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ok - so who's around who can answer a flash question for me?
Benito Rico's profile photoMark Rodriguez (Godriguez)'s profile photoKelly-Shane Fuller's profile photoSandra Parlow's profile photo
depends on the question, I might be useful :)
I'll give it a shot.... I have a few of them.
wait... flash software or flash speedlight?
Flash Gordon? Flash Dance? Macromedia Flash?
London Fog still makes the best trenchcoats...
ok - I have a D5100 - it has the Creative Lighting System.
I have a SB700.

Is it possible for me to use the flash when it is off the camera without having them wired togther?

I thought it was but I can't figure it out. I've found that I can use several flashes wireless, but I'm starting to expect that the "master" flash has to be connected. :(
IIRC you have to use the popup to trigger it off camera.
i thought the CLS worked through the on-board pop-up flash? then again i am a Canon guy so what do i know
Yep. I'm afraid the D5100's pop up flash cannot act as commander.
You should be able to if the D5100 is capable of TTL. Which I think it is.
I don't know -that's why I'm asking.....
I'm laughing at the comments..and your being so seriious. I hope you find the answer..and not some awsome flasher lol
The 7D can be used. But I don't know Nikon. Sorry. Should have gone Canon. :P
The D5100 doesn't have the Flash Commander. It can't do it. You need another flash on top of the D5100, or a wireless trigger system.
I think +Mark Rodriguez is correct it should be controlled by the on board flash but you have to turn it on in the menus. Since I'm a Canon shooter I can't give you specific directions without looking at your manual.
+Sandra Parlow What +Olav Folland said. I use cls all the time like for the post of the night time wedding shot I did on Christmas Eve. I find you have to check the flash manual to be sure your settings are right, The settings for me are different with my D70 than my D90. I am going to look into the 5100 right now.
5100 can't act a a commander with the pop up... you'll need a flash like the sb900 or 800, 700.
what the hell is a manual +Mark Rodriguez ??

+Renee Kirk sigh its' a curse... I'm friends with a bunch of smart asses. Ok boys - line up and flash me and get it over with. Just let me get my points cards ready. 1 is "go to gym" and 10 is "holy crap put that bazooka away!!"
She has a SB-700, but only one. So no off camera flash with the current setup.
ok - D5100 specs: I don't understand them..

TTL: i-TTL balanced fill-flash and standard i-TTL flash for digital SLR using 420-pixel RGB sensor are available with built-in flash, SB-900, SB-800, SB-700, SB-600 or SB-400 (i-TTL balanced fill-flash is available when matrix or center-weighted metering is selected)
Auto aperture: Available with SB-900/SB-800 and CPU lens
Non-TTL auto: Supported flash units include SB-900, SB-800, SB-80DX, SB-28DX, SB-28, SB-27 and SB-22S
Distance-priority manual: Available with SB-900, SB-800 and SB-700
i'm in!!!!!lol just cutting out my cards...I'm lighting challenged!!
the 5100 can't be a commander, as others have said. But the SB-700 has "SU-4" mode. it will watch for your flash and go off as an optical slave. but you will have to fire the flash on camera just a little bit to trigger it.
So +Geoff Yale you're saying that I need to have 2 speedlights? one on the body to work as the master?
The D5100 does not have a built in flash commander mode. You will need to have a speed light attached that can act as a commander. It is not a matter of CLS (which you can use) or iTTL (which your flash is), but rathe a limitation of the 5100 not have a wireless transmitter so it must rely on another source. On a good not, your SB700 does have a wireless commander mode, so if you get a second one you can use that on wirelessly.
Yes, you could put another flash - sb700, 800, 900 - be a controller. Yes, 2 speedlights. Or you can optically trigger it but you have to set off the main flash at least a bit.
I know that +Karin Nelson but I thought I might be able to use it off the camera :(

