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Pictures with flash are dark


Hey all, new here to the forum and to a nice T5i Ive had about a month now. I bought a flash unit for my camera and tried using it off camera in slave mode but all the pictures were dark. Really dark. I tried every setting I could think of but obviously Im missing something. I have e Neewer TT560 Speedlite and of course the T5i. The 560 is defintely firing but I guess just not enough or its out of sync with the camera somehow. 

Could someone point me in the direction I should be looking for some answers? Ive been wandering around the web looking but no luck.









Your camera has a flash sync speed, 1/200 sec, which is slow enough to capture a off camera flash in slave mode. That's the rule unless the flash has High Speed Syncro (HSS).

ah ha, I had left that set to Auto. So I should always use the 1/200 setting? Why even have the auto mode then? I dont know thats why Im asking!! LOL

Thanks for the reply too!!



Well after a fair amount of testing Im almost to the conclusion I have a bad flash unit. According to the manual, when the flash is set to S2, it will slave to the camera flash, IGNORING the first or metering flash, then fire with the shutter. Well my flash ALWAYS fires on the metering flash no mater what setting I have it on. I have tried every combination on the thing and it alwasy fires on the first flash. Actually let me change that, there was one time, in program mode, when it actually seemed to be working correctly. However after making NO changes on the camera or the flash, it went back to firing on the first flash like before. I read numerous reviews where folks were pretty happy with this unit and thats why I think maybe i just got a bad one??


How are you triggering your flash, is it in the hot shoe, or are you using some sort of wired/wireless triggers to get it off-camera?  If the latter, put it on-camera until you get it working properly. 


I've never used the Neewer flashes, but I'd guess they function more or less like any.  It looks pretty similar to the original Yongnuo 560.  The flash should stay in manual mode.  In fact, it really should start up in manual mode.  Perhaps it addresses that in the instructions.  You don't need to use any of the slave modes.

Every camera has a max sync speed, it's a physical limitation of the shutters.  The T5i is 1/200.  If you go above the sync speed you will get a black/dark bar on the bottom where the shutter blocks part of the flash.  The faster your shutter speed above sync speed, the larger the bar. There's a good description here:


That said, if your flash is in the hotshoe then your camera should prevent you from going above the sync speed.  All Canon flashes do it, and even my manual Yongnuo flashes do...  but my wireless triggers do not.  So it's possible the Neewer flash doesn't as well.


Why shoot in auto?  Good question.  I never do; many do not.  Especially with flash, which gives you a fourth variable in which to control your exposure.  I usually have my camera in full manual, set to expose the ambient, and control my subject's exposure with my flash(es).  That might not be the best idea when you're just learning, but I don't know if you have much of a choice with a full-manual flash.   What do you want to do with your flash?  How comfortable are you outside of auto settings on your camera?  IF you're not comfortable in manual or at least semi-auto, then that flash is going to be difficult for you.

Im using it OFF camera, triggering ti with the built in wireless sensor. thats the reason I was using it in S1 and S2 mode. It works fine on the camera in manual mode. I have the flash mounted in a holder on a light stand with the sensor facing towards me at an angle. Like I said, its being triggered but ALWAYS on the first or metering flash. The one its supposed to ignore in S2 mode.  In S2 mode it is NOT supposed to fire on the first flash. Only the second, So thats what its doing I just dont know why or how to get it to stop.


I almost always use M or AE priority.

Ah, I see.  I suppose you could have a bad flash, or that you're not setting it up right, but I think it's more likely that the Neewer unit just isn't playing nicely with Canon's eTTL.  That is, it's not necessarily that your specific unit is bad, but that the Neewer 560 flash may not work well with Canon's (or any brands) pre flash.  Just because it has a slave mode that claims to function with pre-flash doesn't mean it will be reliable.  It's one of the downsides to generic units.


I'm not saying this is the case.  If you read reviews, from actual people not professional product reviewers, stating that they got it to work then it's possible.  Another downside of the knock-off flashes is that the QC isn't always great.  You could have a bad unit.


All that said, this is what I would do.  Go to Amazon and buy a Yongnuo radio trigger.  Here's the RF-602 for $23:


You can probably find it for even cheaper used; Yongnuo has released several newer triggers and people dumped the old ones.  I love my RF-602s, but they made a new 603 recently that had some nice upgrades.  You can get a set of those for $33, shipped on Prime if you have it:


I can't offer much help with the optical triggering because I played with mine for all of a day or two before buying a set of radio triggers and never looking back.  Best money you can spend on off-camera flash.

Yes Skirball I believe you hit it right on the head there. Just because something claims to perform a certain way doesnt mean it will. I have been researching the radio triggers and on everything Ive read and your recommendation I think its in my future.
Thanks so much for the replies and words of wisdom!!

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