600EX-RT controllable from non-Canon cameras with YN-E3-RT update

Like the Canon 600EX-RT but wish you could trigger it from any camera? Now you can.

Yongnuo YN-E3-RT

Yongnuo has updated the firmware for their YN-E3-RT flash trigger. Version 1.07 adds the ability to remotely control and trigger the Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT from any camera.

The Speedlite 600EX-RT is a flashgun with a built-in 2.4GHz receiver, which allows it to be remotely controlled and triggered from other 600EX-RTs or the Canon Speedlite Transmitter ST-E3-RT. As great as the ST-E3-RT is, it can’t adjust and fire the 600EX-RT when the former is mounted on a non-Canon camera, despite the fact it can make adjustments and fire test flashes when held in your hand.

As of firmware version 1.07, the YN-E3-RT, effectively a slightly-modified ST-E3-RT clone, will be able to make manual adjustments to the 600EX-RT and fire it from any camera — be it Nikon, Pentax or even Micro Four Thirds mirrorless, so long as it has a standard hotshoe.

Canon Speedlite 600EX

That’s lot of technical wordy stuff. In short, you no longer need to be toting the latest high-end 5D Mark III or 1D X to benefit from the radio capabilities of Canon’s flagship flashgun.

Yongnuo YN-E3-RT

Here is the official changelog for firmware version 1.07:

Fixed: When one of the group is set to ETTL mode, if one of the flash is not recycled, it may make a full output flash due to incorrect light metering. Now YN-E3-RT won’t trigger a flash in such a situation. Note: if the group is set to M mode, a flash will be triggered no matter it is recycled or not.

Fixed: improved flash syncing with cameras after 2012.

Added: Legacy flash trigger (for non canon cameras). Now you can use YN-E3-RT on non canon cameras with standard iso hot shoe. You need to press test the test button to transfer the M mode parameters.

This adds to the benefits of the Yongnuo YN-E3-RT over the Canon ST-E3-RT. The Yongnuo unit is also cheaper, has group support for pre-2012 Canon DSLRs and has an autofocus-assist lamp.

Download the update from the Yongnuo YN-E3-RT product page. The update is free and the YN-E3-RT currently retails for about $145 on eBay or from the official Yongnuo store.

Do you shoot a non-Canon camera? Are you interested in the Yongnuo YN-E3-RT now? Should Canon follow suit?

David Selby
David is a keen photographer and has been editor of Lighting Rumours since 2010. When not writing about lighting, he works as a data scientist at the University of Manchester, UK.