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I bought a YONGNUO YN-560-TX flash controller for canon, I'm using it with canon Speedlight 430EX II, but it's not triggering my flash! any ideas? do I need to buy a receiver?

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Yes, you need a receiver. The YN-560-TX uses wireless radio signals to communicate with off camera flashes. The Canon wireless system built into the 430EX II uses optical pulses of light to receive communications from a Canon master flash or near-infrared controller. Canon has introduced a newer wireless radio system with the "RT" models: 600EX-RT, 430EX III-RT, and the wireless controller ST-E3-RT. But your older 430EX II is optical control only.

The Yongnuo YN-560-TX is a manual only flash controller. It can set the flash manual power level and the flash zoom head setting from its control panel mounted on your camera's hot shoe. It can not control the flash in E-TTL (automatic) flash mode. If you want to use a Yongnuo controller for wireless E-TTL you need the YN-622C-TX transmitter or YN-622C II transceiver. A transceiver can function as a transmitter when attached to the camera or as a receiver when attached to a compatible flash.

You have several options as to the receiver you use. My recommendation would be to use a YN-622C II transceiver attached to your flash as the radio receiver. Although the YN-622 system uses a different radio protocol than the YN-560 system, the radio receiver of the "II" version of the YN-622C (as well as any "original" YN-622C transceivers made after December 15, 2014) can be switched to YN-560 mode. It's easier to do with the mechanical switch on the "II" version which also has some improvements in operating range over the original version. One advantage is that the YN-622C II will allow manual power/zoom/group control wirelessly via the YN-560-TX mounted on the camera. Another advantage of using a YN-622C II is that if you later decide you want to use the flash wirelessly in E-TTL mode you can get another YN-622C II (or a YN-622C-TX) and continue to use your existing YN-622C II as the receiver attached to the 430EX II. You'll just have to change the radio setting in it back to YN-622 mode.

Another option you might consider before you get too deep into the Yongnuo system is to use the Godox system instead. Here's why.

Even when everything is radio operated, different systems won't usually work with each other.

Sometimes third party systems will reverse engineer a primary manufacturer's protocol. The Yongnuo RT system mimics the Canon RT system and most Canon and Yongnuo RT devices are cross-compatible. After a new release by Canon a firmware revision is sometimes needed by Yongnuo to maintain that compatibility.

Sometimes a third party maker will have more than one system that is either not compatible, or only partially compatible, with their other systems. Yongnuo's rf602/rf603/rf605/YN560 system is for control of manual flashes. Yongnuo's YN622 system is for control of TTL flashes. Older pieces of each system won't work with each other. But since late 2014 the YN622 pieces can be controlled in manual mode by the YN560 system.

Godox is relatively new to the wireless flash scene. Like others, they've also had a couple of different wireless radio systems in the past. Like all of the other third party suppliers, they've experienced their share of growing pains.

With their X1 series they are building a system that allows manual flashes, TTL flashes, and studio flashes to all be controlled via the same wireless radio system. Obviously the manual flashes don't magically become TTL flashes when controlled with the X1 system, but the X1 system does allow the same controller mounted on the camera to control the different types of strobes.

With an X1 controller you can control all of the Godox flashes with X1 receivers built in, such as the TT600, TT685, V850II, V860II, AD360II, or AD/XR600 series. With an XTR16 or XTR16s receiver you can also use an X1 to control older Godox flashes such as the V850, V860, AD180, AD360, AR400, RS600, and various Godox AC powered studio lights.

What you can't do with the Godox X1 system is control flashes from the Yongnuo, Canon, or Nikon radio systems without using an X1 receiver attached to the flashes in question. You may or may not get full usability in such an arrangement. With your 430EX II you should be able to use an X1T[C] receiver to control the flash either manually or in E-TTL mode with an X1T[C] transmitter attached to your camera.

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... do I need to buy a receiver?

Yes. The 430EXII has no built-in radio receiver, so you must add one onto the foot of the flash to trigger it with a YN-560-TX. The add-on radio receivers that can be used include (from oldest to newest):

  • Yongnuo RF-602
  • Yongnuo RF-603
  • Yongnuo RF-603II
  • Yongnuo RF-605

However. These triggers will only let you use the YN-560-TX to trigger and wake-up the 430EXII. You will not have remote power/zoom control. The RF-605 allows you to turn the flash's group on/off.

The Yongnuo flashes with built-in radio receivers that can be power/zoom-controlled from a YN-560-TX are:

  • YN-560 III
  • YN-560 IV
  • YN-660

You may want to consider returning the YN-560-TX and switching to TTL-capable triggers, like the Yongnuo YN-622C-TX/YN-622C II combo, or Godox's X1T-C/X1R-C combo which would allow TTL/HSS, and power control over a remote 430EXII.

See also:

  • A YN-622C II in YN-560 receive mode will allow the YN-560-TX to control manual power and zoom of the 430EX II. This possibility is conspicuously absent from the otherwise comprehensive options available to use to wirelessly control a 430EX II with a YN-560-TX that you've listed. – Michael C Feb 24 '17 at 16:16
  • @MichaelClark, mostly because I don't see the point in paying more for a TTL/HSS capable trigger only to use it like a manual one. – inkista Feb 24 '17 at 18:50
  • There's not that much price difference and it is the cheapest, simplest, and most functional solution to the problem considering the existing equipment. One YN622C II vs. two of anything else to give remote power/zoom/group control. – Michael C Feb 24 '17 at 20:32

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