Speedlight Side by Side Comparison

Compare the specs of 2 flash units by selecting from the pull-down menus.

$model = "'{$_GET['model']}'";
$model2 = "'{$_GET['model2']}'";

if (strlen($model) == 2) {$model = "'320EX'";}
if (strlen($model2) == 2) {$model2 = "'430EX II'";}

include (ABSPATH . 'wp-includes/SpeedlightsPullDown-2.php');

include (ABSPATH . 'wp-includes/SpeedlightsFullSpecsDoubleTable.php');


66 Responses to Speedlight Side by Side Comparison

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Speedlight Feature Comparison Side By Side - Strobist Data i-TTL E-TTL | Speedlights.net -- Topsy.com

  2. Where did you find that the GN of this flash is 33 at 35mm?
    The instruction manual only says GN=33 (dont specify the zoom). In cases like that, the consider GN at 105mm. I think that the Guide Number of this flash (33) shown in the instruction manual is relative at 105mm.
    Am i wrong?

    • fransener says:

      Hi João – not 100% sure which flash mode you’re asking about, but I assume it’s one of the Yongnuo’s. The 460 and 462 and 465 do not have zoom but fixed 35mm coverage. They are specified as GN 33 (meters). So it must be GN33 at 35mm for these. YN-467 and YN-468 have the same GN spec so it must be at 35 mm too for these 2 – also backed up by light meter tests where they are all the same or very close together. But let me know which flash you’re asking about!

  3. Hi Fransener! Thank you for your attention! =)
    I was asking about the TTL YN-468, the latest TTL flash of YongNuo.
    I´m considering buying a this speedlite, but i´m worried about him not being as powerful as the Canon 430ex (GN 43 @105mm ISO 100).

    My YN-560 is powerful (GN=58), but it´s not a TTL flash. =(
    Thank´s again!

  4. fransener says:

    Hi! I don’t have the 430 EX II yet, but the Nikon SB-600 – which is the ’430 EX II from Nikon’. They have almost the same GN at 35mm – Nikon is 30m, Canon is 31m.

    I tested SB-600 against the YN-468 and the Nikon is stronger, so the 430 EX II will be stronger too than YN468. Canon comes certainly also with a higher price tag, and has more features like wireless slave etc.

  5. Hi!
    I´m not understanding: if the TTL YN-468´s Guide Number is 33m (more than the SB-600´s = 30m), it shouldn´t be stronger than Nikon SB-600 (and Canon 430exII)?

  6. According the books i read, the unit’s guide number (provided in metres, not feet, for ISO 100) varies depending on the zoom head settings.
    # At 14mm (with the flip-down diffuser in place) the guide number is 15.
    # At 24mm the guide number is 28.
    # At 28mm the guide number is 30.
    # At 35mm the guide number is 36.
    # At 50mm the guide number is 42.
    # At 70mm the guide number is 50.
    # At 80mm the guide number is 53.
    # At 105mm the guide number is 58.

    So, the YN-468´s Guide Number (33m at 35mm) seems to be quite powerful than the Canon 580EXII´s (Guide Number = 58m at 105mm).
    All in ISO 100, right?

  7. fransener says:

    Yes, all need to be compared at the same ISO, zoom setting, and power level. I use ISO 100, 35mm, full power.

    The YN-468 is officially specified as GN33, but the real life guide number is lower as not only my light meter tests showed but also experience from other photographers.

    That’s why I publish “33 / ~26 (ISO 100, 35mm)” which means: official spec says 33, my measurement showed ~26 as GN. It would be better to have 2 separate fields for spec vs measured GN – this will come hopefully rather sooner than later.

  8. Oh… now a understand. he he
    The instruction manual´s Guide Number is not the real measured value.
    Thank you for helping me with so many doubts, Fransener!

    All these questions are because I´ll be the Photographer in a 19 Years Old Party and I need a TTL flash. But I don´t have much money to buy the best one (I presume It´s the 580EXII). The party will happen in an enclosed space, Like at graduation parties. Does the YN-468 have enough power to make good fotographs at this conditions (like parties, weddings, etc)?

    So… Which is the best choice (YN-468, Canon 430EXII, Sigma EF-530 DG ST or other)?

    Thank you again!

