Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon F3 Flash Photography - SB-21A/B - Index Page

SB-21frontview.jpg (9k) Loading..
Nikon SB-21A/B Macro Flash

Separated into two components, one the main flash unit and another is the controller unit. Since the Nikon F3 has a different kind of mounting foot and hence there are two types of controller need to be designed to fit one for the F3 and one for the rest of other Nikon SLR models that come with a standard ISO type accessory shoe. Controller AS-12 for F3-series cameras; Controller AS-14 for Nikon cameras with standard ISO mounting shoe

The Greatest attraction of the SB-21 was actually the TTL flash exposure control feature which was first made possible in a Nikon body with the Nikon F3 in 1980. Since close-up flash photography is nevertheless, closely associated with higher image magnifications and thus that normally would interpret as more complication in calculating the correct exposure. Early Nikon attempts on Macro ring light was a SR2/SM2 Macro Ringlight which do not even provide AUTO exposure and require manual calculation with its FULL or 1/4 power output (SR-2 also has a moderately higher guide number of 16 (Full), 8 (1/4)). The TTL flash exposure control offered by many of the modern SLRs, has facilitated the convenience and assure a higher success rate for those who involves very much in macro photography.

sb21c.jpg SB21front.jpg AS-14.jpg (10k) Loading..
SB-21A or SB-21B is just differentiated by the mounting foot of the controller. The one with F3's type flash mounting foot - AS-12 which is called SB-21A; the AS-14 - with standard ISO type mounting foot is called SB-21B.

* Designed specifically for close-up photography
* Dual, ratable flash tubes allow you to select flat front lighting or selected relief lighting
* Advanced electronics assure consistent exposure control with variable output
* Built-in focus illuminator aids manual focusing
* Further lighting enhancement is possible using secondary lighting or reflector systems (because exposure control can be completely automatic, no special calculations are required when using these systems)
* Ideally suited for use with all Micro-Nikkor lenses.
* SB-21A for F3-series cameras. Includes AS-12 controller, SS-17/21 case, SW-8 wide-flash adaptor, mounting ring for 52mm and 62mm.
* SB-21B for ISO shoe (F5, F4-series, F100, F90x, F90, F70, F50 or older models such as F801s etc.). Includes AS-14 controller, SS-17/21 case, SW-8 wide-flash adaptor, mounting ring for 52mm and 62mm
* Guide number (ISO 100 in feet) 43 with internal batteries (49 with
external power source)
* Recycling time approximately 8 seconds at manual full output

olymringflas1.jpg olymtwinflsh.jpg
The Olympus Macro system is one of the highly respectable photographic system among all manufacturers. Their TTL OTF IDM® (Integrated Direct Metering) system combine with some very innovative macro flash design provide better and more practical usage than Nikon's macro conservative ringflash. Anyway, Nikon also has not provide a micro photo lenses option to users as with others such as those found in Olympus, Canon and Minolta etc.

  • Controller/Power Pack AS-12 for SB-21A
  • Controller/Power Pack AS-14 for SB-21B
  • Case for Controller Unit SS-17
  • Case for Flash Unit SS-21
  • Wide Flash Adaptor SW-8
  • AA Battery Holder MS-6
  • Adaptor Ring UR-3 (req. with 60mm Micro for AF Operation)
  • DC Power Pack LD-2; (requires SC-21 power cord)
  • AC Power Pack LA-2 (requires SC-21 power cord)
  • Power Connecting Cord SC-21
  • 52mm Adaptor Ring for SB-21
  • 62mm Adaptor Ring for SB-21


Electronic construction: Automatic silicon-controlled rectifier and series circuitry
Flash exposure control: TTL automatic control with Nikon F3 series bodies (with AS-12), also workable on Nikon F4-series, F90X, F70, F-601 or F50 (with AS-14). Manual control: full, 1/4 and 1/16 output

Guide number (ISO 100, m)
: 13 with internal batteries; 15 with external power source
Angle of coverage: 65' horizontal and 85' vertical
Film speed range: ISO 25 to 1000
Recycling time: Approx. 8 sec.
Number of flashes: Approx. 200
Power source
: Four 1.5V AA-type alkaline or NiCd batteries; DC Unit LD-2
Dimensions: Approx. 130mm (W) x 120mm (H) x 21 mm (D)
Weight: Approx. 145g

Accessories ( Provided ): Wide Illumination Panel SW-8; 52mm/62mm Adaptor Rings; Soft Cases SS-21 (for SB-21, SW-8 and 52mm and 62min Adaptor Rings), and SS- 17 (for controller)
wideadapt.jpg 5262adpt.jpg illuminator.jpg ur3adapt.jpg
Wide Illumination Panel SW-8 For shooting flash-to-subject distances closer than 40mm 52mm/62mm, Adaptor Rings: For use with lenses having a filter diameter of 52mm or 62mm
Focus Illuminator: For pinpoint focus adjustment under unfavourable lighting conditions
UR-3 Adaptor. For attaching the SB-21 to an AF Micro-Nikkor 60mm f/2.8D lens

   Back to Index of Nikon F3 Models
About this photographic site
Contributions and Credits
  Home - Photography in Malaysia

Modern Classic SLRs Series :
Nikon F3 Flash Photography - SB-21A/B - Index Page

Copyright © 1999. leofoo ®. MIR Web Development Team.