Incense

by Bart Arondson

submit your photo


Hall of Fame
View past winners from this year

Please participate in Meta
and help us grow.

Take the 2-minute tour ×
Photography Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professional, enthusiast and amateur photographers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Most of Canon Speedlites flashes have quite nice built-in AF-assist LED lights, which would are useful in low-light situations, even when one doesn't want to use flash in photos.

Is there any way to set the flash (or camera) to fire only AF-assist, and not the flash itself? Only way I know is to prefocus and then turn off the flash, which is not very practical.

share|improve this question
    
Same questionf or Nikon: photo.stackexchange.com/questions/897 –  mattdm Mar 23 '11 at 3:16

4 Answers 4

up vote 13 down vote accepted

Disable the flash in the camera settings. It still uses the AF-assist beam, but it will not fire the flash.

The setting is in different places depending on the camera, for example:

EOS 5D:
Menu > Custom Functions > 07

EOS 5D mk II:
Menu > Tools 3 > External Speedlite control > Flash function settings > Flash firing

EOS 550D / Rebel T2i / Kiss X4: Menu > Camera 1 > Flash control > Flash firing (it also works for built-in flash)

share|improve this answer
    
Thanks! Does the Mk II variant also work with non-recent models like 550EX or 580EX? I thought that camera-flash control was limited to 580EX II and 430EX II. –  che Jul 20 '10 at 15:35
1  
@che: Yes, I have a 550EX, and it works. Some of the settings only work with newer flashes, but disabling the flash works with older ones also. –  Guffa Jul 20 '10 at 15:36
    
You can't disable the flash and still have the AF assist lamp on the older 1 series Canons (1DmkI&II, 1Ds mkI&II) which is very annoying... –  Matt Grum Oct 28 '10 at 15:34
    
@Matt Grum: That's an odd limitation... Even my old D60 can do that. :P –  Guffa Oct 28 '10 at 18:49

Generally this can be enabled through a custom function on your camera -- depending on your camera, the setting will be in a different place.

In low light situations, the flash may still strobe to assist in metering and determine how much flash power is required.

share|improve this answer
    
In camera's custom functions I've only found setting to enable/disable AF-assist beam, not having only the AF-assist :/ –  che Jul 20 '10 at 12:26

EOS 5D (mk1) and 580EX II AF-assist & no flash:

  1. EOS 5D: {CF7: 1 (=flash off)} & {CF5: 0 (=send)}
  2. 580EXII: {CF8: 0 (Af-assist light on}
share|improve this answer

Use an ST-E2. It has a focus assist lamp but no flash head. :)

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.