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Sigma DG EF-500/530/610 Super

Setting the Wireless Modes
by Gisle Hannemyr

The appropriate version of the Sigma DG EF-500 Super, Sigma DG EF-530 Super and Sigma DG EF-610 Super can be used as dedicated remote units in other manufacturer's dedicated wireless systems. However, setting up these units a wireless remotes is not very intutive, and the supplied manual is not very clear about how you do this.

Below you'll find my notes on how to set up these flash units to work as Nikon CLS/AWL remotes and normal slaves. If you know how to do this with other flash systems, please use the comment field.


When you do this, it is useful to know that settings up a Sigma flash unit to be used as a remote flash unit off-camera can only be done when the flash is placed in the hot-shoe of the camera, and the camera's metering system is operating. Even if you are going to use a remote unit off camera, you shall have to set it up on camera. And you have to make sure that metering system is on while you're doing it. You turn on the metering system by pressing the shutter button half way down whenever the exposure display turns off.

Below is my notes about how to set the Sigma DG EF-500/530 Super up as an AWL-compa­tible remote unit on the Nikon D70. I think this or a similar procedure will work on other CLS/AWL-capable Nikon bodies. In the example setup we shall set up the camera and remote flash to use group “1” and channel “C3”. You may of course use other values if your camera has this capability

  1. Use the camera's menu to set the built-in flash to Commander TTL mode. Keep it there throughout the setup and shooting process. Set the zoom control on the lens to the widest angle you plan to use in your photo session. It will remain there during setup and use. Ignore any ISO settings on the flash. They are irrelevant when the flash is set up as a remote unit. If the camera allows you to select groups and channels (the D70 don't), set group “1” and channel “C3”.
  2. Turn off the Sigma flash and mount it in the camera's hot-shoe. Then turn it on again.
  3. Press the mode control on the flash until you are in the correct mode. When you're in the right mode, you'll see three lines of information on the LCD screen of the flash:
    • In the upper left of the top line, you'll see “TTL”. The rest of the top line is blank.
    • On the second line, on the left, you'll see a large lightning bolt joined to a smaller lightning bolt on its right with a dotted line, then on the same line “ZOOM xx mm”, where xx is the current zoom setting of the lens.
    • On the third and last line, you will see “1 C1 SL”. The “1” is the group setting, the “C1” is the channel setting, and “SL” indicates Slave.
  4. Flash settings.
    LCD panel in remote setup mode.
  5. Press the Sel button until the “C1” starts blinking.
  6. Repeatedly press the + button to set the right channel from C1 to C4. (In our example, the blinking “C1“ should become a blinking “C3“). The flash is now set up as a wireless remote unit in group “1”, channel “C3”.
  7. When you press Sel button again the group number will blink. You can now press the + button to change the group number. However, since we want group 1, we leave it just the way it is.
  8. Press the Sel button until no characters on the LCD screen are blinking. Do not attempt to set up any additional flash modes as you cycle through the rest of the options.
  9. When nothing is blinking, turn off the camera and the flash, separate them, transport the Sigma to the remote location where you want to use it, and turn both on again. The Sigma flash should now be set to operate as a wireless remote unit, using the built-in flash as wireless master in commander mode, in group “1” and channel “C3”. Make sure the built-in flash is popped up and set to operate in commander mode with the correct group and channel.

After you have done all this, don't press any more buttons on the Sigma flash (except Test, Light, or Off-On) or you'll have to re-attach it to the camera and re-program it.

If you need to change settings, you need to re-attach the flash to the camera.

While in wireless remote mode the red light on the front of the flash will blink continuously, and the flash will not enter standby, as it does when used in other modes.

Normal Slave mode

The Sigma 500/530/610 DG Super must be set to C0 SL mode (that is the normal slave mode) to be fired from a simple two-contact hot-shoe that is featured on most optical and radio triggers. It will not fire at all in manual mode without a full i-TTL connection to the camera body. It can't be set to FP (high speed sync) or second curtain sync in C0 SL mode.

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6 responses:

EF-610 DG super as a commander for Nikon CLS

Excellent info thanks for the help. I was wondering if you could help with setting up the Sigma EF-610 DG super as a commander in order to control up to 3 groups with the Nikon CLS. I have figured out how to set it up but I can't get it to work with the Sigma NOT flashing, and affecting exposure, when it is set as the commander. I'm following the manual and setting up the 0 (master) with the slash mark through the flash symbol, but the Sigma still flashes and affects the exposure. Any ideas?

Canon E-TTL II

I'm a Canon user so I'm in no position to doubt the instructions for Nikon users but the Canon-compatible units I own certainly don't need to be on the hot-shoe when setting them up or changing the settings. I have three 500 DG Supers (late model E-TTL II) and the two I use as slaves have never been mounted on the camera's hot-shoe! In addition, they all remember their respective settings when switched off so, having initiated the slaves, I don't even have to touch their settings again. I can make any required changes through the master unit controls or camera menu.

Sigma EF-610 DG slave in M mode

Thanks for the above info.
After spending a night playing around with the EF-610 DG SUPER flash, I was ready to give up on it. This morning, I returned and started searching. And, it wasn't till I came across this site that I finally got it working and the frustration of not understanding the owners manual was gone. Thanks again. However, I don't use a hot shoe, just the supplied plastic bracket mounted to a tripod. It works, and it works with my Canon ST-E2 so my two Canon flashes and my new Sigma flash all work in the SL mode!

Sony Alpha 77 with a Sigma 610DG Super

Could you please help me with a wireless setting using the flash off camera as well as what I would need to do to use the camera built in flash as well as the Sigma 610 off camera as a secondary flash (wireless).

Thank you in advance

this description valid for 610

To use as slave / remote triggered by Commander mode with Nikon, this info is useful. Press the mode until u have TTL AND the Lightning icon in the display. After use in other mode, you MAY have the TTL missing, but fire once and hit mode again, and it should appear (TTL) then adjust the channel and group that suits you/your commandermode settings.

Sony a65, Sigma 610 super

How would I make the Sigma 610 super triger using radio trigger. Photix Odin for sony seams best but lists all sigma flashes as not compatible. I have not purchased a radio trigger system yet. Any idea's.

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