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Understanding TTL Cables

Lesson 14 from: FAST CLASS: How to Shoot with your First Flash

Mike Hagen

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Lesson Info

14. Understanding TTL Cables

Lesson Info

Understanding TTL Cables

what are the reasons why we use off Camera flash? Well is we've already demonstrated that when you're photographing a model, sometimes on camera portraiture on camera lighting is not the most flattering, Right. We saw the shadow. We saw a little shine on the forehead and on the nose and on the cheeks. Well off camera flash lets us control where the lights coming from. It also lets us control the size of the light, you know, so we can use big, big light sources, small light sources. So we concur. Control, size, direction, intensity. We can fill in shadows. We can make a skinny person like large weaken like a large person like skinny. You just have all kinds of options available to with off camera flash. And and that's where that's where. Really, the excitement for me is in flash photography. Tabletop photography? Yes. You know, if you do macro work, if you photograph bugs and flowers, if you have ah Pinterest site, sport, etc. Or you're making maybe jewelry and you're selling on Etsy of...

f camera flashes, how you gonna make that stuff really shine? You know, if you do jewelry off camera flash that you control where the reflections are. Maybe you see the gym stone and with on camera flash, it just looks flat. But with off camera flashing, I got light from here and you're filling the shadows there. Now you've got a salable product, you know, and everyone the world concede on etc. You can make some cash, so tabletop photography is a great place for off camera flash. I encourage you to learn at home, learn at home before you pay a model, or before someone pays you to photograph out in the field. Already at lunch, we were talking with a few of you in the audience here, and you were saying, I've got a job coming up and I need to photograph this and I need a photograph that well, promise me this. Just promise me that you just won't show up to the client's business or house. And just start, you know, experimenting. Don't do that practice at home. First, get a foam foam head or a set of flowers or something, and just on your living room table, just practice with off camera flash. So let's go through the first way to do off camera flash in the way that I think might be most accessible for for people watching today. And that's using a T T l cable. All right. T t l cable. Well, we already technically did this earlier in the day. Okay, so these air T TL cables, this one here is an older Nikon cable. It's called the S C 17. This is a newer one. I bought it a few months back, made by a company called Velo. The key is to make sure that it's called a dedicated T T l cable. That's the key. And it makes sure that is dedicated for your camera. So if you haven't eat Canon Eos five D mark for whatever, make sure that it's a cannon dedicated tt El keib. Okay, Um, the neat thing about these cables is most of them at least they're kind of they've got this, you know, expand. Oh, they're expandable. So they stretch in the contract. Most cables come in like a three foot length. If you want to, you can buy longer cables or there's even companies out there who we'll splice these for. You look will chop him and increase the links. Like if you need a 30 foot or a 40 foot cable. You can buy them. They're out there on the market. But I think a better solution. If you need more, lengthen your cable. You can daisy chain these. So basically, you can take one cable, put it into the the shoe of the other cable. Just like this course now, it's not gonna do it. I'm a long life TV. There we go fit in there. Maybe this will work. When in doubt, go the other way. Yeah. So they do their ago. They do Daisy chain. And so now, rather than three feet, you can get more like 67 feet. So why would you want to do that? Well, with off camera flash, you want to be in control of the light, right? So let's say that you've got yourself a light stand like this, Okay? You're gonna take this cable, and you're gonna screw it under the top of the light stand. This is a stud. Basically a light sand study was gonna screw that in there for the techie people in the room. That's 1/4 by mount. So there's 1/4 by 20 stud. Okay, that goes into the light stand like that. Cool. Now, this would go on my camera. And if my model or my subject is here in my light is over there, I just need to build the stretch at some distance. If you don't get it at a certain length, you will pull over your light stands. I mean, trust me, that happens. It happens a lot. So maybe put some weight down there, you know, a little, uh, being bag or something else that has maybe five or £10. You can kind of keep this thing from pulling over. But the longer your TL cable, the more room you have to move around the studio. Okay, so this connect that to the camera. So I get back my d 500 with the kit lens. This is gonna go right here on the camera. Great. And the camera is still set up from the previous session's I'm still it s oh, what was that? 400 f 56 and the 2/50 of a second. So all of that's the same. Nothing really changes with the camera when you do off camera flash, that's cool. All the same basic learning we did in the 1st 2 segments translates right to hear nothing significantly different. All right, well, let's mount the flash onto this sucker so we'll use I don't know. So use this one. This is Ah, $30 flash I bought on Amazon. So that's going to go on here just like that. And in the fourth segment, I'll show you how we how we attach this to our light modifiers. You know how we put a soft box on their or an umbrella or something along those lines. So now I'm basically I'm gonna turn on the flash and I'll turn this towards the cameras so the cameras can see it. And then I'm just gonna push the mode button until the mode says T t l four manual, either one of work. So I could be in TCL mode or I can be in manual mode like 1 64th power. Both of them will work great. As far as your camera and your flash are concerned, they're sitting together. See the way with these dedicated T TL cables. The way that works is the flash thinks dismounted right here on the top. So the communication is all the same. There's really no difference. It's just now physically separate, but it's separate by cable. So I met. You know, I s 0 405 6 I'm at 2 of the second I'm in manual 1 64th power and then when I take a picture, Pau offer goes and it's firing. 1 64th Power 1 64th Power 1 64th Power Consistently. It also works in TCL mode. So, like I said before, you know, it paid 30 or 40 bucks for this flash on Amazon. And if I just go to t t l mode now, it works very similarly as the Nikon dedicated Flash or the Canon dedicated flash. So that's T T l. And it would work just the same power. How about pretty simple way to do off camera flash? Ah, I used when? When you can't afford a flash failure, use a cable because there's this is This is solid. You know you'll never have an issue with communication here. It will never break down. You'll never like have radio interference or the pulses of light will never impact or get lost in the mix, so always use cable if your life depends on it, I guess, is the point. You know, if I'm photographing for a client there, like, you better not screw this up or I can't spear up. Then I cable up. Maybe that's a quote if you don't want to screw up on cable up, Okay, so that's a rock solid connection.

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Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

Great fast-class! Mike Hagen got straight to the point and made it super easy to understand!


Great course very informative and so easy to understand.


The class covers exactly what you would expect. Very good basic information about how to set-up and operate a flash on any camera. Mike was extremely personable and communicated very well.

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