    Thanks everyone,

    I think the general concensus is that the 300D is far from useless when
    coupled with an external flash.

    With that in mind I'll start scouring e-bay for a suitable candidate... :)

    I may well upgrade to the 20D (or even a 5D) at some point in the future but
    it's nice not to have to now and to be able to save the money.

    Just for info I am not using the kit lens, I replaced it with the 17-85 IS
    USM but it too is far from a quick lens.
    I bought it for versatility during the day but I am now thinking a faster
    lens would be a good investment.

    I might well try to save some money on the flash to buy myself a 50mm f1.8
    while I'm at it. That way I'll have a separate daytime and nighttime setup.

    Thanks again,

    John



    "Stephen M. Dunn" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > In article <4367654b$> "John Ortt"
    > <> writes:
    > $I basically just think the on-board flash isn't powerful enough to
    > $illuminate beyond a few feet.
    >
    > Yes, the pop-up flash isn't terribly powerful. If you're using
    > a kit lens, that's also part of the problem; kit lenses are slow
    > and rob you of flash range.
    >
    > $I was going to purchase a flashgun to try to solve this problem but I
    > have
    > $heard the 300D is very poor with flash units.
    >
    > Yes, the newer models, such as the 350D, include an improved flash
    > metering system. And yes, the 300D lacks flash exposure compensation,
    > which is a useful feature (and which you can add by downloading hacked
    > firmware). But "very poor" is a bit of an exaggeration.
    >
    > $In short I want to know how the 300D is affected and whether it is worth
    > $purchasing a flash atall?
    >
    > It is. In addition to more power, you also get (depending on
    > what flash unit you pick) other benefits. By moving the flash farther
    > from the lens, you reduce the likelihood of red-eye (without needing
    > to shine a bright light into the subject's eyes before taking the
    > picture. If the flash head tilts and/or swivels, you can bounce the
    > flash (when a suitable surface, such as a white ceiling, is
    > available), which produces softer lighting than the harsh
    > deer-in-the-headlights look so common from direct flash. If you
    > go to a higher-end flash unit, you may also get lots of manual
    > control, the ability to do fancy lighting effects with multiple
    > flash units, and so on.
    >
    > $Would I be better saving up for a new body (eg. a 20D) prior to
    > purchasing a
    > $Flash?
    >
    > The 20D has a lot to recommend it over the 300D, including better
    > flash metering. The question is whether the price you'd pay for the
    > upgrade, which would surely be more than the price of a flash, would
    > get you more useful stuff than the flash would.
    > --
    > Stephen M. Dunn <>
    >>>>----------------> http://www.stevedunn.ca/ <----------------<<<

    > ------------------------------------------------------------------
    > Say hi to my cat -- http://www.stevedunn.ca/photos/toby/
     
    John Ortt, Nov 2, 2005
    #6
  7. In article <4368b6a0$> "John Ortt" <> writes:
    $With that in mind I'll start scouring e-bay for a suitable candidate... :)

    Any Canon EX-family flash will do; any other Canon flash won't*.
    For third-party units, make sure it's compatible with E-TTL metering.

    *: The only flash metering system in recent Canon DSLRs, including the
    300D, is E-TTL or E-TTL II. Only EX flashes support these. You _can_
    use other flashes, but you don't get flash metering; you'll have to
    go back to the 1970s way of flash, which is to do the guide number
    calculations and set the appropriate aperture to get the desired
    lighting (and/or adjust the power output on the flash, if it supports
    manual power adjustments).

    $I might well try to save some money on the flash to buy myself a 50mm f1.8
    $while I'm at it. That way I'll have a separate daytime and nighttime setup.

