New Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite: A Flash Powerhouse


The 600EX-RT Speedlite, Canon’s newly announced successor to its cutting-edge 580EX II, enhances the best features of the 580EX II, and then throws in some fresh ingredients that sweeten your picture-taking experience.

First, in with the new: the 600EX-RT smoothly pivots into precise lighting control with a new wireless flash system using radio-wave communication that’s able to give you mastery over as many as five groups of flashes. To heat up your creative efforts, a new color filter holder is included that handles Canon as well as third-party gelatin filters—so, no more taping filters to your flash. To help you add color to juice up your next shot, a light orange and a dark orange filter are included.

Plenty of already-existing features have also been given a significant boost: the guide number jumps up to 197' at ISO 100, the zoom flash head now covers a significantly wider 20-200mm range (35mm format), and the updated AF assist beam is compatible with Canon’s new 61-point High Density Reticular AF. To make the 600EX-RT more nimble than its predecessor, a dot matrix LCD panel and backlit button deliver much better visibility for all flash controls. Redesigned hot shoe construction, increased dust and water resistance and improved body strength are built in. And the 600EX, of course, supports E-TTL II, which is highly effective, especially with high-contrast subjects. The Canon 600EX-RT gives you one less thing to worry about at your next shoot.

Guide Number 197' (60 m) at ISO 100
Zoom Head 20-200mm
Swivel +/- 180°
Dimensions 3.1 x 5.6 x 4.9" (7.87 x 14.22 x 12.44 cm)
Weight 14.99 oz (425 g)

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I have a 3 light bowens monolight kit triggered by a pocketwizard. Would like to use my Canon 600exrt or 430 speedlights with the monolights. They don't seem to trigger as slaves, so what do I need to be able to fire them?

You could use PocketWizards to trigger the Canon 600EX-RT and the 430EX speedlights.  The 600EX-RT does have a PC sync port for off camera triggering.  For the 430EX you would need a special cord, such as the Impact SCS-M18 Mini Plug to Hot Shoe Sync Cord.  You could then use a PocketWizard on camera and one attached to each light.

I have canon 600exrt speed light how we can fire stobes  along with 600 exrt speed light

Are you looking to fire the strobes and 600EX-RT off camera at the same time? Or do you want the 600EX-RT on camera while you are firing the strobes?  We would also need to know which strobes you are using and which camera.  If you send our Photo Department and email with this information, we would be happy to research possible solutions.

The Guide number on this flash is 56 not 197. The reason why Canon gets away with this is because the photographers of today don't really know what a Guide number is. This is not to insult but it is a fact that today everything is automated. There is no need to know. When flashes were maual you had to know Guide numbers backwards and forwards if you were going to get a proper exposure using flash. Canon has chamged the formula in order to comply with their marketing dept. If I were to compare my old flash to Canon using their formula the Guide number for my Metz units would be avbout 800. When companies told us the Guide number we all understood the output of the flash because it is a specific formula. Canon has decide to invent their own to make their flash sound really powerful. It is a disgrace and insults professional photographers. But, they are laughing all the way to the bank because no one is challenging them.

Hi... what is the max power of this type of flash ( 600ex-rt) ???? thanx and why many of photographers told me thad speed lite is not god for studio ????? thanx

The Canon 600EX-RT has a guide number of 197’ (60 m) @ ISO 100.  You can use speedlites in a studio setting if you like.  That being said, dedicated studio lighting can have more options for modification, they will have more power output, they will be a physically larger light sources which is a benefit if you are lighting up a larger area.  The recycling time will also be faster, and you don’t have to worry about batteries, as they can be plugged into a wall.  Cost is another thing to keep in mind.  For the same price of one 600EX-RT along with a stand and umbrella, you could pick up a basic studio kit with 2-3 heads (along with stands and lighting modifiers).  You might send us an email letting us know what you are looking to shoot, in what type of location, and we would be more than happy to give some recommendations for lighting.

I am planning to buy a lightmeter to use with the Canon 600ex-rt. What would be the solution to trigger the flash remotely buy using the lightmeter?

I have a canon 1ds Mark II what will and wont work as far as different metering methods?

I'm just coming over from a Nikon system, and would like to know if the Canon 600 ex-rt has a slave mode that will allow it to be triggered from other non Canon strobes? I know the Nikon SB-900's can be put into SU-4 mode and triggered this way. If there is nothing in the 600's menu, would it be possible to use an optical slave, such as the Wein PN Peanut Slave, mounted in the PC port of the 600?



does it matter from which country they come from? meaning like the pocket wizards, which have different frequencies by country or or are they universal around the globe? and can i use/control all groups (5) with the 600Ex-rt & ST-E3-RT on the eos 6D and 70D? like the 5D mark III and the 1Dx radio transceiver mode?

