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Fat Tone
19th May 2004, 06:42
Hi

I have the Fuji F401Z (http://www.fujifilm.co.uk/digital/cameras/f401/index.php?page=more&lpage=/digital/cameras/range.php) and while it's not a bad camera within its limits (the convenience of the size and docking crable are certainly a massive plus for me) I do often find I could do with a more powerful zoom, and sometimes a wider angle.

Is it possible to get an adapter (Fuji don't specifically do one) that will do telephoto or telephoto&wideangle? The external diameter of the front part of the lens is about 28mm, but this rotates and moves in/out slightly when zooming. Perhaps the tripod mount could be used to hold something in place?

TIA

T.

PS The fuji parts for another camera would add up to over £100, which is way more than this is worth - I think I'd be better off selling this and getting a whole different camera.

PPS Any advice on optical-slave flashes? The other limitation of this camera is the relatively weak flash.

VJ
19th May 2004, 07:17
Originally posted by Fat Tone
Is it possible to get an adapter (Fuji don't specifically do one) that will do telephoto or telephoto&wideangle? The external diameter of the front part of the lens is about 28mm, but this rotates and moves in/out slightly when zooming. Perhaps the tripod mount could be used to hold something in place?

Hmm, though one... :)
Some cameras do offer a thread around the lens (e.g. Canon G2, A70, ...), which allows you to screw on a tele- or wideangle-extension... In virtually all cases, you have vignetting when the lens is not fully zoomed.

I just wonder what putting e.g. a tele-extension for another make of camera in front of yours would yield... I think it ought to work, but you must be carefull for reflections between the extension and the lens...



PPS Any advice on optical-slave flashes? The other limitation of this camera is the relatively weak flash.
Well, in most cases, you need to be able to set your onboard flash to manual: most slaves get confused from the pre-flashes (simply put: they fire too soon). That being said, I can apparently use my SB800 as a slave to my D100 and it does appear to work, even with the D100 set to DTTL (i.e. with preflashes). There must be something wrong (here is an explenation why it shouldn't go with a D100 and an SB80DX: http://www.bythom.com/wireless.htm ), but the photo looks ok. :confused:

Wein does have a hotshoe slave that is said to ignore the preflashes with digital cameras:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=NavBar&A=getItemDetail&Q=&sku=263025&is=REG&si=feat#goto_itemInfo
I'm nor sure if this also counters the preflashes emitted by small cameras (I have no experience with this Wein product).

Also, I don't think it matters much which flash you have, as long as you can set it to remote wireless (the slave just fires when it sees another flash). In old Nikon terminology, this is called SU-4 (the Nikon component similar to the Wein component above had typenumber SU-4). Some flashes (e.g. the SB800) have this SU-4 unit built in.
So you might consider buying your flash with upgrade in mind, but verify my statement first :). (along these lines: Metz have flashes whos hotshoe can be changed (i.e. to move the from Canon to Nikon), but I was given the advice to stick with the manufacturer of the camera when it concerns digital photography.)
:)


Jörg

Fat Tone
19th May 2004, 07:30
Thanks VJ, useful info. I hadn't realised the flash profile could different on a digital camera!

Perhaps I'll end up making a bracket to hold a teleadapter in place via the tripod mount. If so, can you recommend a (cheapish) make of such things?

VJ
19th May 2004, 07:53
Well, I'm not sure if the flash profile is different. Nikon uses a sequence of 18 (3+4+4+4+3) flashes for DTTL. I'm not sure what other manufacturers do, nor how the Wein module reacts to it (it doesn't have a manufacturer specification though, so perhaps is sees the difference between a pre-flash and the actual flash).

However, if you set the camera to manual flash, it will only flash once. So every slave should react the same. (e.g. Nikon can't do DTTL with slave flashes) And it is in this setup I think you should be able to mix makes.


Before you make the adapter, I would suggest you check to see if there isn't a problem with reflections (and perhaps other stuff). It would be a shame if you work would not turn out to be for nothing.


Jörg

az
19th May 2004, 10:16
As for the tele/wide adapters, I think making a bracket like you plan to is the only option, and I think you'll get "OK" results at best, and it'll defeat the small size of your camera. I think if you really do plan to extend your photographing, a new camera will be needed sooner or later anyway, which might offer a greater zoom by itself, as well as the possibility for screw-on adapters.

Sadly, cheap adapters are usually not of very high quality, but I can't comment on specific manufacturers.

For a slave flash, there are "digital" slave flashes out there, these ought to work. They're also not very expensive. You should try before you buy, though, because it may be that they confuse your camera's auto metering, and you would need to resort to manual controls with the external flash. A newer camera could/should also contain a real hot-shoe, of course, which would allow you to get really creative with flashes.

AZ

Greebe
19th May 2004, 12:10
Sadly, cheap adapters are usually not of very high quality, but I can't comment on specific manufacturers.

Sadly you can't differentiate between teleconverters of Q without analytical review. Something the industry rarely does, because the mindset is these "cheat" to get a poor resemblance of what a REAL lens is capable of. That and they are all grossly overpriced... way more than their quality 35mm cousins.

VJ
20th May 2004, 06:52
Yes, specific slave flashes (studio flashes) also exist (I keep forgetting about those :)). A brandname often encountered on dpreview is alienbees:
http://www.alienbees.com/
I have no experience with them though...

Jörg

spadnos
21st May 2004, 20:38
I would stay away from the Wein (and pretty much all other) IR / optical remotes.
Most of them will fire accidentally when in fluorescent lighting, won't work in the sun (though you often don't need flash in the sun :) ), and will trigger on anyone's flash.

I actually co-founded a business that exists largely because the flash remotes that were available sucked - we built a better one (the PocketWizard (http://www.pocketwizard.com)).

As for the Alien Bees, that looks exactly like the Paul Buff (maker of the White Lightning mini pack) radio, which sucked terribly. My old company was in a patent battle with them, but it turned out to be unnecessary because they couldn't sell the things anyway. I guess that's what happened to the product line.

Unfortunately though, it looks like there's no sync output on this camera (neither hot-shoe nor PC connection) - so the only option is a light slave.

bummer

- Steve

az
22nd May 2004, 02:28
All this means that before sinking larger amounts of cash into a slave flash and/or adapters, you should save up for a better camera first.

AZ

Fat Tone
22nd May 2004, 02:56
You know, when I got this camera I thought it was the DBs. So many features in such a small package. My previous camera was the MX-700 which I sold to get this.

Now I realise this is a good camera (IMO), but for a niche, not for everything. If I want to get more adventurous I need [b]an additional[b] camera, not just a better one. What are the chances of finding a much more versatile camera that will still fit in my shirt pocket or be invisible on my belt, recharge & d/l from a cradle, take small movies etc?

az
22nd May 2004, 03:16
At the moment, not very good. Though if you can go without the cradle, there might be a few options. The problem is that compact size and lots of acessories and manual controls don't mix well, because you need more room for the latter and camera manufacturers seem to think these are two different markets (I disagree, I think many poeple would like a nice full-featured pocket cam). And of course big zoom takes lots of space. And lens threads are uncommon for small cameras, I guess because the small lenses are too frail and would break when using converters.

AZ

Fat Tone
22nd May 2004, 03:36
Sorry Az, it was a rhetorical question!

Now if I can just get to the bullion at Heathrow without being tracked next time I could afford another camera ...;) This typing with one arm business is getting tiring :D