Sony a5100 wired rig
has been some attention given to the ability of recent Sony cameras to
synchronize extremely well. I can confirm this. As far as I know,
nobody has yet done definitive testing of the synchronization of a Sony
pair, but I find it much better and more consistant than a pair of
Samsung NX1000 camaras.
The wiring of the cameras is simpler. You just need to splice together
the three wires of two remote shutter releases which are available
inexpensively on ebay. Even cheaper is to splice two lead wires
designed to plug your Sony camera into a fancier shutter release. Once
the cameras are plugged in with this cable, both cameras will focus and
shoot using the shutter button of one of the cameras.
Rescue at sea
I took a couple of dozen images of this rescue opperation, and all of
them had as good as or better synchronization of the helicopter blades.
The reason it is not even better is that with a rig with the Left
camera inverted, the shutters are moving in opposite directions, one
upwards, and the other downwards. In this case, it would have been
better to have the cameras mounted side by side, both upright. Of
course in this situation I didn't have time to dissasemble my rig and
remount this way.
Ploskovice Palace in Czech Republic
Colton Herta at Toronto Indy 2019
Pros of a Sony Rig
Sony alpha cameras have much better image quality than the Samsungs.
Easier to make cable.
No problem with the mode dial flipping modes by themselves.
There is no problem with with the images failing to be saved to the SD card.
These Sony cameras are newer and faster at everything than the discontinued Samsung cameras.
Cons of a Sony Rig
alpha cameras have their remote port (the Sony standard "Multiport") on
the lens side of the camera. This causes the cameras to have to be
further apart. I have managed to make cut down plugs that allow my
lenses to get as close as 83mm. This is compared to the Samasung's 68mm.
Flash synchronization is not possible on the a5100 because there is no
flash shoe, as on the Samsung's. There is a flash shoe on the Sony
a6100, but manual flash synchronization has not, as far as I know, been tested on this
rig. The a6100 also will have a much wider lens
Synchronized Flash on a Sony Rig
The Sony a5100 only has a popup flash built in and no hot shoe. Popping
up the flash on one camera causes the synchronization to be lost. This
has led me to try to fire a flash from a remote cable where, when the
shutter is triggered, it simultaneously triggers a delay circuit to
fire the flash when the shutters have opened. The circuit is based on this web page.
I have modified the circuit to adapt it to my twin Sony rig. So far, I
have been able to get consistent synchronization in testing, but it has
failed me in the field. I find that there is a problem with maintaining
voltage on the external button cell, and have to replace it frequently.
This is still a work in progress. I hope to modifiy it to work using
the voltage and signal from the primary camera to make it work more
Here is the circuit at this point. Feel free to make one of your own
and perhaps improve it. I am new to electronics, so any help is