Canon updates its popular Speedlite Transmitter, with the new ST-E3-RT(Ver.2)

Canon Rumors Guy

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Canon this past week announced the ST-E3-RT (Version 2) to not much fanfare. This comes ahead of the release of the new flagship flash, the Speedlite EL-1.
There has been no official announcement from Canon USA, but the new transmitter is available for preorder at US dealers.
Key Features

Up to 5 groups or 15 Individual Flashes can be Controlled via 1 Transmitter
Supports E-TTL II Flash, Manual Flash, Stroboscopic and Auto External Flash Metering
8 Types of Custom Functions, 3 Types of Personal Functions
High-performance Hot Shoe Contacts for Reliable Information Transmission and Operation
Channels: 1 Channels
Connection Type: Hot Shoe
Equipment Type: Transmitter
Slave Type: Radio Slaves

Preorder: Canon ST-E3-RT Speedlite Transmitter, Version 2 $299

Press Release
Canon Europe today announces the ST-E3-RT(Ver.2) – an update of the popular ST-E3-RT transmitter. Enabling wireless flash...

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Andy Westwood

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I’m very happy with the Godox kit I have, 2 AD200’s and 3 Godox speedlites. I also like their latest wireless trigger the Xpro. It is so easy to adjust individual lights using this set up by simply pressing the 5 buttons A-E down the side to get to the light you wish to adjust, and a fraction of the cost of the Canon setup.
 

privatebydesign

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I’m very happy with the Godox kit I have, 2 AD200’s and 3 Godox speedlites. I also like their latest wireless trigger the Xpro. It is so easy to adjust individual lights using this set up by simply pressing the 5 buttons A-E down the side to get to the light you wish to adjust, and a fraction of the cost of the Canon setup.
Is the Xpro compatible with the Canon 600EX-RT? If so I’d rather have one of them with the much bigger screen and Individual group buttons and much better screen angle. I just never found a definitive answer.
 
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Chaitanya

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Is the Xpro compatible with the Canon 600EX-RT? If so I’d rather have one of them with the much bigger screen and Individual group buttons and much better screen angle. I just never found a definitive answer.
You will need to add Godox receiver to 600ex-rt(similar to any other proprietary RF system) which attaches via hotshoe and use any one of transmitter on camera.
 

privatebydesign

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You will need to add Godox receiver to 600ex-rt(similar to any other proprietary RF system) which attaches via hotshoe and use any one of transmitter on camera.
And that's what kills it. No way am I buying 7 X1R-C's and adding in all the connections and shit that gave me unreliable flash for decades.

Oh well......
 

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magarity

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" 2nd curtain sync can be used with Speedlite EL-1, 600EX-RT series and 430EX-RT receiver units, but with EOS R5, R6, or EOS-1D X Mark III cameras only "

This seems like a strange restriction. I've have the Yongnuo knock-off for several years and it can do 2nd curtain with any model.
 

Tony Bennett

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Mar 8, 2017
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This new Canon Speedlight seems like it will be nice for those that need it. But I just cannot justify the price.

I had great performance and reliability from my 600ex RT's and ST-E3. I just needed more power. That's what lead me to trying out my studio Paul Buff lighting with their battery packs. The portability was terrible and clunky to say the least but it worked. I was able to go on site without cords. Then I went to the Godox system and that was a game changer for me.
 
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SereneSpeed

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Interesting... but I already wrote off the canon flashes/triggers for godox/flashpoint. They do what I need to do at a better price.

I think that’s the crux of it right there... With Profoto at the high end and Godox taking the entry level, all the way up to Canon’s level of offering, I’m not surprised Canon isn’t working on fancy new products. Hard to compete with the Godox ecosystem.
 
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YuengLinger

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Anybody who maintains a yard knows that there are always areas a wee bit neglected. Canon's lighting division, for example. Rather than responding to competition in this area, they seem to be ignoring it.

Almost as if the original innovators have all left Canon. Did some bean-counter conclude that Yongnuo was just the first of a juggernaut of copycats that would undermine anything new? Did they look around and think there just wasn't enough profit margin with more powerful lights that could work seamlessly with EOS bodies, that there wasn't enough volume to compete in the portable studio-lighting sphere?

There has to be a sad, interesting story behind the current state of Canon's lighting business, though maybe it was never much to begin with. "Here are some flash for the top of your camera. See what you can do with them. What? Off camera? Oh bother. Alright, HERE. Now let us get back to bodies and lenses."

I'm not seeing that the new transmitter has added AF-assist. Would Canon be right to claim this is because they haven't been able to find something as discreet as infra-red that would still work for mirrorless AF systems?

I do know many amateurs grew to hate speedlights because of complexity, and because they slowed down the fun, and because the easiest way to use them was the worst way (blasting straight at the subject from the hot-shoe). And I know a lot of photographers who converted reluctance to learn (or lug around) into a distaste for "artificial" lighting, turning their incompetence into a virtue by brainwashing themselves into believing only available light was good light. Some of this attitude gets reinforced by the great improvements of digital cameras, of course. But I don't think Canon has done enough to educate their market about good light vs. mediocre or poor light.

Did Canon come to believe that the most lucrative segment of a shrinking market simply didn't care about lighting, and the smaller segment that did care didn't offer enough volume to overcome thin margins being challenged by copycats?

Can anybody point to some statistics which show how many photographers purchase more than one speedlight? Perhaps the great majority of photographers who use dedicated cameras see a flash as something like a tripod: "I thought I would need it, but I haven't taken it out of the closet since 1999."

In the current business world, will Canon try to regain some ground with lighting?
 

