HVL-F42AM Improvements

Improvements & Conclusion– Overview of Obvious Improvements over previous flashes and final thoughts

Overall, this new flash look like a very capable flash unit that have adopted some good new features which comes together to be a great tool for both amateur and professionals.

Here are some features I found to be one step of an improvement.

1. Synchronized ON/OFF with Camera:

Not sure why this was not seen on previous flashes, When the HVL-F42AM is connected to my Alpha A-700, having the power switch set to on on the flash will let the camera control the ON/OFF state of the flash.
i.e. If the camera is turned off, the flash will “turned off” and when the camera is turned on, the flash will Power itself back ON again without the need to toggle the switch manually.

2. Test Fire button

This feature was missing on the HVL-F36AM. A simple, but a useful feature for those who like to use the flash to do these:
– Light Painting in long exposure shots
– Test shadow position like a modeling lamp

3. Swivel Head Direction change

Finally the swivel head direction was changed as this allows faster switching of flash head for a rear-biased bounce. I personally use this rear-biased bounce often when doing portrait orientation shoots and I really welcome this long overdue change.

The illustration below describes the usefulness of this turning position.

In the review, I did not specifically touch on the Bounce Head in the normal orientation as there wasn’t any significant change in this area.

Conclusion

As you can see from my short review here on the flash, the HVL-F42AM is a welcoming new tool for both amateur and advance professional users. The flash allows digital photographers using the Alpha range of Cameras to get good flash photos with perfect white balance consistently.

The feature-to-cost of this flash seem alright at US consumer pricing at $299.
All the necessary feature that one needed for an external accessory flash that supports wireless flash photography is all packed well into this little package.

I hope that this short review of mine will help you have a general idea on how this flash performs. Till then, have a great shoot.

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