Paul C. Buff, Inc. Technical Forum

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Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:29 am

Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:19 am
Posts: 3

I use 4 Einsteins on location, mostly in corporate offices. Each has a receiver. When I try to use the Commander or the CST, I experience misfires at about a 5% rate, which is unacceptable and makes me look bad and miss shots.

I have tried every remedy in this forum and have found no success. I have used both hot shoe and PC sync, on both my Nikon D800's. I have used a long PC cord to move the trigger farther from the camera. I have used a hot shoe extension toward the same end. I have rotated the triggers in every conceivable direction, I have tried different channels, I have prayed to all the gods in the pantheon. Always the same result. Clearly, there is an inherent flaw in the design.

What works is when I use the CC solely to adjust the lights, and use my Pocket Wizards to actually trigger the strobes (and slaves) reliably during the shoot. 0% Misfires. It's a somewhat clumsy workaround but after three years of dicking around with the CyberSync system I have given up relying on it.

A quick search will show that I am only one of many people who've concluded the same thing. Please let us know when a solution, either via firmware or a redesign, becomes available.




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Wed Jun 14, 2017 9:01 am

Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2012 9:44 am
Posts: 100
Location: Chicagoland, USA

I am supremely confident that PCB wants to resolve this for you.

I have used Einsteins on location, as you do, since 2012, and in conjuction with CSXCV transceivers and the CyberCommander. I also shoot predominantly with D800s. I very, very rarely experience a misfire. So if there was an inherent design flaw, I would likely have experienced it as well. Yes, others have reported problems, but that does not rise to the level of fact of there being a design flaw. Think of PCB's market share and how much of their gear is in use. If even one percent of even just 10,000 users have a problem . . . . .

So, it is much more likely that you could have some CyberSync gear that is malfunctioning. You have done extensive troubleshooting on your own and searched the forums, and that is great. What is curious to me is that this has been an issue for you for three years, yet you just joined the forums today and this is your first post. Have you called technical support? If I have a technical problem with gear (and especially lighting) that puts me in tough spot in front of clients, I can't imagine not being on a support forum and/or the phone immediately following the job.

PCB is well known for having excellent customer service. The only advice I can offer is to be a bit more fair in your posting to a company who I'll bet very much wants to help you, and contact them directly and immediately. I understand you are frustrated, but this is much more likely to benefit you than an assertion on a forum that their product is flawed.

Last note - I am not a PCB employee disguising as a customer. I would bet they are at least familiar with me - as they are with many of their customers. I've been active in the forums for several years. I have also talked with them many times over the years for minor technical questions, and for repair jobs caused by my own mishaps which are inevitable in the course of many, many shoots. They care, and I have experienced the same level of customer service for which they are known.

CraĆ­g




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Wed Jun 14, 2017 1:58 pm

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Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 10:43 am
Posts: 5266

When you get failures, is it all or nothing, or will some lights fire while others do not?

Is this failure rate on every shoot, or just some?

Do you have any other wireless components in your set up? If so, what?

Do you get the same failure back at your home base (home, office, etc.)?

Do you get the same failure via the test buttons as you do via the hotshoe?




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Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:18 pm

Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:19 am
Posts: 3

In no way do I wish to cast aspersions on the folks in Nashville - over many years I've spoken with them for various reasons and have always been met with courteous and willing service. I called about this issue at the beginning and was given advice about trigger angle which, although polite, did nothing to address my problem. I post this now, after three years, simply because on a shoot last week, once again, I tried to use the CyberSync setup alone and met the same frustrating results.




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Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:21 pm

Joined: Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:19 am
Posts: 3

When you get failures, is it all or nothing, or will some lights fire while others do not?
Some respond, some do not.

Is this failure rate on every shoot, or just some?
To some degree, every time.

Do you have any other wireless components in your set up? If so, what?
Only the Pocket Wizards, which solve the problem completely.

Do you get the same failure back at your home base (home, office, etc.)?
Yes

Do you get the same failure via the test buttons as you do via the hotshoe?[/quote]
Yes




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Wed Jun 14, 2017 4:58 pm

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Joined: Tue Dec 08, 2009 10:43 am
Posts: 5266

magisterludi wrote:
When you get failures, is it all or nothing, or will some lights fire while others do not?
Some respond, some do not.


So generally, you do not have a completely black image, rather at least one unit did fire?

If I understand this correctly, are the lights that misfire the same ones (or in the same position) every time, or might the failure rotate around to all lights?

And to be clear, when I ask about other wireless devices, this would include routers, tools like Cam Ranger, WiFi capable cameras or cards, or anything of that nature.

When you change frequencies, do you switch from say FQ01 to FQ02? Or do you go from FQ01 to FQ7 or 8 or even 13? If there is an interference issue, it could span across multiple adjacent frequencies. By making large changes, you increase your chances of dialing out of the issue.

When adjusting the power, do you see red outlines on some channels more than others? This could be an indicator of poor communication/interference. Please note, this outline will also appear when a light tries to go beyond max or minimum power.




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