Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon SB-11 - Operational Manual - Index Page

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CONTENTS Main Reference Map | Foreword | Basic Operation | Controls in Detail | Bracket SK-4 | Bracket Mounting Adaptor | Tilting Flash Head | Wide-Flash Adaptor SW-3 | Exposure Calculator Dial | Sensor Unit SU-2 | Ready-Light | Open-Flash Button | External Power Terminal | Sync/Multiple Flash Sockets | Sync Cord SC- 11 | Synchronization Chart.

Accessories | TTL Sensor Cord SC-12 | Sensor Remote Cord SC-13 | Sync Cord SC-15; Specifications


The SB-11 was one of the two early flash unit with TTL flash control capability. The portable SB-12 is designed for general usage while the SB-11 is a dedicated handle flash for professional applications. It is big and bulky but it was the most powerful flash unit guide number of 36 (ASA 100, ft) Nikon has produced for their manual focus SLR cameras during the eighties. IMPORTANT NOTES When using SB-11 with AF Nikon SLRs: Multi-sensor balanced fill flash is possible with handle flash SB-11 and SB-14. i.e. With SB-11 using with Nikon F5, N90s and N70 and AF and AI-P Nikkor lenses use SC-23 cord; when using it with Nikon F4 series bodies, Matrix-balanced fill-flash is provided (possible as well as with others such as F60x series (N6006, N6000) or F50 (N50) with AF and AI-P Nikkor lenses via SC-23 cord. When using a SB-14, Matrix balanced fill flash is possible with others bodies such as F70/N70, F60 series (N6006, N6000) or F50/N50 via SC-23 cord. Multi-sensor balanced fill flash is also possible with F90 series (N90 series) in combination of AF or AI-P Nikkor lenses via SC-23 cord.

Nikon F3 SB-11.jpg
Compatible with all Nikon SLR cameras (TTL flash feature where models applied), the bracket mounting Nikon Speedlight SB-11 features automatic control of the flash exposure to match the flash-to-subject distance. By utilizing a silicon-controlled rectifier and series circuitry, the speedlight is also able to conserve its excess energy for the next shot when shooting subjects at close range thus reducing recycling time and increasing the number of flashes per battery set.

In addition, the SB-I1 has a tilting flash head allowing you to bounce the light off the ceiling or walls for more diffused lighting - a technique especially useful when taking portrait or snapshots.

It is quite unlikely that you will come across the SB-11 easily on the used market as it can not be considered a popular flash unit. It is a flash that is built to last and it has such powerful output and its TTL functions could find a way to suit your photographic needs (Especially act as a master flash for multiple TTL flash setup). Even though the SB-11 is extremely easy to use, you should familiarize yourself with the unit's basic operation as presented in the first section before attempt to go the
more detailed sections.


* Multi-sensor balanced fill flash with F5, F100, F90x and AF and AI-P Nikkor lenses (with SC-23 cord)
* Matrix-balanced fill-flash with F5, F4-series, F100, F90x, F90, F70, F60, F801s and AF and AI-P Nikkor lenses (with SC-23 cord); For TTL with Nikon F3, use TTL sync cord SC-12. For Non-TTL flash automatic flash, you can SC-13 for any Nikon flash with standard ISO hot shoe.
* Tilting 90° flash head with angle of coverage 70° horizontal and 53°
vertical (wish wide flash adaptor SW-3)
* Includes Nikon Wide Flash Adaptor SW-3, Sync Cord SC-11, Bracket SK-4, Sync Cord SC-11, Sensor Unit SU-2
* Guide number (ISO 100 in feet) 118; 82 with wide flash adopter SW-3
* Recycling time approximately 8 seconds

Accessories: Wide Angle Flash Adaptor SW-3; Sensor Unit SU-2; Mounting Bracket SK4; Flash Sync Cord SC-11 for SB-11; C-Cell Battery Pack SD-7 (comes with SC-16 Power Cord); High Performance Battery Pack SD-8; AA Battery Holder

Basic Operations

1. Open the battery chamber. Like most bracket flash that was quite popular during those days and unlike compact shoe mount flash units, the batteries are housed inside the handle. Unscrew the lid (at the base of the handle and remove the battery clip.

2. Attach the bracket mounting adaptor to the speedlight's handle.

First, use the screwdriver provided to loosen the two screws on the bracket mounting adaptor. Then, slip the adaptor onto the speedlight's handle and slide it up about 2.5cm (approx. one inch). Orient the adaptor so that its flat side is in the same plane as the speedlight's exposure calculator dial. Make sure the locking wheel is facing toward the rear of the speedlight.

3. Secure the bracket mounting adaptor. Tighten the screws to secure the adaptor into place.

4. Load the batteries. Insert eight AA-type penlight batteries following the + and - symbols on the inside of the battery clip.

5. Install the battery clip.

Insert the battery clip into the battery chamber. Make sure the terminal end goes in first. Then line up the V-shaped notch on the end of the clip with the white dot on the rim of the battery chamber. Push the clip until it drops into the fully seated position.

6. Close the battery chamber. Screw the battery lid back into place.

7. Attach the bracket to the camera. Screw the bracket's attachment screw. into the camera's tripod socket to secure the two units together tightly.

Note: For attachment to the MD-4 Motor Drive, you must reposition the bracket's attachment screw to the other slot.

8. Attach the bracket to the speedlight. Insert the bracket mounting pin into the hole in the bracket mounting adaptor with the two dots aligned; rotate the camera forward.

9. Tighten the locking wheel completely.

10. Attach the sync cord. Screw the straight end of the SC-11 Sync Cord into either of the speedlight's sync/multiple flash sockets; screw the angled end into the camera's sync terminal.

11. Plug in the sensor. With the "Nikon" name up, push the Sensor Unit SU-2 into the sensor socket until it click-locks into place.



12. Rotate the flash head to the normal shooting position. 13. Set the camera's shutter speed for proper synchronization. Set the shutter speed dial to the highest synchronization speed for electronic flash (e.g. set the F3 to the "X" setting).

14. Set the exposure calculator dial.
Turn the dial until the ASA/ISO index is opposite the speed of the film in use. The colour-coded lines underneath the f/stop scale indicate the three usable f/stops for automatic operation, whereas the auto shooting range indicators give you the range of flash-to-subject distances.

For example, if you're using ASA/ ISO 100 film and select f/4, the automatic shooting range is indicated by an orange line. Thus you can shoot any subject located between 0.6 and 9 meters (2 and 30 feet) from the speedlight.

15. Set the lens aperture ring to an appropriate f/number.


16. Set the shooting mode selector. Turn the ring on the front of the sensor until the white index is opposite the colour corresponding to that of the f/stop selected. This sets the speed-light for automatic operation.



17. Turn on the speedlight. Slide the power switch to uncover the red mark. 18. Watch the ready-light. As soon as the LED ready-light comes on, the speedlight is ready to fire.
19.Take the picture. After the speedlight fires, if the ready-light, does not blink, you have a perfect flash exposure.

20. Turn off the speedlight. To conserve battery power between shooting sessions, slide the power switch to the OFF position.

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Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon SB-11 - Operational Manual - Index Page

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