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PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6
  
 
Waki
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


I've owned the PocketWizard TT1/TT5 system for over a year. I also own six Plus III's and I have never had an issue with anything but the CTL TT1/5 system. It did not work all the time. It had some odd issues here and there that usually mysteriously rectified itself but more than once I was somewhat embarrassed in front of customers so eventually I just used my Plus III's. I was never a huge TTL user, using the CTL TT1/5 stuff in manual mode to change my speedlight's power but I did like TTL flash with manual camera settings an FP sync at times and found it useful. I was using Nikon's CLS for that mostly since it was more reliable. But any Nikon user knows it has line of sight limits, and is tough to use outdoors in bright light.

I sold my PocketWizard TT1/5 system. I was cleaning house one day a few weeks back and figured since I had all but quit using it, why not? I also shoot Fuji X besides Nikon and have wished there was a way I could use my Nikon speedlights (two SB-800's, one SB-910 and two Phottix Mitros) with the Fuji's (and Nikon's) AND be able to change the power levels remotely. PW promised this but it never really worked 100% of the time. I read about the Cactus V6 and ordered two. In the course of reading and researching I also came upon the Yongnuo YN-622N and 622N-TX system, so what the heck, I ordered a TX and two N transceivers as well. All these triggers, the Cactus and YN's, cost just a hair more than one PW TT5.

So now the short stories. Sort of. I cannot believe how well these cheaper triggers work. Its not all perfect, and I'm working with Yongnuo support in China to try and figure out why my SB-910 won't fire while configured for TTL mode but it does work real well in Manual mode - Manual mode with the Nikon's is perfect. The YN system in TTL with the SB-800's and Phottix Mitros is, so far knock on wood, dead balls reliable although admittedly it's use is minimal having only been in my hands a week. I have been bashing/using it though everyday. But outside the SB-910 not working in TTL, the YN system is far easier to use, the TX unit is the same thing as my SU-800 only smaller and more compact with a better interface. Exposure is perfect, no issues. I did find the PW TT1/5 to over expose a bit and had to run with -.3 to -.7 EV most times. Nothing like that with the YN system.

The Cactus V6 is another remarkable trigger. Yes, I can use it on the Fuji's or the Nikon (and even a Panasonic LX5 I have laying around) to adjust the power and trigger my Nikon flashes. The V6 uses a profile embedded in it's firmware for supported flashes. If your flash is analogue TTL based, and not supported, then it's possible to have the trigger learn it and build a profile. This profile establishes the power parameters and connectivity for the given system (Canon, Nikon, Pentax or Cactus' RF60) and flash units supported within the system. You do have to set the profile for a trigger, a pretty simple procedure. So one trigger is on camera, the other has a flash attached with correct profile and you just set power and shoot. The V6 can also be put in manual flash only mode and just trigger any unit as well. As with the YN's, its not all golden. No misfires or failures but with my SB-910, and SB-800's the flash does have to be on and in the trigger hot shoe before turing the trigger on. Once they are "mated or paired" via the profile, you cannot adjust the flash manually. you can't even turn it off. you have to remove it and re-boot to make a change to say, the zoom level, but since I don't do that all that much, its not a big thing to me. Some reviewers have noted this and I think Cactus is reviewing it. The triggers are upgradeable via USB so it might get fixed. If it doesn't, I can live with it.

I've decided to keep the YN system for those times I want TTL wireless using speedlights. It's so reasonable in cost and works so well, why not? I'm also keeping the Cactus V6 for the Fuji and other camera bodies I use from time to time and can use them with my Nikon system if needed. Again, given the cost, why not? I will add two more YN622N's and at least one more V6. The build on all these units is better than average but it's not the same materials as what Nikon or Canon use plastic wise. Its on par with PW, maybe PW is a little better but some of my Pluses rattle and sound sort of hollow so it's hard to say. I'd call it even.

In the studio, I'm going to continue to use my PocketWizard Plus III's in conjunction with the Profoto Air Remote I use for my B1 and D1's. I have pack based Profoto stuff too with built in PW so I really need to use the PW/Profoto hybrid triggering there. But outside the studio its going to be Yongnuo and/or Cactus V6's. Let me know if I can answer any questions.



Jun 11, 2014 at 01:24 PM
Focus Locus
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


Waki thank you for this very informative post. I don't have questions now, but know that I will soon, as I am looking into all of these new triggering systems right now, for remotely controlling the power level, not just the trigger fire.

