A new low-profile TTL flashgun has been released with full advanced wireless master capabilities. The MeiKe MK-310 will act as a Master/Commander for your Nikon or Canon lighting setup. The compact MK-310 is a compromise between using your DSLR’s built-in flash — which can be convenient but has short range and drains your camera battery — or a full-sized master flash — which can be expensive, heavy and bulky.
Priced around $80, the MeiKe MK-310 is considerably cheaper than first-party commander flashes such as the Nikon SB-700, SB-910, Canon 600EX or 580EX II (if you can get one), while the guide number of 32 means it can still be a flashgun in its own right (unlike the ST-E2 or SU-800). You won’t find a flash from Nikon or Canon that’s both this small and this easy to control, so will it find a place in your hotshoe?
Marketing literature suggest the MK-310C works with everything from the EOS M to full-blown EOS DSLRs. The Nikon version, the MK-310N, will work with everything that supports a CLS Commander (so not the mirrorless V-series).
Based on the same casing as the earlier Meike MK-300 flash as well as the new MK-GT600 radio triggers, the MK-310 is small enough to stay out of the way while still providing a full set of control options and an LCD screen. It runs on a pair of AAs and features a battery indicator to let you know when you’re running low on juice.
Using the top-mounted control panel you can adjust groups of remote flashes via your camera brand’s proprietary optical transmission system. This saves you from doing it in your camera’s own menus, which are usually more clunky to use. The signal from the front-facing flash tube will also travel further, but you can’t tilt or swivel it like a larger Speedlite, nor will it have nearly the operating range of an advanced (but possibly more expensive) radio triggering system.
As a flashgun, the MK310 supports high-speed sync (HSS) up to 1/8000 second, TTL exposure with flash exposure compensation, manual power control down to 1/128 and a “Multi” (stroboscopic) mode. A pretty decent range of features, then, but the compact size with only two AAs to power it provide a fairly slow recycle time of 6 seconds at full power.
The MeiKe MK310 is available now as the MK310C for Canon and the MK310N for Nikon for around $80 on eBay. You can also get one from EachShot with a 6% Lighting Rumours discount ($75) using code LR!23792 on checkout.
For more information, visit the MeiKe product page.
What do you think? Would you get one? Share your thoughts in the comments below.