CyberSync Review

Paul c Buff CyberSync Mini Review

by Henry on January 12, 2010 · 12 comments

in Reviews

Disclaimer: Before I start this CyberSync mini review, I would like to state that I am not in any way associated with Paul c Buff and his company. I gain no financial benefits from giving this honest review of CyberSync.

There are hundreds of CyberSync reviews on the net, so I will keep this review short and straight to the point. I received my set of trigger and 3 receivers a week after placing an order with the Australian Distributor and have been doing outdoor testing, and of course indoor as well.

What is CyberSync?

CyberSync is a remote control system that enables off-camera flash photography. A photographer can place “lights” away from the camera and remotely fire them, illuminating subjects.

The system consists of transmitter units (CyberSync CST/Commander), and receivers (CyberSync /CSR/CSR+/CSRB/CSRB+).

Range Test:

The test was conducted with 1 Canon 580EX speedlite, and 2 Canon 580EX speedlites. All flashes set to manual power at 1/8 and 105mm zoom setting. The camera used to capture below images was a Canon EOS 300D, in manual mode at 1/250 and f/8.0. Ambient light was deliberately under-exposed to verify that flash was triggered.

5 metre: 100% fire rate
IMG_1003

10 metre: 100% fire rate
IMG_1004

40 metre: 100% fire rate
CyberSync range test: 40 metre

110 metre: 100% fire rate
CyberSync range test: 110 metre

130 metre: 100% fire rate
IMG_1024

Camera maximum speed sync test:

Canon EOS 300D at 1/250, f/4.5. No black banding on the bottom of the frame

CyberSync maximum sync speed test

Same test, 1/320, f/4.5. As you can notice, black band on bottom frame.
CyberSync maximum sync speed test for Canon 300D at 1/320

Pros:

  • Receiver unit uses standard AA battery. This type of battery is easy to find at local supermarkets/stores.
  • Transmitter unit is extremely small and fit snuggly on camera hot shoe.
  • 100% reliable up to 130 metres and a whole lot better than eBay triggers.
  • Off-camera flash will sync at camera maximum sync speed. For the Canon EOS 5D Mark II, this was tested at 1/200.

Cons:

  • There is no lanyard loop for hanging the receivers. People suggest using Wii remote strap over the battery cover. Personally I am using mobile/cell  phone bag, as pictured.
    CyberSync holder - mobile/cell phone bag
  • No OFF button, receiver unit remains ON for 1 hour and will go into standby mode after 1 hour of idleness.
  • PC Sync cable may become loose, but this is easily fixed by using rubber band.
  • Trigger battery CR2450 can be difficult to track down.

In conclusion the CyberSync is a great upgrade over eBay triggers, for an affordable price.

[Update 21st Dec 2010] The battery (CR2450) on my CyberSync CST transmitter decided to kick the bucket after less than one year use. It was difficult to locate a local store that sells this type of battery. I  event went to the city to find it, there was a watch store asking for a whooping $18 but I declined the offer. My search landed me on Dick Smith, thank god, $4.20 per battery!

[Update 13th January 2011] More range test photos.

Approximately 15m

Approximately 30m

Approximately 60m

70m

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Walter March 10, 2010 at 12:03 AM

Very simple and to the point review. I really appreciated you showing the sync speed photos using a 300D. I have e-bay triggers and a 350D and the black bar starting showing up at 1/200 and I can’t use 1/250. This review just made my decision easier.

Reply

angel pope August 2, 2010 at 9:05 AM

I was wondering…did your transmitter/receiver come with the necessary cords to attach to a Canon 5d MII? I got mine awhile back, couldn’t make them connect, put them back in the box and haven’t messed with them since. I tried to contact Paul C. Buff/Alien Bees Website about it but received no response…

Reply

Henry August 2, 2010 at 5:05 PM

Hi Angel,

I received a PC Sync cord for the transmitter unit for connecting to the PC-Sync port on the 5D Mark II. The receiver has two cables included each. I’ve tested using PC-Sync to transmitter and it worked.

Reply

Daniel December 18, 2010 at 12:40 AM

great post, thanks for sharing

Reply

Henry December 21, 2010 at 5:31 PM

Thanks Daniel, and have a Merry Christmas!

Reply

Nathan Griffin August 22, 2011 at 11:01 PM

Very good review on the CyberSync flash remote products – I liked the pictures confirming performance at different lengths. I don’t work that far, but nice to know what they can do.

Reply

Henry August 24, 2011 at 9:00 PM

Hi Nathan,

I don’t work that far too, max distance I use the CyberSync is about 5-10m from the subject. However it is good to know what the CyberSync is capable of. :)

Reply

Craig Rivota December 17, 2011 at 7:36 AM

I have just recently purchased the Fuji X100. This amazing little camera allows you to synch an external flash up 1/2000th of a second with some inaccuracies, but to 1/1000th with no problems. I would like to know if you have experimented with this at all or if anyone knows how well the Fuji X100 will work with these Cybersync triggers. I am considering getting a few for some strobist style work soon. Anyone?

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Henry December 18, 2011 at 7:09 AM

I haven’t used CyberSync on compact digital cameras before, however the CyberSync has 100% firing rate.

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robert December 19, 2011 at 4:25 AM

Don’t know if you found a better source yet of batteries, but I’ve been using dealextreme.com I’m in Canada & the current price of 10-CR2450′s is about US$4.50 including shipping from HK.

Reply

Craig Rivota April 20, 2012 at 6:57 AM

I have been using the CyberSync now for a few months. All I can say is it makes me LOVE my little X100 even more. This is now an amazingly portable custom lighting system. It’s just GREAT!

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