I have been delving into the secrets of the FT/mFT system for over 15 years now and have “grown up” with many things. In the beginning there was no stabiliser, no remote flash, no LiveView and no ten frames per second. All this stuff was gradually developed and I had the “privilege” of being able to explain to photographers how it worked and what to do with it. Accordingly, I tend to consider things to be “basic knowledge”. And occasionally forget that photography is a luxury hobby and that technical details of cameras are definitely not the stuff of secondary school. Long story short: yet another complex question with a simple solution. But let’s get to it first….
Problem: “I have an E-M1III, the FL-LM3 and a Metz 400 for Oly. Both flashes work perfectly on the camera. But when I want to remotely control the Metz 400 in servo mode with the FL-LM3, both flashes flash, but the image is black. ??????”
Of course, anything could have happened. After sending a few pictures and text back and forth, the simple solution emerged:
The E-M1III is in A and TTL. The external Metz is in servo mode, which means that it reacts to a flash with its own flash. What happens? The FL-LM3 sends out its metering flash, the Metz also flashes, the camera, which knows nothing about the servo flash, realises that the flash was apparently far too bright, adjusts the flash and ISO to minimum and the image is black – because the Metz has already flashed with the first flash and ignores the second flash that follows shortly afterwards.
What do you have to do? Switch off TTL. Turn camera to M, set aperture, shutter speed and ISO. Set the flash to manual and the flash intensity manually on the camera. Set the flash intensity on the Metz. Then there’s no pre-flash and everything is fine – you’re just responsible if things go wrong.
If you now want TTL, there is the RC mode in the camera.
Once you have set the RC mode in the camera and set the Metz to slave instead of servo and set the groups and channels correctly, the remote flash works perfectly.
Small problem: The Canon flash, which played along perfectly on M, stubbornly refuses to work in RC mode. The reason? The RC modes of Canon and Olympus have different protocols. They simply don’t understand each other.
You have to know that. Nobody will tell you.
And if you ask in forums, you’ll be laughed at by “cracks” like me. But nobody was born with photographic knowledge. Some have painstakingly acquired this knowledge, some simply regurgitate what others have told them. And still others haven’t learnt anything, but have mastered the art of pretending to.
I can’t even refer to my books with a clear conscience. Because sure – in some of them I wrote something about the pre-flashes. But that was a long time ago. And a complete book that covers everything – nobody can read that anymore and nobody can write it. I have a complete shelf of Olympus photo knowledge next to me. And I also have to look it up from time to time. In my own books….