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Rumors => EOS Bodies => Topic started by: tome223 on September 24, 2012, 09:21:05 AM

Title: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: tome223 on September 24, 2012, 09:21:05 AM
As a 60d shooter was looking forward to the 6d entry level ff I was hugely disappointed by just the additional 2 af points and 1/180th fash sync.   Came across this good comparison page regarding flash syncs

http://www.photographe-mariages.net/blog/20120404/vitesse-de-synchronisation-par-appareil-photo/ (http://www.photographe-mariages.net/blog/20120404/vitesse-de-synchronisation-par-appareil-photo/)

Why do the 60d, 50d, and 7d have a faster flash sync than the 5d mark ii and iii and the 6d?????

I'm holding off to see how the 7d mark ii shakes out now.  the 6d doesn't impress me and the 5d mark iii is too much. 
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Viggo on September 24, 2012, 09:49:55 AM
Bigger sensors means the curtain must travel further.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Viggo on September 24, 2012, 11:08:24 AM
I think we very safely can say it's both those reasons.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: iMagic on September 24, 2012, 11:19:50 AM
I may be wrong, but with High Speed Sync on a flash, max sync shutter speed becomes less relevant.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: dlleno on September 24, 2012, 12:15:05 PM
I may be wrong, but with High Speed Sync on a flash, max sync shutter speed becomes less relevant.

yep you are wrong.

because you need an HSS enabled flash. and even then you will have less power output.

well, lets be careful and precise at the same time... iMagic suggested that with HSS on a flash, max sync shutter speed becomes less relevant, and that is a true satement.  It does become less relevant, just not in all situations.  In order to call his statement wrong, we would then be saying "with HSS on a flash, the relevance of max sync shutter speed does not change", which of course is not true. 
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: jrista on September 24, 2012, 12:57:15 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Canon-F1 on September 24, 2012, 01:15:34 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: neuroanatomist on September 24, 2012, 02:20:52 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.

I think jrista makes a fair point.  I agree that 1/200 s X-sync isn't good, and 1/180 s is worse.  But the difference is only 1/6-stop. 

OTOH, despite the ISO improvement in recent sensors which would allow you to more than make up that 1/6-stop in terms of noise performance, that's not going to help stop action. That 1/6-stop is well and truly gone. 
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: jrista on September 24, 2012, 02:31:53 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.

I think jrista makes a fair point.  I agree that 1/200 s X-sync isn't good, and 1/180 s is worse.  But the difference is only 1/6-stop. 

OTOH, despite the ISO improvement in recent sensors which would allow you to more than make up that 1/6-stop in terms of noise performance, that's not going to help stop action. That 1/6-stop is well and truly gone.

Aye. I don't disagree that 1/200th isn't great, and neither is 1/250th. But since none of the entry-level full-frame cameras have a 1/500th second sync speed, it doesn't make much sense to complain about a sixth of a stop worth of difference. I wasn't thinking that bumping ISO would help stop action...the flash pulse is for that (which is far shorter than 1/180th, 1/200th, even 1/500th shutter). I was only thinking if you wanted to compensate for the loss of exposure (or, for that matter, low ambient exposure to start with), you could easily bump ISO without worry on a camera capable of native ISO 25600.

I guess my real point is...we all get way too hung up on numerical statistics. We all think the 6D is "far worse" than Nikon's D600 because, well, numerically...the D600 wins. But who's to say that is really the case? Canon has done some pretty amazing things with previously unseen high ISO settings, resulting in USABLE ISO settings up to ISO 3200, 6400, even 12800. It has only 11 AF points vs. the D600's 39, but those 11 AF points have a broader spread across the frame than the D600's (which, to me, is a very important factor in AF capability). Canon's AF points tend to be rather LARGE as well, so the lack of density may not be as big a problem as the naysayers think. Additionally, Canon's AF system is capable of focusing in TWO FULL STOPS LESS light than the D600's...which at the very least should translate into better AF performance at EV -1 for the Canon. The Nikon D600 may have more pixels in its 24.3mp sensor, but its also going to be 20% more succeptible to photon shot noise (the primary cause of noise in general) than the 6D with its 20.1mp sensor. Photon shot noise doesn't give a S____ what your DR is...it occurs regardless.

