EOS Documentation - 540EZ Operator's Manual
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The 540EZ Speedlite was Canon's top of the line shoe mount flash for use with all EOS cameras,
and is capable of TTL and A-TTL flash metering with Canon EOS Cameras. The flash reverts to
straight TTL with the flash tilted or swiveled to bounce positions. Some cameras enable A-TTL
only in P or full auto modes.
The most complete information about Canon's flash technology, metering and theory can be found
Control Buttons and Lights
POWER switch - "O" position is off. "1" position is on. "SE" position is also on but with a power
save feature, so that the flash will automatically turn itself off if it has been inactive for more than
MODE button selects between TTL (or A-TTL) flash mode, Manual flash mode and Multi Strobe
flash mode. Most of the time TTL or A-TTL is used as this provides automatic flash exposures.
You can use FEC to change the flash exposure up or down three stops while in TTL/A-TTL mode.
In TTL (or A-TTL) mode, when the camera's shutter button is pressed half way down, the LCD on
the flash will display the selected aperture. In addition, when the camera is set to M, Tv or Av
modes, the camera will show a distance scale at the bottom of the flash with a bar above the scale
indicating the auto flash range. In the 540EZ's this scale can be changed to feet or meters by a
micro switch in the battery compartment.
In M (manual) and MULTI modes the LCD displays the same distance scale but with just a dash
showing the proper distance for the selected aperture, zoom setting and film speed. You can use this
to easily find the proper aperture for a given distance by pressing the shutter half way and changing
the aperture until the dash appears over the distance you want. You might have to set the power to a
lower level to use closer distances.
In MULTI mode the exposure/distance calculation is for each pulse, and should be compensated for
if the pulses will overlap on the subject.
SEL/SET button. In TTL or ATTL mode this button enables the Speedlite to select a Flash
Exposure Compensation with the +/- buttons. If you would like more or less flash than normal, you
can use this to achieve your desired results. Press the SEL/SET button again to "set" the selection
and stop the blinking of the FEC symbol in the LCD. The FEC symbol stays on anytime FEC is set
to anything other than "0".
In M (manual) flash mode the SEL/SET button allows you to set the power level of the flash in
conjunction with the +/- buttons. Press SEL/SET and the power level setting on the LCD will blink.
Use the +/- buttons to select the desired power level (1/1 is full power and 1/128 is the minimum).
Press the SEL/SET button again to "set" the power level and stop the blinking.
In MULTI mode the SEL/SET button alternates between setting the frequency of the flashes, the
total number of flashes, and the power level of each of the flashes. Press in once and you can set the
Hz (frequency), with the +/- buttons, between 1 and 100 cycles per second. Pressing the SEL/SET
button twice will allow you to set, with the +/- buttons, the total number of flashes to be fired
between 1 and 40. If you do not enter a number the flash will continue until the flash capacitor is