ok +Allan Chen ... so... I have to put it in SU-4 and then what?
alright :-). when the sb700 is in su-4 mode (I don't know the controls on the sb700, sorry, I only know the 800), it just looks for another flash to go off. you set the one on your camera as low as you can. the sb700 will see the flash and go off as well.
+Juan Gonzalez is talking about putting a remote trigger on your camera. that is the other option. my option is what you can do right now. no new equipment. I'm not saying it's better. but there are many triggers that you can attach to the hot shoe on your camera that will trigger a remote flash, too
+Allan Chen may be correct about the su-4 mode (I don't have a 700 so I must defer to his knowledge), sadly if you only have the built in (popup) flash you can't control its intensity. So it may be enough to trigger your 700 in su-4 mode, but you will get the harsh light that popup flash tends to produce as well.
+Mark Whitney you can always dial the pop up down, even on the 5100, if I recall. just flash compensation.
+Allan Chen, do you think a Nikon SG-3ir would work for Sandra? That's only 12 bucks ( Do you think the SB-700 would still trigger with that little bit of light?
+Allan Chen I have never seen an option for that on the xx00 series. Is great if it is there. Since I shoot a D300s, I have little experience with the xx00 series bodies.
ok-I see +Christina Lawrie ... and thank you +Allan Chen - so the remote would just slide into the hot shoe and send the impulse to the flash without a lot of messing around?
+Karin Nelson ok- in the flash manual I keep seeing something that looks like that but I don't know what it is...
it is possible that it needs a really good look at your on-camera flash going off. make it so the IR side of the 700 is aimed at your camera, and fire the camera, with on-board flash, off right at it. does the 700 go off?
+Sandra Parlow - Look for a refurbished sb-600 and then you would have two flashes. The SB-700 would be your primary.
+Sandra Parlow I didn't realize the 5100 didn't have built in transmitter for cls. on another note, I also use triggers that fire my flashes but they don't work TTL My SB 800 fires from commander mode in my D90. Sorry I couldn't be more help!
Yes +Mark Rodriguez very much... I could use the distraction because I'm feeling very frustrated right now! ;)
I can sell you an sb800 if you'd like :-). about to put 2 of them on ebay
+Mark Whitney according to some quick googling the 5100 does have 3EV flash compensation. but of course at some point the sb700 won't pick it up anymore...
With his 10 lb slab of meat? Have you started marinating it yet, Godriguez??
you should start a hangout for this :-)
good idea CHristina... I might have to just go for the remote first though.

Thanks +Ron Clifford for the effort. I appreciate it!
+Mark Whitney it lists exposure compensation as a separate feature so I'd imagine that it has both. I think it's just way buried in the menus rather than via a simple button+dial.
+Allan Chen ... why are you selling them? how much are you asking?

I can turn the exposure comp down to -3
+Mark Rodriguez, I have been one of those purists, but now I am trying to learn flash. It broadens horizons. ; )
I used to do weddings and portraits and product photography. I have a full time job already. a nd a kid on the way. so I'm just pulling all my gear back to a more "sensible" kit. So I dont' need 3 SB800's, for instance :-). market price on ebay minus some "google+ circle" discount :-).
You can actually control the flash output to: full, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, and 1/32 power. This is what I was referring to, not EV compensation. NIce feature for a built in flash. You can also use an SU-800 Wireless Commander to control your SB700 wirelessly. I see the SU-800 going for mid-200s on Google search
Get the sb800, one hell of a flash! I'm pissed they stop making it. 
+Sandra Parlow yes, one goes on flash, one goes on camera. I love it, and I used my single flash off camera with that. Now, I have two, and my 7D can trigger, but I still use my cable when I want to have two off angle flashes like with my splash stuff, and I'm too cheap to get flash triggers. I'll eventually splurge and get them, but for now, this works.
+Christina Lawrie as well. well, ebay price seems about...$280-300? I'll do $275, shipped, or make an offer. I am not trying to turn this into a selling place for me, though I do have umbrellas, other flashes, battery packs, too.
+Allan Chen ... will you give me a day to think about it? I live in Canada... you'd probably have to charge me shipping.
Wish I had an extra 275, I would take you up on that for sure as well +Allan Chen