Numeric comparisons between cameras is, and always has been, a terrible idea. Freaking out over a sixth stop difference in flash sync speed is...well...rather childish. I think the 6D is a somewhat lackluster release (seems to be Canon's MO these days), but I think it will be a fine camera, and will make quite a number of Canon customers happy campers.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: dlleno on September 24, 2012, 02:39:48 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.

I think jrista makes a fair point.  I agree that 1/200 s X-sync isn't good, and 1/180 s is worse.  But the difference is only 1/6-stop. 

OTOH, despite the ISO improvement in recent sensors which would allow you to more than make up that 1/6-stop in terms of noise performance, that's not going to help stop action. That 1/6-stop is well and truly gone.

Aye. I don't disagree that 1/200th isn't great, and neither is 1/250th. But since none of the entry-level full-frame cameras have a 1/500th second sync speed, it doesn't make much sense to complain about a sixth of a stop worth of difference. I wasn't thinking that bumping ISO would help stop action...the flash pulse is for that. I was only thinking if you wanted to compensate for the loss of exposure, you could easily bump ISO without worry on a camera capable of native ISO 25600.

That 1/6th of a stop manifests itself to the budget strobist in the form of additional power required of the strobe itself, to compensate for the smaller aperture necessary to properly expose the background on account of the slower shutter speed. Thats why strobists like high sync speeds and are often found complaining about little things like fractions of a stop. 

no its not much, but it will eat more batteries, affect re-cycle time, etc and is  more relevant to those using small speedlites, especially outdoors, as upposed to those packing around larger strobes and battery packs on location. 
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: RLPhoto on September 24, 2012, 02:41:11 PM
As a 60d shooter was looking forward to the 6d entry level ff I was hugely disappointed by just the additional 2 af points and 1/180th fash sync.   Came across this good comparison page regarding flash syncs

http://www.photographe-mariages.net/blog/20120404/vitesse-de-synchronisation-par-appareil-photo/ (http://www.photographe-mariages.net/blog/20120404/vitesse-de-synchronisation-par-appareil-photo/)

Why do the 60d, 50d, and 7d have a faster flash sync than the 5d mark ii and iii and the 6d?????

I'm holding off to see how the 7d mark ii shakes out now.  the 6d doesn't impress me and the 5d mark iii is too much.

no.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: jrista on September 24, 2012, 02:50:05 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.

I think jrista makes a fair point.  I agree that 1/200 s X-sync isn't good, and 1/180 s is worse.  But the difference is only 1/6-stop. 

OTOH, despite the ISO improvement in recent sensors which would allow you to more than make up that 1/6-stop in terms of noise performance, that's not going to help stop action. That 1/6-stop is well and truly gone.

Aye. I don't disagree that 1/200th isn't great, and neither is 1/250th. But since none of the entry-level full-frame cameras have a 1/500th second sync speed, it doesn't make much sense to complain about a sixth of a stop worth of difference. I wasn't thinking that bumping ISO would help stop action...the flash pulse is for that. I was only thinking if you wanted to compensate for the loss of exposure, you could easily bump ISO without worry on a camera capable of native ISO 25600.

That 1/6th of a stop manifests itself to the budget strobist in the form of additional power required of the strobe itself, to compensate for the smaller aperture necessary to properly expose the background on account of the slower shutter speed. Thats why strobists like high sync speeds and are often found complaining about little things like fractions of a stop. 

no its not much, but it will eat more batteries, affect re-cycle time, etc and is  more relevant to those using small speedlites, especially outdoors, as upposed to those packing around larger strobes and battery packs on location.

I think your missing my point. Instead of narrowing aperture and reducing shutter speed to compensate for ambient exposure...couldn't you keep flash power, aperture, and shutter the same and boost ISO? That was what Canon-F1 was freaking out about...increasing ISO affects BOTH flash and shutter speed. Keep flash power the same (or reduce it), use the same shutter and aperture, and bump ISO. Does that not solve the problem? Or is everyone here still thinking that high ISO is evil because it introduces noise...which would not be exactly true with the new cameras from Canon.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Viggo on September 24, 2012, 02:59:07 PM
For me it isn't about LOW ambient light, it's about HIGH ambient outside i want to underexpose and let my flash work my main subject. And optimal with a 2,8 or faster aperture for shallow dof. I use 2x 580's at near full power and going from 250 to 300th of a second and into highspeed makes it look like my flashes didn't even fire. THAT'S the problem. That and the fact that with sync you can freeze quite a bit of fast action at 300th syncspeed, but very little with 200th.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: studio1972 on September 24, 2012, 02:59:44 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.