    Good idea. It's dirt cheap, as lenses go, but faster than any
    zoom (particularly faster than slow consumer zooms), and sharp.
    --
    Stephen M. Dunn <>
    >>>----------------> http://www.stevedunn.ca/ <----------------<<<

    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    Say hi to my cat -- http://www.stevedunn.ca/photos/toby/
     
    Stephen M. Dunn, Nov 2, 2005
    #7
  8. John Ortt

    Bill Funk Guest

    On Wed, 2 Nov 2005 22:51:33 GMT, (Stephen M.
    Dunn) wrote:

    >In article <4368b6a0$> "John Ortt" <> writes:
    >$With that in mind I'll start scouring e-bay for a suitable candidate... :)
    >
    > Any Canon EX-family flash will do; any other Canon flash won't*.
    >For third-party units, make sure it's compatible with E-TTL metering.
    >
    >*: The only flash metering system in recent Canon DSLRs, including the
    >300D, is E-TTL or E-TTL II. Only EX flashes support these.


    Not true:
    http://www.sigmaphoto.com/flashes/flashes_flashes_details.asp?id=3257
    >You _can_
    >use other flashes, but you don't get flash metering; you'll have to
    >go back to the 1970s way of flash, which is to do the guide number
    >calculations and set the appropriate aperture to get the desired
    >lighting (and/or adjust the power output on the flash, if it supports
    >manual power adjustments).
    >
    >$I might well try to save some money on the flash to buy myself a 50mm f1.8
    >$while I'm at it. That way I'll have a separate daytime and nighttime setup.
    >
    > Good idea. It's dirt cheap, as lenses go, but faster than any
    >zoom (particularly faster than slow consumer zooms), and sharp.


    --
    Bill Funk
    Replace "g" with "a"
    funktionality.blogspot.com
     
    Bill Funk, Nov 3, 2005
    #8
  9. (Stephen M. Dunn) writes:
    > Any Canon EX-family flash will do; any other Canon flash won't*.
    > For third-party units, make sure it's compatible with E-TTL
    > metering.


    That's bad advice..

    E-TTL metering is difficult to control and overkill if all you
    want is a hot-shoe mounted external flash with bounce and swivel.

    Most EOS 300D owners would be much happier with a generic auto
    flash such as the Sunpak 383.

    For more details, see:
    http://folk.uio.no/gisle/photo/flash.html

    > The only flash metering system in recent Canon DSLRs, including the
    > 300D, is E-TTL or E-TTL II. Only EX flashes support these. You
    > _can_ use other flashes, but you don't get flash metering;


    Auto-flashes do their own metering, and they often do it very well.

    > you'll have to go back to the 1970s way of flash, which is to do the
    > guide number calculations and set the appropriate aperture to get
    > the desired lighting (and/or adjust the power output on the flash,
    > if it supports manual power adjustments).


    Wrong decade. The 1970ies was the golden days of auto thyristor
    flashes and they did away with guide number calculations. You have
    to go back 40 years or more to have to compute aperture from guide
    numbers.
    --
    - gisle hannemyr [ gisle{at}hannemyr.no - http://folk.uio.no/gisle/ ]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Kodak DCS460, Canon Powershot G5, Olympus 2020Z
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
     
    Gisle Hannemyr, Nov 11, 2005
    #9
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. H. Brinkman
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    887
    H. Brinkman
    Aug 9, 2003
  2. Steve m...
    Replies:
    3
    Views:
    648
    Guest
    Dec 9, 2003
  3. Michael A. Covington

    Using non-Canon-dedicated flash with Digital Rebel (EOS 300D)

    Michael A. Covington, Nov 13, 2004, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    339
    Michael A. Covington
    Nov 13, 2004
  4. fatboybrando

    EOS 300D & EOS 300D Rebel

    fatboybrando, Mar 26, 2005, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    2
    Views:
    521
    fatboybrando
    Mar 26, 2005
  5. Doug Mitton

    Canon Digital Rebel (300D) Compact Flash Sizes?

    Doug Mitton, Jul 9, 2010, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    5
    Views:
    1,937
    Doug Mitton
    Jul 12, 2010
Loading...

Share This Page