Yongnuo YN-E3-RT radio controller officially released

The first third-party alternative to the Canon ST-E3-RT is going on sale for $150.

Yongnuo YN-E3-RT

The first third-party alternative to the Canon ST-E3-RT is going on sale. For photographers wanting wireless control of their Speedlite 600EX-RTs, Yongnuo’s YN-E3-RT, priced $150, is almost half the price of the original yet isn’t an exact clone.

The YN-E3-RT has the same form factor — clip it to your camera and adjust your flash settings using the top-facing LCD screen. You get E-TTL control, manual power adjustment and high-speed sync to boot. But the Chinese firm has added in one or two extra features that it reckoned were missing from Canon’s offering.

According to the manufacturer it has an operating range of 100 metres (versus Canon’s 30m) though this may be taken with a pinch of salt. At the time of writing the only compatible radio-enabled flashgun is the Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT, though an aftermarket YN600EX-RT is supposed to be on the way. Note that the YN-E3-RT does not work with the YN-622 or RF-603 system.

Yongnuo YN-E3-RT

The major difference between the YN-E3-RT and the ST-E3-RT — other than the price — is the addition of an AF-assist light on the Yongnuo version. Since Canon EOS cameras still don’t seem to feature such illuminators of their own, this little LED could prove a godsend for photographers shooting in dim environments.

Yongnuo YN-E3-RT

How reliable is it? We will be getting one of these little transmitters in to our offices soon to write a full review. If you need the absolute most reliable option, wait until our review published, save up for the real deal or opt for another tried-and-tested flash trigger. It remains to be seen if the YN-E3-RT will live up to its specs.

Compatible with600EX-RT600EX-RT
High-speed syncYesYes
Built-in AF assistNoYes

The Yongnuo YN-E3-RT is on sale now from certain sellers on eBay and Amazon. If in doubt, visit the official Yongnuo store, which should have stock soon. Are you thinking of going for one of these modules or do you prefer another kind of radio trigger? Share your opinions below.

David Selby
Based in the West Midlands, UK, David Selby is editor of Lighting Rumours, a part-time photographer and a statistics PhD student.
  • Kay O. Sweaver

    I’ll never understand Canon’s stubborn refusal to put AF assist lamps on anything. Good on Yongnuo for doing what Canon won’t.

  • YS

    Oh man, where’s the 560-RT? I only use flashes manually, so all the extra cost for TTL wireless flash is unnecessary. Looking forward to trying out a YN setup.

    • Pontiaku

      I agree. That extra money for TTL is better spent elsewhere. You would only need one TTL flash for use on the camera anyway so a remote makes no sense. I think the 560 III’s are reasonably priced, we just need a good trigger for them.

  • Louis Weijl

    Is this item for Canon only? What about Nikon?

    • There are no Nikon flashes with built-in radio yet, so a Nikon version wouldn’t be much use at the moment.

  • david

    given the blatant copy of canon’s product, what are the moral ethics of buying this product?
    afterall, most photographers are the first to scream when someone steals or copies their work.
    double standards?

    • This product is not a copy.
      The device looks very similar but does not copy all the details.
      The device has almost the same functionality, but implemented differently.
      Yes, almost completely copied the interface but it is logical, because the same set of features, besides it is very convenient for users.
      Unfortunately Canon is in no hurry to expand and improve the RT product line . Very well what will be the alternative. Perhaps this will encourage Canon to action.

      • david

        with all due respect it is clearly a copy.
        from the top it is identical.
        it could have used canon’s mould it is so similar.
        wonder if canon would ever seek an import ban.

        • notice carefully 🙂
          housing is similar but not interchangeable
          please note the distance between the display and buttons.

  • “Ask David Selby, he has done a review on the flash light that is never going to be put out in the market with Rikon’s names”

    Where is this review of which you write?

    • iphoto27

      12/10/12: Rikon Dazzne Flash Light, LR by David Selby.
      2/27/13 Pixel from Flash Havoc

      Rikon showed up in 2013 Photos in New York but will be making it Pixel and Yongnuo.

      Godox is making flashes & power for B & H Photo, Calumet, Cheetah Light and other.

      Cononmark is making for Iphoton.

      Triopo is making flashes for B & H Photo.

      • We reviewed the Kody triggers but not the Dazzne Flash Light, which has yet to appear anywhere outside product renders.

  • Valics Lehel

    I have Yongnuo YN-560 III, anyone know a trigger with HHS which will trigger my flashes? TX.

    • Pontiaku

      I forget, does the 560III even support HHS? I’ve heard you can use 1/1 power and exceed the sync speed limit.