CACTUS RF500X STUDIO STROBE!!!

edited November 2017 in Product Ideas
man... I really love to use those V6II's with my flashguns... but since it seems there is not a chance for trigger stacking to get working...
I would really love to have a 500Ws Studio Strobe that speaks the CACTUS language...
it would be so nice to experience REAR CURTAIN SYNC and HSS without any quirky workarounds... on my PENTAX K-1(and successor) and PENTAX K-70!

How would you other guys like a studio strobe that is totally versatile and offers all the functions you would have on a hotshoe-flashgun but is way more powerful?
ever tried strobin into a 190cmx30cm Striplight with a Flashgun? Guys,... there is no way one can say a flash with GN60 can keep up to a studio strobe with 500Ws in this aspect.

PLS join ... this would be totally cool for everybody who is serious about his/her photography...! we need this!

Comments

  • Our thoughts also .... wink wink 

    Except that we don't think 500Ws is enough. 

    :)
    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. 
  • edited November 2017
    @Antonio:

    And while you are still aware of my existance let me point out some things, that would be important on a future Transceiver-Device and/or Cactus - Studio-Flash.

    I ask you to be the first company on this planet to make TTL-Studio Strobes the right way.
    (and future Cactus Transceivers so they can handle all those functions)

    Most producers only offer HSS via their ~?-TTL protocol while most ~?-TTL protocols would offer so much more.

    Possible for a studio light with the PENTAX P-TTL protocol would be for instance:

    1st REAR CURTAIN SYNC
    having movement in a picture and the last position frozen and sharp often is a very nice thing to have,
    but i dont know of any TTL-enabled studio flash up to now, which offers this feature
    (maybe there is one but i would wonder if so.)

    2nd Autofocus Assist Light... if turned on, that function should turn on the modeling light when you half press the shutter if the modeling light is not already switched on(when the cam recognizes dim conditions)
    (Dont laugh.. that actually could come in handy in dimmly lit situations when the photographer only has one strobe and wants easy/tight lighting from the side.)
    OK if you are in a studio, there is some light, but what if you are away from your studio somewhere else? Club etc. or a Cellar? or --- dimmly lit Restaurant.
    I took some shots at Jaimie Olivers 15...(with permission from Kitty) and man... that was sooo dark inside there... i liked it. but.. man. ... I guess we all know that nearly total darkness and AF are no friends... and i could handle a porty in such a situation but in no way i could use its modeling light in permanent mode. that would irritate everbody else in there. so such a feature would come in handy.
    Mostly i shot available light at the J15 with 1/40.. but the plates... you have to strobe 'em.(see 2nd shot)



    3rd a release for the Modeling Light ---!!! Yes its 21st Century and loads
    of photographers will love to have that. some Metz flashes would offer
    that. but since PENTAX-Cameras have no release for that. we are pi...
    like always..(and whilst our boss is sipping pina coladas)
    (There is
    no release for that on any PENTAX camera i know, but you could put one
    on future transceivers or make menu button plus wheel button pressed
    resamble that signal...)


    image
    image

    4th - Red Eye Reduction Preflash
    this function could switch on the modeling light for short or send a real preflash as long as light comes out and the models eyes close their iris , .. its fine for me.

    5th - Automatic Contrast Flashing
    That is an actual P-TTL function which sets (i guess in absolute power) one flash to correctly expose the subject.... and the other flash to half the power of the first.
    (That could be done easy i guess, and even with a setup of 2 Studio flashes renders useful for me.)

     - Flash Compensation Value Setting on Cam
    so i only set the proportions of a setup first and than all the flashes react to the !Flash compensation Value! i set on my PENTAX-DSLR

    - Stroboscopic Mode...
    Most Studio Strobes do Strobo-Mode for a certain time one has set before. but it would be nice the way it is supposed to with ~?-TTL ... the flash should only strobe while the shutter is released...

    - HSS of course
    so we will have that one for sure, i guess. ;)

    - Camera Conversion Recognition
    The flashes realize(they should have to) the cameras sensor format they are used on.
    PENTAX dedicated flashes recognize
    A)FF Sensor or Analog 135mm Film Format
    B)Crop Sensor(Super 35.. o.. the flashes itself call it "digital")
    C)645 ... yes... a P-TTL flash should always recognize the format

    BTW!!!... this could solve some mysteries you may have encountered when you tried to reverse-engineer the P-TTL protocol!!!