+Sandra Parlow you need to set your built in flash to Manual Mode, then you should be able to adjust its output power.
take your time. I dont think shipping to canada is all that bad and consider that part of the google+ circle discount unless it really is super expensive.
Are we done with the flashing?? I have my cards in hand.., and no players. Lol
if anyone is interested in SB-28's (good power, not iTTL system, though), a sunpak 120J, battery packs for nikon, a quantum turbo pack, and some stands and umbrellas, let me know.
OK!! It worked!! THe SU - worked - I didn't have it set to remote - so now it works! ok- good!
GREAT! yes, you gotta play with it. once I had to use 2 800's in a circle all on SU-4 to trigger a flash way around the side from my shooting position. have fun with it.
awesome!~ thanks guys! +Allan Chen I'm going to still think about that flash. has it been used a lot? still lots of life left in it??
I don't know how to put my flash in manual mode +Mark Whitney ... you are talking about in camera,right??
+Sandra Parlow I love my SB 800 and my only complaint is the commands are not intuitive enough, but once you figure it out, it is an AMAZING little unit with plenty of power and control. my 2 cents
still lots of life yet. that's why I had 3. 1 primary, 1 on my backup, 1 as a backup to the backup. I'd say the two I'm selling are at least 90% life left if not more. never abused. I always notice what my power output is, whether it's going 100%, and if so I let the capacitor cool before shooting again.
the thing is... I haven't even learned how to use the one I just got yet and here I am thinking about buying another one!! O_o
ok +Allan Chen I'll lthink about it over night and get back to you tomorrow, ok? Thank you!
Yes +Sandra Parlow. Go to the Custom Settings menu (the little pencil), then into e3 Bracketing/flash. then e3 again. You will find Manual mode and a menu of output levels. At least that is where it is on my D300, I imagine it is similar on the 5100.
+Sandra Parlow Just remember it opens a whole new world of possibilities and you will need to take it one step at a time. I use flash a lot and I love the opportunities it opens up.
+Mark Whitney YES! there it is!! Thank you! ok, so basically, this is how I turn down the power on my in camera flash so that it doesn't fire so bright, but it will still trigger the SB?
ok- just let me say how awesome all of you guys are! If it weren't for you, I'd still be sitting here pulling my hair out! God how I love G+ People are SO awesome here!

I just took a few shots. Going to edit and then post one!!!

You guys rock!!
+Sandra Parlow going manual via the menu sets the flash to an absolute power of, saying, 1/2. However, a certain situation might need only 1/4. or 1/8. so in some cases you are overpowering, others underpowering. Flash compensation is relative. It will reduce the metered amount by 1-2 stops, or whatever. Depends on whether you want a little bit of light from your built-in flash or not.
I feel badly that I'm contributing to the confusion. But there are a lot of options. But you can lock it down to a few specific goals. Do you want the vast majority of the light to be the off-camera one? Do you want a mix?
Well I'm glad you didn't, and why give up when you have all these wonderful people here. Loooooooooooooong way to go for me to buy a flash(need to buy a frickin camera first ;)! I'm hoping I'll know a bit of it by reading all these interesting posts by the time I get there! :D :D
+Allan Chen is correct. My suggestion is only one option and you just have to play with different things to see what works best for you.
and I agree with +Mark Whitney . find one and stick with it, then try out the other. it's tons of fun in the end. someday you'll end up with...9 flashes in your bag :-)
You guys have been great - I am EASILY confused = especially by technical things like this. It took me FOREVER to learn f stops and shutter speeds. Like... weeks.. months even! Anything that has to do with numbers confuses the hell out of me.

Just took a quick peek at the pics I took and they aren't lit up great but I'm just happy to have figured out how to use it!

To answer your question +Allan Chen .. I really don't know. I would love to be able to light things from the side to create shadows, which is why I wanted to have the flash off camera - but who knows where I'll go with flash? I've always shot landscapes and this is like learning light all over again -it's all so different.
+Sandra Parlow - remind me to post a shot of my off-camera flash later. It's almost embarrassing :P
If you really want to understand small flash better (especially Nikon flash) then get the book the hot shoe diaries by Joe McNalley. He is my flash hero and not only is he extremely informative, he is entertaining too.
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