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Author Topic: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations  (Read 12793 times)

brianleighty

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Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« on: September 01, 2012, 11:29:22 PM »
So I just got my Yongnuo RF-603 triggers. They're not bad for the price but I realized a couple things now that I own it that I didn't realize before hand. I think I still would of gotten it but it does show that it designed to be used a specific way and has some freedom limitations. Anyways, the first thing is it took me forever to get it working. I put batteries in both triggers but when I would push the button it wouldn't send a signal to the other trigger. I tried different channels and batteries thinking those were the issue. I finally put the trigger on top of the camera and suddenly everything worked. I googled around and discovered this is a limitation of this model is that the transmitter has to be on the hot shoe on a Canon camera to work. The main thing that stinks about this is it means I can't use an ettl flash on the hotshoe at the same time I'm using this trigger :( I tested to see if the ETTL passed through but it doesn't (not that I'd really to do that since there's no locking base on the triggers). The PC port is an output only so you can't send a signal to the trigger through a camera's PC Sync port. There's stuff online about putting in a resistor inside the unit to trick into being a transmitter always. I don't completely understand what they're doing but my question is couldn't this be done outside the unit as well? So have like a hot shoe that you put the trigger on that has that resistor built into the stand? Then you could just remove the stand when you didn't want it to be transmitter and then you could put a pc sync input on it as well so you could activate the trigger from the pc sync out port.

Another limitation I found and this is more specific to my setup. But I would like to have a setup where when I take a picture with my primary camera, the secondary camera takes a picture as well. I can make this work if I plug the remote shutter release into both cameras and their respective trigger but if I use the cameras built in button to take a picture then the other camera won't take a picture which means I have a very awkward setup to have to use the button built into the trigger since once again the 2.5mm output for remote release is output only not input. I brought this up in another thread and thought I'd bring it up here as well that I'm wondering what would prevent you from using the PC sync port to trigger the other camera to take a picture. I did some testing and the voltage the trigger is sending out is maybe a volt if that if my meter is working correctly. The camera itself is sending a higher voltage than that for the remote release trigger so I don't why that wouldn't work but then again I'm little eerie of trying it out with off chance it would take out a circuit board in the camera. The safest option would be to use a relay or something similar that upon getting the input voltage it completes the remote release circuit. By doing this, whenever I take a picture with the main camera it will send a signal to the second camera to take a picture as well which is what I want.

Any thoughts anybody?
Canon 5D Mark II, 50D, XSi, 24-105L IS, Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 40 2.8, Canon 35 2.0, Sigma 10-20, Tamron 17-50, Canon 50 1.8, 580 EXII, 430 EXII

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Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« on: September 01, 2012, 11:29:22 PM »

Bosman

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2012, 11:17:45 PM »
So I just got my Yongnuo RF-603 triggers. They're not bad for the price but I realized a couple things now that I own it that I didn't realize before hand. I think I still would of gotten it but it does show that it designed to be used a specific way and has some freedom limitations. Anyways, the first thing is it took me forever to get it working. I put batteries in both triggers but when I would push the button it wouldn't send a signal to the other trigger. I tried different channels and batteries thinking those were the issue. I finally put the trigger on top of the camera and suddenly everything worked. I googled around and discovered this is a limitation of this model is that the transmitter has to be on the hot shoe on a Canon camera to work. The main thing that stinks about this is it means I can't use an ettl flash on the hotshoe at the same time I'm using this trigger :( I tested to see if the ETTL passed through but it doesn't (not that I'd really to do that since there's no locking base on the triggers). The PC port is an output only so you can't send a signal to the trigger through a camera's PC Sync port. There's stuff online about putting in a resistor inside the unit to trick into being a transmitter always. I don't completely understand what they're doing but my question is couldn't this be done outside the unit as well? So have like a hot shoe that you put the trigger on that has that resistor built into the stand? Then you could just remove the stand when you didn't want it to be transmitter and then you could put a pc sync input on it as well so you could activate the trigger from the pc sync out port.

Another limitation I found and this is more specific to my setup. But I would like to have a setup where when I take a picture with my primary camera, the secondary camera takes a picture as well. I can make this work if I plug the remote shutter release into both cameras and their respective trigger but if I use the cameras built in button to take a picture then the other camera won't take a picture which means I have a very awkward setup to have to use the button built into the trigger since once again the 2.5mm output for remote release is output only not input. I brought this up in another thread and thought I'd bring it up here as well that I'm wondering what would prevent you from using the PC sync port to trigger the other camera to take a picture. I did some testing and the voltage the trigger is sending out is maybe a volt if that if my meter is working correctly. The camera itself is sending a higher voltage than that for the remote release trigger so I don't why that wouldn't work but then again I'm little eerie of trying it out with off chance it would take out a circuit board in the camera. The safest option would be to use a relay or something similar that upon getting the input voltage it completes the remote release circuit. By doing this, whenever I take a picture with the main camera it will send a signal to the second camera to take a picture as well which is what I want.

