I wanted to do a quick review on the Pocket Wizard Plus III's. I received my Pocket Wizard Plus III units today along with my Sekonic RT-32CTL transmitter and I am very excited. First impressions of these units are great. They are slightly larger than the Radio Popper Jrx units I was using, but not enough to bother me. It fits right in to the hot shoe and sits sideways so you can look right over the camera to see your subject with easy.
Functionality - The units are very easy to setup. I put in two AA batteries and turned them on, that's it . The unit starts up in Channel 17 with all 4 (A B C D) zone's set to trigger. I tested over 100 flashes from inside my garage, outside, around the corner from the garage with the brick wall siding and I did not miss fire one time.
One of the awesome features is Selective Quad-Zone Triggering. This feature adds four zones (A B C D) enabling you to remotely trigger flash and or cameras... you heard me correct CAMERAS in groups or individually. I don’t have a second camera but I did test the remote fire capability on my own camera and this is something new I can play with down the road if and when I get a second camera. Ok, here we go!!!
REALLY COOL FEATURE ONE is that I setup all 3 of my Alien Bee 800's with one Pocket Wizard. I set my Sekonic L-358 to channel 17 and fired all strobes. Now here is the cool part. From my camera I was able to turn off the A channel and one strobe no longer fires. What I love about this is that when I am teaching or I want a certain effect I don't have to turn off all of the lights to be selective and then turn them back on. If I am doing it from the Sekonic meter I can just turn that channel off not to fire a particular strobe. VERY COOL!!
REALLY COOL FEATURE TWO is that I able to use this as a remote to fire my camera or in the event of having two cameras. For those wedding shooters this will come in really handy if you have a camera stashed somewhere. Push the test button down half way to wake up the camera and push down (just like a shutter button) and take your picture. VERY handy feature!!!!
REALLY COOL FEATURE THREE is if you have a Canon 7D or a very fast camera for sports shooing you can take advantage to 14.5 frames per second. I just upgraded my 7D to the new firmware and my camera now can take 25 18MB raw files before I start to even buffer. The flash just goes crazy and didn't miss a beat at 8.5 frames per second. If you happen to have a Canon 1Dx you will be happy at 10fps.
REALLY COOL FEATURE FOUR is that this little guys have USB ports. You can now upgrade the firmware on these so if you do use ETTL equipment or ITTL and have older Pocket Wizard equipment you can now use these to fire the older ones with no issue. The USB port is handy will it will charge the unit via USB. I tested this by using my USB cable and plugged it in to my Mini Vagabond light with no batteries inserted and it worked like a champ!
I will have to defer to someone else here on the following two modes for (RP - Repeater Mode and LR - Long Range Mode). I shoot in the studio so I did not run to a football field to test out these two options.
A HUGE plus for me is that these units are exactly the same which gives me redundancy in the event that one goes down. With the Radio Poppers I had to have two separate transmitters (one for the camera and one to trip my strobes from my Sekonic light meter). I can use any one of these on the camera and or strobe / flash and change the mode from Auto-Sense, Transmit, Receive or Transmit / Receive.
I really love these units and for a manual system they really rock out. For me to use TTL I just need to upgrade and purchase a Flex which I might do down the road. I personally will use most of the functionality of these units so for me they are a better fit than the Radio Poppers.
Overall I give these an A+