Calumet’s flash triggers.. first impressions
(Firstly, if you’re not interested in off-camera flash, do yourself a favour and don’t read this.)
When you begin to learn about how wonderful off camera Speedlite flash is, but how unreliable infra-red triggers are (line of sight, baffled by sunlight), the only other credible option has been Pocket Wizards. They’re radio triggered and are rock solid in that respect, but they’ve always been ruined by the crap PC Sync connector which is held into the side of the flash by nothing but benevolent gravity – and you’re constantly going back mid-shoot wondering why the flash isn’t firing. I’ve been looking into alternatives and today bought some radio triggers that Calumet produced.
As you can see they come pretty well appointed, with every lead under the sun. Including one massively decent one which gets round that irritating held-together-by-hope issue.. a screw thread that holds the little scally in:
You can also see from the picture below how much EASIER they are to include in a flash setup. The Pocket Wizard dangles off the flash by the cord with the sync cable trailing back up – but the Calumet trigger is half the size, and locks unfussily onto the flash.
Finally here you can see the comparative size of the two trigger systems. The real killer here is that one transmitter and three receivers cost me more or less the same as ONE Pocket Wizard.
There are alternatives of course, and downsides. The Wizards are all tranceivers, where as the Calumet system either sends, or recieves a signal. Also the Flex system by Pocket Wizard fits onto the flash in a similarly convenient way to the Calumet triggers, and can also include a separate thingy for changing the power on the flashes remotely. But for the privilege you’re paying literally hundreds of pounds extra for the kit.
I’ve been assured that Calumet’s own is, despite the price difference (and the ‘if it’s cheaper it’s rubbisher’ rules of anything photographic) every bit as capable as the Pocket Wizards and first impressions are very positive.. let’s see how it survives the ravages of press photography.