Nikon F3 flash TTL metering with Metz 45 CT-5.

Discussion in '35mm Cameras and Accessories' started by Marco Gilardetti, Nov 28, 2018.

  1. Marco Gilardetti

    Marco Gilardetti Member
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    Gentle fellows, I own a Metz 45 CT-5 hammerhead flash and, since I recently purchased a Nikon F3 which has a flash TTL metering feature, I thought it would make sense to buy Metz' specific cable for Nikon F3's proprietary flash socket, and enjoy the flash TTL metering feature offered by the F3.

    However, I could not assess if I would actually get TTL metering, I could only found partial information about what is needed and what each component will offer:

    - Metz 45 CT-5 user's manual does not mention TTL metering anywhere (or at least I couldn't find it mentioned);
    - here it is specified that 45 CT-5 offers limited TTL metering functions with "some cameras" (which ones?);
    - here I deduced that model SCA 344 is a specific Metz connector for the F3 camera (but I ignore if there are others).

    Nowhere I could positively read that by connecting the 45 CT-5 to the F3 with the SCA 344 cable and connector I will get flash TTL metering performed.

    Does anyone have direct experience, or perhaps owns some document which I couldn't find on the internet, and can assess wether TTL metering will or will not work?

    Thank you very much.
     
  2. AgX

    AgX Member

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    To adapt their flashes to the several flash-communication systems the camera manufacturers applied, all major german on-camera-flash manufacturers introduced the SCA adapter standard.
    Such adapter basically at one end had a SCA face and at the other end the proprietary camera face.
    There are countless types of adapters and thus it is a kind of science its own... Though adapters with same designation are interchangable, notwithstanding which flash manufacturer made them.

    There are however different series of adapters.

    100-series (introduced 1980)
    (only applied by Braun)

    500-series (analog)
    (Only applied by Metz and shortlived. I never came across such flash or adapter.)

    300-series (analog)

    3000-series (digital) (introduced 1992)
    With the more advanced camera models to achieve all (or sometimes not even not all) communication functions one needed the 3000-series adapters

    3002-series (introduced 2003)
    (successor of the 3000-series)


    For your Metz 45 CT-5 you need a 500-series SCA-adapter!
    However I do not know whether such existed for the Nikon F-3. I have no documentation on the 500-series.

    You might contact Mecatech on this matter.
    But it would mean less hassle and likely be more economical to substitute your flash by a model CT-4 or CL-4. (The CL-4 has as new feature an AE-confirmation indicator, that is all.)

    For these flashes you would need adapter 344.
    It enables flash-TTL on the F-3.
    It is the only SCA adapter for the F-3 and the old hammerhead flashes, at one end it has the proprietary hammerhead plug. Aside of it there is the 345 which got the SCA shoe to be used directly on the succeeeding flash models. Both adapters connect at cameraside to Nikons proprietary flash shoe at the left side. Both adapters serve the same functions.
    These two are the only SCA adapters for the F-3 I know of.


    I hope this helps.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2018
  3. OP
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    Marco Gilardetti

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    Thank you very much for your committed reply, Agx! Indeed one of the documents linked above mentions the SCA 500 standard for the 45 CT-5, but then I failed to find any detail about it, and all other flashes seem to use the SCA 300 standard instead. Moreover, nowhere I've found mentioned these "cameras" with which the 45 CT-5 deploys its "limited TTL" features.

    Hopingly someone will know the answer.

    Thanks for your suggestion but I like too much the LED display of the 45 CT-5 to ever use any other flash! I use flashes very very rarely anyway. I just thought that as long as the F3 offered TTL metering it would have been a nice "plus" if I could have my 45 CT-5 unit to operate in that way, but I don't really need it and I wouldn't switch to another flash unit just because of that. Actually, the built-in esposure computer of the 45 CT-5 works wonderfully, and I never really felt that I needed something else in order to get well exposed pictures.
     
  4. AgX

    AgX Member

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    I do not see the advantage of the CT-5 display.

    The CT-4/ CL-4 has in place of six green, plain LEDs, six printed figures for the respective figures for the apertures. So in effect more information.
    With all three flashes the figures for the auto-apertures are printed under the transparent disc, but I find the additional green figures printed outside the disc better to read.
    In the dark the LEDs would be better visible for the dial setting, but still you would not know the actual aperture. Even not if you memorized those six and counted the lamps, as seemingly only one LED is lighted at a time.

    Furthermore, in manual mode the CT-4/CL-4 offers in addition 1/2 and 1/4 output. The CT-5 offers only full power.
     
  5. ic-racer

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    I think you need SCA 344 to work with the F3 and that flash. Those handle flashes are nice, I use the Rollei versions. However, for my Nikon cameras, I use Nikon flashes. The SB-28 is nice because it works both with Nikon TTL and all other 'vintage' cameras with its built-in sensor.
     
  6. AgX

    AgX Member

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    No, as pointed at above the 344 belongs to the series 300 adapters. The OP's flash though is designed to work with series 500 adapters.

