Question about Nikon Speedlight SB-800 TTL Flash

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Flash in need of crash cart?

Hi all,

I've been having a problem with my camera, or rather flash.  When I called Nikon, they said that it could be a number of things and that I should basically figure it out on my own. Thanks guys, you're the best!  Anyway, I have a D200 and SB800 that I use with a bracket and sync cord for weddings. In the past, I had some problems with exposure. The first shot would come out with a perfect exposure, not changing anything the second shot would come out slightly underexposed and the third, even more underexposed and unusable. I figured this was due to the flash not being able to recharge fast enough and therefore not being bright enough and let it go. However, I was shooting a wedding this past weekend and it happened again, but this time some very important shots all came out black. I went to change out the batteries in the flash and they were so hot that they literally burnt my fingers. I replaced the batteries and then everything was fine again, the rest of the photographs came out beautiful. Does anyone have any idea as to what might be causing this to happen? By the way, I do not have any other battery packs on the camera, except for the extension that comes with the SB800 that allows you to add a 5th AA battery. The batteries are not rechargeable. Any and all help is appreciated!!

P.S.  I went to see the Nikon rep. this past Saturday at a local camera shop and he had no idea what was wrong with it.  He had me sit in a corner and fire it off 300 times rapidly to see if the batteries got hot.  They didn't of course.  He then told me that he shouldn't have told me to fire the flash so rapidly because it was bad for the flash.  Oops, so glad I fired all 300 off 5 feet away from you and in the direction of your face then!   He just told me rather rudely to buy locally from now on so that I could perhaps count on, in the future, a company to lend me a spare when it, my trusty flash was out for repair.  When I asked him if I could count on the company who made my flash to lend me one of their 5 perfectly polished SB-800'd sitting on the table for people to ooh and ahh at because I've spent AT LEAST an entire year's salary on their products, he simply replied, 'I can't do that ma'am (I'm old enough to be a ma'am now :( ), you would have to send it in for repair, but here is my card and perhaps I can get it through the repair process a little faster for you."  Gotta love them Nikon reps.

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Re: Flash in need of crash cart?

That Nikon rep really knows his products.

1. Really, the batteries were very hot could have been not putting the one of those five batteries in the right direction.

2. You're using the flash with those dome filter or pull out filter from flash. Over 55% of light power are lost and maybe only 20% to subject. This will make the capacitor/batteries very hot and may break down, flash will take a break when you needed the most.

3. Firing the flash off using DC voltage very fast will kill the flash or making it work harder.

Hope they are helpful.

Posted on Jan 15, 2008

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