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Sony HVL-F43M

Flash for Sony Alpha DSLR cameras

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Item # 158HVLF43M

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Overview

Our take on the Sony HVL-F43M

Proper lighting is one of the most important tools a photographer can employ. The Sony HVL-F43M is a fast, versatile flash that will help you take professional-quality photos with your Alpha camera and lenses. The flash head tilts up to 105 degrees back so you can bounce light off of nearby surfaces to soften harsh shadows. It will even point as much as 8 degrees downward, and pivot 90 degrees left or right so you can switch from horizontal to vertical shooting on the fly. There's also a built-in LED light that comes in handy during low-light video shooting.

Use the included stand for wireless off-camera flash placement.

Use the included stand for wireless off-camera flash placement.

The Alpha flash

Proper lighting is one of the most important tools a photographer can employ. The Sony HVL-F43M is a fast, versatile flash that will help you take professional-quality photos with your Alpha camera and lenses. The flash head tilts up to 105 degrees back so you can bounce light off of nearby surfaces to soften harsh shadows. It will even point as much as 8 degrees downward, and pivot 90 degrees left or right so you can switch from horizontal to vertical shooting on the fly. There's also a built-in LED light that comes in handy during low-light video shooting.

Sophisticated metering

The HVL-F43M offers through-the-lens (TTL) metering, making it easier to properly light your image exactly the way you see it through the viewfinder. Sophisticated metering and control information is relayed instantly via the unit's built-in display screen. Sony's Wireless Ratio Control feature lets you control multiple off-camera flashes, taking some of the guesswork out of setting up a complex shot.

Product Highlights:

  • compatible with Sony Alpha DSLR cameras
  • tilts 105 degrees upward and 8 degrees downward to enable wide range of bounce effects
  • pivots left and right 90 degrees for quick transition between horizontal and vertical camera orientation
  • Wireless Ratio Control allows remote control of multiple flashes for complex shots
  • includes built-in bounce sheet and retractable wide-angle panel
  • covers up to 14 feet at ISO100 with 105mm lens
  • dust and moisture-resistant design
  • powered by four AAA batteries
  • recycle time: 2.9 seconds
  • fires 200+ times per battery charge
  • made of durable polycarbonate and ABS plastic
  • built-in diffuser disperses light in a wider pattern for close-up photography
  • 3"W x 5-5/8"H x 3-1/2"D
  • weight: 12.5 oz.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

What's in the Box:

  • Flash unit
  • Multi-interface Shoe Connector protection cap (installed)
  • Mini Stand
  • Vinyl zippered storage pouch
  • Operating Instructions
  • Warranty Sheet (US)
  • Warranty Sheet (Canada)

Excellent sturdy flash that enables various angles to get rid of any shadows on your subject. Light seems natural and adds an extra element to your ahots. Do recommend a diffuser as sometimes the flash can be too bright depending on the amount of light in the area.

Djinn, San Francisco, CA

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Sony HVL-F43M Reviews

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Features

Compatibility: The Sony HVL-F43M electronic flash is designed for use with newer Sony α-series digital still cameras, select Cyber-Shot point-and-shoot cameras, and Sony camcorders equipped with the Multi Interface Shoe. With the optional ADP-AMA Auto-lock Shoe Adapter, you can use the HVL-F43M on Sony cameras with the Auto-lock Accessory Shoe.

LCD Control Panel: The flash unit has a backlit 1-7/8" (diagonal) LCD control panel that indicates the status and settings of the flash unit. The panel shows the Flash Mode, Wireless Flash (channels, controller, remote), TTL/Manual/Multi, Wide-panel, Bounce, Battery status, Power Level, Zoom, and Flash Range.

Flash Modes: The HVL-F43M offers four Flash Modes: Fill Flash (unit always fires), Auto Flash (fires automatically when the camera determines flash is needed), Wireless Flash, and No Flash (does not fire).

TTL/M Button: The flash unit can be set for TTL (through the lens) operation, Manual operation, or Multi Flash.

Bounce Flash: The HVL-F43M's flash head can be tilted from 0° (straight forward) to 150° to illuminate your subject with reflected light instead of direct light. Reflected light reduces the intensity of the shadows, and produces a softer light on the subject. There are stop positions at 30°, 45°, 60°, 75°, 90°, 120°, and 150°. You should consider the flash range, focal length of the lens, and distance to the reflective surface, when determining the bounce angle. When photographing objects from a close distance (2.3' to 3.28'), you should tilt the flash slightly downward (8°) for accurate illumination.

Quick Shift Bounce: When shooting the portrait position, you can rotate the flash left or right between 0° and 90° to set the same bounce flash as when shooting in the landscape position, and use the control panel at the proper direction. There are stop positions at 30°, 45°, 60°, and 90°. If you have the bounce angle set to 90° sideways and 0° upwards while shooting in the portrait position, you may need to use the built-in wide panel to prevent dark areas at the top and bottom of the photo.