Any thoughts anybody?
yea they litterally just came out with one that does ttl pass thru. Its a 6222 now.

https://thephotogadget.com/en/content/yongnuo-yn-622-wireless-ttl-flash-trigger-set-canon
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brianleighty

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2012, 08:04:23 PM »
Actually I think it's not pass through but more the trigger acting as an ste2 and the flash while attached is receiving signals like it would if it was wireless. I've definitely looked into those and after seeing the limits of this device will look into more. The main thing is its a brand new product and doesn't have a USB upgrade port so I'm tempted to wait some. I discovered a way to make the required change without soldering but I may end up soldering at least one spot.
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joshmurrah

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2012, 10:20:04 PM »
I've been using these for the past year, here's my quick experience/review for whoever's interested.

I've used these as part of a hobby-grade studio-in-a-bag setup with a bunch of 603's (six total, I have two camera bodies) and four Yongnuo manual flashes.

They're manual-based radio triggers, much similar to the pocketwizards, these are NOT ETTL devices.  You set your flash in manual mode with a power level, or attach them to strobes.

The only signal these send is to pop, there's no ratios, or exposure information passed.

Within that context, these have worked GREAT.

They use AAA batteries, not the lithium cell batteries (CRxxxx) or the 123 batteries.  I use low-self-discharge batteries (like Eneloops), so they're always ready to go.  They're easy on power, and in an emergency, you just have to find AAA's, not some weird photo or cell battery.

They broadcast on 2.4GHz, and the first thing I did was set a different channel in case I came near somebody who didn't bother.  I have never had a misfire that wasn't related to the flash not being charged.

These are transceivers, meaning that they transmit and receive, so there's a hotshoe below the unit that's meant to mount on the camera and receive the trigger, as well as a hotshot receptacle on top that's meant for mounting the flash.  There's also a PC plug onboard that you can use to trigger to the larger strobes.  These are cool in that you just grab one, and use it on a camera or flash, doesn't matter which.

The transceiver will pass-through and fire a manual flash attached onto your camera through the unit, however I'm not sure about the ETTL part of it.  Works fine for a manual flash tho for when you want a fill or such.

There's no lock for the hotshoe foot on these.  That's my largest gripe on the 603's, is that if you use a non-clamping attachment (such as the "foot" that comes with most flashes) or use it with a flash on top of it on your camera, it will NOT be secure.  You can keep a handful of rubberbands for this "just in case".  It'll be fine while it's level or steady, but when you pick it up to move it, the foot will fall out.  If you have a 603+flash on your camera body, beware, it'll fall off!!  These are very light and stay attached just fine on a camera if you don't have a flash on top of it.

There's a separate plug for the remote shutter operation as well.  Here's the rub on that one though, you have to have it mounted on a hotshoe for it to work, it's a little annoying.  But, no biggie.  I only use them for manual flash work.

These are really great units, they're available for very cheap in a two-pack on eBay, much much cheaper than the pocketwizards.  The only reason I'd move to the pocketwizards, would be for the group capabilities... these cheapos only work on a broadcast, every trigger operates at once, no groups.

Overall I love these, they're a LOT cheaper than pocketwizards, and I have found them to be just as reliable, plus they're transceivers, so you don't have to worry about what gets used where, just use them and go.

Hope that helps!
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brianleighty

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2012, 06:14:40 PM »
"There's a separate plug for the remote shutter operation as well.  Here's the rub on that one though, you have to have it mounted on a hotshoe for it to work, it's a little annoying.  But, no biggie.  I only use them for manual flash work."

What do you mean it has to be on the hotshoe? I just did a wedding last night with only the shutter release cable plugged in and the transceiver hanging from the cord. The other one was in my hand. Worked fine.
Canon 5D Mark II, 50D, XSi, 24-105L IS, Sigma 35 1.4, Canon 40 2.8, Canon 35 2.0, Sigma 10-20, Tamron 17-50, Canon 50 1.8, 580 EXII, 430 EXII

ScottyP

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #5 on: September 09, 2012, 08:17:27 PM »
It's a manual trigger.  That is the limitation.  You have to walk over and manually set the power levels on the flashes, then go chimp a picture, then adjust the flash manually, then chimp again, etc.. 

Not ideal but to save the kind of bucks involved, it is a serious no-brainer.  Frankly if you are doing a strobist thing, you will be getting up and chimping constantly anyway, playing with snoots, re-angling flashes, scooting them in or out, etc..  Look at The Strobist himself.  He is wearing down a groove in the ground between him and his flashes, even with his assistants there, and you know he is not using manual triggers and manual flashes.  He could be grouping them and adjusting them from his camera, but he is not.
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Alpine

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2012, 09:03:13 PM »
I bought two of these units a few months ago and they seem to work fine.  I bought them because they also included a camera cord with dedicated connector on one end and a simple stereo plug on the other for remote shooting.  The really cool thing about that was that I also own an old remote switch for my eos film camera which I modified by replacing the old dedicated canon connector with a stereo jack to mate with the yongnuo cable.  Great...now I have a wired remote release or a wireless one!

However, the TTL ability was something I really wanted, so what I did is modify an off camera TTL cable to add a second hot shoe (with only the X pin) for the yongnuo.  I guess you could think of it like a Y connector.  The cable plugs on the camera's hot shoe and the flash on one side of the Y and the yongnuo on the other.  This results in the camera communicating data with the flash and sending only the sync signal to the wireless trigger.  Works great!  You get TTL for the main near camera flash and manual flashes on the background.  I don't know if anyone sells a Y TTL...I'm sure someone does, but it is really easy to make one from other cables.

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Re: Yongnuo RF-603 Limitations
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2012, 09:03:13 PM »