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What would you get if you use do a lot of flash photography


I find that, these days, I do a lot of flash photography, including fill flash outdoors. I've just purchased a G2 (thanks to everyone on this board for inspiring me!) and find that the flash is not performing so well for me. In particular, I miss being able to bounce and the method of doing fill flash is a bit cumbersome.

I'm considering the TLA 280. For those who have used it, I have a couple of questions:

1) I haven't even seen one -- how big is it relative to a standard SLR flash (I use an SB28 on my Nikon if that helps)? Does it make the G2 imbalanced?

2) Does it do a better job of fill flash? Do you still need to go through the G2 algorithm to do fill flash (set AE lock, then turn on flash, etc...)

3) Anyone recommend a different flash?

Thanks everyone.
You're going to be slightly dissatisfied with the G2's flash performance if you've been using the Nikon system. I know I was. I own an F100, F5 and a Fuji S2. I'm not knocking the camera at all. But the G is more of an ambient light type of camera. Although, it does work great with studio flash. The G systems flash just doesn't cut the mustard compared to other brands like Nikon. Keep in mind that the Nikon system relies on what the whole composition reflects. That's the purpose of the 5 segment TTL flash sensor. The G system uses center weighted TTL falsh control. You'll need a lot more practice in deciding what type of compensation to use in your flash photography. Eventually, you'll get the knack of it. But for now, until you master " the art of G flash" stick to your nikon for anything imprtant. many will agree with me on this. And many will not. That's just my own opinion based on my own personal level of skill.
I have the same question. I am considering a Metz 44 mz2, 54mz3, tla 280 or tla 360. I am interested in general indoor use and fill flash.What do you recommend and is it easier to use fillflash with any of those choices on a G2?
I have been using a Metz 32CT7 on a G2 for a while, as well as an old Vivitar bare bulb flash. Now I stick a huge Sunpak 120J TTL on the top (of course, even much bigger than SB-28) which looked kind of funny. Balance is not as bad as I thought but I am still adapting to the new setup. I consider myself a semi-serious-amateur flash freak. Now I wish the camera supports flash exposure compensation so that I can engage my brain less of the time in outdoor fill situations, but I cannot think of anything which cannot be accomplished by setting aperture/shutter speed in manual mode. It is just more cumbersome without automation.

Now, it is true that I have seen a lot of nice pictures from Nikon's flash system. Perfectly balanced background and foreground every time, even if the photographer has limited skills. But for me, my photography isn't based on proper exposure (since I use print film most of the time, I just err on the overexpose side). Rather, it is based on properly applying basic principles of lighting (size of light source, position of light source, and distance from subject). In that regard, I have found the Contax G TTL flash system already adequate, even though you name any other modern camera line (including Contax N) and it will have more features and automation.
i've a Metz 32CT7 which i used it with ex-camera, Yashica 108. Part#1 question;
With the Contax G2, do you think the setup parameter is similar. Manual "M" of x to aperture opening of y as indicated at the back of the flash. cheers
Although I generally try to avoid using a flash, I have found two Contax flash units to be useful with my G2. The ultra compact TLA 140 is an excellent travel flash that never produces red-eye, unlike the TLA 200. For more heavy-duty needs, the TLA 360 is more suitable. Unlike Nikon flash systems, the TLA 360 does not receive information from the G camera regarding ISO and aperture settings, so these must be manually set on the flash.

The G2's center-weighted metering system is less sophisticated than a matrix metering system and tends to overexpose flash shots. After a period of experimenting, I have learned to set exposure compensation to at least -1 when using a flash. The results are quite satisfactory.

In general, I prefer center-weighted to matrix metering, because I like to control exposure by adjusting compensation. Such adjustments are tricky with matrix metering, because you don't know for sure how the camera's computer has determined the proper exposure.
Thanks to all for their advice. Are there non-contax flashes (preferably small) that can bounce and swivel, but also do TTL metering and couple (i.e., can read ISO and aperature settings) with the Contax G2?
Hi Stephen,

the Sunpak B3600DX has a module for the G2. I believe that it's called an Auto 444D in the U.S?? (I'm in Japan)

I don't own this particular flash, but have considered it. It is definitely not a small flash, though.

I've also been thinking about picking up a flash that can bounce and has a little more power. I was considering one of the Contax flashes that has a bounce head.

Mark Edwards
I use an old Metz 30CT6, which has a trigger-sensor and it fires automatically with the TLA Contax flash. It can bounce and is stronger. You have to do all the settings manually though.

I use two different flashes from Metz. A 45-CT and a 42-MZ, both with the SCA382 adaptor. They work fine withe G2. Compared to the size of the g2 is the MZ-42 a bit bulky. The 45-ct has the great advantage, to have a builtin flashbracket. I switch them to manual mode and the G2 makes the rest. I own also a TLA 200 and use it very often.

Good flash!

Hans Villars, Switzerland