Monday, 14 March 2016

Pixapro ST-III TTL Wireless Flash Trigger

Pixapro ST-III TTL Transmitter & Receiver for Canon DSLR cameras
I conducted my initial test of the Pixapro ST-III T (Canon) with a Canon 580EXII Speedlite. For now the triggers are only available for Canon or Nikon. I'm informed that Sony compatible units will be available later in 2016.

First impressions. The build quality and layout of controls is good, although the CH (Channel Select), GR (Group Setting) & MODE (Mode Selection) buttons would benefit from white fill to the recessed letters (see photograph). The backlit LCD display is clear and once I became familiar with the button sequences changing channels and moving between modes is straight forward.

Camera Trigger ST-III TTL-T Canon
Buttons:
TEST - press to see if flash fires, also to trigger remote camera with supplied lead.
Select Dial -  Changes flash power, moves between groups and modes.
CH - Changes channel 1-32 and adjusts custom functions.
GR - Selects group A-C and confirms settings.
MODE - Moves groups between modes.

It should be noted that the flash group to be adjusted needs to be in the centre of the screen next to the white dot on the left of the backlit LCD panel.

The flash group to be adjusted needs to be in the centre of the screen next to the white dot on the left
When set to Manual Mode the flash power may be adjusted from 1/128 to 1/1 power in 1/3 stop increments. In TTL Auto mode exposure may be compensated between ±3 in 1/3 stop increments. I don’t know if this is a feature or an anomaly, but when set to Manual mode the power settings are mirrored on the flash LCD display, but not when in TTL. Apparently this is a feature of the Pixapro CITI600 (Godox AD600) as the flash is multi camera system compatible.

In TTL mode the ST-III trigger doesn’t need switching between normal & HS Flash mode it does it automatically. On my flash I have to switch to HS Sync and the trigger recognises this.

Wireless range is stated as >100m which will be line of sight with no obstacles. Indoors, depending upon conditions, less.

There is an AF beam assist for those times when light levels are low or contrast insufficient for cameras to focus.

Flash/Speedlite Receiver ST-III TTL-R Canon
Buttons:
TEST - Fires all functioning flashes with compatible receivers in place.
CH - Changes channel 1-32.
GR - Selects group A-E.

Both units have a Micro USB socket for firmware upgrades - which at the time of writing only seem available in Chinese and MS Windoze OS. Nothing for Mac users. The transmitter also has a PC socket which will allow older studio flash etc to be used triggered but not controlled remotely.

I’ve tested Pixapro ST-III TTL Wireless Flash Trigger/Receiver set with the following:

Pixapro CITI600 TTL - total remote control
Yong Nuo 565 EXII - TTL, Manual remote power setting, no HS
Canon 580 EXII - total remote control
Canon 550 EX - Manual only, no HS or TTL
Elinchrom Ranger Quadra - trigger only
Elinchrom BXRi - trigger only
Elinchrom EL500 - trigger only
Multiblitz Profilux 200 - trigger only



This means is you can mix differing makes & types of studio flash & speedlites with ease. A selection of adaptor leads are supplied, including a lead to use the trigger/receiver as a remote camera trigger.

THE trigger & receiver are both powered by AA cells, not supplied.

The instruction manual is clear & concise, although if you’re like me the type is of a size where reading glasses will be necessary! These days a paper manual is a bonus as much of the time manuals and user guides are PDF download for DIY printing.

I highly recommend the Pixapro brand products available from https://www.essentialphoto.co.uk - Yang Wu and the team offer a superb level of customer service (yes, I have experienced it) both on the telephone and by the website Live Chat!

If you're based in UK Yang and the Essential Photo team will be at The Photography Show 19-22 March 2016, stand E91

That's it for now and don't forget if you really enjoy lighting to visit and join The LIGHT Side - a place to learn, be mentored, nurtured and learn about lighting, lighting and photography, whatever your level or experience.

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