Sb 800

Looking to purchase a Nikon sb-800 is this Flash compatible with a cactus V6 II ?

I want to be able to control the power and I want to be able to control the zoom is this possible?

And does the cactus V6 to only control flashes in TTL why do they not control flashes in manual mode?


  • Have a look at the V6II compatibility information and you'll see that the SB-800 is supported.

    Remote control of both zoom setting and power level is possible.

    Regarding your last question, you have the option of either running a multi-brand firmware on the V6II or a so-called X-TTL firmware. Unlike the X-TTL firmware, the multi-brand firmware does not support TTL via radio. All power level control is done manually by adjusting levels on the V6II transmitter on the camera. However, for that system to work, the flash on the V6II receiver must be set to TTL mode. The V6II receiver wouldn't be able to change the flash's power level otherwise.

    You can still trigger flashes which are set to manual mode, but you wouldn't be able to remotely change their power levels.

  • Thank you for your reply. I will be shooting on an old film camera medium format. So I can control the zoom and I can control the power of the flash with the V6 II in TTL mode. I guess if the flashes in TTL mode or manual mode I guess it really doesn't matter because I could still control the power settings in the zoom the end result will still be the same so I guess that's good.

    I'm thinking about buying a couple Nikon sb-800 I don't know of any other trigger system that is going to let me control the power and zoom to a radio trigger other than the cactus V2.
  • Okay my last question is I know the Nikon sb-800 has a radio system built into it to communicate with each flash if I purchase the V6 too and I put one on my camera then I I need a receiver on each sb-800 correct.

    For example I purchased 3 Nikon sb-800s I purchased two Cactus V6 II. One Cactus V6 ii on the camera one Cactus V6 ii on the flash. I guess my question is do I need a receiver on each flash that I want to control ?
  • edited April 2018

    Shooting with an old medium format film camera should be fine, but I'd be surprised if you would get HSS to work. Therefore, the V6 (rather than V6II) may be the better product for you.

    However, the choice between V6 and V6II also depends on which flash model you want to remote control. In case of the SB-800, both V6 and V6II support it, though.

    Any built-in radio system by Nikon, Canon, etc. won't help you when trying to use a V6(II) transmitter. You are correct that you'll have to buy one extra V6(II) for each SB-800 you want to remote control/trigger.

    In your example, you'd need four V6(II) (one on-camera, three for the three off-camera SB-800). If you wanted to use one SB-800 on-camera (on top of the V6(II) transmitter), you'd only need three V6(II) units.

    In the light of the expense to be expected for each SB-800 + V6(II) pair, I'd encourage you to have a look at the Cactus RF60X. This is a very capable flash that not only recycles very quickly (within 1.9s) but first and foremost has a built-in radio receiver. Hence, you wouldn't have to deal with carrying, mounting extra receivers, and wouldn't have to worry about receiver batteries either.

    The RF60X pairs ideally with a V6 or V6II transmitter and you'll find it very convenient to work with. Build quality is great and it has a number of features (such as a delay option) that you may not use on day one, but which will come very handy once you recognise applications for them.

    The only downside I can see regarding the RF60X is that it won't support i-TTL when mounted to the camera directly, like a brand-specific flash would do. However, in your case, it seems unlikely that you'll ever be able to benefit from mounting an i-TTL flash to your camera directly anyhow.
  • Thank you for your response very detailed explanation you said that the cactus V6 will control the sb-800 will it control the power and the zoom or just the power? Or do I need the cactus V6 II to control the zoom.

    You are right if I got the cactus rf60x it would be a lot less expense I don't need all those radio triggers but the downside to that is resale value is not going to be near as good as a Nikon sb-800.

    And you're right I could care less about TTL.
  • The cactus rf60x goes for about $175 a flash x 3 Flash's 1 transceiver V6 2. Versus buying spree Nikon sb-800 off of eBay the average $125 a piece but I would need for triggers so I need more triggers but the flashes are less the other way the flashes are more but I need less triggers to me it seems kind of a wash as far as the price goes
  • You are right, the V6 will only give you remote power control over the SB-800. I won't let you change the zoom setting remotely; sorry for not mentioning that difference to the V6II. The V6 only remotely controls the zoom of the RF60(X).

