Panasonic GH4 + Cactus v6ii+ Panasonic FL360L - HSS Problem

Antonio, 

I also can confirm the same HSS problem as user Nikinik7503 except that I am using the GH4 along with the Panasonic FL 360L. Everything syncs & functions perfectly up to 1/400s. At 1/500s the flash atop the Cactus v6ii trigger produces banded images where only the top 1/3 of the image is visible, leaving the remainder blacked out. This is the constant result of all TX/RX trigger & flash unit settings combinations (including adjusting curtain settings within the GH4 itself) as I've spent literally the entire day thus far testing, unsuccessfully.

I received my units (x2) on yesterday with firmware version 1.0.006 installed. And after experiencing this HSS problem I upgraded the firmware to current 1.0.008 in hopes of resolution. Unfortunately the upgrade had no effect. 

One other interesting & unfortunate discovery is that when setting the RX unit as 'Panasonic' flash system & 'Panasonic Auto' or specifically 'FL 360' I am only able to fire 1 successful burst of flash. Subsequent shots do not trigger the flash to fire at all. Without switching the unit off & reverting to an Olympus profile. This again is the case with all combinations of TX/RX & flash unit settings combinations. I intitially thought this might have something to do with TTL mode being activated on the TX unit, but I still experienced the same problem after deactivating TTL mode & testing with all settings combinations. I've 'factory reset' both units numerous times. 

Also my V6ii never auto-detects my camera properly. It always boots up as auto causing me to have to manually set it as Olympus.

This product seems like an excellent tool otherwise, but definitely frustrating to say the least in getting the HSS & TTL to function properly.. I really hope you guys will place priority on resolving these issues for us GH4 & future GH5 owners.We'd love to enjoy the full functionality of these units too. ;-) If anyone has this setup working successfully, please share the knowledge. 

Regards, 

Sean 

Comments

  • Hello Sean,

    Have you tried removing the metal spring plate on your camera hot shoe?

    If auto-detect on V6 II TX isn't able to recognize the camera as "O" (Olympus / Panasonic), then there isn't much point to continue because the hot shoe pins are not algned properly, meaning signal from camera does not get to the V6 II.

    As for the flash, FL360, try using the auto profile.
    After you do a factory reset, switch on the flash first, set it to TTL, and then switch on the V6 II to RX mode.

    See if this helps. Thanks!
    Antonio Lao
    Brand Manager
    _____________

    To help us better help you, always state the exact firmware version installed on your Cactus device(s), such as: "1.1.013", "NIK.A.001", "v.103", or "A06".

    TTL or HSS not working on Cactus V6 II and V6 IIs? Be sure to check hot shoe connectivity by doing the <CAMERA INFO> check.

    Feel free to suggest an improvement or share product ideas. Contact us directly at info@cactus-image.com.  At Cactus, we listen. 
  • Hi Antonio. With your advice about the pins not lining up in mind I decided to insert the transmitter more forcefully (cautiously) into the hot shoe before opting to remove the metal plate, as I'm a little leery of modifying my equipment unless absolutely unavoidable. After doing so, I went into menu system & noticed that Sync Mode - Normal HSS & Olympus (M43) are now displayed. Excellent. 

    Now for the flash. I discovered that the onyly way to Get the FL 360 into TTL mode is to attach it to the GH4 hot shoe, so I attached it to the Cactus TX unit hot shoe atop my GH4. This allowed me to select the FP TTL A mode. Next I removed the flash from the TX unit & attached it & powered it up in the RX unit. RX unit auto-detected it perfectly. 

    On my GH4 I dialed in 1/1000. Used the TX unit to set flash power to 1/4 on the RX. Aimed at a target in a low lit room & bam. It works!! Target well illuminated (over-illuminated actually,lol). Continued to dial in various shutter speeds & flash power settings combinations & all test shots were successfully illuminated including 1/8000!! 

    ** One note: I can confirm (as well) if the GH4 goes into sleep/standby mode, the TX unit will stop sending HSS signal. This is overcome by switching the TX unit off & back on. HSS will be restored. 