    - auto stand-by and wakeup via shutter-button-half-press

    and godd*... PLS KEEP IN MIND to make the modeling light source exchangeable...
    ...man i have no problems with powerful LEDs as modeling lights. Actually i LOVE them... but no sense in that if you need an electrician to exchange a faulty LED-light-panel...
    looking at most effordable studio strobes i get the creeps when i think about who will change that LEDs...


    ... and i also tried to lay down the problem of closed P-TTL to the german Product Manager & Group Leader Marketing D/A/CH of RICOH-IMAGING... maybe you want to get in touch with him.
    Maybe he can loosen some tight directives... he sounded very open-minded, and said he doubts that the Headquarters in Japan would deny assistance or opening the P-TTL protocols to engineers if they just ask.

    that guy is a trooper, he seems to have been in the company(PENTAX...) already when it still was family business...

    Wolfgang Baus

    Product Manager & Group Leader Marketing D/A/CH

    Press- and Media Relation

    BTW... pls listen:
    If you design new transceiver-devices... Just rethink the position of the display... i dont know if anybody else in here already mentioned this issue
    (because most people today start to worship things if they only deliver half of what the people would need or could use - i call it "the apple phenomenon")
    ... but it really hurts when i have to climb up a stepper to check my cameras TX-Transceiver settings and when i have to step up a ladder to check back group settings of my RX-units.

    furthermore, let me tell you:
    changing settings on the TX when the camera is mounted on a big tripod makes me play the same game... step up ladder to see whats going on on the display.
    Because to the opposite what you may conclude from those pictures;
    When i shoot Food, I DONT do hero shots much often, because i like to show the whole dish and show most parts of it sharp.
    So I work from above... camera at eye-height...

    i render the Godox X1T designer to have found the best possible positions for display, indicators, etc.
    but the display could be tilted slightly downwards in just a nearly unrecognizable amount of degrees(1-3deg) and the X1Ts test/release button should not be sitting on the bottom right corner of the top side but on the top left corner on the top of the device...
    And looking at the Godox X1T .. I would say that have "borrowed" a bit of design from the cactuses... so i would say its ok if you borrow back.

  • Our thoughts also .... wink wink 

    Except that we don't think 500Ws is enough.
    Exciting!

    Are plans sufficiently concrete to indicate a timeline?
  • 1st REAR CURTAIN SYNC

    2nd Autofocus Assist Light...

    5th - Automatic Contrast Flashing

     - Flash Compensation Value Setting on Cam

    - HSS of course

    All these already exist on the X-TTL firmware so it would be odd if they wouldn't be carried on to a strobe trigger.

    - Camera Conversion Recognition

    What would that be good for?

    Of course, camera formats influence flash head zoom settings for on-camera speedlights, but

    • strobes typically don't zoom, and
    • zoom settings on off-camera flashes/strobe are not influenced by the lens used on a camera or the camera's sensor size.



    i render the Godox X1T designer to have found the best possible positions for display, indicators, etc.
    but the display could be tilted slightly downwards in just a nearly unrecognizable amount of degrees(1-3deg)

    This goes to show how different people's needs are.

    First of all, the X1T embodies several severe design flaws as far as I'm concerned, with the placement of the wheel just being one of them.

    Second, you seem to be too short for the height of the tripods you are using. :) Just joking, please don't take this the wrong way. Seriously though, note that the V6II's display design is consistent with the design of top-plate camera LCDs. Cameras admittedly offer both back-LCD and top-LCD options, but many users are very happy to shut down their back-LCDs to save battery and use the top-LCD only.

    BTW, Godox seems to disagree with you about the X1T, because their successor model (the XPro) introduces a number of changes. Personally, I regard it as a far better design than the X1T.

  • edited November 2017

    @Class A:

    ... I will not bloat this up by quoting you.

    but I will answer:


    I am not so sure, if an interconnection of the AF-Assist-light feature to a modeling light on yet-non-existant product is already there.

    Just something useful is existant in a current product, doesnt make sure, that you will see it implemented in its successor, as long as you as a customer dont make sure, the producer knows that you use and appreciate it.

    I guess in R&D and in evolution that is called: Use it or loose it.

    that is the reason why I pointed out, that would be good features to have.




    Camera Conversion
    Recognition

    ...that is one feature, that I thought it may be
    nice to have... but that may not be so important, since the change in
    the output may not be that severe.

    but:

    as flashguns seem
    to change the zoom for some reason, I would say:

    this
    influences the amount of light that reaches a target...

    but
    maybe this is too pedantic.. and it doesnt carry a heavy real world
    consequence with it, when talking about a studio strobe.



