The Nikon Creative Lighting System

Because the built-in flash has limitations, you sometimes need to add extra light to a photograph. To help with that, Nikon developed the Creative Lighting System (CLS), where external flashes can communicate with each other and be controlled by a Master flash or controller unit. The system allows flashes to be used off the camera easily, and also for multiple flashes to be used together to illuminate the subject.

Available flashes

At the center of the Nikon CLS is the Speedlight, which is the name Nikon uses for its dedicated flash units. As of this writing, the Nikon Speedlight system consists of the SB-910, the SB-700, the SB-400, the SU-wireless commander, and the R1 Wireless Close-up System (which uses the SB-R200). All of these work with the Nikon D3200.


Image courtesy of Nikon.

4.17 The SB-700 Speedlight. The flash head can be positioned at various angles.

Using a single Speedlight is easy—just slide it into the hot shoe on the D3200 and turn it on. The camera automatically knows it has an external flash attached and will use it instead of the built-in flash. The following are the individual pieces of the CLS:

SB-910. This is the flagship Speedlight in the Nikon line. It is designed to work with any Nikon camera that has a hot shoe, including the D3200. The SB-910 can act as a regular flash, or be configured as a wireless commander to ...

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