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I have an X1 trigger and receiver set for Canon and a 580EX II. I don't know how to control the power of the flash through the trigger. I also have a Godox v860II and setting its power through the trigger is a breeze. How do I set the 580EX II?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ What have you tried so far that did not work in order to control the power of the 580EX II? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Aug 5, 2019 at 1:43

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The flash needs to be set to use its hot foot for communication with the camera.

If you set the flash to 'Slave', it will ignore anything attached to the hot foot and will monitor its optical sensor for optical pulses from an optical master flash (or ST-E2 flash controller). You should set the flash to 'Manual' power mode in the same way you would if the flash were attached to your camera's hot shoe. As far as the flash is concerned, the X1 receiver you have attached to its hot foot is the camera.

When you change a setting via the X1 controls (or the camera's menu), you need to do a half press of the camera's shutter button to tell the X1 to transmit the change to the remote flash if it has been more than a few seconds since the TX has communicated to the flash. As far as I can tell, this is a power saving feature as the 'wake' and 'set' signals are combined in one very short transmission.

Don't forget that the 580EX II must be set via the flash's control panel to 'default' settings for power and zoom or the X1 can not change the setting on the flash. The flash should be set to 1/1 manual power (or ±0 EC in TTL mode) and "Auto" zoom (There will be an "A" to the left of the displayed zoom head position) using the control panel on the flash in order to allow the X1 to change those settings. If the flash is set to another power level (or EC setting in TTL) or a specific zoom setting (There will be an 'M' to the left of the displayed zoom head position) via the flash's control panel the X1 or camera's menu will not override those settings. Also note that pulling out the diffuser panel on the flash is manually setting the zoom to 'wide' and the zoom head will not move regardless of the setting made via the X1. You're also locked out of changing the zoom setting on the 580EX II's control panel when the diffuser panel is pulled out.

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I'm working with same setup in 2023, Godox X1T-C and X1R-C, using both 580EX and 580EX II flashes, with camera Canon R6. I second what Michael C says, and add this additional info comparing the 580EX to the 580EX II:

  1. E-TTL mode flash exposure compensation setting works remotely in BOTH the 580EX and 580EX II.

Set both Godox and Flash to E-TTL mode. Set compensation using the Godox menu, or use the Camera menu (ext speedlite control / flash function settings / flash exp comp). Note that the compensation is not displayed on the remote flash's display, but it is nonetheless working to adjust the flash.

  1. Manual-mode flash setting works remotely with 580EX II, but not 580EX.

The 580EX II's display updates to show the manual setting selected remotely using the Godox. The Godox will also toggle the 580EX II between ETTL and Manual mode remotely. But not on the 580EX.

  1. Both flashes correctly respond to f-stop remotely.

  2. Neither flash will respond to lens zoom remotely. They stay fixed to one zoom which you can set manually. I have not found this to be a detriment.

In summary these old flashes still have useful life with Godox remote control, especially the 580EX II, and also 580EX if using E-TTL mode.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Unless there's been a change in recent firmware releases, I'm pretty sure if you leave the zoom setting on the flash at 'Auto', it can then be controlled by the transmitter. If it's set to any other value via the flash's control panel the value set on the flash will remain in force. (Similar to how FEC must be initially set to '0' with TTL and Manual power set to 1/1 on the flash's control panel for the trigger to be able to control and change those settings.) \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Apr 29, 2023 at 6:49

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