    Still:

    I am sure, (since no other systems seem to  have that in their
    protocol) this function, that is implemented into P-TTL
    communications set, may cause worries reverse-engineering it.

    (just
    wanted to point that out again to the CACTUS-Image-Team)



    ?peoples
    needs? - peoples needs are not soo different if you ask me...



    that
    has nothing to do with my personal size....(1,8m)



    camera
    mounted "eye height" = hard time to look on the
    top-lcd,

    its not consistent with the top-lcd of a camera.
    PERIOD.

    Cactus V6II LCD sits about 6centimeter!!! ABOVE where
    you would look at a cameras shoulder-LCD.

    That makes a huge difference(if you are not taller than 1,9m),

    if you work with your camera „from above“ and
    therefore have it mounted as high as possible (max. eyehight) on your
    tripod.



     for the
    very same reason, that top  lcd is tilted on some professional
    cameras like the PENTAX 645Z(it was designed for real photographic
    work.)

    (for the same reason, the MZ-S also had this tilted top
    and so the LCD was tilted too)



    like I said – also difficult
    to read off group setting, when your flashgun(including V6II on its foot) is hooked up to
    a Bowens-S adapter and this setup is mounted on a tripod that is
    extended to at least 1,7m ...



    If you are an inuit, or if
    you are left handed, that will not change a thing.



    Class
    A, ...about the design of the Cactus V6II, like on PF i think, you
    take things to personal... its just objective criticism... the godox
    was just an example and is no competition to the Cactus V6II since it
    is just a trigger, so keep calm.



    ...Cactus Image wouldnt
    have to change the design entirely...

    Most of us who use this(V6/V6II)
    with studio reflectors mounted on big tripods or with ceiling
    systems, would already be happy if the next Cactus-Transceiver
    devices would have

    lights on
    the bottom that show which group they belong to...

    BTW: I
    can not find a way to lock the
    group setting, but that would also be important.



    again,
    this is not about the godox controller being better or
    competition.

    and pls understand that an XPro trigger is just a
    trigger for a studio strobe, you dont mount an XPro trigger on camera
    flashgun and try to read its settings from down below.

    So i see no sense in
    going after that.



    talking about ease of use...

    it
    would also be comfortable to have a device that you can hook up to a
    computer via USB, that makes it possible to

    change
    settings via an application,

    just like the solution
    Elinchrom offers. (Its very comfortable according to a studio
    photographer I know)

    (Jinbei came up with something similar
    recently)




  • Our thoughts also .... wink wink 

    Except that we don't think 500Ws is enough. 

    :)
    Thank you so much!
  • edited November 2017
    Just something useful is existant in a current product, doesnt make sure, that you will see it implemented in its successor, ...

    Fair enough. I wasn't sure how familiar you were with the current X-TTL feature set and though it could be worth pointing out that some items you mentioned would be on the "please retain" as opposed to the "please add" wishlist.



    Camera Conversion
    Recognition

    ...that is one feature, that I thought it may be
    nice to have... but that may not be so important, since the change in
    the output may not be that severe.

    I still don't understand what the sensor size information would be used for. That makes me wonder whether Cactus understand you. But I'll leave that to you to explain or not explain.



    but: ... camera mounted "eye height" = hard time to look on the
    top-lcd,
    its not consistent with the top-lcd of a camera.
    PERIOD.

    Of course, it is consistent with the use of a top-LCD.

    If you can read the top LCD of your camera, you should be able to read the V6II display. The V6II display is slightly angled downwards so even though it sits a bit higher than the camera's top-LCD panel, you should be able to read it as soon as you can read an (un-tilted) camera top-LCD panel (as the latter cannot be read at a 90-degree angle). If there is a need for additional eye height at all, we are talking a couple of centimetres at most.


    That makes a huge
    difference if you work with your camera „from above“ and
    therefore have it mounted as high as possible (max. eyehight) on your
    tripod.

    Sure, but note that your use case is just one of many. The normal use case is
    that one has the camera in one's hands or on a tripod so that one can
    read the top-LCD. It would be a major pain if one had to angle the
    camera forward each time whenever one wants to read the trigger LCD.
    That is why manufacturers put the top-LCD at the top and not just expect
    camera users to tilt the camera forward to read the back-LCD.

