View Full Version : Best External Flash For Oly C-750

11-24-2004, 05:18 PM
I need opinions for the best flash for this camera. Preferably one that has a focus lamp which is compatable with the camera and will help with the focusing. Money is almost no object.


12-22-2004, 04:09 PM
I have a Sunpak 383 and spent around $130 for it. But if money is no object, get the Olympus FL-50. It is a good size for the camera, and it allows you to use the camera's internal flash controls to set the intensity of the flash. It also allows you to use any of the camera's modes. A flash from another maker other than Olympus requires you to shoot in manual mode only.

Jim Last
12-23-2004, 01:27 AM
Not sure if the Auto Focus Light on the FL-50 will work with the C-750, you may want to try it out in a store before buying.

I think that the FL-40 will work without any issues, however, you will need to trawl throught the second hand shops or eBay to find one, usually between 120 and 170 for one in great condition with everything included.

You could also look to try the NEW FL-36 which is available in the US now and the UK in January.

If you want full connectivity you will need to use an Olympus flash, rather than using third parties.

12-31-2004, 02:55 PM
I've also heard this is your best bet, particularly if money is no object:Olympus FL-50

Norm in Fujino
01-23-2005, 02:40 AM
I have a Sunpak 383 and spent around $130 for it. But if money is no object, get the Olympus FL-50.

The FL-50 is a great flash (I have one), but unfortunately, as Jim suggests, its focus assist illuminator doesn't work with the C-750. The best features about it IMO are its high power and the flash zoom that links to the setting of the C-750's lens, allowing you to get better distance and coverage from the camera's 10x capabilities. The power is high enough that you can bounce vertically off ceilings for softer lighting in many situations.

02-18-2005, 07:35 PM
I've owned a C-750 for about a year now, and have been gradually purchasing accessories for it. I recently decided to take the plunge and buy a flash. I was aware of four "compatible" flashes that Olympus made for it, the FL-20, 36, 40, and 50.

The FL-20 has no AF assist, but it also has limited power and no bounce or tilt capability, so I ruled it out despite its relatively modest price (approx. $110).

The FL-40 appears to be discontinued, although it is still (barely) available and it is costly. I've found the FL-50 for as low as about $385.00, but I have a hard time justifying that, since I only paid about $400 for the camera itself, brand-new from an online retailer.

The FL-36 has bounce/tilt, it is a relatively powerful flash, and it seems to have most if not all of the features of the FL-40 & FL-50. It uses (2) AA's instead of 4, it has a decent flash charge rate and battery life, and is available for as little as $190. Much more reasonable.

Prior to purchase, I read the manuals for all four flashes online, and based on their information, I was led to believe that none of the flashes had an AF assist that was compatible with my camera.

Despite this one missing feature, I decided that overall, the FL-36 was the best choice, and I purchased it.

This is a quote from page 10 of the manual (it can be downloaded and read here:


AF illuminator light-emitting area. When the subject is dark or low contrast, the built-in AF illuminator emits light to facilitate focusing. The AF illuminator can also be defeated. (Page 47) The AF illuminator only works with the Olympus Four Thirds System digital SLR camera. It does not work with other cameras.

On page 47, within the instructions for disabling the AF assist, it again states: AF illuminator; Only works with the Olympus Four Thirds System digital SLR camera. It does not work with other cameras.

Finally on page 62 it states: AF illuminator : Automatic firing at low intensity, possible only when a camera with communication capability is connected. Standard effective distances (Variable depending on the camera and lens in use.) 1 to 5 m (3.3 to 16.4 ft).

I received the flash last night and started playing around with it. The only modes available on the flash when attached to my camera are "TTL Auto" and "Manual". "Manual" is ONLY available when the camera has been set to M (as in A/S/M or full manual).

I found during my experiments that in dim lighting, while the camera is attempting to autofocus, the flash paints a red target on the wall or whatever you're aiming at.

