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Canon Speedlite 600 EX-RT

Canon Speedlite 600 EX-RT

Canon has released a new Speedlite!  Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT Flash

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Before this release I was using the Canon Speedlite 580EX II and loved it.  So when the Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT Flash was released I was at first not in a hurry to purchase the new one.   After looking at a few stats and details about the Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT I quickly made the change!

In My mind here are a few of the major factors.

600ex-rt back

Radio Triggering!!!!

Need I say this again? Radio Triggering!!! What I have been doing in the past was using my Canon Speedlite 580EX II and pairing them with PocketWizard 801-130 Plus III to get my radio triggering. Both the Canon Speedlite 580EX II and the 600 EX-RT have what is called wireless optical triggering which is great if you are indoors and have a clear line of site with each other, but with my work that almost never worked for me. If I was taking pictures at a reception there would always be people in my way, or there was too much distance between me and the off camera Speedlite. These conditions would cause a lot of miss fires.

Now that the Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT has Radio Triggering this is no longer a problem! The 600EX-RT can control up to 5 groups of flashes or a total of 15 Speedlites.

The reason I am excited about this new feature is because I can now use master and slave flashes! In the past I have been using my off camera lights in manual mode as my Pocket Wizards only relay the fire command with out any E-TTL information. Pocket Wizard have units that are designed to relay E-TTL information but I could never get them to be consistent or accurate. (but that is for another conversation) The great thing about master and slave flashes as it make my job 100% easier.

Lets say you are taking a portrait of somebody you can have your on camera flash set as a fill light, then you can has a Key light set 1 stop brighter then your fill, then you can have a kicker light set 2 stops brighter than your fill lights. The great part is if you were to adjust your fill light up or down every other light will automatically adjust to maintain the ratio you created. This is great in a wedding reception environment as I don’t have to walk to the off camera lights and adjust them manually any more.

Included Color Balance Filter

Canon is smart enough now to include color balancing filters. In the past I have used someThird Party Filter Holders to add gels or match the color of other light sources. This is fine but there was always something I did not like about them, for example the fit was never 100% or it took to long to adapt everything. Now the with the 600 EX-RT you get filter that were designed and fitted to the Speedlite.
600 ex rt filter

E-ttl II (Evaluative Through The Lens Metering)

E-ttl II is a method for the flash and camera to meeter your photo to achieve the correct flash exposure automatically.  Basically, to make things over simplified, The flash sends out a series of short test flashes before the pictures is actually taken to measure the amount of light that is reflected back to your camera.  Most people if they were looking at the Flash they would not even notice the series of test flashes as they would just see it as one big flash.  E-ttl II is great for the photographer running an event or an average photographer who is looking for great photos with out having to mess around with flash controls.

If you are wanting to test drive the Canon 600EX-RT before you pick one up you should check out BorrowLenses.com.  Its great they will ship you a flash for $28 for three days!

If you are wanting to pick one a Canon 600EX-RT take a look at Amazon as they have them on sale! [easyazon-cta align="none" asin="B007FH1KX2" height="28" key="amazon-us-small-orange" locale="us" width="120"]

lens rental

Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT Overview

Canon’s new Speedlite 600EX-RT is engineered to provide a new level of performance and reliability for professional flash photography with today’s most advanced DSLRs. With wireless two-way radio communication, the Speedlite 600 EX-RT allows photographers to expand their creativity using wireless speedlites with the reliability of radio triggering. The Speedlite 600EX-RT offers an expanded zoom range and a higher guide number, plus a number of improvements over its predecessor in both operation and feel. It features a new dot-matrix LCD panel for display of all pertinent shooting information, backlit controls plus an internal sound generator. Reliability is ensured with improved hot shoe contacts, improved flash head durability and the most comprehensive dust and water sealing system ever on a Canon Speedlite flash. A new color filter holder helps maintain accurate color in a variety of ambient light conditions.

Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT Highlights

Wireless Radio Multiple Flash System
TTL, E-TTL II & A-TTL Compatible
GN 197′ (60 m) @ ISO100
Exceptionally Dust- and Water-Resistant
Zoom Flash Head: 20-200mm Range
Dot Matrix LCD Panel and Backlit Button
Color Filter Holder for Gelatin Filters
18 Custom Functions
Full 180-Degree Swivel in Each Direction
AF Assist Beam

Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT Specifications

Flash Type On-camera E-TTL II/E-TTL/TTL autoflash Speedlite
Compatible Cameras EOS DSLR
Guide Number Approx. 197′ (60 m) at 200mm flash coverage, ISO 100
Flash Coverage 20 – 200mm (14mm with wide panel)
Bounce 90° right, 7° down, 180° left/right
Flash Time Normal: 1.8 ms or less
Quick Flash: 2.3 ms or less
Color Temp. Info Transmission Color temp. info transmitted to camera when fired
Color Filter Can be used
Exposure Control System E-TTL II/E-TTL/TTL autoflash, auto/manual external flash metering, manual flash, stroboscopic flash
Effective Flash Range Normal: 1.6 – 98.4’ (0.5 – 30 m)
Quick Flash Min.: 1.6 – 39.4’ (0.5 – 12 m)
Quick Flash Max.: 1.6 – 68.9’ (0.5 – 21 m)
High-Speed Sync: 1.6 – 49.2’ (0.5 – 15 m)
Flash Exposure Compensation +/- 3 EV in 1/3 or 1/2 steps
High-Speed Sync Provided (only cameras made since 2012 support wireless radio)
Manual Flash 1/128 – 1/1 power (1/3 steps)
Stroboscopic Flash 1 – 500 Hz
Flash Exposure Confirmation With lamp lights
Modeling Flash Fired with camera’s depth-of-field preview button
Recycling Time Normal: Approx. 0.1 – 5.5 sec.
Quick Flash: Approx. 0.1 – 3.3 sec.
Flash-Ready Lamp Display Red: Normal
Green: Quick Flash
Compatible AF System 1 – 61 AF points (28mm or longer focal length)
Effective AF Beam Range Center: 2 – 32.8’ (0.6 – 10 m)
Periphery: 2 – 16.4’ (0.6 – 5 m)
Radio Transmission Frequency 2405 – 2475 MHz
Modualtion System Primary: OQPSK
Secondary: DS-SS
Radio Wireless Settings Master/slave
Radio Channels Auto, 1 – 15
Wireless Radio ID 0000 – 9999
Radio Slave Unit Control Up to 5 groups (A / B / C / D / E), 15 units
Radio Transmission Distance Approx. 98.4′ (30 m)
Radio Flash Ratio Control 1:8 – 1:1 – 8:1, power 1/2 steps
Linked Shooting Provided
Optical Connection Method Optical pulse
Optical Wireless Settings Master/slave
Optical Channels 1 – 4
Optical Slave Unit Control Up to 3 groups (A / B / C)
Optical Transmission Distance Indoors: 2.3 – 49.2’ (0.7 – 15 m)
Outdoors: 2.3 – 32.8’ (0.7 – 10 m) at the front
(+/- 40° horizontally and +/-30° vertically, facing master unit)
Optical Flash Ratio Control 1:8 – 1:1 – 8:1, power 1/2 steps
Custom Functions 18
Personal Functions 7
Power Source 4x AA / LR6 alkaline, Ni-MH, or lithium batteries
Battery Life Approx. 100 – 700 flashes (with alkaline batteries)
Radio Transmission Wireless Shooting Time Approx. 9 continuous hours
Optical Transmission Wireless Shooting Time Approx. 1,500 times
Power Saving Power off after 90 sec. idle time (60 min. as slave unit, 5 min. linked shooting)
External Power Optional CP-E4 battery pack
Dimensions 3.1 x 5.6 x 4.9″ (8.0 x 14.3 x 12.5 cm)
Weight 15 oz (425 g)

If you are wanting to test drive the Canon 600EX-RT before you pick one up you should check out BorrowLenses.com. Its great they will ship you a flash for $28 for three days!

If you are wanting to pick one a Canon 600EX-RT take a look at Amazon as they have them on sale! [easyazon-cta align="none" asin="B007FH1KX2" height="28" key="amazon-us-small-orange" locale="us" width="120"]

lens rental

4 Comments

  1. Radio Triggering why did I not know about that! good job canon

  2. Thanks I am looking for a flash and this is very helpful. it maybe out of my price range since I am just learning. does anybody have any cheaper options

  3. Kay- I say look into the canon 430ex a few less options and no radio triggering. but if you are looking for one flash on camera this may be the one

  4. Thanks for the post very helpful

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