    You may also want to note that beginner cameras lack the top-LCD. The
    better models all have a top-LCD. This suggests to me that any extra
    device for non-beginners should be readable from a similar angle and not
    require a "beginner camera"-forward-tilt.

    In your scenario, a camera's top-LCD also becomes unusable. Has this lead to all camera manufacturers to abandon the top-LCD? Surely not.



    like I said – also difficult
    to read off group setting, when your flashgun(including V6II on its foot) is hooked up to
    a Bowens-S adapter and this setup is mounted on a tripod that is
    extended to at least 1,7m ...

    Of course. It is also difficult to check the group settings, if the receiver is hidden inside a softbox. There are all sorts of circumstances where visual access may be compromised. That cannot mean, however, that one messes up the usability for the standard use cases.

    BTW, it is easy enough to check the group setting before you lift up the receiver and if you are unsure later, just use the test button on the trigger (half-press or full-press) and see whether the receiver/flash responds. Easy problem to solve.



    Class A, ...about the design of the Cactus V6II, like on PF i think, you
    take things to personal...

    I don't take things personally.
    I'm just offering my view on things, like you do.

    I wouldn't want a V6II successor to have a display that is mounted in a manner so that I have to tilt the camera before I can see it. I don't see some your suggestions as personal attacks or as attacks against Cactus. I see them as technically flawed.



    its just objective criticism...

    No, it's your personal opinion.
    I don't see anything "objective" about it.
    As a matter of fact, camera manufacturers and most designers of triggers disagree with your views. I'm not saying that the status quo is always right, not at all. Your suggestions could be very good ones despite an overwhelming amount of devices being designed differently. I just, from my viewpoint, think your suggestions would improve a very small use case (trigger high up) and severely worsen many other, much more common use cases.



    the godox
    was just an example and is no competition to the Cactus V6II since it
    is just a trigger, so keep calm.

    I'm very calm. I don't know what you are talking about "competition" or "no competition". That doesn't make sense to me. I don't think in these categories.




    and pls understand that an XPro trigger is just a
    trigger for a studio strobe, you dont mount an XPro trigger on camera
    flashgun and try to read its settings from down below.


    I understand what the XPro is made for. Many agree with me that it is an improvement of its predecessors. I also understand that the V6II is a transceiver and therefore has to make compromises.

    I believe, even as a transceiver, the V6II should be optimised for a transmitter role. The V6II comes into its own when used with RF60(x) or hopefully a future Cactus strobe. It can be very useful to use a V6II in a receiver role as well, but I'd try hard to avoid compromising the transmitter role just because there is a receiver role as well.

    So, the Godox XPro -- as a pure transmitter -- is much more interesting for me to look at, compared to some device that also operates as a receiver, is high up, and you still want to visually access somehow.



    it would also be comfortable to have a device that you can hook up to a
    computer via USB, that makes it possible to

    change settings via an application

    I believe such integration will be possible with all high-end triggers in the future. Personally, I'd be more interested in phone or table support as even laptops aren't that mobile and the screen sizes of phones / tablets should be big enough.

  • edited November 2017
    man, now you make me uncalm. I ADMIT THAT.

    gosh!: 6cm is a huge difference... you dont get around with facts by using wise words.

    just try it....!!!

    again:
    in food photography for instance you often work from above and use a ladder or stepper to reach eye-height.

    and then imagine your camera is mounted that high and tilted downwards...!!! you just dont see the V6's display....
    you just dont see it!!

    understand it, this comes from experience, and not my imagination d.

    (food-photography is not the only application where you may want to work this way)

    The V6II will not be optimised for anything, because it is an existant, in-production device...
    And it is a TRANSCEIVER... THAT IS THE REASON why we can hook it up to our flashguns and use them like wireless-remotely controllable strobe heads.

    AGAIN, you cant even read the group of the Receiver if its mounted in a serious setup.
    AGAIN, this is no fantasy, this is experience.
    ...if you dont often use V6II's in real life its obvious that you may not know, that sometimes things dont work 100% for that very reason... a photographer would want to check back.
    (i would talk to it, but unless they build siri or alexa into that things, i have to "visually access" them somehow.)
    So, the Godox XPro -- as a pure transmitter -- is much more interesting for me to look at, compared to some device that also operates as a receiver, is high up, and you still want to visually access somehow.
    So, the Godox XPro - is not interesting for me in any WAY!
    That is, because IMHO we are talking about future Cactus Products here.
    And future Transceivers... will still be transceivers...

