Nikon SB-800 Speedlight

28th Oct 2005


    Finally, before my departure to Japan (04 October 2005) for my Ph.D study, I manage to find and buy a 2nd hand SB800 flash from my local photo store. Though the flash is a little old and the LCD backlight is not working, but still it is a rare find nowadays thus I decided to go for it. I paid RM700 (US$189) for it, and new was around RM1250 (US$338) in Malaysia.


My SB800 comes with a SS80 pouch (which is supposed for the SB80DX flash) and a fifth battery holder (good), but no flash diffuser dome (ouch...have to get myself the Omni bounce separately...).


I couldn't figure out how to fire the SB800 remotely in TTL using my D70 as the main controller. After reading here and there and checking up some websites, I finally manage to make it works! Initially I was worried that my SB800 might be faulty and not working peace of mind :))


Here I would like to share my findings...I find the setting is a bit troublesome...not as easy as 1 2 3 or something trial and error can achieve. Hope this guides will help those who are too lazy to flip and read the whole flash manual...




How to use Nikon D70 as a flash commander


Equipment needed:

1. Nikon D70/D70S

2. Any AF Nikkor (needed in order to have TTL flash)

3. One SB800 (just one is enough) OR SB600


D70 body

1. press MENU and go to CSM MENU

2. scroll down to no. 19 Flash mode

3. Choose TTL Commander mode

4. There are TTL, AA and FULL (M) modes there. Choose TTL (unless you have specific reason why you want to have AA or FULL power output, else Nikon TTL flash is at 99% of the time smarter than us... :))

5. on the camera part, DONE. Half press the shutter release button to return the camera shooting ready mode.



1. ON the power of your SB800 by pressing the ON/OFF button more than 2 seconds

2. Press the SEL button for more than 3 seconds and you will go to the Custom Menu modes

3. Go to the FLASH CONTROL MENU, press SEL once, then press + or - to scroll up or down (here you will see OFF, MASTER, MASTER (RPT), REMOTE AND SU-4)

4. Use the + - button to scroll down to REMOTE, then press SEL once to make the selection

5. Press ON/OFF button once to escape from the FLASH CONTROL MENU

6. You should be able to see the big sign REMOTE on the LCD of the flash now

7. On the upper left corner, there is CH 1 2 3 4. Make sure that CH 3 is selected. The alphabet 3 should be larger than the others.

8. On the lower right corner, there should indicate Group A B C. Make sure that Group A is selected.

9. To change the selection in 7 and 8, press SEL to change between CH and GROUP and press + - to change the selection.

10. D70 only works with SB800 in CH 3 and GROUP A mode. NO OTHER SELECTION/COMBINATION!


Now...pop up the built in flash of your D70 and place your SB800 at distance. Fire the D70 and the SB800 should be triggered.


Happy shooting! :D