Step 8: Now What?

OK, you have a killer flash....now what?  Well you have a few courses of action:

1.  Throw away the flash.  Bad for the environment, bad karma.

2.  Give away the flash.  OK if you make sure that unwary recipient knows that the flash can destroy a modern camera.  Look for the Holga and other toy camera users.  All that plastic will be unaffected by the hundreds of volts coursing through its guts.

3.  Get a limiting device.  Wein Products Inc. sells a very nice hot shoe voltage regulator.  For $50, this product will protect your camera against high voltage flashes.  However, you do sacrifice all the communication you might have on the flash as well.  Usually not a problem.  Most flashes with communication electrodes are modern enough to  have a low trigger voltage.

3a.  Get a PC limiting device.  The flash plug (PC plug [PC stands for Pronto Compur]) will carry the same trigger voltage as your hot shoe only flashes.  You can also buy PC connection cords that will limit the trigger voltage.

4.  Practice good flash hygiene.  Properly label your flashes and only use the correct flash with the correct camera. 

5.  Surgery.  If you are "good with tools" you might want to open the guts of your flash and install a trigger voltage limiting circuit like Zenobe did with a Vivitar 283.  It is not as hard as it sounds, but there is an element of danger.  Flash capacitors can hold literally heart stopping voltages.  Make sure you observe all safety precautions and never trust a capacitor.  Always handle capacitors like they are fully charged, a little paranoia goes a long way.

If you don't want to or don't have the equipment to measure the trigger voltage on your flash,  you can look here for a database of flashes and their trigger voltages.

Enjoy your well lit photos with a flash you can trust!
You are very, very mistaken. All Canon &quot;A&quot; series cameras (A-1, AE-1, AT-1, AE-1 Program, etc.) and &quot;T&quot; series cameras should be on your list of &quot;modern&quot; cameras. The AE-1, invented the concept of the modern 6v sensitive camera. <br> <br>You should consider 1980 as your break point, not 1990 (the AE-1 was introduced in 1978). If you don't, you may fry a lot of cameras. <br> <br>Every auto-focus camera should be considered modern, plus others. <br> <br>If you are smart, you should treat EVERY camera as a potential risk for getting fried. <br> <br>If you are connecting to any old flashes, you should either use your on-camera pop-up flash to trigger the old strobes via slave OR you should connect to them using a Wein Safe-Sync between your camera and the old strobe.
Fantastic - this is a really good guide. :D

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Bio: I don't care about what anything was DESIGNED to do, I care about what it CAN do.
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