    AND GODD.!!! yes i want to visually access the receiver for the very reason I already explained.
    Group settings in RX mode dont seem to be LOCKABLE.
    And I am so ... sure, that I am not the only one who wants to be able to check back every receiver he has set up ...

    and i dont have any clue how the transmitter role could get ....?"compromised"?... by its display being easily readable when mounted up high...

  • IMO the angle of the display on V6 / V6 II is pretty similar to the 645Z. I don't think there's any space for argument that both are better than the typical flat LCD on most other cameras. And when you have a camera mounted above your eye level or especially when you have it tilted downward on a tripod, there's no way you can check anything on a 645Z's top LCD either, could you?  


    image





    In order to look at the settings on the flash trigger, you will either need:
    1. a ladder
    2. a Cactus Android / iOS App installed on a smart device (only for the future V7 though)

    This is something we plan on having, a wireless control on your smartphone, iPad, etc.. I think this is something which you need. Load up an App also for your camera and control both the camera and the lights from your smartphone. 


    As to your wish lists, here's what I know or my general comments:

    1. Rear Curtain Sync:  Not a problem since it's already doable on the RF60/RF60X
    2. AF Assist Light:  Current V6 II already has an AF assist light as well as the RF60X. However the strobe will likely not get one because it has number 3 below
    3. Modelling Light: Yes, pretty standard so we will definitely include one.  Essentially you can also use this as a AF assist light.
    4. Red Eye Reduction:  Err... this function is usually found on consumer products and no professional cameras. But if the particular Pentax camera supports it it is doable.
    5. Automatic Contrast Flashing:  We have never tried this, is it like an Auto beauty mode for off-camera flash? I think most of our customers set their own flash power outputs and not rely on any presets.
    6. Flash compensation value set on camera:  Not possible on current Pentax cameras
    7. Stroboscopic mode:  Yes, RF60/RF60X has Multi-flash mode
    8. HSS:  Yes, obviously. It will also support TTL for Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Panasonic, Pentax, Sigma and Sony
    9. Camera Conversion Recognition:  I don't see much point for the conversion because the strobe does not zoom nor does it mount right above lens, so the light coverage has no effect on the image. 
    10. Auto Standby / wake-up by shutter half press: Not doable.  But we can turn off the LCD and give you a feeling that it is in power-saving mode, but essentially the radio receiver has to stay active, otherwise how would it capture the shutter button half press signal?
    11. Replaceable LED modelling light:  Aren't LED suppose to last a long time? 

    Thanks for your contact referral at Ricoh Imaging in Germany. 


    And about your suggestions about the LCD angle on the future Cactus V7, a Tilt angle adjustable display screen would be nice to have but it means more mechanical parts, bulkier, and heavier.  Would people prefer using an App on a smartphone comfortably in their hands or twitching their eyes to try and read the tilted-down display screen?

    Thank you for your comments and don't hesitate to share other ideas you may have.

    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. 
  • Our thoughts also .... wink wink 

    Except that we don't think 500Ws is enough.
    Exciting!

    Are plans sufficiently concrete to indicate a timeline?
    Probably... and hopefully by the end of 2018 to early 2019.
    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. 
  • edited November 2017
    In order to look at the settings on the flash trigger, you will either need

    * a ladder

    * a Cactus Android / iOS App installed on a smart device 

    I agree that an App (for phone or tablet) would be the best solution, not only for this particular challenge.


    Red Eye Reduction:  Err... this function is usually found on consumer products and no professional cameras. But if the particular Pentax camera supports it it is doable.

    P-TTL supports red-eye reduction, but it is indeed a functionality not normally associated with strobes. Strobes are typically not used on-axis, so the red-eye effect normally is not a problem at all. Also, often strong modelling lights fulfil the same purpose without the danger of catching half-closed eyes.


    Automatic Contrast Flashing:  We have never tried this, is it like an Auto beauty mode for off-camera flash? I think most of our customers set their own flash power outputs and not rely on any presets.

    P-TTL supports a very crude light ratio approach. You can basically forget about it, as it is extremely limited in the ratios and number of light sources supported. A V6II with X-TTL firmware far exceeds the respective functionality.

    P-TTL is an archaic system and the appalling limitations of the the contrast-based approach is one of the areas in which it shows its age.



    Flash compensation value set on camera:  Not possible on current Pentax cameras.

    That's not true. Pentax cameras support a single, global flash exposure compensation value and last time I tested it, it worked in combination with the X-TTL firmware. You are correct that current Pentax cameras cannot control individual flash exposure compensation values per group, but there is a single, overall value that P-TTL respects.



