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Lighting that Wins: E-TTL in High Speed Sync
by Cindi Starr


I love shooting in High Speed Sync using Pocket Wizard’s, MiniTT1 and FlexTT5 system. I hope that this article will encourage you to experiment with this system and find ways to create images you never thought you could capture before.

What are the advantages?
Using the MiniTT1 and the FlexTT5, along with 580EX II external flashes allows your camera to sync with your external flash at a much higher shutter speed as opposed to regular E-TTL. Where the default on the 580EX II is 1/250, you can now set your shutter speed to much faster speeds. Setting the camera in AV mode, there is now control over your depth of field (f-stops) and in bright sunlight you can achieve outstanding images that were not previously possible.

First let’s review what equipment I used:
• Canon 5D (set on AV mode for this technique) – Camera set in Raw
• 2 – 580EX II, Canon External Flashes (one on camera and one on a stand)
• Canon CP-E3 external battery pack for the 580EX II on the stand
• Pocket Wizard Mini TTI – transmitter (on my camera, with 580EX II mounted on the hot shoe of the Mini TTI)
• Pocket Wizard Flex TT5 – transceiver (on the stand with second 580EX II, mounted on the hot shoe of the Flex TT5)

Note the following settings to your equipment:
• Camera in aperture priority mode (AV setting)
• 580EX II’s – Set to High Speed Sync, once this is turned on it will show a box with a lightening bolt and an H next to ETTL. Turn on custom function #6. This will allow the unit to flash every time you shoot. Keeping in mind that if you shoot too rapidly and the unit is not fully recharged you may find the image under exposed. Make sure to use Canon’s CP-E3 external battery pack to increase the charge time. (This is why I use a raw setting in my camera.)

Wild Child (Image # 1) was awarded First Place in Portraiture at the Dallas Professional Photographer Association in November 2010.

This portrait was taken at 12:00 (high noon), no kidding! I would have never done this before. Using the sun as my hair light, my assistant pointed the 580EX II toward the subject’s face (I usually dial down 1/3 of a stop, and adjust my light from there).

• Shutter Speed 1/1250 sec
• Camera set in Aperture Priority (AV mode)
• F/stop at f/2.8
• ISO 125
• Focal length 70mm
• Metering Mode: Spot (set on subjects face)

Innocent Cowgirl (Image #2) – was awarded Second Place in Portraiture at the Dallas Professional Photographers Association in June 2011.

This portrait was taken around 10:00 am. Again using the sun as the hair light, my wonderful assistant positioned the 580EX II on the subjects face. I was able to capture this great image.

• Shutter Speed 1/1000 sec
• Camera set in Aperture Priority (AV mode)
• F/stop at f/3.2
• ISO 200
• Focal length 115mm
• Metering Mode: Spot (set on subjects face)

With this great technology and a bit of know-how, now you can get out of the shade and into the light. Controlling your shutter speeds and depth of field, you can create beautiful images.

Thank you to BWC of Dallas for the printing of these images and Arlington Camera for all they do and the outstanding customer service they provide.

Brian BraunMy Shooting Starr Photography – By Cindi Starr
1909 Central Dr. Ste. 201
Bedford, TX 76021

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