I think jrista makes a fair point.  I agree that 1/200 s X-sync isn't good, and 1/180 s is worse.  But the difference is only 1/6-stop. 

OTOH, despite the ISO improvement in recent sensors which would allow you to more than make up that 1/6-stop in terms of noise performance, that's not going to help stop action. That 1/6-stop is well and truly gone.

Aye. I don't disagree that 1/200th isn't great, and neither is 1/250th. But since none of the entry-level full-frame cameras have a 1/500th second sync speed, it doesn't make much sense to complain about a sixth of a stop worth of difference. I wasn't thinking that bumping ISO would help stop action...the flash pulse is for that. I was only thinking if you wanted to compensate for the loss of exposure, you could easily bump ISO without worry on a camera capable of native ISO 25600.

That 1/6th of a stop manifests itself to the budget strobist in the form of additional power required of the strobe itself, to compensate for the smaller aperture necessary to properly expose the background on account of the slower shutter speed. Thats why strobists like high sync speeds and are often found complaining about little things like fractions of a stop. 

no its not much, but it will eat more batteries, affect re-cycle time, etc and is  more relevant to those using small speedlites, especially outdoors, as upposed to those packing around larger strobes and battery packs on location.

I think your missing my point. Instead of narrowing aperture and reducing shutter speed to compensate for ambient exposure...couldn't you keep flash power, aperture, and shutter the same and boost ISO? That was what Canon-F1 was freaking out about...increasing ISO affects BOTH flash and shutter speed. Keep flash power the same (or reduce it), use the same shutter and aperture, and bump ISO. Does that not solve the problem? Or is everyone here still thinking that high ISO is evil because it introduces noise...which would not be exactly true with the new cameras from Canon.

You are totally mixed up in your thinking. The scenario here is bright sunlight, ISO 100. Shutter set to max sync speed and aperture set to expose background as desired. Boosting the ISO does absolutely nothing to help this situation, quite the oposite.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: jrista on September 24, 2012, 03:22:50 PM
You guys do realize your complaining about 1/20th of a second difference between the D600 and 6D, right? That is 0.0005 seconds difference! It really doesn't matter that much, and given the design of the 6D as a low-light camera capable of ISO 25600 and AF at EV -3, it matters even less. You could bump up the ISO by a third of a stop for pretty much ANY exposure and compensate for the difference if you really, really needed to. Now, if it was a 1/60th sync speed vs. a 1/200th sync speed, that would matter, but thats not the case.

please stop talking about things you don´t understand!!

ISO affects FLASH and AMBIENT exposure.. it´s obvious you don´t know what strobist are talking about.

yes 1/200s was already bad... doesn´t change a thing that the trend to make it even worse is a bad sign.

I think jrista makes a fair point.  I agree that 1/200 s X-sync isn't good, and 1/180 s is worse.  But the difference is only 1/6-stop. 

OTOH, despite the ISO improvement in recent sensors which would allow you to more than make up that 1/6-stop in terms of noise performance, that's not going to help stop action. That 1/6-stop is well and truly gone.

Aye. I don't disagree that 1/200th isn't great, and neither is 1/250th. But since none of the entry-level full-frame cameras have a 1/500th second sync speed, it doesn't make much sense to complain about a sixth of a stop worth of difference. I wasn't thinking that bumping ISO would help stop action...the flash pulse is for that. I was only thinking if you wanted to compensate for the loss of exposure, you could easily bump ISO without worry on a camera capable of native ISO 25600.