    And about your suggestions about the LCD angle on the future Cactus V7, a Tilt angle adjustable display screen would be nice to have but it means more mechanical parts, bulkier, and heavier

    It would furthermore mean: More fragile and more expensive. Potentially, it would also mean: More difficult to handle, as the angle could change inadvertently due to unintended bumps, etc.

    I can think of a large base of users who would absolutely be against such a complication. Some people don't even want articulated LCD screens on their cameras, even those are far more useful than an articulated trigger display.



    Would people prefer using an App on a smartphone comfortably in their hands or twitching their eyes to try and read the tilted-down display screen?


    I'd say the App is definitely the way to go in order to address the reading challenge, but also to open up many more features, such as stored scenarios that can be recalled via names, etc.


  • Probably... and hopefully by the end of 2018 to early 2019.

    Great! Can't wait!!!

  • FTF: nice that you consider making use of the modeling light via the AF-assist light.

    ... i guess i mentioned that modeling light switching on for short ... would also be a solution.. therefore we are congruent..

    point 4... err... ;) yes you are totally right, that mostly would be considered a consumer function.
    but that is no reason to not make it available for professionals.
    IMHO you could/should make this available even without TTL functionality(if technically possible), because more often than on digital, the red eye-effect is a pain on film material which many professionals still use.(from testino to leibovitz. they all still take film on mid-format according to what i know, and according to what i can see when reports about them are online or on TV)... and especially when you have a "negative to print"-workflow without any retouching... that may make sense somehow.
    Most analog cameras dont work with a TTL protocol.
    --- but i think we are congruent again, that it may be possible to make this red-eye reduction happen by misusing the functionality of the AF-assist light... what would mean, that:
    If you half-press the shutter-release button, the modeling light should already be switched on.
    (if we only rely on the AF-assist-light-functionality, than Cactus-image should really have a talk with PENTAX to build an option into their firmware to make "SB"(Spotbeam) go on permanently when you half-press the shutter button... at the moment its just goes on when its near dark.
    (that is a feature i requested on or two times from ricoh... 100% user customisable AF-assist light threshold... becaues lots of people complained about that it goes on too late or only when its nearly total darkness. and i experienced the same. ... so if this ever get implemented we may be able to set af-assist light to "always on on halfpress")
    ... but i guess this point is very low on a priority list and i am not sad that it is.


    still the thing with the display.
    i know, having another transceiver design means more cost... Thats clear as consommé double.
    but it really aches me when you bring the 645Z example i mentioned
    and ignore that,
    the transceivers display sits app. 4cm above the hotshoe.
    the hotshoe itself sits app. 2 cm above the shoulder-lcd...
    that gives me a total difference of app. 6cm.

    furthermore i want to mention... (just to plot it down).. that if the cam is tilted down slightly, i can still:
    take a squinty look at the shoulder-display, because it sits at the same level as the viewfinder not to say slightly below. and is tilted actually 1-2 degrees more than the cactus display(WHICH STILL sits at least 4cm above the VIEWFINDER.)
    that means: a total of 6 ... SIX CENTIMETERS ABOVE the cameras shoulder-lcd.
    8*) I am pretty sure that there are about 3 billion of people on this planet who can assure you that 6cm make a huge difference. :P

    and since you asked for it... in the studio, i can read out everything i want from the the CAMERAs main color-lcd in info-mode.(it is tiltable by the way)

    and no, i am with Class A... making such a small LCD tiltable will most likely make it more breakable..
    if you refuse to tilt it a bit more... than just leave it.
    (Speaking for my person i CAN step up on or 2 steps on the ladder.... but its a pain in the ass... and every time i do that, i think about that Godox X1T design... BUT: Class A is still right. Before you compromise its ruggedness by making it tiltable, leave it that way)
    IMHO it would be best if you could tilt it much more, because if i work with the cam in my hands i dont see a handling problem if its tilted a bit more... (not even with the 90 degrees like it is on the X1T)
    but hey... its up to you Antonio.(I am pretty sure that loads of people would love you for that)
    (and pls consider the position of the test-release button...)

    back to what you numbered point 5...
    yes kind off. its like i told you, that also is what a pentax manual will tell you.
    one flash will try to reach 100% correct exposure... the other one will use half of that absolute power to avoid the "flat-face effect"...
    and I totally agree. that this is easily set without further development and we may not need that.
    i just wanted to point out that it is there.

