HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Cabled, wireless, studio - anything do with using flash
andrewbroadfoot
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HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby andrewbroadfoot » Mon Dec 23, 2013 11:32 pm

When I purchased my two A99's, I picked up an HVL-F60M flash as well. I'm really not a flash guy but I wanted to get one just in case I might need one some day. Well, that "someday" will be coming in July when my sister gets married and I have been playing around with it for the past week. I have stumbled upon several threads around the net that say this flash has an overheating issue. I was wondering if anyone here has experienced it personally and if you had any luck finding a solution. I have fired it off continuously trying to get it to fail but it has't shut down one me so far, just the usual lag to recycle. Her wedding will be outdoors and most likely in the sun so I will be shooting with maximum flash power thus I will be pushing it. Also, has anyone here found a good external battery pack that will fit the HVL-F60M flash and that might decrease the recycle time?

Thank you in advance for any advice/suggestions. Sincerely,

Andrew Broadfoot

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Greg Beetham
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby Greg Beetham » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:35 am

The only thing that comes to mind is that SLT’s could be more demanding on flash power than a regular DSLR design with no light loss…maybe, but the SLT’s are supposed to compensate for the light loss of the mirror by uprating the ISO so maybe the extra demand isn’t as much as imagined.

If you are intending to use fill flash in broad daylight the system has a tendency to jump to HSS automatically, you can check if the A99 still does this by putting the camera in ‘Auto’ or ‘P’ with the flash turned on and walk outside from inside where the ambient light level is much lower, the metering will detect the change in ambient and adjust the flash to suit.

The main problem with flat flash (HSS) is it’s very much reduced in range as compared to normal flash, but normal flash is also handicapped with high ambient light too because you have to keep the shutter speed at or below sync speed to take advantage of the much higher power which means you have to keep an eye on the ISO and aperture (lower ISO and deeper f-stops) to force the shutter speed down which in turn raises the demand on the flash to overcome the restricted light entering the camera due to the narrow aperture.

The only way to help the flash unit in that case is not to shoot at longer distances, light falls away by the square of the distance, (twice the distance = four times less light) or wide angels (wide angle coverage is much the same as increasing distance = much more demand on the flash) using both together means the flash will quickly run out of puff.

No matter which mode you choose the flash is going to struggle competing with the sun and the idea of a exterior battery pack for the flash is an excellent one, but Sony discontinued the carry over one from Minolta and I don’t know if they have one available now.
Greg

Ps the flash will most likely still display ‘HSS’ even though you set corresponding ISO-aperture-shutter speed to get the camera into normal flash sync range, that is normal as per the high ambient level but the camera will choose which one it uses at the moment of exposure depending on distance, flash-ambient balance +/- and angle of coverage.

andrewbroadfoot
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby andrewbroadfoot » Tue Dec 24, 2013 7:54 am

Thank you very much for you detailed reply. I haven't had much difficulty finding the external battery pack so I may very well pick one up. At the wedding I will most likely be working with the Carl Zeiss 135/f1.8, A99 and the flash in question. I will most likely also be shooting from a decent distance as well.

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bfitzgerald
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby bfitzgerald » Tue Dec 24, 2013 12:04 pm

You don't need an external power pack for a flash at a wedding, it's more a press photographer/event shooter type thing. Take spare batteries though
If you want to test for over heating then simply set it to manual and fire off full power flashes and see if the unit shuts down, ambient temperature will obviously be a factor too.

Try to mix up things a bit don't just stay well back (unless you want that pj type look)
You likely won't overheat a flashgun with HSS as it's firing lower power shots very quickly I've never had a flash unit slow down or shut down with HSS. It's the big power blasts that can cause problems. It is possible Sony modified the design I've no idea, but I wouldn't be overly keen on using that flash as my only unit if it has over heating issues.

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pakodominguez
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby pakodominguez » Tue Dec 24, 2013 4:26 pm

andrewbroadfoot wrote:Thank you very much for you detailed reply. I haven't had much difficulty finding the external battery pack so I may very well pick one up. At the wedding I will most likely be working with the Carl Zeiss 135/f1.8, A99 and the flash in question. I will most likely also be shooting from a decent distance as well.

Battery pack:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Battery-Pack-Ca ... 43ae22275e
The flash will overheat if you fire many shots at full power in a short period of time.

If you gonna work with the 135mm, my recommendation will be to place yourself with the sun on your face and shoot with the subject in backlight; you'll get a better lighting than when using flash, avoid unwanted shadows and stressful situation if the equipment don't follows you.
Pako
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Greg Beetham
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby Greg Beetham » Wed Dec 25, 2013 2:19 am

Barry I’ve seen some F60 owners complain of overheating and the flash stop working after 15 full power flashes.
I’ve had a flash stop at a wedding, my F56 with energizer lithium’s, admittedly the lithium’s had been used a couple of times before and I should have put in new ones but it can happen, luckily I wasn’t the photographer at the wedding I was just taking some shots and staying out of the way, I had spares back where the car was parked, I was surprised how few shots I got before the batteries went dead.
But with good batteries the F56 doesn’t overheat or at least mine never has but maybe I don’t push my luck with distance and spread, and maybe you don’t either, but some people can obviously find the limits of a flash, either it’s the way it’s used or there is a fault with the system, flash or camera or both, I would guess the way the flash was used would play a big part.
HSS for daylight flash fill is very handy but it has to be reasonably close to work properly in my experience, otherwise you run the risk of poor exposure control and balance with bright backgrounds, and even with full power flash you can contrive a soft double image if the choice of settings combined with distance and the amount of ambient light is just right, one exposure for the ambient and one exposure for the flash all in the one image but both very slightly displaced so the result looks slightly out of focus, it can happen with moving subjects.