  9. fransener says:

    Hi João – if you have the budget for the Canon 430EX II, then go for it – you won’t regret. But for around half the money you get a YN-468 which is doing most jobs just as well. Just has no wireless E-TTL mode (plus some other differences).

  10. Rusty says:

    Hi fransener have just purchased a Canon 7D most of the eBay sellers say that the YN-468 is not suitable for this camera. my main use for a flash would be for background fill with the flash detached and to the side apart from the regular on the hot-shoe shots one would make which model ‘YN-**’ would you recommend,Rusty.

    • fransener says:

      Hello Rusty

      The 7D has the built-in commander on the popup flash, but there is no Yongnuo that can be triggered in wireless E-TTL. What you can do is buy a YN460-II which has 2 simple optical slave modes and use them as background lights. Or get a YN560 which does the same thing – manual mode and optical slave modes.

  11. Arios says:

    Pardon me to correct…
    Nikon SB 80DX Has “Modeling Light”

  12. fransener says:

    Thank you very much Arios, you’re absolutely right it does have a modeling light, I’ve updated the database!

  13. Samgy says:

    Could you please put the new Sigma flashes to this database. Thanks.

  14. beeswax says:

    Great work Fransener, many thanks!

    Would it be possible to include the “measured” Guide Number (at ISO100 35mm) in these comparisons – where available ?

    • fransener says:

      hello beeswax

      Where available, I added it after a “/” in the GN field in the table. So “33 / 28″ means GN 33 according to specs, 28 as measured GN. I will rework this table soon and introduce test results as its own section! Is there a specific model you’re looking for test result info?

  15. beeswax says:

    Thanks F – that’s much easier now :-) . I was looking for reasons not to buy two new YN560s for about the same price as one 2nd-hand, 7 yr old SB80 … I guess the YN560′s long term durability (eg GN after maybe 1000 flashes, etc) would be less than nikon, metz, etc., and I wouldn’t expect the YN’s optics (at 105mm zoom) to be as effective as the nikon … but doubling up should more than compensate for both, plus being more versatile. Thanks for your help!

  16. April says:

    Hello, I am a new owner of a Canon Rebel xs…Several of my friends have them we all know nothing about cameras or flashes lol…We are looking for a compatible flash for our camera it seems the canon speedlites are out of our price range.Any advice on which one would be easy and affordable would be helpful thank you….

    • fransener says:

      Hi April

      If a Canon is too expensive, look at a Yongnuo 465 for example, that’s the lowest cost entry into the ETTL world. For a bigger budget, the Nissin Di622 Mark II is an interesting offer.

  17. Santosh says:

    I am stuck deciding between 468 and 560…or for that matter any other TN model…
    i already have a Vivitar 285HV.
    I do not need TTL function…
    Kindly advice…
    Also, both 468 and 560 have optical slave triggering…
    so my existing trigger for 285HV would be enough,right?
    Please help…

    • fransener says:

      Hello Santosh

      If you don’t need TTL, then stay away from 465-467-468, and look at YN-460 II or the YN560. They work with your T2i in manual mode = flash in mode “M”, camera in mode “M”.

  18. Santosh says:

    Oh my camera is Canon t2i…

  19. Mr Moon says:

    Does the GN number reduce as the flash gets older? That is to say, do the internal components (such as the capacitor or tube) subject to reduced output based on usage?

    • fransener says:

      Hello Mr Moon

      Good question; GN does not get lower over time. My old Metz 45 CT4 – bought over 20 years ago – has a guide number of 46.9 today – higher than the official GN of 45. Also my Nikon SB-24, a model that went out of production in 1992, has 38.1 versus the official 36. My Nikon SB-26, which is at least 14 years old, also surpasses the manufacturer specs.

      People say that color temperature changes over time, and that the light gets more yellowish / warmer. That might be the case (color is hard to measure in an objective, repeatable way), but if it’s the case then it’s only to a tiny extent – don’t think it is significant. Moro like 5500K versus 5600K – that kind of shift.

  20. דוד says:

    can the comendor nikon SU-800 control the metz flash ?

    • fransener says:


      The SU-800 speedlight controller is able to be a master for all speedlights in the table above with a “yes” in the field “CLS wireless slave”. Including Metz 48 AF-1, 58 AF-1, 58 AF-2 and 50 AF-1 have that feature.

