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Flash trigger PT-04s Mini review

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cruzerpics View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote cruzerpics Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Flash trigger PT-04s Mini review
    Posted: 26 February 2010 at 01:18
I just got back from PMA and met with Godox the mfg of the PT-10 flash trigger. I was able to get a sample of the PT-04S which has a transmitter with a minolta/sony hotshoe so no adaptors are needed for the body but the PT-04 receivers are still only have an ISO shoe.


This particular combo is already being sold on ebay under various names and start at $20 for 1 reciever + 1 transmitter. If you are using sony flashes you will need an Minolta fs-1200/Sony FA-CC1AM or equivalent knock off. Interestingly both the sony/minolta adapter cost more than the PT-04S set.

If you are using the knock off adapters please stay away from the Seagull SC-6 variants sold all over ebay. The Minolta/Sony flash connection is very wobbly and the ISO foot on the bottom has no locking mechanism which makes it very easy for the flash to accidentally slide off the PT-04 receiver.

I happen to have both the SC-6 & FS-1200, the minolta might be worth the investment (if you can find one) since it's much more secure. I would hate to break my $300 flash just to save a few dollars.

PT-04S Transmitter & PT-04 Reciever


The transmitter has 4 channels available and it can be adjusted by the dip switches on the bottom. It also has 3.5mm sync jack on the side and a test button on the top. There is a battery inside the unit but I had a very hard time trying to open the transmitter casing to access it. I was only able pry a corner of it open but didn't want to put more pressure on it in fear that the housing may crack.

The receiver has a hot ISO shoe on top and cold shoe on the bottom that can articulate 180 degrees, it can also mount on a light stand directly via the 1/4" threads. Inside the unit 2 AAA batteries are required. As mentioned before you will need an adapter to mount your sony flashes. I urged the mfg to build a receiver with the Sony shoe and he assured me they were already working on it and one will be available in few months time.


Range:
Mfg. Rated 30m
Tested to more than 70m


I took the system outdoors for this informal test. One f42 was connected to the PT-04 via FS-1200



The other f42 was connected via a TLL cord to a SC-6.
(I didn't trust my flash on top of the SC-6 connection.)


both f42's are fired here via the PT-04s transmitter on a a700 which was about 10 steps away (18ft/5.5m)




I repeated taking ten steps several times and triggered the flash 3 times at each interval to test consistency. I reached 130 steps (230ft/70m) when the flash on the left failed to trigger. (later I found out the batteries had died in that flash...duh!)

I continued to another 20 steps and the flash on the right had issues triggering consistently which was at 250ft/76m.




This was great news considering in the instruction manual it was only rated at 98ft/30m. I'm assuming this range will vary depending on the amount of RF interference or the level of battery charge in the TX/RX

In comparison here is the same flash triggered at max range using the pop flash. About 40ft/12m



Sync:

I'm little disappointing here as the mfg rates sync speed to 1/200 but was only able to get 1/160 without the shutter appearing in the frame.

1/200 sec


1/160 sec




Actual usage:

I'll post back here once I have spent more time with system in real shooting conditions.



Special note: I had to perform a special procedure for getting my Sony f42 flashes to trigger when using third part RF transmitters/receivers.

1) Connect the the flash to the body directly and make sure both the flash and body are powered up by half pressing the shutter release. I don't know the technicalities of this but the body and flash must go through this communication process otherwise the flash won't trigger when connected to the RF receivers.

2) Remove the flash and connect it to the receiver then put the transmitter on the body. The flash should now trigger when using the the RF receiver. You have to keep the flash powered up, so if it switches off or it goes into "save power" mode you will need to reconnect it to the body again. You may want review your flash manual so you can change the power save timing to a longer time or set it not use the "power save" feature.

On my f42 I had to hold down the HSS button for 3 seconds till the flash icons blinked then push the zoom button till it reached the 35mm setting which turns off the "power save" feature. (105=30sec 70=3mins 50=30mins)





Edited by cruzerpics - 26 February 2010 at 03:16
 



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Octupi View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Octupi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 February 2010 at 01:35
Good write up and testing Cruzerpics.

Did they provide what the rated sync voltage is? This would be a concern to me. I'd also wonder if they are FCC approved frequencies they are using. This would help ensure other devices don't misfire your flashes.
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cruzerpics View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote cruzerpics Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 February 2010 at 01:44
I'm not sure what the sync voltage is but I asked about frequency they said it was 433mhz. There are no FCC labels on the unit so I'm assuming it's not been tested.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Jlav Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 February 2010 at 03:06
Thanks for the review. I was just looking at these units and you've answered some questions.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Stelios Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 March 2010 at 19:23
Any idea if the same process (mounting the flash, half pressing the shutter etc.) is needed with other flash triggers? Especially the cactus.
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p_man View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote p_man Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 March 2010 at 20:00
AFAIK, the process for the 42s is dependent on the flash, not the triggers - so yes, you would need to do this for all the types of wireless rf triggers.

