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Save Money or Buy Pocket Wizard system?

BravozuluBravozulu Member
edited June 2014 in the gear

I shoot primarily at home, and mostly in portrait mode. I have 2 Nikon SB-800s and 1 SB-700. I fire them remote and am comfortable with the Nikon CLS system. Although the distances are short, there are some challenges. Camera is Nikon D7000.

Using the pop-up flash as the Commander to trigger the remotes is dicey when the camera is orientated in portrait mode. The pop up is to the left and blocked by the body and lens from any remote flashes off the right.

And I often place the flashes in lightstands and inside of softboxes. The red plastic sensor windows on the flashes are buried inside. I am real busy managing the shot and don't always know if the 2 or 3 remote flashes fire or not. I never got the part about the little beep noises.

My work consists primarily in shooting my wife's paintings before she ships them out to clients. She needs an accurate record for her portfolio.

I am not being paid. In the future I may consent to doing a wedding (which I've done countless times before). But I'm over 70 and not physically up to it. What PW units would I need, and how much would they cost me? Is it worth it compared to the IR triggers of CLS?


  • Look up the Yongnuo flash triggers... the YN622N's. Much cheaper than PW's and they work great.

  • I have PocketWizards, and they work great. However, for your needs, PocketWizards might be too costly.

    With PocketWizards, you need a MiniTT1 or FlexTT5 and a speedlight on your camera to serve as Commander. In this configuration, you dial your remote speedlight settings into the speedlight, and the PocketWizard transmits the information to the remote flashes.

    If you don't want to mount a flash on your Commander, you would need to buy a AC3 Zonecontroller to take place of the flash.

    Each remote flash needs a FlexTT5.

    From your given equipment, your set-ups could be as follows:

    Setup 1
    1 MiniTT1 - Sits on your camera; Your SB-700 sits on the MiniTT1 as the Commander flash
    2 FlexTT5 - One for each SB-800

    Total cost: About $650 USD

    Setup 2
    1 MiniTT1 - Sits on your camera
    1 AC3 ZoneController - Sits on top of the MiniTT1. This takes the place of flash sitting on your camera, unless you need a flash on your camera for additional lighting
    3 FlexTT5 - One for each of your three flashes

    Total cost: About $740 USD

  • Exactly.... and four of the YN622's will cost about 160. Great input Stephen.

  • I bought my PocketWizards before the Yongnuo or even the Phottix units were released. If I didn't have these PocketWizards, I would definitely look at these other brands.
  • fortunately there are quite a few companies (radio poppers, cactus, yongnou, Meike) that are now manufacturing transmitters similar to the PW Flex system for Muchless $$. check out flashhavoc.com
  • dmcdtcdmcdtc Member
    I've always found using the Yongnuo's difficult by having to remember how to adjust the various settings without a display. I just purchased the new transmitter for this and can't wait to use it...

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