  21. דוד says:

    hello again!
    is the Nissin Di866 more powerful than the nikon sb-900?
    and how much is it more powerful ?
    thank you

  22. Gabrielius says:

    Hi there,
    I was wondering what to choose: Nikon SB-400 used or Yongnuo YN-465 new ? The prices are the same.

    Thanks for the answers!

  23. Sidney says:

    I have the canon t2i and even though I concentrate on video I am also shooting photos with it.I want something that will help me take my portraits and if I do weddings or some type of event, it will do the job, what lighting would you recommend.I would like to stay as low in cost as available. Also I want to know if you can also recommend either a wireless trigger or wired trigger for the canon t2i?

  24. Javier says:

    I actually have a 580ex (the old version, not the II version). If I buy a 430exII, will I be able to use my 580ex as a master and the 430exII as a slave?

    • fransener says:

      Hello Javier

      The 580EX has the wireless TTL master feature and it’s able to control the 430EX II in wireless TTL slave mode. There’s no ‘generation conflict’.

  25. David H says:

    Great review. How many groups will the Metz control (ie. SB-900 controls 3, SB-700 does 2, etc) and can they be controlled in either manual or i-TTL?

  26. April says:

    I have been looking for the YN-465 and it seems they do not sell them at many places.All the places I seem to be finding are over seas.I actually bought one over a month ago and am now having problems with the company(via ebay)them saying they never recieved payment therefore never shipped it so I have been waiting for something that is never going to come.Do you know of a site that is reputable to purchuse the Yongnuo 465?

    • fransener says:

      Hello April

      I’m sorry, don’t know of any specific sellers other than the YN company store which is in China. I hope things work out for you.

  27. April says:

    Thank you…Still working on getting my money back but in the mean time went on Cl and a man is selling all this for $300 dollars so I may go for it!! then I will have the 420ex..
    Package Includes:
    -Canon EOS Elan 7ne 35mm Film Body
    -Canon EOS EF 28-80mm lens
    -Canon EOS EF 100-300mm lens
    -Canon EOS 420EX Speedlite Flash
    -UV Lens Filter
    -Polarizing Lens Filter
    -Carrying Case

    Thoughts is this a good deal?

  28. April says:

    update… I talked him into just selling the speedlite!! woohoo!

  29. red says:

    im confuse ,plz help me.wheather i must buy nissin di622 mark 2 with baterry grip sbd11 .or sb700 only..
    which is speedlight is good? di622 mark 2 or sb700??

  30. Tesla says:


    what would be the better option for photographing parties, to buy Yongnuo 465 which has greater real GN (27) or buy instead Yongnuo 468 with lower measured GN (20)? Is it really that difference of GN 7, seems not small?


  31. Tesla says:

    and considering that Yongnuo 468 has flash exposure compensation buttons on flash itself, isn’t that problem for YN-465 as it doesn’t have those controls on flash?

    • fransener says:

      Hello Tesla

      Re exposure compensation on the flash: depending on the camera you use, it’s easy (or not so easy) to set on the body. On the Nikon D80/D90 for example it can be set with the command wheel. With regards to the 7 GN difference: the YN468 should be sufficient for most situations when you set your camera to ISO 400 – which doubles the effective guide number of the flash.

  32. Janette Sturm says:

    hello. I’m selling my canon speedlite 270ex. I was disappointed after buying it since when I use it, it’s too over exposed. I need to rotate the flash and put it in the up-est position just so the light will bounce and so the shots will not be too much exposed. My classmate suggested for me to buy yongnuo yn648. What is your advice? :)

  33. Baz says:

    G’day, I am tossing between Nissin Di866 and an used 580EX (1st gen) to be used with my Canon 30d (keeping 5d mkII in the horizon!). Please advise.