    Thanks for your prompt response which got me on the right track. As usual (in my tech support experience) it's some tiny, simple detail causing the issue. I could tell that the system had great potential. Now I can confirm it's great value! I'll definitely be purchasing 2 more units immediately.
    Let the creative shooting begin!!  
  • Hi @SeanBruce,

    Thanks for posting an update.
    Hi Antonio. With your advice about the pins not lining up in mind I decided to insert the transmitter more forcefully (cautiously) into the hot shoe ... I went into menu system & noticed that Sync Mode - Normal HSS & Olympus (M43) are now displayed. Excellent. 

    Glad to hear that!  So, was the V6 II able to auto-detect the GH4 then? Or you simply manually select the camera system?
    Either way, there was a good connection between the GH4 and V6 II since you were able to shoot up to 1/8000s.
    .
    .
    .
    .... Now for the flash. I discovered that the only way to Get the FL 360 into TTL mode is to attach it to the GH4 hot shoe, ...
    That is not the case. Try this:
    1. Mount the FL360 on a V6 II
    2. Switch on the flash, let it stay in AUTO mode
    3. Switch on the V6 II to RX mode
    You will see V6 II's display an "O" in the flash icon, and the FL360 display switches to TTL AUTO with a FP icon at the top left. If you don't scroll through the mode until you do.
    .
    .
    .


    ** One note: I can confirm (as well) if the GH4 goes into sleep/standby mode, the TX unit will stop sending HSS signal. This is overcome by switching the TX unit off & back on. HSS will be restored. 


    Thanks for confirming the sleep mode behaviour. Albeit a little troublesome to overcome but at least it works. :)
    .
    .
    .
    ... Now I can confirm it's great value! I'll definitely be purchasing 2 more units immediately.

    Let the creative shooting begin!!  
    Thank you for choosing Cactus and we appreciate your understanding during the troubleshooting process.

    Cheers!
    Antonio Lao
    Brand Manager
    _____________

    To help us better help you, always state the exact firmware version installed on your Cactus device(s), such as: "1.1.013", "NIK.A.001", "v.103", or "A06".

    TTL or HSS not working on Cactus V6 II and V6 IIs? Be sure to check hot shoe connectivity by doing the <CAMERA INFO> check.

    Feel free to suggest an improvement or share product ideas. Contact us directly at info@cactus-image.com.  At Cactus, we listen. 
  • Yes Antonio, I'm pretty sure the GH4 is being auto-detected as 'O' when TX unit is powered on now. Honestly though, I can't confirm 100% since I didn't reset the TX unit before getting it to function properly. It's working perfectly now & I'm not in the mood to risk messing up the magic.. LOL!! I'll follow up if I discover any different... 

    Of note also, I've noticed that the locking lever may create problems attaching to the GH4 as well. I'm used to reaching a noticeable 'click' (audible/feeling) confirming the lever is in locked position, but it doesn't happen for me. Feels like there is still room to manipulate the lever to reach 'locked-in' but also feels like it might break in getting there. My TX unit started functioning successfully when I released the tension by backing off the lever a bit... Just an interesting oddity that you/other users may want to keep in mind when troubleshooting this combination. 

    I'll keep the flash/RX unit steps you mentioned in mind. 

    Thanks! 
  • LOL. okay just let it stay for now then. But when you get a chance do let us know.

    That click sound might have been the locking pin? Maybe try adjusting the placement of the V6 II so that the locking pin may line up?  Just a thought.

    Thank you!
    Antonio Lao
    Brand Manager
    _____________

    To help us better help you, always state the exact firmware version installed on your Cactus device(s), such as: "1.1.013", "NIK.A.001", "v.103", or "A06".

    TTL or HSS not working on Cactus V6 II and V6 IIs? Be sure to check hot shoe connectivity by doing the <CAMERA INFO> check.

    Feel free to suggest an improvement or share product ideas. Contact us directly at info@cactus-image.com.  At Cactus, we listen. 
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