21 March 2009

High speed sync flash - leave it on all the time?

When you're shooting with a Canon Speedlite you usually get the option for high-speed sync flash. I prefer to leave high speed sync on all the time and here's why.

If you shoot sometimes in the daylight and need to overpower the ambient, then opening up the aperture to get plenty of power from the flash is nice, but you often end up with hitting the sync speed wall. Leaving high speed sync on all the time means you just keep on driving through that wall. The only downside is that the flash power falls off the faster your shutter speed goes.
If your sync speed is 1/250s then at 1/500s your flash is half as powerful and at 1/1000s then a quarter of the power is yours and you don't get warnings to this effect in the camera so you need to keep an eye on the shutter speed.

Don't forget that if you go for manual power control on the flash or second curtain sync then you lose the chance to have high speed sync.


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