New trend: Chinese flashes with built-in radio (MeiKe MK570)

Yet another flashgun with radio triggering built inside: the MeiKe MK570.

MeiKe MK570C

You wait for a bus, then they all come at once. For a while since its release, no companies have had a direct equivalent to Canon’s radio-controlled wireless flash, the Speedlite 600EX-RT. But now every third-party manufacturer seems to be taking on the format.

MeiKe has revealed details of the MK570 radio-controlled flash, which is the latest radio-controlled aftermarket flashgun we’ve spotted. It will go up against recently released/announced products including the Phottix Mitros+, Yongnuo YN600EX-RT, Triopo TR-850EX and Cactus Image’s (rumoured) unnamed flash.

MeiKe MK570CThe MK570 (MK570C; MK570N) is a flashgun with integrated 2.4GHz radio. You can trigger the MK570 using another MK570 (mounted on-camera) or the company’s dedicated MK-RC9 transmitter.

Our contact would not confirm to us whether remote power control is possible or if the system offers triggering functionality only, but they did say that TTL will not work in radio mode. The product page gives “wireless manual dimming” as a feature, when the MK570 is triggered by a master flashgun on the camera. The MeiKe MK-RC9 radio transmitter will also do basic triggering up to 100 metres.

MeiKe MK570Radio waves travel much further than optical (or infra-red) signals sent by conventional wireless flash systems, and are more reliable outdoors or under bright ambient light. Flashes with built-in radio negate the need to buy and attach separate radio receivers to each light in your setup.

The form factor of the MK570 is copied wholesale from the Canon Speedlite 580EX II and it promises features such as a 58mm metric guide number, PC sync, external power support and stroboscopic mode. It’ll also have an optical slave sensor.

The MK570 is not ready for public release yet, so some of these specs are to be confirmed and we don’t have a date for when it’ll go on shelves. The retail price is also uncertain. Visit the MeiKe web site for more information.

Will your next flashgun have radio control? Or are hotshoes and cords sufficient?

David Selby
Based in Paris, France, David Selby is editor of Lighting Rumours, a part-time photographer and a quantitative analyst.
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