Update: for the final production models, see our ComTrig G430 review.
Chinese trigger manufacturer Ojecoco have partnered with British photographic supplier CotswoldPhoto to develop a new kind of wireless flash trigger. The Ojecoco H-430 is a stripped down accompaniment to the firm’s high speed H-550 series triggers (reviewed here).
Unlike the transceiver-based H-550, the Ojecoco H-430 has distinct transmitters and receivers, apparently making the triggers “faster with lower latency”.
The H-430, which comes in Canon and Nikon flavours, bears resemblance to other wireless remotes such as the Phottix Strato Multi II and Pixel Rook. Indeed, it shares many of their features, including wireless flash grouping, AAA batteries and TTL pass-through on the transmitter.
However, Ojecoco have an ace up their sleeve. Crucially, the H-430 is inter-compatible with the H-550, allowing shutter speeds up to 1/8000 second to be obtained when the H-430 is triggered by an H-550 in high speed mode. As you can see from the chart below, this gives an Ojecoco user many more shutter speeds to choose from:
For more details on how high speed mode works, see our separate H-550 review.
What’s more, there is an ECP port on the H-430TX for “trap shooting” using sensors attached to the transmitter. This will enable users to trip their cameras and/or flashes in response to sound, light, pressure etc. for applications in wildlife and scientific photography.
CotswoldPhoto sent us a pair of pre-production Ojecoco H-430s to evaluate in advance of their release. (See here for a review of the final models.) Ours were for Nikon, but results for Canon should be similar. We weren’t able to test every single feature since some parts of the design were only completed between this batch and the final production run.
Straight out of the box, the H-430s have an intuitive, easy-to-use design that for the most part negates the need for the clearly-written instruction manual (not included, but available as an electronic PDF). Buttons are sensibly labelled and everything is easily accessible. You can change groups, channels, modes and batteries, even with a flashgun mounted on top and a light stand underneath.
The devices feel solidly made. A metal foot on the transmitter, locking rings and locking pins all serve to inspire confidence that your H-430s will sit securely wherever you put them.
The transmitter (H-430TX) and receiver (H-430RX) look almost identical. On the right side of the device you’ll find an Off/Mode switch and a Group button. On the transmitter there is one mode for handholding (for use of the two-stage test/shutter button) and another for syncing with your camera. On the receiver you can set the unit to trip either a remote camera or an off-camera flash (suggesting you can’t do both at the same time).
On the left hand side is the Channel button and two 2.5mm synchronisation ports. On the receiver these are outputs to a remote camera or flash. On the transmitter they are inputs – either from your camera’s Prontor/Compur sync port, or from an external sensor (ECP) for trap shooting.
Despite the claim of “lower latency” in this model, we achieved the same maximum shutter speeds as obtained in our H-550 transceiver test. On the Nikon D40 we got 1/1250 second and on the D700 1/250 second. A manual flash mounted on the transmitter’s TTL hotshoe can synchronise up to 1/2500 second with the D40.
One quirk we noticed is that wireless grouping works only with flashes, and are disabled when triggering a remote camera. I’m not sure why this is, but it could cause frustration for someone wanting to trip several remote cameras in groups. Channels are unaffected.
There were no problems using these triggers at extremely short to long ranges, and no misfires or missed shots were encountered.
Overall, the Ojecoco H-430 is an excellent all-round trigger. It has everything offered by the latest remotes from other manufacturers with the possible exception of an external power input (found on the dearer Bishop, Opas and Strato II). The unique selling points are price (see below), compatibility with the high speed H-550 series and the ECP port for trap shooting.
CotswoldPhoto is Ojecoco’s exclusive worldwide distributor for H-430 flash triggers. They are set to be officially released tomorrow, on Saturday 3rd December 2011. An Ojecoco H-430 transmitter/receiver kit will be priced at US$80/£50/€60. Additional receivers will cost US$35. Note that prices may vary with exchange rates.
You can also win a set in the first round of our upcoming photographic competition.