Tag Archives: PocketWizard Employees

Using the PocketWizard Pedal to shoot the NYC Marathon

The New York City Marathon is the largest marathon in the world and runs through all 5 boroughs of the City. In 2019, there were over 53,000 runners and it was the goal of event organizers to capture 1.8 million images, hopefully capturing every single runner – at least once! To meet that goal, they hired over 70 photographers and placed them in 22 locations.

One of those photographers was PocketWizard’s own Lenny Christopher. Lenny is a professional photographer and videographer and brings that experience to both our support and marketing teams.

Take Care of Your Hands

Lenny has shot many races before, and he said, “Taking 20,000+ images is hard on your hands!” We agree – can you relate? That fine muscle control of half press followed by a full press while holding the camera gets tiring. Now imagine that you are going through that same motion for over 7 hours.   

Using the PocketWizard Pedal to Activate the Shutter

Lenny employed the PocketWizard Pedal to take the strain off his fingers. He connected a PocketWizard Plus IIIe to the Pedal and attached a Plus IIIe to his camera with a remote camera cable. With this set up, he could switch between using his finger and his foot to control the shutter.

Using the PTMM Adapter to Activate Focus

Using the Pedal alone wasn’t quite enough for this unique situation. Lenny needed the ability for fine control of focus since he wanted a shallow depth of field and his subjects were on the move. That’s where the PTMM Pre-Trigger Switch came in.  This cable is a pre-trigger adapter and offers a switch to turn pre-triggering on or off.  When turned on, the camera wakes up and behaves as if you were half pressing the shutter and the camera (set to continuous focus mode) will constantly refocus. With the PTMM Adapter and the PocketWizard Pedal, Lenny could control the shutter and focus simply and easily without tiring his hand.


Benefits using the PocketWizard Pedal and PTMM Adapter

  • Lenny took over 27,000 photos over a period of 7.5 hours. Using the Pedal helped to relieve the strain he would normally feel in his hands.
  • It was a cold morning and Lenny was happy to be able to wear gloves since he didn’t need the fine motor control of his fingers. 
  • The PTMM Adapter kept the camera awake and constantly focusing so Lenny could keep one hand on his monopod for stabilization and one to zoom for quick composing and framing of an image, while using the foot pedal to actuate the shutter. The end result was increased speed and stabilization.

Pro Tip: Reviewing Images

When the PTMM cable is on, the camera behaves as if the shutter were being half pressed. As a result, you are not able to review images. You can use the on/off switch to disable Pre-Trigger for quick image review. When you are ready to continue shooting, flip the switch to turn Pre-Triggering back on.

Two Items to Add to Your Kit

The PocketWizard Pedal is a great way to free your hands when capturing an image.  And, in a situation where your focus point is changing, the PTMM Adapter is an indispensable tool to keep the focus activated. How will you use yours?


PocketWizard’s Moonshot

You never know when creative inspiration will strike. Our Sales and Marketing Manager, Sarah Lavoie, was inspired by Michael Heeney’s amazing photos from Lone Rock Point and had the creative idea for an epic family portrait at this beautiful location.

Inspired by the PocketWizard’s E Release Range

The new E Release firmware upgrade is a simple way to get incredible range for off-camera flash and remote cameras. The extended range in regular mode is up to 5 times further than our legacy firmware. Sarah wanted to put it to the test by taking an epic family photo in front of a rising full moon. In this case, she wanted to be far away so that she could use a long zoom and she needed a flash to light the family at twilight. A zoom gave her the compression she wanted for the full moon appear closer and larger. PocketWizard Plus IIIs upgraded with the E Release gave her the power to trigger two speedlights from a distance.

PocketWizard Made the Distant Triggering Possible

The speedlights were triggered from a distance of about 2300 feet (700 meters). It is also worth noting that the distance was spread over water and with an elevation rise – both of which are notoriously challenging for any radio triggers. That is, any radio trigger other than PocketWizard!

Behind the Scenes Video with the E Release

Press play to watch this video to see how this photo was taken.

Tips for Long Distance Off-Camera Flash

  • Update your PocketWizard radios with the E Release. Learn more here.
  • Have a way to communicate with your subject(s). In this case, Sarah was so far away that the family could barely see her and they felt like they were posing for no one. They also could not see the moon and needed to know where to stand and when to smile.
  • Train your subject(s) on how to set up and test your flash and radios. Send them with spare batteries just in case.
  • Use technology to help you plan. Sarah used an app called PhotoPills to help her plan when and where the moon would rise.
  • These photos were taken in TxRx Mode – Sarah did not need to use Long Range Mode (LR) to get this distance. When using LR with a flash, you may lose a stop or two of sync speed. Sarah was using a 200-500mm lens on a canoe – she didn’t want to reduce her shutter speed any more than necessary – and she didn’t need to!
  • Be creative – the E Release opens a world of opportunity!
  • Tag us! #whypocketwizard

Explore the Possibilities!

With PocketWizard, we can help you Make it Possible!

Shoot this Look

3 PocketWizard Plus III Upgraded with the E Release:

  • Plus IIIe on the camera
  • 2 Plus IIIes attached to speedlights with a flash sync cord mounted on light stands

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Why PocketWizard?

Does this sound familiar? You need something and when you go to buy it, you are presented with many options from unknown brands that are much cheaper than the brand you know and trust. This is a common occurrence seen in nearly every market segment but especially common in the electronics industry. We have certainly seen this with radio triggers! You may have discovered options for off camera flash (OCF) radio triggers that are cheaper than PocketWizard.

What Radio Trigger Should you Buy?

You may want to know – is PocketWizard worth the extra money? How many times have you bought a cheap alternative only to find out that it doesn’t meet your expectations? If only you had bought the best one the first time! How many times have you said “They just don’t make them like they used to”?

Made Just Like they Used To

PocketWizard is different. Our radios are made just like we used to. We’ve been in business for 27+ years in Burlington, Vermont. Most of our products are manufactured close to home, either here in Vermont or New Hampshire or upstate New York.

Many of us are photographers in our free time, so we know that sometimes you don’t get a second chance for a perfect shot. We know our triggers must work right the first time. We do all we can to ensure that you won’t miss a shot. We pride ourselves on the quality and reliability of our products.

But What If?

But what if something goes wrong or what if you have a question? To help you, we have a support team right here in Burlington. Our products have a three-year warranty and are designed for a photographer’s lifestyle. That means they are tough. They are also thoughtfully designed and repairable.

The PocketWizard Service Team

When you email info@pocketwizard.com during the week, you’ll hear back from our service team shown below: Seth, Heather and Lenny. Usually you’ll hear back within 24 hours. But, if you email us on the weekend, we’ll most likely get back to you on Monday. Recharging on the weekends is important to us!

Happy PocketWizard Customers

We thought we’d share some feedback we’ve heard from some happy customers:

“Hi, I just wanted to pass along how helpful Seth was during my interest in PocketWizard. He was patient while answering all my questions and educated me on the best route for my scenario as a wedding photographer. It’s employees like Seth that will make me come back to this company. Thanks again and I hope he is recognized for the great work!”

“I have many awesome photos made over the years due to the amazing PocketWizards!”

“Your lightning-fast shipping department sent me a replacement Plus III hot shoe in record time. Using the PocketWizard online video, I was able to install it in five minutes flat. Thanks to your amazing team, I now have a like-new Plus III with minimal down time.”

What’s your Story?

We’d love to hear from you – why did you choose PocketWizard? Hashtag your story with #whypocketwizard.