(subscribing)



Jun 11, 2014 at 10:05 PM
Waki
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


And just like that, things change. Yongnuo did get back to me finally and with finality suggested I return the triggers since their combination of D800+SB-910+YN622N works fine. Thats it. So I decided to return the YN system, still keeping the V6 Cactus. My rationale being if the V6 is working in manual and the YN really offers all manual and some TTL, I'd be better off with just the V6's.
Then I got to thinking about the Phottix Odin and I'm tempted to got a transmitter and two receivers and see what I think. I may wait a few weeks until I'm back from an upcoming trip but right now, it's perking away in my head. An added thought with the Phottix system is if I do add another flash, I can go with a Mitros+ and built in triggering. Or buy another B1 and use the TTL-N trigger once available. Hoping Profoto supports FP sync. Decisions, decisions.



Jun 12, 2014 at 02:25 PM
kimimila
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


I just bought 3 of the Yongnuo 622n receivers and and the 622n-tx, and have noticed the same problem with my SB910 not firing when the Yongnuos are in TTL mode. Works perfectly in manual, AND even works when I use a flash as commander on camera, but NOT with the 622n-tx commanding. I don't really plan on returning them (I almost never use TTL, and if I do, I don't mind putting a flash on top to command), but did you get any other advice as to what the problem could possibly be? I'm shooting a D3s, but I think the problem is with the 622n-tx because the other triggers worked fine.


Jun 19, 2014 at 08:02 PM
Gregg Heckler
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


The only time my PW TT1 and TT5 system lets me down is when I don't do what I should be doing. Shoot a 1/125 calibration shot, turn everything on in sequence, make sure the batteries are good, and the antennas are extended. It's the best system I've tried so far outside of my Elinchrom Skyport for my strobes. It also gives me high speed and Hypersync for both Speedlights and strobes.


Jun 19, 2014 at 08:22 PM
 

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Kisutch
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


I just picked up a YN-622n set for a project. Mine don't work with my SB-600's when in ttl mode, but they do work with my SB-700. I can't return mine cause I modded mine to work with D-cells, before I realized they didn't work with the SB-600.

This speaks to why these knock-off triggers are a bad idea.




Jun 25, 2014 at 10:26 PM
Waki
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


I wound up with a Phottix Odin system and so far it has worked without any problems. Exposure is more on target than the PocketWizad CTL TT1/TT5/AC3 system I used for years. More reliable too. I did the calibration shot, powered things on in sequence and did all I was supposed to do, yet there just were times when the darned thing would not work. Mostly in front of clients. I still power on in sequence, old habits die hard, but I don't have to.
All my flashes work with the Odin. I'm not wild about the TCU size, and preferred the profile of the TT1/AC3 but it really doesn't stick up much more than a Plus III. I Liked the dials for exposure adjustment on the AC3 too but the Odin is like using my SU-800 and I can live with it considering the price, the reliability and the performance.
I'm really fond of the Cactus V6 though. Same super reliable performance with my Fuji. X cameras and the Nikon flashes. I wish the Fuji stuff was more robust in the flash department. That's a weak point.



Jul 05, 2014 at 12:48 PM
ahaug
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


I wonder if there has been a fix for the sb 800 and cactus v6 and yongnuo 622n? These triggers would be great if they worked with my current flashs. I'm looking for a triggering system that allows for ttl passthrough and ev control of the remotes on the transmitter. I have an sb 800 and sb 600. I'm going to be adding one or two more flashes for wedding reception lighting. Any suggestions would be great.


Aug 09, 2014 at 04:06 AM
Vlad_IT
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


Kisutch wrote:
I just picked up a YN-622n set for a project. Mine don't work with my SB-600's when in ttl mode, but they do work with my SB-700. I can't return mine cause I modded mine to work with D-cells, before I realized they didn't work with the SB-600.

This speaks to why these knock-off triggers are a bad idea.



Use us-800 on top of yn-622n on top of camera or pop-up built in flash and set in into commander mode - then all remote speed lights will work fine. It's something wrong with yn remote unit not to fire some of nikon's flashes. It might to do with firmware on speed lights or the remote



Aug 12, 2014 at 08:21 PM
Doug Maclean
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · PocketWizard, YN-622N and TX and Cactus V6


the 622 tx and 622n is fantastic regardless of price.And the price is sweet.I have 6 of them and never had 1 misfire and tested them at couple hundred feet.And they have been shoved into the sand and still worked.And high speed sync is the bomb.Mine work with sb 600, 700 and yongnuo yn 568ex.I put the flashes in ttl so i control them manually through the 622 tx.I never trust or use ttl Doug M




  NIKON D7100    35mm    f/2.0    1/6400s    400 ISO    +5.0 EV  






  NIKON D7100    18mm    f/3.2    1/800s    320 ISO    -1.3 EV  




Aug 13, 2014 at 12:53 PM





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