    point 6... like Class A said... it is indeed possible.

    point 9... I really don't want to step on your nerves, (because i am a thankful person) but i would say:
     the smaller the sensor the more light it will need.

    and i am not the only one saying that.

    there is a reason Sigma has brought the 18-35mm 1.8 so this is the first lens for aps-c that brings
    the math of an "aperture equivalent" into account.
    and so should a flash system...
    again... i am sure there is a reason pentax implemented that feature...
    and yes actual PENTAX-flashguns counter the loss with a higher zoom factor.. but if you can not zoom (and by doing so concentrating the light output) you will have to send out a stop or 2 more light(according to the difference in the format)

    again: this is not something i see being top-priority, but very somewhere above the middle, because actually it would indeed make sense... to compensate the difference between formats.

    please carefully read:
    http://www.discoverdigitalphotography.com/2013/what-does-equivalent-aperture-mean/
    smaller sensor - less light.

    and there is loads of difference from the popular APS-C sensors up to the "pseudo" 645 sensor.
    (I wouldnt wonder if PENTAX ups the size to real 645 in the 645Z successor, since fuji now stepped into the mid-format game, or even start a digital 6x7)


    and last but not least: 100% totally agree to the idea with the app.

    i think all is said and done, and saying and complaining more ... would not make a sense...
    I am pretty sure, that I can count on, that Cactus-Image will fish out the best possible functionality for us PENTAX users and also for all the other brands owners, without becoming a forum junkie.
    Horrido, my friends!
  • one more thing came to my mind:

    Maybe you even want to bestowe us with more than one studio strobe option? ;)

    I guess if the brains design is done, having more bodies is easy...(just looking at the market and saw a new neewer flash "Neewer Vision5 with TTL, remote and 400Ws of power". I've seen offerts for freakin 250-320 dollars..!) the studio strobe market seems to be booming... but I am sure nothing can come close to the cactus system, if it hits the market.
    Thank you so much Team Cactus!
  • OK. 6cm difference, I get it now. Because the departure point is different.

    If we use a Godox X1T screen placement (vertically mounting it), the screen size would be smaller than we originally wanted it to be. Plus it would also get the way of our signature Adjustment Dial.

    Given the structural limitations (LCD screen size, orientation, adjustment dial, angle of view), maybe it's a safer bet to stick to a more typical layout (top display with buttons and signature dial on the horizontal face, and whenever the camera + trigger is mounted high and hard to see, use the App. 

    We will run more studies and see how best to proceed with the design. 

    Thanks again both for your ideas and suggestions!
    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. 
  • No offense here, but to keep our talking "sober", stay honest...
    I understand you'll have to watch the production costs for your products... but the fact is: when you produce a studio flash, you also do NOT place the display on top of that studio flash.
    No you place it on the back of the device, so it is facing towards your body and not up to the ceiling with a slight tilt. THAT easy. There is no "alternate fact" to change a pros mind that this is way better position to place the display.
    I am also convinced that more people would buy into cactus X-TTL(and now upcoming Studio-Flashlights) gear if you would offer a properly designed transceiver.
    Nonetheless also wifi enabling the new generation(or a Mark III version of the V6)of your transceivers and also offering an app so you can fiddle around with settings via Android-App... would be a nice idea.
    But keep in mind, the display position really is a pain in the A... back for non-hobbyists.
  • patarok said:

    No offense here, but to keep our talking "sober", stay honest...

    I don't think there is any reason to suspect dishonesty on behalf of Cactus just because they do not seem to agree with you that your particular use case should define the design for everyone else.


    patarok said:


    I understand you'll have to watch the production costs for your products... but the fact is: when you produce a studio flash, you also do NOT place the display on top of that studio flash.

    Placing the LCD on a studio flash is an entirely different matter. There are good reasons, for instance, to place the LCD at one of the sides of a studio flash. These reasons do not apply to radio transmitters, hence there are studio flashes with the LCD on the side, but no radio transmitters with the LCD on the side.


    patarok said:


    There is no "alternate fact" to change a pros mind that this is way better position to place the display.

    You appear to be equating "pro" with "food photographer". I submit that there are many more pros that do not experience the "6cm" height challenge you are describing.

    As a matter of fact, Canon, Nikon, Sony, etc. appear to agree with me because they did not angle the top LCD on their pro cameras downwards.

