The recent announcement of the PlusX flash trigger by PocketWizard recently brought a lot of attention to the low budget trigger market. We decided that it would be a good time to do an overview of some of the most popular triggers in this category and compare them. The hope here is that before you run out and a flash trigger, you can check this out and know what the pros and cons of each choice are.
Budget triggers fall into one of two categories, transmitter/receiver models and transceiver models. The transmitter/receiver models tend to be older technology, but they are cheap and in most cases very reliable. Transceiver models tend to be a little more expensive, are more convenient, and usually offer more features. Checkout the triggers below, and decide which model is right for you.
NPT-04 – $25 per set
The NPT-04 Is a popular flash trigger that is basically the lowest dirt cheap triggers you can find. They are based on transmitter/receiver technology meaning that you need to have a transmitter and at least one receiver to fire your flashes. The NPT-04’s are branded for several different companies and sold on Amazon and Ebay.
Pros: Cheap, Reliable, 4 Channels, Easy to Replace
Cons: Transmitter Batteries are hard to find, Basic Features, Low Quality Build
Price: ~$25 – Buy on Amazon
Yongnuo 603 – $30 per unit
The Yongnuo 603s are another set of the cheapest triggers you can find, unlike the NPT-04s though they are based on the transceiver model. The 603s offer a great basic trigger at an affordable price. They sync with your shutter at up to 1/320th, higher than 1/25th like most flash triggers that don’t support HSS.
Pros: Cheap, Reliable, Easy to Replace, 1/320th Sync Speed, 2.4ghz for great range.
Cons: Basic Features
Price: ~$30 – Buy on Amazon
Cactus V5 – $40 per unit
The Cactus V5 is a very popular transceiver model trigger on the higher end side of the market. It has one of the best feature sets in the budget trigger market. The V5 features a solid build quality, is powered by AAA batteries, has 16 available Channels, and offers group flash triggering for up to 4 separate groups of flashes.
Pros: Price per Unit, Group Triggering, 16 Channels
Cons: Decent Build Quality, No Compatability with previous Cactus Triggers
Price: ~$40 – Buy on Amazon
Yongnuo 622 – $90 per set
The Yongnuo 622 is the latest flash triggering technology out of Yongnuo, it offers features only found in high end (and expensive) triggers at a very affordable price. The 622’s are E-TTL Compatible (I-TTL coming soon), and support HSS (High Speed Sync) for syncing with your camera at up to 1/8000th.
Pros: TTL Compatible, HSS Compatible, Hot Shoe, Battery Indicator, Reliability, Overall feature set
Cons: Decent Build Quality, Price
Price: ~$90 – Buy on Amazon
PocketWizard PlusX – $99 per trigger
The PocketWizard PlusX is the latest entry into this market and the first try by PocketWizard to break into budget triggers. The PlusX is a transceiver based model meaning that a unit can both trigger other units or be triggered by other units. It offers 10 Channels and is compatible with other PocketWizard triggers.
Pros: Transceiver model, compatible with other PocketWizard products, Build Quality, 10 Channels, long range
Cons: Price per unit, no hot shoe on unit, very basic features.
Price: $99 – Buy Now on Amazon
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