    And to throw another line of thinking, I’m also considering two YN-468 with multi RF 603 (to add Master/slave mode) this 2 flash solution would be of same price range. Please advice what would I be compromising in the long run with the YN option ie., lack of zoom, less measured GN etc, would these compromise be so limiting that a budding strobist like me would regret later.

    thanks in advance

  34. pat says:

    How do you compare YN468 with Canon 270EX in terms of maximum power/coverage (at 35mm, 50mm and maximum possible zoom)? Other thing I found in specification comparison (270EX vs YN468) that you did not mention about option in camera, for example, the flash exposure compensation can be applied in camera for 270EX. Also Manual Mode with different power level can be chosen in 270EX. Thanks in advance for taking your time to reply.

    • Speedlights says:

      Hi Pat! Here’s the comparison for these 2 flashes: http://speedlights.net/compare-speedlight-specs/?model=270EX&model2=YN468. For the 270 EX I have only the official values, no opportunity yet to test one. But I think it’s a fair assumption to say that 270EX specs = real power (I’d expect even a bit more, that’s what you get from all other Canon speedlites which surpass their official specs).

      That said it’s GN 20 (YN468) vs GN 22 (270EX) at 35mm, and GN 21 (YN-468) vs GN 27 for Canon at 50mm. The Yongnuo only catches up at 85mm where it also reaches 27.

      I’ll be more precise with the column labels when I re-work the database in the next round – it’s exactly as you say: FEC and manual mode can be set through the camera, but they both are not available as options on the flash (that’s what the table here shows). Thanks for the feedback, Frank

  35. Mark I says:

    Hi…I’m a wedding shooter with a Nikon D7000. The choice is between the Nikon SB-700 and the Nissin Di622 MK II. Price wise the Nissin is $50.oo less expensive then a SB-700 refurbished by Nikon. The Nissin is 35% more powerful than the Nikon. The Nissin being more powerful it would not work as hard as the Nikon. Let us assume the Nikon has a full power cycle, where as the Nissin would not use a full power cycle for the same shot. Because the Nissin’s capacitor does not need a full recharge, would this make the Nissin recycle faster making it almost as fast as the Nikon in this scenario. The reality is that the Nikon recycles faster than the Nissin, but is not as powerful. The Nikon SB-700 has lots features, although I”m not sure I would use most of those extra features. What to do? Any suggestions? Thanks.

    • Speedlights says:

      Hi Mark; your argumentation makes sense – a more powerful flash can fire at a lower setting which decreases recycle time. I was thinking something else, i.e. the missing high speed sync on the Di622-II. I could imagine that to become an issue with daylight fill during a wedding shooting?

  36. Grant says:

    G’day there,
    Am tossing up between a Metz 50 AF-1 and the Nikon SB-700; I have a D5000.

    Do you have a preference between these two or would you maybe lean towards something else; happy to spend around the $300 – $350 mark.

    • Speedlights says:

      Hi Grant! The Metz is a good flash, with 2 areas where it can’t fully compete with the SB-700: it’s more complicated to use, and the AF assist light is a simpler design. On the other side the cost is lower and the power output a bit higher. If money is no factor, I’d recommend the Nikon, but the Metz provides the better value-per-Dollar probably. Frank

  37. Jon says:

    Which TTL flash would you recommend for a Canon 5D mk1, with planning for a 5D mk2 in the near future? I’m rather overwhelmed with my fully-manual Yongnuo 560 mk2, and am currently considering a used Canon 420EX for $115. Guess I could just save up another hundred for a Metz 44 A1 or Nissin di622, or even a Canon 430EX (not sure which one), but I’d rather get one that’s more affordable. Unless I’ll be unsatisfied and want another upgrade! Recommendations?

    • Speedlights says:

      Hi Jon! I think you have a pretty good list already. When it comes to a good flash working with 5D mk 1 and 5D mk 2 things are a bit tricky; Yongnuo flashes don’t support the 5D, the Nissin Di622 (mark 1) does not receive very positive reviews so I would not buy it either; Di-622 mark 2 is incompatible with 5D, only with 5D mark II. You’ll be fine with a 420EX, or a 430EX, or the latest 430EX II – they all will work. A pretty good alternative is the Metz 48 AF-1 which you might be able to find as a used flash for a reasonable price. Frank

  38. Jayakody says:

    I recently purchased one YN-560 flash and also a pair of YongNuo RF-603 after doing some internet search.

    Unfortunately, when I connect the flash to the RF-603, i cant do any changes in the flash settings and I can do it only when the RF-603 is detached.

