For the love of all that is good - please help! I want to use in MANUAL not TTL - is it possible?

To anyone that can provide an answer - a MILLION thanks and FOREVER grateful.

I purchased the Cactus V6 for my Nikon SB 700 because I wanted to do OFF camera flash in MANUAL mode; like you can do with the Nikon SB 900 or Nikon SB910.

I read through the Cactus Manual and it says to attach the Cactus to the Nikon SB 700 put the speed light (Nikon SB700) in TTL mode then turn on the Cactus in RX mode. I have a Cactus in TX mode on the hot shoe of my camera. 
SO???? TTL mode for Manual operation? Really???? 

My question is 
Do I still get to use the back LED screen on the SB 700 that shows critical MANUAL operation info like distance to subject, power level increments (1/16, 1/250 etc) and Zoom? 

If so - please show me how!!! Please. I've attached a photo whereby I turned the SB 700 to Manual then switched the RX Cactus on. How do I change the display on the SB 700? Can I change the display on the SB 700? How do I change the power levels and subject to sensor distance? 

Yes, I am a brand newbie to the flash camera world and would love any advice from the wise sages in the community.

So to clarify I have
2 Cactus V6 - one on the camera hot shoe in TX mode; one on the Nikon SB 700 in RX mode. Both have correct profiles dialled in (Nikon SB 700). 
From there I am completely lost on how to operate it.

I have no idea why the photo uploaded side ways! ARG!!!

Thank you so much


  • OH For heavens sake!  
    Like CACTUS Admins have been telling people since 2014 - UNLOCK THE FLASH.
    Turned the SB 700 on in Manual Mode
    Turned the Cactus on in RX mode (attached to the flash) 
    Pressed the RX Catcus & held for 2 seconds to get the UNLOCK the flash to happen.
    Tada! :) 

  • And the agony continues.

    So Manual mode on SB700 - yes. 

    Flash able to trigger from Cactus TX on camera - NO

    What is the point of unlocking the RX Cactus???? 

    Seriously someone needs to come up with detailed instructions on how to use this equipment.

    I have spent most the day googling Youtube videos to no avail. 
  • So - after a full day of Youtube videos searching through the Cactus Community I really can't find any help on how to properly use this unit.

    The latest thing I found is to UNLOCK and LOCK the flash each time I take a photo -is this correct??

    Someone - save me from this agony! Tell me in detail how to set up the TX/RX so the camera talks to the Cactus V6 AND Nikon SB 700 to which it is attached.

    Thanks to anyone who is smart enough to figure it out.

    I have read through the Manual (repeatedly) but it is cryptic and mysterious - telling only about how set dial in settings but not how to use them.

    Thank you

  • Hi Anna,

    In order for the V6 to communicate with the SB-700, the flash (SB-700) needs to be in TTL mode.

    If the SB-700 is in manual mode, it will only receive basic flash triggering signal from the centre hot shoe pin - that is simply an ON/OFF switch. In such case, how can you control its power settings remotely?

    So the answer is yes, you have remote manual power control of your SB-700 by setting it to TTL mode.

    Do remember to set the correct flash system (Nikon) and flash profile (SB700) on the V6 unit that is set to RX mode (with flash mounted on top). 

    Hope this helps!
    Antonio Lao
    Brand Manager

    To help us better help you, always state the exact firmware version installed on your Cactus device(s), such as: "1.1.013", "NIK.A.001", "v.103", or "A06".

    TTL or HSS not working on Cactus V6 II and V6 IIs? Be sure to check hot shoe connectivity by doing the <CAMERA INFO> check.

    Feel free to suggest an improvement or share product ideas. Contact us directly at  At Cactus, we listen. 
  • First, take a long breath, walk few miles and cool down.
    With that attitude you are going to get nothing.

    Second, now that you are calm, the off-camera flash MUST be on TTL mode because the flash is so dumb that they DO NOT KNOW that is not attached to the camera.
    The Cactus V6 unit is telling the flash "I am a camera", and the dumb flash believe on it!
    The Cactus V6 unit that is attached to your camera (As TX = Transmitter) is "magically" sending the info (power level and head zoom) that you, and only you, have manually chosen. BTW, the dumb camera also "thinks" that the Cactus V6 is a "real" flash and send the proper signal to activate it. the TX unit send that signal to the RX unit.
    The dumb off-camera flash obey the instructions sent by the attached Cactus V6 unit (RX = Receiver).
    But if you set your flash in Manual mode, CANNOT obey the instructions sent by the Cactus remote controller units.
    You, and only you, have to figure it out which exposure wants and set the proper flash power and zoom head.

    Maybe Cactus staff can provide you a more precise answer.
    Please do not forget to ask gently.
  • Dear Antonio and lansa301

    Thank you for your comments and explanations. Now it makes sense! I think.  I will try it out and see.

    I see the advantages of manually setting flash and that is what I would like to do. (For an experiment try photographing white TTL and then in Manual!) 

    And lansa301 - I took a deep breath and spent the rest of the day gardening. Much needed and felt much better. 

  • edited August 2017
    Off-camera flash and flowers are like bread and butter.
    Great that you can combine both passions.
    Magda Indigo is an outstanding artist that create stunning images like the old Flemish masters.
    You can admire her work here:


    Of course, the main learning source for us is David Hobby "Strobist". You can learn almost everything about off-camera flashes on his blog:

    This one is a previous post by me. There are few ideas and difference between manual setting and remote TTL.

    Please, do not hesitate to ask any question. Here are people glad to help you.

  • lansa301

    Thank you for the info! 
    However that day it was hands off the camera; hands in the garden to clear my mind.

    But now you have me wanting to photograph the lovelies in my garden.

    Great links too! Thank you :) 

  • Do not worry.
    Flowers are great subject to practice OCF (off-camera flash). They do not complain if you take hundreds of images and test countless settings. Have marvelous colours and awesome shapes and textures.
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