    On the flip side, the V6 may not make the SB-800 fire a pre-flash (something to investigate, if you are interested), whereas the V6II definitely will. With the V6II, you'll get a tiny "TTL-delay" which is fine when you are actually using TTL features like automatic metering, but when you are fully manually controlling a flash then the delay serves no purpose. However, unless you are trying to capture certain moments precisely, the small "TTL-delay" won't make a difference.

    Personally, I wouldn't worry about resale value unless you already have a plan that implies obsolescence for speedlights. Wouldn't you normally keep the speedlights? 

    Why are you comparing used SB-800 prices to new RF60X prices? If you have no issue with buying used gear, why not make advantage of the -- as you say suboptimal resale value of a RF60X -- and buy the latter used? Even with your, what I feel is a skewed price comparison, you are still paying $135 more in total for the SB-800-based solution while getting a bulkier and less convenient to handle package.  
  • I enjoy the cactus V6 that I have I think it's a good quality trigger I've never seen the cactus rf60x there are several them on eBay and none of them have any bids on them they don't seem to be moving at all.

    I don't doubt your word when you tell me that the cactus flash is a good Flash there are a few good deals on eBay right now on the rf60x which I'm probably going to grab them.

    Let me just confirm something with you I'm a little bit confused can I control the power and the zoom of the cactus rf60x with just a cactus V6 ? Or do I need to V6 ii ,. And thank you for all of your help.
  • The V6 can remotely control the power level and zoom setting of an RF60X, as long as the latter runs a multi-brand firmware variant, such as version 104, for instance. 
  • Thank you for your information I didn't know you could control the zoom and the power on the 800 with just a V6.

    I do disagree with you on the resale part because down the line I'll probably end up with monolight sore strokes and I'll probably want to sell my flashes there are numerous Cactus flashes for sale the rf60x the D6 and the b62 transceivers on eBay dipping listed for months on end and not one person has put a bid on them but if I throw up a Nikon sb-800 it's gone in 3 days that's the difference.

    I'm sure the cactus is a very good product but I don't think a lot of people actually know about it it's not a common name with a really solid reputation in photography the fact that stuff is been sitting on eBay unsold for weeks and weeks on end pretty much tells the story.
  • Sorry about the misspelling eventually all want monolight or strobes. Basically anything related to Cactus on eBay doesn't sell the resale of it is very difficult I take that into consideration when I purchase something.

    Obviously you're Nikon your Canon flashes your Metz flashes are much more common and they're going to sell much quicker if you decide to sell them.

    Thank you for your time and all of your valuable information.
  • @califmike33, Thanks for comparing a Cactus wireless flash against the big boys from Canon, Nikon and Metz. LOL! :blush:

    A particular flash model may sell in days on eBay but does mean it has the same functionality, firmware upgrade-ability, customer support, etc. than a stock OEM flash from the camera manufacturer?  Those guys are just probably looking for a original flash with a friendly(ier) price tag. There will always been a need for them, no doubt. But I just don't see why such a thing - how fast an item would be sold - would matter to a photographer - unless they are into reselling photography gear on eBay. 

    If the flash is good, you will use it and keep it. Why worry about resell?

    And for that matter, why are those Canon, Nikon flash units up on sale on eBay in the first place? 

    FYI I just ran a search on eBay, of the 10 there were only 4 pre-owned RF60X, and 3 of them have bids on already. 

    BTW, RF60X is not a system-specific flash unit, it only has a single pin hot shoe, so it is in fact very different than a Nikon SB-800, for example. Nikon SB-800 is mainly for on-camera use and the RF60X is made for off-camera flash applications.   This would also explains why a SB-800 would sell faster, because there's more people using on-camera flash than off. (besides the brand / design / perceived-reliability). 

    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  At Cactus, we listen. 
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