283 External Flash


Vivitar

Categories: Reviews: Equipment : Accessories

The 283 External Flash

Feature Highlights:

  • Guide number: 120 (ISO 100/ft.
  • 4 auto f/stop settings
  • Auto thyristor circuitry
  • Vertical bounce flash
  • Variable power control with optional VP-1
  • Remote sensor capability
  • Sufficient light indicator
  • Illuminated calculator dial
  • Power source: 4 AA batteries


6 Reviews  

Average Rating: 5 out of 5

5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Golden Cameras
 
Paul  5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 2/6/2007 5:10:06 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 2/6/2007 5:10:06 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 2/6/2007 5:10:06 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 2/6/2007 5:10:06 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 2/6/2007 5:10:06 PM
Rating: 5 out of 5
I've used the Vivitar 283 professionally for 25 years and recommend it as a reliable almost-perfect workhorse flash. With a 3' remote sensor cord and white bounce card I have full control over where the shadows are placed in vertical or horizontal shots.

Also, unless I have a desperate reason to do so, I almost never place the flash on top of the camera for several reasons:
1. it's a vulnerable place to attach a heavy object on a camera while shooting
2. even with a diffuser, it places an obtrusive shadow behind your subject
3. pointing the flash up in bounce mode only works for horizontal shots (and verticals aim the flash to either side)

Regarding trigger voltage: I've been using the 283 with remote cord on a digital Olympus SP350 with no evidence of "frying" of my electronics. I can't vouch for its effects on other digital cameras, but that is my experience.

2/6/2007 5:10:06 PM
 
Ed Marion
BetterPhoto Member Since: 3/27/2005
4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/14/2006 12:15:47 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/14/2006 12:15:47 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/14/2006 12:15:47 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/14/2006 12:15:47 PM 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/14/2006 12:15:47 PM
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
I owned mine since 1980 and it never let me down.
4/14/2006 12:15:47 PM
 
Maverick Creatives
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/1/2004
5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2004 5:16:53 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2004 5:16:53 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2004 5:16:53 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2004 5:16:53 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 12/18/2004 5:16:53 PM
Rating: 5 out of 5
Vivitar 285HV Auto Electronic Flash

It may seem overkill. I have this elaborate flash unit connected to the NON ttl flash hot shoe of the fuji S7000. I love it. It expands the horizon for my rather limited range of f stops by providing lighting challenges to experiment with. I'm using the Lumiquest pocket bouncer with it. Nothing but good to say about this unit.
Gary

12/18/2004 5:16:53 PM
 
Bob Fowler 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/7/2004 9:27:44 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/7/2004 9:27:44 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/7/2004 9:27:44 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/7/2004 9:27:44 PM 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4/7/2004 9:27:44 PM
Rating: 5 out of 5
A classic. Such a wide variety of accessories are available for these, it's hard to find fault with the basic design.

OK, it's not THAT hard... If you have an older model of this flash and plan to put it on a modern, electronic camera, you would do well to test the sync voltage. Some of these had 350+ volts at the sync terminals (both hot shoe and cord) and will fry your camera if you're not careful. The current level is very, very low, but many modern cameras won't tolerate more than 6 volts at the sync connection.

Having said that, these are great flash units for PJ work, especially with a Sto-Fen Omni Bounce. I use one on a QRS-35-H flash bracket by Custom Brackets.

4/7/2004 9:27:44 PM
 
Jeff S. Kennedy 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 4.5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Great flash. Its probably the greatest value going. Tough to find a flash this durable and powerful for under $100. I've heard people complain that the base has a tendency to break but I've owned a couple for many years and used them heavily with no problems. The only thing I've ever replaced are batteries.
 
Michael LaRosa 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras 5 out of 5 BetterPhoto Cameras
Rating: 5 out of 5
This is probably one of my favorite pieces of photo gear...ever. I have depended on my 283s in all kind of situations for years. I use them on camera or on a bracket with a bounce card or diffuser, bounced off a wall or ceiling for indoor fill, and mounted on a lightstand with an umbrella to take studio-style portraits. It so compact & lightweight I can carry it in my camera bag nestled next to my lenses, so it's always available to serve as an outdoor fill. I use it on automatic, and I use it on manual with the Varipower module. I'd recommend it to anyone. You get all this versatility and dependability less than a hundred bucks.
 

6 Reviews