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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby Iknowit » Tue Apr 22, 2014 6:02 pm

If you want a flash that will not get overheat nor shutdown quickly then stay away from the
Sony HVL-F60M flash. The Sony HVL-F58AM is a little better but no ATG ADI TTL.
Just like the Canon 600EX-RT and Nikon SB-910, we demand weather sealed.
So the heat from the flashtube & components can not be cool down due to those seals.

You have some choices, but one is clearly the best.
But some think it is not available.

1. ATG Gold MG8k Flash Kim X3
2. ATG Gold Trio Flash Kim X3
3. Metz 76MZ-5
4. Quantum Qflash Trio
5. Quantum Qflash T2 and T5d
6. Metz 60CT-4
7. ATG Gold Metz 60CT-1 & 2, Metz 60CT-1 or 2
8. ATG Gold Pro II Flash Kim X3
9. Profoto B1 (500ws). Must get the radio transmitter
10. ATG Gold Profoto A1 (800ws). Comes with ATG R Transimtter.

From 1 to 7, these flashes can fire all day without overheating nor shutdown.
#1 can shoot & recycle under ONE SECOND.
#1 and 8 can do nine wireless flash modes.
#1 and 8 can do 1st, 2nd and HSS/Auto FP/HSS
#2, 4, 5, 6 and 7 require special external battery packs.
#3 required special hotshoe adpater for TTL.
#8 is a direct fit on Sony latest hotshoe.
#9 is only for Canon or manual shooting.
#10 has awesome power of 800ws in radio ETTL II, ITTL and ATG ADI TTL.

If you are a serious into shooting events & weddings then an external battery pack is a must.
Pushing that ASA/ISO high is not the answer.
When was the last time you see well known indoor portrait photographers shoot without monolight and can sell one image for over $6,000.00?

Quantum Instruments make & was the king of battery packs until ATG Elite Gold Battery Packs.

ATG Elite Gold Battery Packs
Quantum Turbo Battery Packs
Both of these required HV cable designed for your flash.
HV cables for ATG, Canon, Nikon, Metz and Sony

Again, if you need the power and using Canon or want to do it wireless radio manual flashes, then go for the Profoto B1. This set will hit you under $3,000.00.

More power, then #10 is it for shooting with Sony, Canon or Nikon.
Shooting wireless radio ATG ADI TTL (Sony), ETTL II (Canon) or ITTL (Nikon).
This can do what the Profoto B1 can not do, wireless radio in 1st, 2nd and HSS.
If you can't afford Profoto nor play with the big boys, don't ask for the prices.

The biggest drawbacks for the working Sony professional photographers using HVL-F60M Flash:
1. HSS is disabled once flash is bounced
2. Overheat & shutdown very quickly
3. Fresnel Lens will warps or bubbles
4. No PC Sync Socket
5. No ATG Auto Sensor
6. Can not get wireless IR flash (Remote) once flash is pointed into a softbox
7. Weak Hotshoe Locking Button
8. Lousy instruction manual
9. 160 of sync on wireless flash
10. Delayed flash due to Shutter Assy has to close & up that ATG and Gary Friedman knew in R/D.

Bet you didn't know that the Sony HVL-F60M Flash is the most expensive flash ever came and made in China?

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Dusty
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby Dusty » Tue Apr 22, 2014 6:39 pm

I think I found the reason Greg can't find a website for ATG. http://www.lightingrumours.com/mysterious-internet-troll-promotes-non-existent-brand-2480

It only exist in someone's mind.

Dusty
An a700 and couple of a580s, plus even more lenses.

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Greg Beetham
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby Greg Beetham » Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:23 am

Actually Dusty I didn’t even look for this ATG whatever believe it or not. :roll: The Iknowit guy provided no link and he doesn’t sign his messages with even a first name so his post is only a curiosity at best. But he’s on the right path recommending Metz at least, Metz do know what they are doing even if Sony don’t have a clue about flash or what it’s used for.
Greg

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Birma
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Re: HVL-F60M Shoe Flash For Sony Alpha A99 DSLT

Unread postby Birma » Wed Apr 23, 2014 8:50 am

I think it was me in another thread Dusty :)

Iknowit has replied to me there, but I'm still not exactly sure what he is selling?
Nex 5, Nex 6 (IR), A7M2, A99 and a bunch of lenses.


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