    In the CT-5 manual Metz have it on "dedicated flash mode". This was an early term used for the pre-TTL communication between flash and camera.
    In those days for instance a competing manufacturer offered flashes that got several pins at their hot-foot. Depending on the setting at the flash it was dedicated to the very camera model and its proprietary hot shoe.
    The series 500 (like series 100) offered the same form of early dedicated communication which still not incorporated TTL-flash-control,.
    And anyway, the CT-5 flash has no switch to set it for TTL-control.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2018
  7. ic-racer

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    Yes, CT-5 version I missed that, in that case it indicates the following for the Metz 45 CT-5/F3 combination:

     
  8. OP
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    Marco Gilardetti

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    It has no technical advantage, it's simply beautiful. Being a beautiful thing and being done with beautiful things is the core of classic photography, at least the way that I intend it.

    Thank you, this settles the issue I suppose. May I ask you from where did you quote that sentence?
     
  9. AgX

    AgX Member

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    I now realized that at the back of its reflector head the CT-5 has a LED figure display (It is not hinted at in the manual, thus I did not realize.)
    Something the later type 45 models did not get.

    I guess If ever I come across a CT-5 I might take it just for this...
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2018
  10. OP
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    Marco Gilardetti

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    Ah, my fault... I took for granted that everybody knew about the display, while the CT5 is actually quite a niche flash. As said, I admit the display is not overly useful, but it looks terrific. I see you've been already caught by it!

    By the way - how I wish that Nikon put a LED display in the F3 rather than that awful LCD display, which was described as short-lasting even in the user's manual... It's disconcerting how they knew since the beginning that it was not a smart choice, but actually the weakest part of the camera...
     
  11. BrianShaw

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  12. OP
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    Marco Gilardetti

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    Thanks again. I then wonder what were those "limited TTL metering capabilities" mentioned... Well, nevermind.
     
  13. BrianShaw

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    Limited TTL, which is very different from limited TTL metering:
    Flash ready
    Sufficient flash.

    Where did you see “limited TTL metering” referencing F-3? I think what you saw in that link we’re references (without being perfectly clear) to later Nikon digital cameras. I could be wrong... I just skimmed... but the continual reference to SCA300 was what I focused on.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2018
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  15. Vincent Peri

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    I have 8 Nikon F3HP's, and every one of them has a bright, clear LCD display, even after 38 years. Looks to me like Nikon got that wrong.
     
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  16. George Nova Scotia

    George Nova Scotia Subscriber
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    Nikon F3 + 45CT5 + Mecablitz Special Adapter C60 Worked just fine for several retirement parties in big rooms. Give me a bit I'll scan the manuals and give you some pictures....

    George
     
  17. MattKing

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    I have a Metz 60CT-2 that stands as a replacement for one I actually bought new when it was current, about 30+ years ago. It too used a 500 series interface for TTl. That interface works really well with my Olympus OM-2 cameras, and I expect with my OM-4T as well.
     
  18. gorbas

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    Marco you're right! I used Metz 45 CT-1 for more than 20 years only relying on it's measuring exposure cell and it always performed flawlessly. Sorry that you can't find right system info but I'm sure that it will work nice without dedicated adapter
     
  19. George Nova Scotia

    George Nova Scotia Subscriber
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    Attached is a picture of the C60 adapter it goes between the flash and the F3 hot shoe. Also part scan of the manual.
    WP_20181128_13_53_37_Pro.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

  20. AgX

    AgX Member

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    The OP asked about the TTL feature of the CT-5 which is has not got, whatever adapter.

    The SCA C-60 adapter belongs to the SCA 500 series, it enables communication between the CT-5 flash and F-3 camera on lower lever.
     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2018
  21. AgX

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  22. BrianShaw

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  23. OP
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    Marco Gilardetti

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    Lucky you. I have instead just one F3/T, the "indestructible" camera made with the miracle metal, the super-ultra-professional machine for the super-ultra-professionist who will be at the north pole, in the savana and inside an erupting volcano at the same time, and the only not working part is (go figure) that lame LCD display. So in my opinion Nikon really took it right: that LCD display was poo and they even knew it, but they put it there nonetheless. "Professional" indeed. Give me the display of a Canon A1, please!

    Thanks everybody for the further research! It seems that TTL is really not amongst the features of the 45 CT-5, whichever connector is used. Not a big deal really: I will just go on using the internal metering computer.

    Thank you once again!
     
  24. I own both a CT-4 and a CT-5. I bought the CT-5 first, assuming incorrectly that, since it had a higher nuumber than then -4, it would have more features. Well, other than that cool LED readout it has, I discovered, much to my displeasure, that it wasn't good for much when it came to flash automation. As I read up more on it, I realized that the CT-5 was an oddball and generally shunned by the working pros and amateurs alike. Now, the CT-4, by contrast, is a very useful flash. With the right SCA adapter or module, one can get TTL automation with a wide variety of cameras. I use it mostly with my Bronica ETRSi and the Metz module for the Bronica but I have a few adapters for other cameras where I can get TTL flash automation with them too.
     
  25. AgX

    AgX Member

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    In fact at its time it had more features than the CT-4, namely that camera-flash communication with cameras they were "dedicated" to. And thus the designation indeed hinted at an upgrading.
    But the series 500 adapters soon where succeeded/replaced with the 300 series, which included TTL-control, whenever the respective camera offered this.

    Here the strange thing is that this successsive adapter series got a lower figur designation, and with the successive type 45 flashes Metz fall back to the "4" designation with similar result.
    Yes, very confusing.
     
  26. Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
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