Please be aware that the sigma 500 series flashes with the minolta iIso foot do not work with any wireless rf trigger unless you mod them to add a pc sync.

@cruzerpics - isn't there a sync socket on the receiver? I don't know why you needed the adapter if you were using the sync.

Edited by p_man - 01 March 2010 at 20:00
p_man
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Post Options Post Options   Quote KoprivaMedia Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 March 2010 at 20:56
I use cybersync triggers and the same process is necessary for the 42's. It really doesn't bother me that much, the only time it's a pain is when you have to change batteries (after which you must again mount the 42 on the camera and half-press before putting the flash back out on the lightstand), but changing batteries is already a pain anyway.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote bill_bly_ca Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 March 2010 at 21:33
Originally posted by p_man p_man wrote:


Please be aware that the sigma 500 series flashes with the minolta iIso foot do not work


I have a similar setup (Youngno? IIRC) and both my 500 and 530 super work fine with the SG-6 adaptor. Though most of the time I use an old pair of NOS Quantray(SP?) Nikon flashes with these.

I also seen exactly the same shutter effect at 1/200 Sec with either the Sigma or the Quantray

My 2 receivers did not work with the first set of Sanyo NiMh batteries so I threw in some dollar store Panasonic AA and all is well..

There seem to be a few reports that sensitivity to 1.2V and 1.5V AAs always do the trick. So far a few hundred triggers and they still flash over..

I see cruzerpics got Enlopes to work.. I have a set of Enlopes and I'll give em a spin.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote cruzerpics Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 March 2010 at 03:13
Originally posted by p_man p_man wrote:

AFAIK, the process for the 42s is dependent on the flash, not the triggers - so yes, you would need to do this for all the types of wireless rf triggers.

Please be aware that the sigma 500 series flashes with the minolta iIso foot do not work with any wireless rf trigger unless you mod them to add a pc sync.

@cruzerpics - isn't there a sync socket on the receiver? I don't know why you needed the adapter if you were using the sync.


No sync socket on the receiver and wouldn't matter if it one had since there isn't a sync port on the f42 either. There's plenty of room in the receiver to hard wire in a 3.5mm miniphone jack. I will buy another Sony compatible TTL cord and remove the on camera connection and put a 3.5mm plug that way I can plug it directly to the receiver or the transmitter(which has 3.5 sync jack already)

Edited by cruzerpics - 02 March 2010 at 03:20
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sybersitizen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 August 2010 at 04:01
Just FYI, I see that eBay is now showing quite a few radio systems labeled 'PT-04' that have different looking receivers with built-in Minolta/Sony iISO connectors, like this:

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Cool daddy View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Cool daddy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 August 2010 at 10:32
Thank you Syber, this looks like a great set for only $49,95
but OMG when will this be available for Sony...




*Dear santa,
Please spray a little magic dust over this item and turn it into Sony,then I want this for Christmas, thank you*



Edited by Cool daddy - 21 August 2010 at 10:54
A700+VG | A350+VG |sig 10-20|sig 18-200|sig 24-70 2.8|sig 70-200 2.8|min 28/2.8|min 50/1.7|min 28-135|min 70-210/F4|min 100-300apo|2x F42am and 2x F56am|and lots of M42 stuff...
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Post Options Post Options   Quote beline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 December 2010 at 16:53
sybersitizen, whats the performance like on those "new" 'PT-04's? I am 'this' close to pulling the trigger on a set (transmitter, two standard receivers, two sony receivers) for like $65. With the studio strobe plugs I am in heaven.

Let me know if you find anything out. I want to grab a set quick. I might just go ahead and do it...
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Post Options Post Options   Quote sybersitizen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 December 2010 at 18:49
Originally posted by beline beline wrote:

sybersitizen, whats the performance like on those "new" 'PT-04's?

I have no idea... I just spotted them on eBay while poking around. I have a different brand.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote chito beach Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01 December 2010 at 19:09
Originally posted by Cool daddy Cool daddy wrote:

Thank you Syber, this looks like a great set for only $49,95
but OMG when will this be available for Sony...




*Dear santa,
Please spray a little magic dust over this item and turn it into Sony,then I want this for Christmas, thank you*



pixel has a programmable version available

http://thealphafactor.wordpress.com/2010/11/15/pixel-soldier-tf-373-trigger-for-sony-alpha/
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