STEP 1. Ensure your cameras are set correctly for multi-camera use
Prosumer DSLR / mirrorless cameras are great pieces of modern engineering and design - however they are designed to be used in isolation so to optimise them for use in multi-camera setups they need to be set in very specific ways.
So to ensure the cameras are set correctly for multi-camera use follow these steps...
- Confirm the cameras are in manual (M) exposure mode.
Manual exposure mode will give you total control over the exposure settings and prevent the cameras from making decisions about the exposure which may delay the shutter release.
- Confirm the AutoFocus (AF) is disabled on the all cameras and lenses (if applicable)
If AF is 'on' the camera will always try and acquire focus before they take the shot and in a multi-camera array they won’t all AutoFocus at the same time. Which means that the cameras won’t all fire at the same time.
- Check your shutter speeds
In a multi-camera array the typically shutter speeds you should be aiming for are between 1/5 and 1/15. Anything faster than this and you run the risk that all the cameras shutters will not be open at the same time.
Assuming a flash/strobe is being used the shutter speed will not affect the exposure as this will be determined by the flash duration.
- Confirm all the cameras / lens apertures (f number) are set to the same value.
This is important as the aperture leaves in the lens close before taking the shot so if they are not all the same value then they may delay the cameras firing. Recommended values are f8-f11.
- Confirm all the cameras iso and white balance values are set the same
This is more to ensure the exposures are even across the cameras.
STEP 2. Fault finding the connections
After the camera settings are confirmed it is then worth running a test with the TriggerBox in green mode to see if all the shutters open at the same time.
If there are still problems then it’s down to fault finding the connections...
- Swap the cable with one that was working
Connect a working trigger cable to the camera that’s not firing. If this fixes the issue then it was an issue with the trigger cable. If not go to 2....
- Keeping the cable the same swap the problem camera to one that is firing
If you find that the swapped camera works then it is either; a) an issue with the camera settings on the camera that wasn't firing, so double check the camera settings (go to step 1) or b) a fault with the problem camera, in which case consult your cameras documentation.
If you are still experiencing problems then you will need to check the TriggerBox outputs, so go to 3...
- Take a camera and cable combination that is known to work and plug into the output socket that is not firing.
If it fixes it look at the problematic camera and cable combination. If not then it is a fault with the TriggerBox output socket and you will need to contact our support team - see below.
What information you can provide when raising a support ticket.
Going through the steps above solves around three quarters of the support tickets we receive. If this does not help, then here's what you can provide for us during your ticket submission in order to make your support experience as quick and seamless as possible.
- Tell us who you are - knowing your name and which company you're from means we can personalise the support you receive.
- Describe the issue as clearly and as simply as possible - explain which product you are having an issue with, the process you are going through and what isn't working as you expect.
- Tell us the steps you have taken already to try resolve the issue - not only just this help us narrow down reason for the issue it also stops us from advising things you've already tried
- Let us know the make and models of the cameras you are using - knowing the type of cameras you are using makes our troubleshooting efforts so much easier and therefore much faster.
- Send us some pictures or video - they say a picture (or a series of pictures) speaks a thousand words. If you can illustrate your problem in a video or by sending us some examples of the problem that's a great way to get the issue across.
We hope this article will provide the best experience possible if you should ever need support with your TriggerBox product. Again, thanks for being a ESPER customer!