DannyPwins

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Mar 27, 2016
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" 2nd curtain sync can be used with Speedlite EL-1, 600EX-RT series and 430EX-RT receiver units, but with EOS R5, R6, or EOS-1D X Mark III cameras only "

This seems like a strange restriction. I've have the Yongnuo knock-off for several years and it can do 2nd curtain with any model.
I have the Yongnou as well. It’s better than the Canon at like half the price.
 

privatebydesign

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I have the Yongnou as well. It’s better than the Canon at like half the price.
I’ve had two Yongnuo ST’s and neither were close to the Canon for range and reliability. I don’t like the Canon model but have two of them because they just work.
 

privatebydesign

EOS-1D X Mark III
CR Pro
Jan 29, 2011
9,473
3,855
Anybody who maintains a yard knows that there are always areas a wee bit neglected. Canon's lighting division, for example. Rather than responding to competition in this area, they seem to be ignoring it.

Almost as if the original innovators have all left Canon. Did some bean-counter conclude that Yongnuo was just the first of a juggernaut of copycats that would undermine anything new? Did they look around and think there just wasn't enough profit margin with more powerful lights that could work seamlessly with EOS bodies, that there wasn't enough volume to compete in the portable studio-lighting sphere?

There has to be a sad, interesting story behind the current state of Canon's lighting business, though maybe it was never much to begin with. "Here are some flash for the top of your camera. See what you can do with them. What? Off camera? Oh bother. Alright, HERE. Now let us get back to bodies and lenses."

I'm not seeing that the new transmitter has added AF-assist. Would Canon be right to claim this is because they haven't been able to find something as discreet as infra-red that would still work for mirrorless AF systems?

I do know many amateurs grew to hate speedlights because of complexity, and because they slowed down the fun, and because the easiest way to use them was the worst way (blasting straight at the subject from the hot-shoe). And I know a lot of photographers who converted reluctance to learn (or lug around) into a distaste for "artificial" lighting, turning their incompetence into a virtue by brainwashing themselves into believing only available light was good light. Some of this attitude gets reinforced by the great improvements of digital cameras, of course. But I don't think Canon has done enough to educate their market about good light vs. mediocre or poor light.

Did Canon come to believe that the most lucrative segment of a shrinking market simply didn't care about lighting, and the smaller segment that did care didn't offer enough volume to overcome thin margins being challenged by copycats?

Can anybody point to some statistics which show how many photographers purchase more than one speedlight? Perhaps the great majority of photographers who use dedicated cameras see a flash as something like a tripod: "I thought I would need it, but I haven't taken it out of the closet since 1999."

In the current business world, will Canon try to regain some ground with lighting?
I think that is unnecessarily harsh. Canon were the first, by quite a way, with dependable all in one wireless speedlites. They are also the first and I believe still the only company with an Ai auto rotating head, and anybody that hasn’t used that feature is missing out, it is awesome. And they came out with ETTL flash metering years before Nikon.

So you sound like Monty Python and “what have the Romans ever done for us”, apart from two or three of the best and most significant advances in lighting technology in the last 50 years, nothing.

Canon are not and have never seen themselves as a lighting company, there are other well established specialist companies that make any number of different lighting systems for all needs and budgets, they do and have always offered a decent range of sized and priced Speelites
 

unfocused

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I finally broke down last year and bought three of Adorama's Flashpoint XPLOR (Godex) lights. I am glad I did.

For years I had nine 600RTs with battery packs and would gang them three to a softbox, but it was never satisfactory and extremely frustrating if you were shooting for any length of time. The way Canon has their strobes programmed, all the strobes in a group (A for example) will not fire if just one of the three is still recycling. So if you have a low battery in just one strobe you have to stop everything and either waste time figuring out which is slowing you down or switch out all the batteries. It would be so simple to offer an AC Adapter, add a battery level indicator and have the strobes that are recharged fire even if one in the group is still recycling.

Maybe they fixed these problems with the new model. But for me it's too late. The Flashpoints recycle almost immediately. The batteries hold their charge and with AC Adapters, you don't have to worry about battery life during long shoots. Plus, they actually cost less than what I invested in RTs over the years.

Canon's RT system itself was very reliable and I loved being able to set up everything from the camera's menu system, but the power issues were just too much of a hassle.
 

YuengLinger

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I think that is unnecessarily harsh. Canon were the first, by quite a way, with dependable all in one wireless speedlites. They are also the first and I believe still the only company with an Ai auto rotating head, and anybody that hasn’t used that feature is missing out, it is awesome. And they came out with ETTL flash metering years before Nikon.

So you sound like Monty Python and “what have the Romans ever done for us”, apart from two or three of the best and most significant advances in lighting technology in the last 50 years, nothing.

Canon are not and have never seen themselves as a lighting company, there are other well established specialist companies that make any number of different lighting systems for all needs and budgets, they do and have always offered a decent range of sized and priced Speelites

Just a mediation on where things stand today. Most readers here know of Canon's important contributions to the development of flash photography--but what signs do you see that more will follow? How long can a company, or a division of a company, sustain itself on past achievements?

What conversations would we be having now if Canon had just kept making incremental upgrades to dSLR's instead of going so deeply in on mirrorless? Are there any rumors of similar boldness with lights?

Harsh or not, it's Canon that will have to determine how to compete in a market where reverse-engineered--or even stolen--tech can be produced quickly in mass quantities. (I believe lighting is less complex and difficult to manufacture cheaply than today's camera bodies and lenses--but that too might quickly change. It would take a lot to convince me that Yongnuo and other such companies aren't backed by silent partners with very deep pockets.) Or Canon might decide to throw in the towel and tolerate dwindling sales of Speedlite systems that look run-of-the-mill and overpriced in 2021.
 
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