    Arguably, for your very particular application, it would be better if every camera manufacturer followed the 645 design and angled the top LCD slightly downwards or even have it straight at the back. Apparently, however, the majority of pro photographers are better served with a top facing top LCD.

    I sympathise with the trouble you are having to read the V6II's display, however, since you are having to use a stepper/ladder anyhow, requiring you to make an extra step or go on your toes seems justifiable compared to compromising the usability of a radio trigger in almost every other photography genre.


    patarok said:


    I am also convinced that more people would buy into cactus X-TTL(and now upcoming Studio-Flashlights) gear if you would offer a properly designed transceiver.

    I humbly beg to differ, suggesting that the majority of flagship cameras are properly designed and that aligning a radio trigger design with how those cameras are used in most photography genres is a good idea.


    patarok said:


    Nonetheless also wifi enabling the new generation(or a Mark III version of the V6)of your transceivers and also offering an app so you can fiddle around with settings via Android-App... would be a nice idea.

    I feel that such an app would perfectly address niche needs like yours and others and thus would allow keeping a more generally useful display design for general use.

    To clarify, I'm not trying to suggest that you do not have a case or silence your viewpoint. On the contrary, I agree with you that you do have a case for your particular niche. I'm just adding another voice, arguing that the V6II's LCD angle design is quite a good one and optimising for your particular niche would be detrimental to other, more widely-spread photography genres.
  • Speaking of.
    Godox is slightly leading the game. They already have studio monolight-s (200, 400, 600 w/s), and, I guess in the moment, already ready to ship Pentax HSS P-sync remote. However, I am still in the Cactus boat yet, but it can easily change if no monolight is announced, (at least), in reasonable time. It would be really nice to see something alike. Other than this, is there any known studio strobe which enables managing power/speed output using Cactus controllers ?
  • Other than this, is there any known studio strobe which enables managing power/speed output using Cactus controllers ?

    The Aurora Dante 400 is compatible with Cactus triggers.

  • I've tested my Pentax K1 with the Godox XPro - P trigger, the AD200 and AD400PRO lights.
    The trigger design is nice, neat, easy to see and adjust settings, groups etc. The AD200 has a decent output, measured well over a twin mount with 2 x RF60s or 2 x Metz AF58s. The unit does get hot with constant use, the colour of the light is not consistent and you can't adjust the power in1/10 stops, the big let down is no TTL for Pentax.
    The AD400PRO is a beast, power, fan, colour consistency, Pentax TTL, but nearly 2.5 kg to carry about. The other negative is that the 200, 400 and 600 all use a physically different battery and charger! That's nonsense to me. One charger, one battery shape, different outputs would be better.
    I've asked the UK importer if it would be possible to get the Aurora Dante 400 to test but he says he hasn't actually seen one. The online spec doesn't look to great.
    So like you I'm stuck, happy with my Cactus gear but needing higher power for outside wedding and commercial work.
    If only there was such a thing as an RQ250.
  • edited October 24
    Donald said:

    ... the big let down [for the AD200] is no TTL for Pentax.

    A couple of days ago a V2.2 firmware update for the AD200 has been released that makes it compatible with Pentax.


    Donald said:


    If only there was such a thing as an RQ250.

    Yes, indeed. :(


    Donald said:

    ... I'm stuck, happy with my Cactus gear but needing higher power for outside wedding and commercial work.

    Have you tried multiple RF60X on a flash bracket?

    There are brackets that support using three-four speedlights in one modifier. Such a combination would get you close to or even above the output an RQ250 would have provided. Of course the battery management and handling will be far worse, but in terms of power output, you could get by.
  • Class A, I've just read about the TTL update so will be asking for another trial with the AD200, but I'm still concerned about lack of cooling. There's also an update for the XPRO -P apparently but I'm not too sure what that's about, possibly more to do with their speedlites compatibility.
    Yes, I normally run 2 sets of twin RF60s on one bracket, powered by Godox PB960 battery packs for super fast recycling, into 42" Octobox modifiers. So 4 flashes in total, but some times 3 sets of 2. Mounting any more is not really practical for fitting into the modifiers. Each body has a V6-11 controlling the lighting groups. If I use the Metz AF58S instead of the RF60s it measures an extra 8/10s of a stop on the Sekonic meter, but I need to use V6-11s for receivers as well, and I'm not too happy with the way that all fits. I prefer to keep the Metz guns mounted on my 2 x K1 bodies, manual mode 24-70 and 70-200 fitted, for TTL bounce flash if needed during the reception.
Sign In or Register to comment.