That 1/6th of a stop manifests itself to the budget strobist in the form of additional power required of the strobe itself, to compensate for the smaller aperture necessary to properly expose the background on account of the slower shutter speed. Thats why strobists like high sync speeds and are often found complaining about little things like fractions of a stop. 

no its not much, but it will eat more batteries, affect re-cycle time, etc and is  more relevant to those using small speedlites, especially outdoors, as upposed to those packing around larger strobes and battery packs on location.

I think your missing my point. Instead of narrowing aperture and reducing shutter speed to compensate for ambient exposure...couldn't you keep flash power, aperture, and shutter the same and boost ISO? That was what Canon-F1 was freaking out about...increasing ISO affects BOTH flash and shutter speed. Keep flash power the same (or reduce it), use the same shutter and aperture, and bump ISO. Does that not solve the problem? Or is everyone here still thinking that high ISO is evil because it introduces noise...which would not be exactly true with the new cameras from Canon.

You are totally mixed up in your thinking. The scenario here is bright sunlight, ISO 100. Shutter set to max sync speed and aperture set to expose background as desired. Boosting the ISO does absolutely nothing to help this situation, quite the oposite.

If its high ambient light, then sure, ISO won't solve the problem. My experience with flash is usually to add some fill to a subject in lower light. I don't use flash much when there is plenty of light...I just jack up ISO to get a high shutter speed. Granted...I photograph birds, so I can't apply my experience to the average sports photographer.

If you need high flash sync speed to freeze motion in high ambient, and manufacturers aren't providing it...then its time you guys started voting with your pocketbooks! :P Walk away...don't buy. Stick with the camera that gives you the flash capabilities you need until the manufacturers hear your complaints and deliver.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: dlleno on September 24, 2012, 03:41:10 PM
more power thats for sure :D 

yea the important thing to the outdoor strobist (who complains about fractions of an f/stop)  is balance of ambient and flash -- its a contest between the sun and the strobe.  Thats why an ISO boost doesn't help -- for every increase in ISO you have to reduce the aperture.  we want high shutter speeds and low apertures so that the strobe has a fighting chance against the sun.

good thing we arn't still at 60th or 125th sync :D :D
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: racgordon on September 24, 2012, 03:52:07 PM
Correct me if I am wrong....... (famous last words)

This is not necessarily something intrinsic to DSLRs but is a fundamental issue with a focal plane shutter, and applies to Digital or Film.

I will try and explain although a Google search (substitute your favorite search) will I am sure turn up a more lucid explanation.

Most handheld DSLRs (maybe with the exception of the Leica S) still use a focal plane shutter which allows light to hit the sensor by opening a (first) curtain, and then at the end of the exposure shutting a (second curtain).  Due to mechanichal factors (materials strength, inertia etc.) there is a maximum period of time when the WHOLE area of the imager is exposed to light at the same time.  Above that period of time (or shutter speed) the second curtain follows the first curtain so that (in effect) the light (of the exposure) scans across the imager.

Focal plane shutters that ran horizontally across the image plane (Leica M style) which used a treated cloth material for each shutter curtain were limited to a maximum synch speed of around 1/50 or 1/60 second.  I recall talking to Leica folks in the 80s when I was in the business and their view at the time was that that speed was the best trade off between consistent accuracy, durability, and quietness.  At the time Vertical run focal plane shutters (and remember because of the rectangular nature of the 35mm frame, the vertical shutter blades had 2/3 of the distance to travel) eventually crept up to 1/125 second and stayed there until the 90s when IIRC they hit about 1/200sec

The shortest amount of time when the WHOLE imager area can be exposed at once is therefore the highest flash synch speed. in the mid 80s some companies (Olympus comes to mind) came up with an innovative way to get around this by pulse firing a strobe (at obviously reduced power) so that strobe light would be evenly distributed across the film at higher shutter speeds than was normal at the time.

This limitation is one of the reasons why medium format camera systems (where the size of the shutter would be greater, and thus maximum synch speed lower) tended to use a leaf shutter.  The leaf shutter rather like the lens aperture has concentric blades and can close and open fully, thus at any speed you can always get flash synch (although I cannot recall ever seeing anything higher than 1/800 sec).

The advantage of the aster shutter speed beyond freezing action (or the inverse, preventing camera shake) was to control the amount of ambient light in the composition.  e.g. if you want to darken the background when using a strobe.

