G6 external flash HF-DC1 or shoe mount (430EX or 220EX or 380EX)
I am looking to get an external flash to 1) increase shooting distance over 35 feet in a dark environment like a reception and 2) reduce red eye. I know the G6 has a hot shoe so does not need a "slave" function. HF-DC1 is slave, will not connect to auto metering, has ISO of 59 in feet, and is compact for about $120 EX speedlites will connect to metering, and will be a bit bulkier but shoot longer distance (higher GN) for between $120 and $500 (the 430EX would push my budget hard). I know a lot of folks have the 420EX or 430EX and like them with the G6. Is anyone using the 220EX or the HF-DC1 with a G6, and if so what are their thoughts? I am just trying to see what others are recommending, and if I missed any reasoning that is necessary. Thanks for your suggestions..

Comments (12)

Do you want absolutely a Canon Flash ? Why not a Sigma one ? I don't know them because a have yet a speedlite 430EX with my G6 (realy nice together), but it seems that the EF 500 DG-ST could be a good solution, it works with the G6 in E-TTL too, with a higher GN, and it is much less expensive than a Canon Speedlite...

Comment #1

Hm, there seems to be a "corrective effect" here because the camera jpeg is 640x480 and the raw files I'm working with are 12Mp (and displaying at 1920x1200) try this, it's a 640x480 version of the post-processed raw shot above. it loses some detail as a result but you can see the difference more directly. The question is, is there any more detail in the 12MP camera jpegs? Yes...enough for you to see what is going on in them, relative to the raw you can see that when viewed at "actual size" the shots are both 640x480 and the camera jpeg looks "ok" but the raw shot is much better. If you are using a tabbed browser, just open this up in one tab and the shot above in another tab and switch back and forth, the difference is obvious. Tomorrow I'll shoot some 12MP shots in both formats and show some crops. The full images are anywhere from 6MB to 20MB each depending on ISO and sharpening...

Comment #2

Yes, it's the best way I have found for my G6, like I dreamed it. I can shot in any mode, and not worry of any settings, because the flash makes all the job by itself, in a correct way with the TTL system. Even with close-up and "super-macro" shots, which get the correct light. When I miss a photo, it's often because I have tried to overdo the technical possibilities of the camera, but it would be the same with any camera and flash... Another thing : Since I shot in RAW mode, I can easily bring some corrections (exposition, white-balance), for a perfect result when needed.

The only thing which does not work because the G6 is not a DSLR, it's the red light for AF assistance, and we can regret that not any flash can give us this help with the G6. But we can forget this, because of the other qualities. So good lightnings in your research of the good flash ! (and excuse my english).


Comment #3

Another thing about the 430EX, it's about the long life of the batteries. I use 4 x NiMh 2500 mah, and and I have the impression that they will never die. When I must recharge them (because it happens !), it's because I have done several hundreds of shots with them. And after each shot, the flash is ready after about 2 seconds, sometimes less, it depends of the distance of the subject. But I repeat, I don't know how works the Sigma flash, May be it does the same that the Canon one, it would be interesting to see...

Comment #4

Hi I was just looking around and reading stuff regarding the canon's HF-DC1 flash.i have a canon S2IS and is planning to buy an external flash unit but I am a bit concerned with the HF-DC1 since it cannot swivel and bounce. I have heard of the canon 430ex and even the 530ex but it's way too much for my camera ryt?would a bower brand be recommendable?and whats the best flash for the S2IS that would rily be worth for this unit? By the way, I am new to this hobby and would welcome your suggestions... Thanks...

Comment #5


It is hard to help determine what would be best for you. I did not wish for the slave type that is not metered through the camera. That left me with either a 220EX (approx $125 USD) or the 430EX (apprx $250 USD), as I could not afford the 580EX (approx $400 USD). The HF-DC1 is about $130 USD, but is not metered by the camera - along with no bounce or swivel - which is what ruled that out for me. In the end I decided to stretch hard and ordered the 430EX for it's through the lens metering, red eye reduction from being farther away from the lens axis, fast recycle time, battery friendly usage, and power to do what I wanted it to do. Even though it is much smaller than the Vivatar 283 I have, it is larger than I would like to have on a camera the size of a G6, but meets my other requirements, Go to Canon's web and see what flashes are compatible with your camera.

If your camera supports the two EX's, then I would go with one of them, as that is what I did...

Comment #6

Thanks Don, Is the hot shoe the part of the camera that's located above the lens?I don't think this unit has a hot shoe. It needs a slave bracket with shoe.Does this work the same as the hot shoe? There's a bower and a vivitar flash for this unit that can bounce and swivel though...

Comment #7

Hi again don. I have some links here that I want you to check and make comment for me to have an idea. thanks Here are the links: All of these fits the S2IS camera.

Thanks for the help. I rily appreciate it. -paul..

Comment #8

Paul, Yes, you are limited to a slave only, I looked it up. I really do not have a lot of advice regarding the units on e-bay, or the Canon slave either. I will tell you in my experience, the built in flash is just not powerful enough and needs some external support. A friend got a slave unit for a non Canon and it also made a big difference. Compare the Guide Number (strength) of the flash and realize they are rated BOTH in meters and in feet, so meters are over 3 times stronger then the same rating number in feet. I do think I would stick with brand names though.

That is the best advice I can give...

Comment #9

I am hopeless at photography. Have had Ixus cameras since 2000 and am now on Ixus 80IS. I usually use auto shoot. (I know I should learn how to use manual - I have just broken my ankle so maybe this is the time to learn!) Would buying the HF-DC1 flash help with the red-eye and this may sound like a stupid question but how does it fit onto the camera? Thanks Evelyn..

Comment #10

The HF-DC1 comes with a bracket to attach to the tripod mount, with the flash being held beside the camera. I don't think using it will solve any red-eye problems though, as the in-camera flash needs to fire to trigger the slave flash. Newer cameras remove red-eye in firmware. You can do the same with most image editors these days...

Comment #11

I'm new here so apologies if I am in the wrong Forum. I recently managed to lose about 150 images using a Canon G6 with a 256Mb CF card. This followed an attempt to take some video. I have used the camera for a number of years without a problem. First about half the images disappeared then the whole lot. Now I have a card with no images that my PC tells me needs formatting. What did I do wrong and can I retrieve the lost data? Any advice would be appreciated...

Comment #12

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