JYC of Hong Kong have have developed a transceiver-based wireless flash trigger for their Viltrox brand, adding to the JY-670 ring flash and JY-680 speedlight. It is called the Viltrox Transceiver JY-2410, runs on the universal 2.4GHz signal frequency, has four channels and is powered by two AA batteries.
Straight out of the box, the basic kit comes with two transceivers, a mini tabletop stand, a protective case and various connecting cables for your flash and camera.
It’s clear that the company have spent some time designing the carry case, which can snugly fit two transceivers, the mini stand, up to six spare AA batteries and some cables. It is well padded, has removable dividers and a belt loop.
As for the transceiver itself, it’s remarkably compact, especially considering two AA batteries fit inside. No space is wasted. On top you’ll find a large test button and a hotshoe with electronic contacts for both Nikon and Canon TTL. Now, this isn’t a wireless TTL trigger, but it does have TTL pass-through on the camera hotshoe. More on that later.
Should you want to use the JY-2410 as a wireless shutter release, there is a 2.5mm stereo socket and an assortment of cables included to connect your transceiver and remote camera. There’s also a screw-lock PC port for flash synchronisation. It would have been nicer and probably more reliable as another 2.5mm or 3.5mm jack. Read more on that here. One thing that is missing for wired use is a lanyard hole.
The spring-loaded battery door isn’t the strongest piece of plastic in the world, but I wouldn’t call it horrendously flimsy either. Also on this side of the device, you will find a 1/4″ tripod socket.
You can use this to mount your flashgun sideways on a light stand (see image above), which can help to centre the beam into your lighting umbrella. It’s also useful if, in a pinch, you find yourself short of mini stands, though not as sturdy.
On camera, a metal foot and locking ring make for a secure fit in the hotshoe. From the back of the device you can pick one of four channels, two operating modes, or switch the transceiver off. I don’t like these switches. They feel cheap and easy to knock and the settings are so close together it’s difficult to be sure what you have set. I managed to drain a set of AAs when the JY-2410 switched on accidentally when in storage.
All those electronic contacts on the top hotshoe get put to use when you mount a system flash while the JY-2410 is on your camera. In the right mode, the trigger passes through all the TTL information from your camera’s hotshoe to the hotshoe on top. Thus you can have an on-camera TTL fill flash or advanced wireless commander in combination with manual radio triggering. The manufacturer also says you can wake up sleeping remote flashes, though this didn’t work with the MK-430 we tested it with.
Now, this is where things get confusing. What do “A” and “M” actually stand for? What do these modes do? The Chinglish instruction manual wasn’t terribly helpful in this regard. From trial and error we’ve worked out that TTL pass-through only works in “M” mode (which is counter-intuitive, and seemingly contrary to what we managed to glean from the manual). Moreover, the JY-2410 doesn’t want to play transmitter in “A”, suggesting this is a receive-only mode. Since the waking from sleep on a half-press didn’t work with our particular speedlights, we don’t know which modes support wake-up on the receiver. But firing a test shot will always wake up a sleeping flashgun.
Once you’ve finally got the Viltrox JY-2410 in the right mode then it will successfully trigger your flashes. But disappointment looms, for this stylish remote is no Usain Bolt. On a Nikon D700 we only managed sync speeds of 1/160 second before black bands started to appear. A Nikon D40 with an electronic shutter didn’t fare that much better, reaching 1/400 second. As you can see from the chart below, this is the slowest trigger we’ve ever tested.
Range seems to be decent and we haven’t experienced any misfires with the JY-2410 system. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t experience problems in the field from knocking it into the wrong mode, accidentally draining the batteries in your bag, and so on. All in all, the Viltrox JY-2410 could be a promising trigger, but needs some polish.