Flash Zoom: The flash unit can automatically switch the flash coverage to cover a range of focal lengths from 24mm to 105mm. If desired, you can manually set the flash coverage regardless of the focal length of the lens you're using. The coverage can be manually set to 24mm, 28mm, 35mm, 50mm, 70mm, or 105mm. The flash coverage is determined according to the image sensor size (APS-C/35mm format) of the camera.

Wide Panel: The HVL-F43M has a built-in wide panel that can be pulled out when needed to cover focal lengths from 24mm to 15mm. This prevents having darker areas on the periphery of the photos because of the difference in light intensity. The wide panel is stored in the area above the flash tube when not in use.

Bounce Sheet: When shooting portraits, the built-in bounce sheet creates a highlight in the subject's eyes, making the subject look more vibrant. The bounce sheet pulls out when you pull out the wide panel. You can then push back the wide panel to use the bounce sheet. The bounce angle should be set to 90° upwards.

Flash Compensation: When using a flash mode that supports TTL (through-the-lens) metering, the flash intensity is automatically adjusted. You can correct the automatically adjusted flash using Flash Compensation. You can set the Flash Compensation values between -3.0 and +3.0 in steps of 0.5 or 0.3 EV.

Multiple Flash: In Manual mode, you can set the unit to flash multiple times while the shutter is open. Multiple flash allows motion of the subject to be captured in a single photograph for later analysis. You will need to set the flash frequency (1 to 100 Hz), the number of flashes (2 to 100), and power level (1/8, 1/16, 1/32, 1/64, or 1/128).

High-speed Sync: High-speed Sync (HSS) eliminates the restrictions of flash sync speed and enables the flash to be used throughout the entire shutter speed range of the camera. This allows you to shoot with a wide aperture, leaving the background out of focus, and accentuating the front subject. The HSS feature can be turned on or off in the Custom Settings.

Wireless Operation: The HVL-F43M can be used for wireless flash photography in three possible ways:

  • Off Camera Flash: The HVL-F43M is used as an off-camera flash unit, controlled by the camera's built-in flash. The included mini-stand can be used to hold the flash, allowing you to place it on a table top or tripod.
  • Controller: The F43M is used as the controller, and another flash is the off-camera flash.
  • Multiple Wireless Flash: Using the HVL-F43M as the controller and a camera that supports lighting ratio control, you can control a group of off-camera flash units, while controlling the lighting ratio between a maximum of 3 groups.

Test Flash: The Test button illuminates amber when the flash is charged and ready to fire. When the proper exposure is reached, it will illuminate green. You can try a test-flash before shooting to check the light level or check shadows.

Built-in LED Light: In addition to the flash, the F43M has a built-in LED light for shooting video. The front-mounted white LED creates natural light and shadows, letting you shoot movies indoors or in poorly-lighted areas. The LED has a maximum intensity of approximately 400 lx at 1/2 meters (1' 7-3/4") or 100 lx at 1 meter (3' 3-3/8"). You can adjust the brightness to one of ten levels.

AF Illuminator: The HVL-F43M has a built-in AF Illuminator that will illuminate when the camera's shutter button is pressed halfway down for auto focus, and the light on the subject is low. The AF Illuminator will even operate when the flash is set to No Flash mode. The camera's AF Illuminator will not operate when the flash's AF Illuminator is on. The AF Illuminator's range is 1.64' to 19.68'.

Custom Settings: There are nine custom flash settings that can be easily recalled when needed. These include HSS Setting (C01), Wireless Channel Setting (C02), Wireless Controller Mode (C03), Recording Mode for Manual/Multiple flash (C04), Test Flash setting (C05), Power Save setting (C06), Wireless Flash Power Save settings (C07), Flash Range units (C08), and Power Level Interval (C09).

Power Requirements: The HVL-F43M is powered by four Alkaline or Ni-MH "AA" rechargeable batteries (not supplied). Fresh alkaline batteries provide enough power for more than 200 flashes. Fully-charged Ni-MH batteries (2100mAh) can power approximately 250 flashes or more. The batteries will also support continuous lighting of the LED light for approximately 4 hours. A battery indicator on the data panel lets you know the status of the battery charge.

Overheat Protection: The flash has Overheat Protection that suspends operation until the temperature of the unit falls back to normal. When overheating is detected, the Power lamp flashes red at one-second intervals. You can also manually turn off the flash unit for approximately 10 minutes to allow the unit to cool down.

Dimensions:

  • Flash at 0° (direct--no bounce): Width=2.941", Height=5.438", Depth=3.295"
  • Flash at 180° (bounce straight up): Width=2.941", Height=7.063", Depth=2.813"
  • Weight: 12.5 ounces (excluding batteries)

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Q & A

Customer Q&A

1 question already asked

Yes it does. I use it with A7RII camera, but it works well with all a7 cameras. [ PRATYUSH  Dec 19, 2017 ]
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