This page outlines the best practices when many photographers are simultaneously triggering remote cameras at large sporting or other events.
We are very proud of our radios. They provide rock-solid mission-critical performance in venues around the world. Thanks to our broad frequency range, powerful Custom IDs, and proven digital RF signaling methods, our MultiMAX radios can handle several photographers at the same event while providing control and exclusivity like no other remote trigger system.
But they are not originally designed to handle over 100 photographers working the same finish-line event like happens at the largest sporting events.
We continue to improve operation for exclusivity (Custom IDs), simultaneous use (Patterns), and greater distances (Long Range Mode). But too many photographers on the same frequency can still be a concern. Please read this information to learn the best methods to increase your odds of getting that once-in-a-lifetime remote shot at the most crowded events.
Quick Check List
Here is a quick check list to get you started:
- Get MultiMAX radios from your favorite local source, or upgrade your old ones
- Send them to LPA Design/PocketWizard for Custom IDs
- Upgrade your firmware to the latest that includes Patterns
- Know your frequency
- Find the Sign-up Sheet
- Pick a Pattern
- Set a long contact time on your Receiver
- Use Long Range Mode on your transmitters *and* receivers
- Press and *hold* TEST or your trigger button, don’t tap it
- Use ferrite chokes on long cable runs.
- Get the receiver’s antenna as high as you can
- Maintain line of sight whenever possible
- Dress cables away from antennas
- Consider hard-wiring
Custom IDs, myths and realities
A Custom ID is a private digital code on a MultiMAX. In crowded shooting environments, Custom IDs allow only you to trigger your remote flash or camera. Other photographers cannot trigger your remotes.
A Custom ID is not a “private frequency.” It is an exclusive code installed on top of an existing PocketWizard frequency. Too many photographers triggering simultaneously on the same frequency can be a serious issue, even for Custom ID users. Your remote might not trigger because it cannot “hear” its digital code through all the other digital codes being transmitted on that frequency.
The methods throughout this document can be used to improve operation in multiuser environments.
To get a Custom ID on your MultiMAX you must already own MultiMAX radios, then send your radios to LPA Design / PocketWizard in Vermont.
Custom IDs are $95 USD per ID per radio.
- Custom IDs can only be installed on MultiMAX radios. They are not available for any other PocketWizard radios including Plus III, Plus II, FlexTT5, MiniTT1, etc.
- You cannot buy MultiMAX radios directly from PocketWizard. If you do not own MultiMAX radios, you must purchase them from your local dealer, then send them to LPA Design / PocketWizard.
- Dealers and distributors do not sell MultiMAX radios with Custom IDs already installed. Many dealers will let you drop-ship your MultiMAX radios directly to LPA Design for a Custom ID service.
- All MultiMAX radios that you want to work together must have the same Custom ID installed.
- Custom IDs cannot be installed via the PocketWizard Utility.
- Future firmware upgrades will not erase your Custom IDs. They are permanent.
- You can get more than one Custom ID on a radio. Each additional ID is $95 per radio.
- LPA Design / PocketWizard maintains a database of Custom ID holders. Only you can get your Custom ID on future radios.
- Custom IDs are exclusively installed at LPA Design / PocketWizard in Vermont.
- LPA Design / PocketWizard
- 21 Gregory Drive
- Suite 140
- South Burlington, VT 05403