Hands-on with the Hähnel Tuff TTL flash trigger

We review the Tuff TTL wireless flash trigger for Canon E-TTL, test it on location and compare it with the Pixel King.

Hahnel Tuff TTL


The Tuff TTL is an excellent all-round system. It is impressive – and a credit to the R&D team – that Hähnel have managed to produce a bug-free wireless TTL trigger on their first attempt. For anybody from a beginner to a professional seeking an easy, long-lasting lighting solution, the Tuff will do the job nicely. Operation is foolproof and durable, so it’s a safe option for someone who doesn’t want to baby their gear. We tested the device with Canon’s bleeding-edge Speedlite 600EX and encountered no issues. Combine this with future firmware updates and Hähnel’s gadget should work with flashguns for years to come. Hähnel Tuff TTL packaging It is, however, not the most advanced trigger on the market. For the same price you can get the Pixel King, which lets you control your Speedlites in manual as well as TTL mode, plus high speed sync for specialist applications. On the other hand, the King is possibly not as easy to use for beginners and a little bit less sturdy. Moving up the price scale, look at the PocketWizard FlexTT5 or Phottix Odin for the ultimate in radio triggering. There is also Canon’s own RT system including the 600EX-RT and ST-E3-RT. In future, look out for the Hähnel Viper, a more sophisticated device somewhere on the horizon.

Where to buy

A Hähnel Tuff TTL kit, including one transmitter and one receiver, costs £100 including VAT. Extra receivers are around £60. You can buy yours from Amazon UK. The Nikon version is said to be coming “soon” while the higher-end Viper has no fixed release date. Check the Hähnel web sitefor technical data.

  1. Introduction
  2. What’s in the box?
  3. On assignment
  4. Comparison with the Pixel King
  5. Conclusion

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.