I have a new digital camera. Can I hook it directly to my existing flash?
Yes, with some considerations. You can use the hot shoe (with adapter) or the PC jack, if it has one. The sync voltage tolerance of your camera is very important. Consult the instruction book or call the manufacturer directly for this information. All camera manufacturers have different specifications. Also, there is no universal standard for sync voltage level on flash packs. This may vary from 5 volts to as high as 300 volts. Applying too much sync voltage to your camera may damage it permanently. We know the sync levels for all flash equipment we service… call us. You can also use a product called a Safe-Sync made by Wein Photo Products. This device goes between the pack and the camera and acts as a buffer and reduces any level of pack sync voltage down to only 6 volts, thus making the pack safe for any camera. We sell this item. Another solution is to use a Pocket Wizard radio trigger or similar device. Since the radios only supply about 3 volts to your camera and totally isolate you from the pack and other photographer’s local flashes, sync voltage is a non-issue with this product. Do be aware that even radios have a max sync voltage they can accept from your pack. The Pocket Wizard is 200 volts but many low-cost units can only accept 60 volts max. Also note that we can often lower the sync voltage of many packs when in for service. The purchase of a sync protection device is often cheaper than sending in your pack just for a sync mod, however.
I’ve heard about sync voltage problems with some digital cameras. What’s this about?
Check out the first FAQ in this section.
I have a Canon camera. Do I need sync protection?
Depends on the age. Early Canon digitals could only tolerate 6 volts of sync and were really only designed to operate exclusively with Canon brand on-camera flashes. This did not make the pros very happy. A lot of Canons got nailed in the early days. Canon seemed completely unaware of the professional world of flash and the wide variety of sync voltages present. You might seriously consider the Safe-Sync or radio as described in the first FAQ in this section.