Best flashguns for nikon dslrs

Nissin Di866 MkII Speedlite Pro - £230/ $358

A high-end flashgun at a reasonable price, there's a lot to like about the Nissin Di866 MkII Speedlite Pro. Uniquely in this group, it has a colour LCD info panel that might sound gimmicky but makes for easy navigation of the advanced menu options.

These include variable speed repeating strobe bursts and full wireless master/slave operation with other Nikon or Nissin flashguns.

Another neat feature is that additional AA battery holders are available, speeding up the process of replacing charge.

The Nissin features a secondary, smaller fill flash strobe, too, also unmatched in the group. This is useful for supplying direct flash when you're using the main flash head in bounce or swivel mode.

Performance

Recycling speeds from full-power flashes are three seconds slower than the Nikon SB-700's when using NiMH batteries, and the Nissin takes twice as long to recycle on alkaline cells.

There's a tendency towards underexposure in i-TTL mode, and the motorised zoom is a little noisy. There's also no facility for switching from FX to DX zoom settings. Still, it's a good flashgun for the price.

Flash output

Best flashguns for nikon dslrs

The full power output lags quite a way behind the manufacturer's stated maximum, and accuracy is disappointing at 1/2 and 1/4 settings as well.

Aperture reading at 1m
Theoretical: 60
Measured: 32

i-TTL exposure accuracy

Best flashguns for nikon dslrs

Like the Metz, the Nissin often underexposed images when we used it in TTL mode. In this case, it's given the same -1.0EV flash exposure.

i-TTL exposure accuracy
Measured: -1.0EV

Colour accuracy

Best flashguns for nikon dslrs

Along with dark exposures, colour balance is a little on the cool side. This makes the Nissin less than ideal for skin tones and portrait photographs.

Colour accuracy
Measured: 20

Image quality verdict

Best flashguns for nikon dslrs

Many of our test images are too dark in i-TTL mode, and the Nissin lacks accuracy in manual mode as well. Consistent results are a challenge.