    I’m having trouble with this since I need to change the flash gun settings time to time during a photo shoot.

    Q1. Is this a known issue?
    Q2. Have any of you experienced such an issue
    Q3. Does any of you know a solution for this?


  39. Tom Wasinger says:

    I just received the Metz 50 AF-1 for my Nikon D5000. I have tried everything but the flash does not want to communicate with the camera. I have tried all modes. It works fine in manual mode. In all other modes, the pop-up flash takes over. I can’t get any indication on the flash menu that it is connecting with the TTL function. I have tried resetting the flash, changing batteries, holding the shutter button down while holding in the mode button on the flash, different batteries, and nothing seems to work. The flash has the most recent firmware. Any suggestions?

    • Speedlights says:

      Hi Tom

      Try cleaning the electrical contacts on both the flash and your camera hot shoe. Slide it on and off a couple times. If that doesn’t help you want to find out if the contact problem is on the flash foot or the camera hot shoe. Do you have another flash you could try for that purpose, or maybe a radio trigger? Frank

      • Tom Wasinger says:

        Thanks for the advice Frank.

        I double checked the terminals and used an eraser to clean off all the metal connectors to ensure there wasn’t any residue blocking the connection between camera and flash. The flash worked fine in manual mode and the camera will fire the flash, even with a 3’extension cable, but I am not able to get any TTL communication between the camera and flash unit. Unfortunately I don’t know anyone with another D5000 and my D90 is still out for repair (since August – ugh!) so I can’t completely rule out the flash connection.

        I have a very old flash that I was using before I received this one. I’m out on the road while writing this response so I don’t have the flash with me but I think it is a Himmex brand. It is a single terminal, manual flash. I sure hope that flash didn’t do something to damage my camera.

        I couldn’t get any response from the US Metz dealer so I ended up sending the flash back to Adoroma.com this weekend. I guess I am going to take the plunge and spring the extra $100 for a Nikon SB700. I really liked the Metz 50. It seemed to have great power and was simple to use, in manual mode that is. I sure hope it is worth spending the extra money on the Nikon Flash.

  40. Olesku.pl says:

    I’d love Olympus FL14, FL20, FL36R, FL50R in this comparison :) also, Metz 24 AF-1 and 36 AF-5 would be nice to see. Especially because I’m now looking for differences to choose between them for my small Olympus PEN :)

    Btw: me & friends have ~10 units of YN460II. Difference in power between the best and the weakest are like 1EV… So GN38 in spec may be the best, not the average. Let’s assume it’s not only this model of YN spec flaw ;)

  41. LUU PARIAN says:

    any comment about sunpak pz42x for nikon d5000?

    difference between sunpak pz42x, nissin di622, and recommended yn for d5000.
    do all these flashes have auto and manual mode?

    • Speedlights says:

      The Pz42x is a decent flash and Sunpak is a reputable company. It offers TTL as well as a manual mode. Between Di622 and Pz42x I would go with the Sunpak.

  42. RB says:

    Hi, I went on ebay and found a few of the Metz 54 AF-1C flashes that claim they are new. I noticed your comparison said they were not.
    I currently have the Metz 54 and I’m searching for the power control. I’d like to be able to use 1/2 power etc.
    If I can find the manual online I hope it will help with that.
    Thanks for all the info you provide, it is very helpful for a flash novice like myself.


  43. fotki says:

    What do you think about Triopo TR-980? Can you review it and add to list?

  44. luke says:

    IM looking at a used Nikon SB-600 or the Y565 for use with me nikon D90?
    DO you have any advice?
    I have not owned a external flash before.

    • Speedlights says:

      Hello Luke – both are good choices imo, and should be even pretty close from a price point. The Nikon has a more advanced AF assist beam with dual-beam construction so it covers also lateral AF sensors whereas the Yongnuo is focused in the middle. If you’re shooting a lot of action that will be an advantage. On the other side Yongnuo have put a nice package together that will be more than sufficient for hobby use.

  45. Olesku.pl says:

    Hi once again! Any chance for Metz 24 or 36 tests? I’m still looking for really small unit for my Olympus micro4/3 small camera and there is not much options on market… btw I hope Yongnuo will make something small like Metz 24 but better :) )

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