I have a 5D2 body, a 580EXII, Pocket Wizard TT1 and Pocket Wizard TT5 and I just bought one 600EX-RT in hope to have those flashes off shoes firing. After going through lots of Q&A, it looks like I need to get another 600EX-RT to put on the body, or a ST-E3 RT, or additional TT5 to attached to the flash in order to have those two flashes flash off-shoes firing. Am I correct?

If that's the case, getting another 600EX-RT probably is a wiser way than opting other choices.

I have a 5D MkII & 580ex flash
If I want ETTL I have to either have it on the hotshoe or use a TTL extension cable from hotshoe to flash.

In order to get TTL Off Camera I would need to upgrade the flash to the 600ex AND get a transmitter.

My question is must it be the canon ST-E3-RT or could it be one of the Pocket Wizards (which one) ?

The advantage of the Pocket Wizard (which one) is:
I could keep my 580ex flash
I could use it to wirelessly fire my studio flash too

Please advise

I have Elinchrom Speed Transmitter (came with BRX500 set) on Canon 5DM3, and Speed Receiver bought from B&H. I was told by B&H that I could use 600EX-RT with this receiver,together with Elinchrom system. I tried to trigger but only BRX fired, not 600EX-RT.

I set up 600 as Radio Transmission and SLAVE, but LINK LED stays RED.
Could you please advise where I should look into?

Hey, I have Canon 1D MKIV (unfortunately before 2012). For me a "reach" is priority, so if I have one (slave) 600EX RT on light stand and another (master) on camera's cold shoe, can I trigger slave using radio transmission (further reach then optical) ? Of course all is in manual mode since E-TTL over radio doesn't work for my older camera model.

I just bought the 600EX-RT and am using a 5D11 camera. I cant set the zoom to auto and I dont get the square icon that says the flash will recognise my camera to make the auto adjustments for the zoom. I am using canon L series lenses. EF 24 - 60 and EF 70 - 200mm lenses. All my research says they should be compatible. Can you help me set it properly or tell me whats going on?

With the ST3 on the 5d mk3 and using the 600 and 430 off camrea, am I correct in saying the 430 will fire optically from the 600 burst? No functionality would be available on the 430 from the st3 and the 430 would need to be manually adjusted? Thanks in advance.

Will this flash work with the Canon OC-E3 Off Camera Shoe Cord or any off camera flash cord?


I have a 600 ex-rt flash... can you tell me what the size of the female-bolt-receptor on the shoe mount is as I'm trying to match it with my mic stand using some kind of an adapter?

I have the Canon 5d Mark II...can it communicate wirelessly with the 600 ex-rt without any kind of transmitter? If not, what kind of transmitter is the best to use with it?

I have the Quantum Turbo 2x2 Battery, which cable do I need to connect with this new Canon Speedlite 600EX-RT?


5D Mark III lover

I am looking to use the 600 on my Mark ii and have another 600 off camera. Can I wirelessly trigger the flash with it on the Mark ii or do I have to have the Mark iii?

Do you sell any receivers that are compatible with the signal transmitted from the 600EX-RT, in order to use the 600EX as the master on my camera body and use a compatible trigger for two 430EX-II slaves? I see that this model works on the 2.4ghz freq, but will any receiver on this frequency be triggered by the 600EX-RT if it is on the same channel, even if it is just a dummy manual trigger?

i just wanna know if it is possible to attach elinchrome or any trigger
with this flash

Hi. I have a 550D body, 600EX-RT flash and a ST-E3-RT transmitter and I want to use the 600EX as a slave and as a remote release. Both 550D and 600EX have 2.5mm terminals but are they compatible?

If so, is there a release cable available similar to SR-N3 but with 2.5mm jacks?

Here is a link to a little write up I did on the New Canon 600's with the new controller. It includes a work around if you have older flashes and the pocket wizards. Not the best solution but it worked.

I have two 5DMrk3's, 3 of the new 600 speedlites and the transmitter. It is flawless. They work 100% and are easily adaptable in any situation like a wedding. They are flawless as for I struggled with the inferred not firing in the past with the other 580's. I STRONGLY recommend these flashes for constancy and power.

I have a Canon 7D and I intend to purchase my first flash. I was wondering if the 600 Ex - RT is still better than the 580EX II, because I've read so many good reviews about the last one. I want to make sure.

And also: Why is the 600 EX - RT cheaper than the 580 EX II?

Hope you can help me.


Well. I've been reading most of the topics here, some doubts are solved but I got a bit confused in other points.

I want to buy the cheapest solution to flash my 600ex-rt off camera, with an umbrella, etc.
I have a 5D markIII, and Im not planing right now to buy other flashes, since I am still learning.

