Using a sync cord to fire strobe lights

Jason wrote:

I recently was given 1 White Lighting 10,000 and 2 White Lighting 5,000 to start my studio photography. I am in the process of getting my sync cord connector for my digital camera. Do I need more cords to plug the lights into one another for the 2 to fire? What is the best way to handle this set-up? I’m not too sure what I really need to make all three work for me.

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6 thoughts on “Using a sync cord to fire strobe lights

  1. Post author


    Most modern monolights come with built-in slave sensors which will trigger the strobe when it detects a large flash of light from another monolight. This means that you will only have to connect your camera to one monolight and allow the others to be triggered from their slaves.

    If you do not want wires in your studio, consider purchasing a remote triggering device like a Pocket Wizard which uses radio transmission to trigger your lights. This makes positioning your equipment much simpler.

    You may even use your on-camera flash set to low power to trigger your lights. The intensity of the flash should be enough to trigger the monolights slaves without affecting the scene. If you still see the light from the flash, you can bounce it into the ceiling or the nearest light using a small white card.

  2. darren maskell

    Hi l have a d80 nikon and a mono studio light .l am having a bad time in finding the right cable from camera to mono flash unit l hope you can help thanks alot darren maskell…………………………………………….

  3. Post author

    Marsha – Sync cords and wireless systems both fire the strobe instantaneously. Wireless is nice for the freedom it offers from cables, however. There are many brands, but recommending one would be difficult without some more information about your lights. Email us more information and we’ll do our best to help.

    Darren – You need a hot shoe to PC connector like this one to attach to your camera. Then any standard PC cable will allow you to connect to your strobe so long as the connector on the light matches the cord. For a specific cord, please email the brand and model of light.

  4. Dan

    I have a D2X and a photogenic light kit. I have been told that using the sync cord from a nonpowered flash can “zero” out the camera if there is a voltage difference between the camera and lights. Is this a potential issue or “urban legend”. I have already used this set up for approx 200 or more flashes and fortuantely nothing happened. Is that an assurance that it will not happen?

    Should I power the flash , disc the cord and let my SB 800 trigger the studio lights? Or is a $50 Ir slave the way to go?