After reading Syl Arena’s book the Speedliters Handbook I decided to purchase one of the 10 metre long OCF33 off camera cords that Syl was selling. Right after receiving the cable I started to experiment with some set-ups using the long cable to put a speedlite a long way off-camera. It works as I expected, but then I had the realisation that the cable makes one unique feature of the Canon flash system even more useful; the ability to control a flash from the camera LCD menus. This was introduced with the Speedlite 580EX II and the EOS-1D Mark III body in the Spring of 2007, all bodies and flash since then have the function included
OCF33 simplifies teaching about flash photography
I was out with some friends taking pictures and had the OCF33 cord a flash, lightstand and silver umbrella with me. Quickly I was able to put the flash up in the place I needed it, and then could work completely from the camera menu, changing all the features and settings on my flash. I can change the zoom, and hence how big my light source looks, set high speed sync, even set manual power levels all from the camera. My friends were asking how I was getting such a range of results without changing the flash. To answer I first moved the camera end of the OCF33 cord to one of the other photographers camera, an EOS 40D. This also has the flash control feature in it’s menu. Now the other photographer could change the settings on their camera and get the range of results similar to mine. First off we worked through some shots with the camera in aperture priority (Av) mode, and then switched the camera to manual, leaving the Speedlite in E-TTL
Going forward I can see that the combination of this OCF33 cord and a camera plugged in to a projector so the menu’s are shown to a class, is going to be a great help when teaching about flash with the Canon system.