My concern is about the future. So let's go to the topics:

1- If I buy the ST-E3 it will control my 600ex-rt only via radio. If I decide to buy another flashes later, what will I have to buy to control other flashes, like 580(those without radio), 430..600ex-rt? Are there any radio receivers to be used as slavers with any canon flashes being controlled by the ST-E3 on top of 5D3?

2- If I buy the ST-E2, its optical crolling only. It will control my 600EX-RT ? Because on this link

This Flash is not mentioned as compatible.

If answer is YES, I have the same question from 1- above. Will I be able to shoot with any other flashes from canon together, without having to buy optical receivers to each one, cuz it seems that all flashes can understand that signal from ST-E2, differently from radio ST-e3 ?

3- Is there any other brand doing the same job as ST-E2, compatible to all Canon Flashes? This Pocket wizards can be used in this case (5D3 + 600ex-rt + other canon flashes) ?

4- I read here that Only ST-E3 will work with 600ex-rt. Is it correct that there is no other brand that can be used as a radio transmiter to 600ex-rt ?

Thanks in advance!!!

1: The ST-E3-RT is a radio wireless transmitter and is only currently compatible with the Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite Flash, which is the only current Canon flash with a built in radio transceiver. It cannot control any other Canon flash, as other Canon flashes do not have built-in radio receivers/transceivers. The only radio transmitters/transceivers that will work with most all Canon flashes are the PocketWizard FlexTT5 and MiniTT1 remotes, which list on their Compatibility webpage that they would work with the Canon 220EX, 270EX, 270EX II, 320EX, 420EX, 430EX, 430EX II, 550EX, 580EX, 580EX II, and 600EX-RT Speelite Flashes.  The Radio Popper PX Transmitter and PX Receiver would also be compatible.  RadioPopper lists on their website the Transmitter will work with the 550EX, 580EX, 580EXII, 600EX-RT, and ST-E2.  The PX receiver will work with the 420EX, 430EX, 430EXII, 550EX, 580EX, 580EXII, and 600EX-RT.

2: The ST-E2 is an optical wireless transmitter which is compatible with all Canon flashes that have built-in optical wireless receivers, which include the Canon Speedlite 320EX, 420EX, 430EX, 430EX II, 550EX, 580EX, 580EX II and 600EX-RT.

3.  There are no other Optical Transmitter Only units similar to the Canon ST-E2.  However, if you are looking for third-party flashes with built-in optical transmitters, then the following options would work: the Bolt VX-760C Wireless TTL Flash (B&H # BOVX760C), Metz mecablitz 58 AF-2 TTL Shoe Mount Flash (B&H # ME58AF2C), Nissin Di866 Mark II Flash (B&H # NIND866MKIIC), Nissin MG8000 Extreme Speedlight (B&H # NINDMG8000C), and the Vivitar DF-583 Power Zoom Speedlight for Canon (B&H # VIDF583C).

4:  Correct.  The only transmitters that are compatible with the Canon Radio system is the ST-E3-RT Radio Transmitter and/or another Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite Flash.

Is there anyway to trigger the 600ex using a sekonic 758 light meter?

I'd like to be able to measure flash output

If your Sekonic L-758DR DigitalMaster Flash Meter has the RT-32 Module or RT-32CTL Module inside the light meter, to trigger the Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite flash using the radio mode on the L-758, you would need a PocketWizard Wireless Transceiver/Receiver Remote connected to the PC terminal of the 600EX-RT Speedlite Flash (or connected to the flash's hot shoe via the PocketWizard FlexTT5 Transceiver. Sekonic radio triggering is only compatible with PocketWizard remotes.

(All remotes listed on the included link above EXCEPT for the PocketWizard FlexTT5 Transceiver Radio Slave for Nikon i-TTL Flash System, B&H# WIFTT5N, would work with your listed equipment).


I have a Canon 5D Mark II with a PW mini and one Flex TT5. I have a new 600ex-rt and an old 580ex II. Is there any way I can use the two flashes off camera?

If you already own a PocketWizard MiniTT1 and one PocketWizard FlexTT5, yet you want to use both the 600EX-RT and the 580EX II Speedlite Flashes off-camera, you would have to purchase a second PocketWizard FlexTT5, as both off-camera flashes must have a FlexTT5 transceiver connected to communicate with the MiniTT1 transmitter on your Canon EOS 5D Mark II.

Do note: While the Canon 600EX-RT does has Canon's new radio transceiver built into the flash, it is only compatible with the Canon ST-E3-RT Wireless Transmitter and/or other Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite Flashes. It is not compatible with PocketWizard remotes, just as PocketWizard remotes are not compatible with other brand's remotes.

Now I got a bit confused.
To use optical controlling on my 600ex-rt off camera, I have to buy an optical receiver as an optical transmitter?

Each flash itself (600ex and other canon models) does not get the optical sign from the transmiter, without a receiver, like it does with the flash popup from a camera?

