Metz has just announced two new camera-specific flashes in versions for either Canon, Nikon, Pentax, Sony, or Four Thirds (includes Olympus and Panasonic Micro Four Thirds).
These may be of interest to many as they add some features missing on the branded flashes, in particular:
- extra wide diffuser which allows coverage of lenses as wide as 12mm focal length in 35mm camera terms.
- secondary light which adds fill light and catch lights while the main light is swiveled to bounce off a wall, etc
- extended range of manual flash output settings – 25 levels
- wireless master TTL function (58AF-2 only) even if camera model does not support wireless TTL – but only for Canon, Nikon and Olympus – seems that although TTL flash works on Panasonic, Pentax and Sony cameras, the wireless TTL does not work on these according to the pdf documentation
I had hoped this would add wireless TTL flash capability to my Panasonic GH-1 Micro Four Thirds camera, but seems that this is not the case – otherwise it would have made the perfect (albeit a bit large and heavy) solution, particularly when you can also get the Metz slave wireless TTL ring flash – the 15 MS-1 which would make up for the fact that Olympus and Panasonic have been very slow to redesign their macro flash system.
However, perhaps the Metz promo documentation accidentally left out Panasonic in the wireless TTL capability as the MS-1 documentation reads:
“The remote TTL flash operation of the mecablitz 15 MS-1 digital can be used for digital cameras of the following makes: Canon, Nikon, Olympus/Panasonic, Pentax/Samsung and Sony-Alpha. In this case, the camera must either have an integrated flash unit acting as master, or be equipped with add-on flash (e.g. Metz 58 AF-1 digital).”
Well I am a bit confused, perhaps someone can enlighten me on this one!
Will you get wireless TTL capability with a Panasonic?
Given that many Micro Four Thirds users also have either a Canon or Nikon dSLR system, it would have been nice to have a new third party flash such as one by Metz which could be used in TTL mode on each of the different cameras as with the Metz SCA flashes such as the Metz 54 MZ-4i digital and Metz 44 MZ-2 digital, but neither offer wireless TTL flash. Perhaps the next SCA flash from Metz will offer wireless TTL.
The documentation does not indicate whether the wireless TTL functionality can be allocated to groups of flashes as with the branded flashes, nor whether you can mix branded flashes with these in wireless TTL mode.
It’s time to bring these babies back from obscurity!