If you use a TTL flashgun with extensive information at the back you might get a bit lost with all the digits and letters. You may ask yourself “what is important and what does it mean?”
Below we highlight the most relevant data and its meaning.
Although your particular flash may look slightly different, the LCD image below is generally recognisable for most types of Nikon and Nikon compatible flash units.
1. Indication for TTL flashmode. Nikon has the option of TTL BL mode. This results in a better balanced lighting than TTL only.
2. Indication for High Speed Flash Sync.
3. Indication for manual zoom. You manually have to change the zoom that corresponds to the focal length of your camera’s lens. If M-zoom is switched off, your flash is at automatic zoom (A-zoom will not be indicated at Nikon flash units). When zooming in or out with the lens on the camera, the flash automatically spreads the light over the image based on the focal length.
4. 24mm is the focal length of the lens. It changes along when you zoom in and out with the lens (provided that A-zoom is activated).
5. Aperture F5.6 and ISO 200 are set on the camera. It automatically changes when a different aperture and/or ISO is set.
6. Distance range indicated by numbers and a black bar chart. It is the range of distances* where the flash can properly reach the subject. Ignoring the distance will result in an over- or underexposed subject. The minimum and the maximum limits are indicated in meters, but can be changed to feet in the menu of the flashgun.
7. Indication for flash compensation. EV stands for Exposure Value. It is not indicated when EV is at zero.
*Please note that Metz Mecablitz 58 and 400 only show the maximum distance. However, a certain minimum distance should be taken into consideration.
Flash unit with limited data
Your flash unit may not show all the data as mentioned above. However, the camera settings are recognized by the flash. With those settings, the flash offers a certain minimum and maximum distance.
The following flashguns don’t show flash distances, but it’s important to be a aware that a minimum and maximum distance must be taken into account.
- Nikon SB-500 and SB-600
- Metz Mecablitz 26 and 36
- Godox TT350
- Yongnuo YN568, YN685 and YN968
- Nissin Di700, i40 and i60
- Sigma EF610
If you have a flashgun limited data at the back, read here about the meaning of the symbols.