I guess I am confunding something..sorry, just learning before buying.


If the Canon 600EX-RT is being used off-camera optically, then you need either another 600EX-RT as an optical transmitter, an ST-E2 Wireless Transmitter on the camera, a camera with a built-in flash that can be used as a commander flash, or a third-party flash that states it can be used as an optical master commander flash. In either case, the unit on the camera or built into the camera must be listed as a master or commander flash unit for optical transmission.

Say you have 2 canon 600flashes- one on camera and one off camera... can you adjust it where only the off camera flash fires and the on camera flash does not?

Can anyone tell me how to set my zoom coverage to Auto? I've got the 600ex-rt on a 5D MKII and I'm using a standard Canon L series lens. Flash is set to ETTL and camera is on M. The instruction booklet tells me there is a manual and auto zoom coverage mode, but it doesn't tell me how to change from M to A.



According to Canon, it's under C.Fn 09

C.Fn-09 – Auto zoom for sensor size
0: ON (Enabled)
1: OFF (Disabled)

When flash coverage is set to Automatic <A>, the 600EX-RT will automatically adjust its angle to coverage to match the field-of-view of your lens and image sensor. If you set this C.Fn to 1, the flash will automatically adjust its angle of coverage to match full-frame/35mm format only.

#1 I just got the 600EX-RT and found a menu custom settings glitch!!!

I talked to Canon about it to report and inquire... they confirmed it...were to look into it... and get back to me...and they never called back. Help!

I have my 580EXII's set so I can directly swing the dial to instantly adjust exposure without having to push the +/- button to activate the adjustment dial. There is also that option in the 600 custom functions to do the same. But when you set it, it doesn't work in Manual or Multi Flash only engages in the ETTL mode. You still have to push the +/- button first to active the dial in Manual & Multi flash modes. Will there be a Firmware update to fix this bug?? Canon pulled one off the shelf to test this and as I talked him through the set up for it he confirmed it was done correctly and that his unit was doing the same thing and that it was not working as intended in that setting. Will there be a firmware update to correct this? It is my most used custom function and I am devastated that it doesn't work for any of the new 600EX-RT flash units! I ready to send mine back to B&H until Canon gets their ducks in a row, because I rely on that feature heavily with my other units and need that setting consistency across the line.

#2 - I've heard rumors that when the 600EX-RT Flash was showcased & introduced at PhotoPlus Expo in NY it tanked as the radio signal was throwing cell phones and fax machines off and all was in chaos. Can anyone confirm or deny this? It makes me nervous as I live in Phx,AZ. I have one unit and had intended to eventually convert from PocketWizards with 580EXIIs to these 600EX-RTs on their own. Any info in this regard to radio signal and possible interference in a big city (or inside a corporate building) would be appreciated!

thanks! :D Shannon

I am looking into getting a flash for some telephoto lenses. I noticed that the 600ex's range is up to 200mm, does this mean that it would cover the object covered by a 200mm lens better then the 430 and 580 flashes who's range is in the 100's? In addition, when using lenses in the 400 mm range, using something like the Better Beamer and the 600ex would provide coverage for the object? Are there any other flashes that would work with the Canon 7d and these longer lenses, that are cheaper then the 600ex?

With telephoto lens, flash coverage (side to side) is not the issue. The concern is the through of the light being able to reach your subject. The 600EX will have more of its light reach a distant subject than compared to the 430 and 580 flashes. A Better Beamer will add reach for subjects far away from your flash. There are less expensive flashes but none that match the output to the Canon 600EX-RT Speedlite.

Can the 600EX-RT be triggered with a pocket wizard? Or do you need the Speedlite transmitter?

Likewise, can the speedlite transmitter be used in place of a pocket wizard when using both speedlite's and strobes (Dynalite strobes that have built in pocket wizards) ?

With the 600EX-RT do you need pocket wizards as well to set off studio lights and other flashes?

I have this flash and also a 430EX11 would I be able to have both off camera and triggered by the ST E2? If the answer is yes would i be able to have Ettl with them or would they bothe need to be set to manual and used as slaves? I have trifggers (Pixl Kings) which allow me to trigger the 600 which in turn is triggering the 430EX but i'm losing the functionallity of ETTL....any advice would be good as i like using the 2 flashes when i can

Thanks! Can I control then the 430 with the 600 when both are off camera?


In optical mode, a 600 will fire a 430, yes.

Ok I know I'm crazy. But can you use the 600 ex-rt with a Nikon d600? Thanks

Can the 7d built-in flash transmitter trigger an off-camera 600EX-RT using the radio signal or without a line to sight?

Without the ST-E3-RT Is optical mode the only option to triger 600EX-RT from 7d?

I am trying to deciding between a used 580 EXII or a new 600EX-RT

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