I contacted Olympus tech support today regarding this discrepancy. The tech I spoke with was completely bewildered. He said he would pass along the information "upstairs". One thing he mentioned during our conversation, along with some detective work on my part, may explain the situation.

First of all, the Olympus C-750 UZ is not a Four Thirds System camera, nor is it a digital SLR. The tech mentioned that the AF assist should only work when it was operating in "TTL Auto" mode. The C-750 has a TTL hotshoe. "TTL - Through-The taking-Lens System. To help adjust exposure, a light receptor built into the camera directly measures the light passing through the lens." "TTL-AUTO - For use with an external flash. Light emitted by the flash is measured by the light receptor in the camera as it passes through the lens. A signal is then sent to adjust the external flash intensity." I don't know whether any other C7xx cameras are TTL compatible or not. Reading the C-750's manual, I get the impression that it should also be capable of full communication with the FL-40 and FL-50, but I have no way of confirming this.

The AF light is not bright enough to be visible on the LCD or the EVF. It is on for less than a second, and the lighting has to be fairly miserable for it to kick in. You can also depress the shutter release half-way to trigger it if lighting is low enough. Or do it while the lens cap is on.

By the way, the flash itself is a joy to work with. It acts like it's a part of the camera. It even turns itself off when you turn the camera off.

Norm in Fujino
02-19-2005, 06:33 AM
Hmm, I wish I knew what to do to get that effect. I have a C-755 (basically same as the 750), and a FL-50, but the focus assist lamp definitely doesn't work in any mode I've been able to find.

02-21-2005, 04:46 PM
The C-750 and the C-755 are similar, but not identical. There are entire discussions on the web regarding the supposed changes that may or may not have been made between the two models, and apparently there is even more than one version of the C-755. In light of the fact that Olympus didn't even know that the AF illuminator on the FL-36 would work with the C750, I can't promise that they didn't change something in the camera's flash control section, too.

The language in the manual for the FL-50 regarding the AF illuminator lamp is identical to that in the manual for the FL-36. It is possible that they may have incorporated some change in the FL36, but nothing in the manual suggests that this is the case.

For starters, make sure the flash is operating in TTL Auto mode. On the camera end, start out with the mode selector in P, and the flash mode set to auto. Leave the lens cap on, press the shutter release half-way to force a focus, and look at the AF assist area. If it doesn't light, it may just not work. It worked in other modes on my camera, but that seems a safe starting point.

I have customized some of the settings on my camera. For one thing, I use multi-metering. I don't know whether this may have an effect. Also, I use the iESP mode for focusing.

Also, I found reference that the auto on/off feature I referred to is also only supposed to work with E-1 (Four Thirds) cameras.

Good Luck!

Norm in Fujino
02-21-2005, 05:12 PM
Well, at least the auto on-off feature works on mine. :confused:

02-24-2005, 08:01 PM
I also believe the feature only works when the flash is horizontal and facing forward (i.e., no bounce, no rotation.) Sorry, that's the last I have to suggest.

03-17-2005, 06:53 AM
I use the FL 36 on my 770. Wonderful.

The focus assist lamp does light for about 1/2 second. Who know whether the camera uses it. Olympus says no.

john the toymaker

03-23-2005, 11:12 AM
I have a C-750 as well, and am looking into getting either the FL-36 or FL-40. I'm not a photographer by any means, and would like something that does everything automatically (except for aiming the flash which I've read up on a little bit).

Does anyone know if the FL-40 offers more 'automatic' features than the FL-36, considering Olympus' claim that the FL-36 isn't fully compatible with the C-series cams?

Also, anyone else experience FL-36 AF assist lamp working with the C-750?

04-22-2005, 02:54 PM

I decided to go with the FL-36 and as someone else also experienced, the AF illuminator DOES work with the C-750. It is very brief so the first time I looked for it I didn't find it - but when i shot a close object in the dark it was much more apparent. I'd definitely recommend the FL-36 for the C-750, if money is a concern.