The whole point of this long winded explanation is that I suspect that since maximum sync speeds in focal plane shutters have not got much above 1/250 sec. in the last 20 years there is probably a major physical limitation to doing so.  I am willing to bet if camera company X came out with a camera that allowed the use of all strobes at 1/1000 sec just about every wedding photographer would buy it!

The question I have is if it is theoretically possible to do this  by using a slower shutter speed like 1/250 sec and "faking it" by taking a 1/1000 sec sample of the image created during the 1/250 second exposure.  I see that you would lose two stop of illumination overall but it appears that between 100 and 800 ISO most modern imagers have sufficient latitude?

Lastly, why, if you can get 1/250 on full frame can you not get higher on a crop sensor, surely the shutter run distance is shorter, and so the synch speed should be higher?
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: tome223 on September 24, 2012, 04:19:44 PM
Thanks everyone for the great input.  I love the 1/250th flas sync on my 60D and was shocked that the 5d mark ii and iii only have 1/200th despite the 5d mark iii being 2.5-3x the price.  And the D700 and D800 both have 1/250th.  I do notice a difference with max flash sync between 1/250th and say 1/180th - namely w/blurred waving hands.  my 60d + the pop up flash is always on 1/250th for indoor candids of my toddler.  One of the features I like the most on the 60d is the wireless trigger to the 430 ex ii....here's to hoping cano's future ff are 1/250th flasj sync or faster

Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: neuroanatomist on September 24, 2012, 04:35:43 PM
here's to hoping cano's future ff are 1/250th flasj sync or faster

My 1D X has a 1/250 X-sync speed, as do the previous 1Ds bodies.  The 1D IV has 1/300 s.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: paulc on September 24, 2012, 04:35:55 PM
Sync speed is important because lighting is a game of ratios.  Ambient is just another light to balance.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: bbasiaga on September 24, 2012, 05:03:41 PM
I suspect that design limitations are nearing regarding the shutter technology (as someone said above).  Add to that increasingly complex and capable speedlight systems that make HSS easier, and you get lack of attention to designing faster shutters. 

In one justification, the MFG can give you a 'cheaper camera' (with slower shutter xsync), and then charge only those who need higher speeds extra for their flash systems.  In another justification, they force you to pay extra to sync at 300 because they are greedy b*stards.

-Brian
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: willhuff.net on September 24, 2012, 05:26:15 PM
I'd buy a FF EVF DSLR if it could allow for x-sync at 1/1000 or faster.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Drizzt321 on September 24, 2012, 05:26:37 PM
Thanks everyone for the great input.  I love the 1/250th flas sync on my 60D and was shocked that the 5d mark ii and iii only have 1/200th despite the 5d mark iii being 2.5-3x the price.  And the D700 and D800 both have 1/250th.  I do notice a difference with max flash sync between 1/250th and say 1/180th - namely w/blurred waving hands.  my 60d + the pop up flash is always on 1/250th for indoor candids of my toddler.  One of the features I like the most on the 60d is the wireless trigger to the 430 ex ii....here's to hoping cano's future ff are 1/250th flasj sync or faster

With the 5d2 (and 5d3 I believe) it's limited to 1/200 likely due more to use of similar level of shutter technology & specs, but having a physically larger area to transit across. Thus, having to slow it down. With the 1D series, as Neuro has said, has had 1/250 since it's probably the fastest they can make the shutter for a 35-mm FF without starting to get astronomically expensive (if it's even feasible), or switching to some other kind of shutter tech.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: cpsico on September 24, 2012, 06:07:19 PM
I may be wrong, but with High Speed Sync on a flash, max sync shutter speed becomes less relevant.
Yes but with a penalty in maximum flash power, and you must buy an expensive flash capable of HSS
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Drizzt321 on September 24, 2012, 08:08:37 PM
I may be wrong, but with High Speed Sync on a flash, max sync shutter speed becomes less relevant.
Yes but with a penalty in maximum flash power, and you must buy an expensive flash capable of HSS

And have several of them in order to makeup for the lost power, as well have one mounted on your camera or somewhat expensive to very expensive RF triggers which can do the wireless ETTL w/HSS.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Hillsilly on September 24, 2012, 11:50:06 PM
I wouldn't say they are getting worse.  Just not getting better.  For the better part of the last twenty years most mid range Canons have been around the 1/180 - 1/200s mark.  Less than 10 years ago, a lot of Canon bodies were still in the 1/90 - 1/125s range.  Unfortunately, it seems you can have a fast max shutter speed, or a fast sync speed, but you can't have both.  I might be sounding like a Canon apologist, but I prefer the option of a faster shutter speed on my DSLRs for action photos (if I want faster sync speed, I'll just use of my medium format cameras - but then I can't go out in the sun or I have to use very small apertures).  Now, where did Canon put that 1/8000s shutter speed....
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: hyles on September 25, 2012, 02:10:07 AM
When balancing ambient and flash light in low light, i usually use speed of 1/100, sometimes faster and with static subject even slower.
In low iso's bright light shot, even 1/250 is a slow speed if you don't want to use narrow f-stop. In this case i switch to HSS.
Although a shorter sinc speed would have been mutch better, i don't  see 1/180vs 1/200 to be a real problem .
As far as i remenber the only eosD to have 1/500 was the 1D with its fast 1/16000 shutter. But it used a CCD, so the faster sinc was obtained cutting power to the sensor instead of closing the shutter, this was (is?) not possible with cmos, this is why this feature was not present on other reflx.
Diego
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: swrightgfx on September 25, 2012, 02:55:53 AM
This limitation is one of the reasons why medium format camera systems (where the size of the shutter would be greater, and thus maximum synch speed lower) tended to use a leaf shutter.  The leaf shutter rather like the lens aperture has concentric blades and can close and open fully, thus at any speed you can always get flash synch (although I cannot recall ever seeing anything higher than 1/800 sec).

I agree. Yet another reason shooting film is still relevant and vital. Not only can I sync a flash to 1/500, but I can even handhold a Bronica SQ-Ai at 1/15 and still get a sharp shot, too.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: racgordon on September 26, 2012, 11:09:09 PM
Has anyone given any thought to my throwaway idea about "Faking" a fast synch speed by taking a 1/1000 sec sample of a 1/200 exposure.   Now granted it would do nothing for those using a strobe to fill in foreground illumination when shooting outdoors and other advanced fill flash work, but I could be an interesting tool for wedding/event photographers.

If you think about it it is sort of HDR in reverse, but for I think this would have to be something done within the camera and not something I think you can do post processing.

There might be other uses for this type of function, what we are doing is to take 4 samples of sensor output during a 1/200 second when flash us used (and 1/200 sec is the max synch speed).   I think that combining a number of "sub samples" like this of a series of shots might allow all sorts of interesting effects.

Does anyone have any opinions?
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: stewy on October 11, 2012, 10:05:16 AM
It would be nice if at least Canon's 1D line supported 1/500 or 1/1000 sync speed. Its a noticeable difference in light intensity when going from full sync to high speed sync. Add a light modifier to soften the light and that makes things even worse.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: paul13walnut5 on October 11, 2012, 10:32:50 AM
Quote
Has anyone given any thought to my throwaway idea about "Faking" a fast synch speed by taking a 1/1000 sec sample of a 1/200 exposure.   Now granted it would do nothing for those using a strobe to fill in foreground illumination when shooting outdoors and other advanced fill flash work, but I could be an interesting tool for wedding/event photographers.

If you are lighting a scene purely by flash, then essentially your exposure duration is not your shutter speed, but the duration of the actual flash of light.  Which is a lot faster than 1/200th or 1/250th.

And as you say, such an idea wouldn't do much where fill flash is being used, which is were the problem actually is: at fast shutters in bright ambient light.

Your sample would also need to take place at the exact same 1/1000th of a second that the flash actually flashes at...

Maybe Canon will come up with a portrait lens with a leaf shutter?  That would be another way of solving the problem.

And your idea of multiple samples would only really work with multiple flash bursts, which is kind of what HSS mode already does, except that each sample occours over a different portion of the sensor as the shutter curtain moves.

The issue with this mode is of course, reduced output.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: Jeffrey on October 11, 2012, 11:36:39 AM
Leaf shutters make all the difference in shutter speeds, but then you need to be careful that the lights will synch at speeds faster than 1/250. Surprisingly many lights won't synch at faster speeds including some models of the most popular pro level lights. Oddly enough, the Paul Buff brand Einstein model light packs do synch at very fast shutter speeds and they cost a fraction of the higher end pro level lights.

Having been lucky enough to shoot with a camera and lights that synch at 1/1600, the image captures of a model in motion in the studio are wonderful. 

Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: KyleSTL on October 11, 2012, 02:31:53 PM
I understand the limitations everyone is bring up about killing higher levels of ambient light with a faster SS, however, the 6D (which is what prompted this thread) is a consumer level camera (i.e. and 'entry-level' full frame DSLR).  For more advanced users that would have the need for a strobist setup and more complicated techniques, higher end cameras fulfill the need for a fast sync speed.  I would say the majority of 6D owners would not be limited by the lower spec.  I think we all need to compare apples-to-apples though, as far as sensor size is concerned.  Here's how I see it:

Full Frame

1/300 - Nikon F5
1/250 - Canon 1Ds series, 1Dx, and highest-end film cameras (EOS 620, EOS 1, 1N, 1V), Nikon D3, D4, D700, D800, F4, F6, F100, F90, F801 (N8008)
1/200 - Canon 5D series, prosumer film cameras (EOS 3, 5), Nikon D600
1/180 - Canon 6D
1/125 - lots of Canon and Nikon middle-to-low-end film cameras
1/90 -    "

APS-H

1/500 - 1D
1/300 - 1D Mark III, IV
1/250 - 1D Mark II
1/200 - EOS IX (APS film SLR)
1/180 - Nikon Pronea 6i (APS film SLR)
1/125 - EOS IX Lite, Nikon Pronea S (APS film SLR)

APS-C

1/500 - Nikon D1 series, D70, D70s, D50, D40
1/250 - Canon 20D through 60D, 7D, Nikon D2 series, D200, D300, D300S, D7000
1/200 - Canon D30, D60, 10D, Rebels, EOS M, Nikon D90, D80, D60, D40x, Dxxxx
1/180 - Nikon D100

One cannot compare sync speeds between cameras when sensor size is different.  Look up at the full frame section and notice where the highest-end film cameras ever made are, and also where the EOS 3 and EOS 5 were.  The industry does not look like they have made huge steps back as the forums seem to indicate (especially with regards to prices and other available technologies included in the cameras and flashes).  Prior to the AF era sync speeds were even worse (T50, T60 = 1/60, T80 = 1/80, T70 = 1/90), except for T90 (1/250).

I'm still a little baffled by the 1/500 sync speed on the oldest Nikon APS-C DSLRs, but clearly Nikon hasn't gone back to that since.

EDIT:  Added APS Film SLRs just for comparison.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: KyleSTL on October 19, 2012, 02:04:01 PM
I was hoping my breakdown would add to the discussion, but it seems to have died.  I think that organizing them by image size shows that the overall distance travelled affects sync speed.

If I remember correctly from my Art Photography classes the vertical plane shutters at their highest speeds (1/1000+) never have the entire frame exposed at the same time.  Essential what happens is a slit between the upper and lower blades travels down the frame.  That is what affects the sync speed because the entire frame needs to be exposed during the short burst of light provided by the flash.  I would assume that the sync speeds listed above are the shortest intervals each camera is able to have the whole frame exposed prior to the dropping of the upper blade.  Someone with more intimate knowledge about shutter design may be able to backup or refute my statements.
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: neuroanatomist on October 19, 2012, 02:20:56 PM
That is what affects the sync speed because the entire frame needs to be exposed during the short burst of light provided by the flash.  I would assume that the sync speeds listed above are the shortest intervals each camera is able to have the whole frame exposed prior to the dropping of the upper blade.

Absolutely correct. 
Title: Re: Why are flash sync shutter speeds getting worse?
Post by: DB on October 19, 2012, 02:49:45 PM
Here's what Ken Rockwell has to say on the subject. He debunks the myth that new camera models with better ISO can compensate for slower shutter sync

http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/syncspeed.htm (http://www.kenrockwell.com/tech/syncspeed.htm)