Elinchrom ELB400 Service mode
Recently when I was out on shoots with my Elinchrom ELB 400 I was sure the number of flashes I was getting was falling far short of the specification. The manual says it should be around 350 pops at full power and up to 6000 at lower settings. I only seemed to be getting 200ish I wasn't even using full power or the modelling light. This happened a couple of times so I gave The Flash Center in central London a call. One of the guys there said I should definitely be getting the full number of pops as my battery wasn't old by any means. Anyway after a bit of a chat he let me know about a hidden service menu where it was possible to get the control unit to re-calibrate it's power capacity indicator.
I searched high and low on the internet and haven't been able to find a single reference to this hidden service mode so I thought I'd share it with you guys. Of course it's hidden and as far as I can tell undocumented to the general public so you are on your own with any problems. I can't really say if things are better because I have also been taking the advice to separate the battery from the control unit when not using it. There is a tiny amount of trickle loss which would reduce the stored charge in the battery over a few weeks.
Enough with the preamble lets get on with how to access the hidden menu
Switch the unit on as normal. i.e with a head of some sort. Then press Modelling Lamp and the Left & Right arrow buttons all at the same time as shown ringed in red in the photo below.
Now press the menu button as shown ringed in green in the photo below.
Scroll down the menu by pressing the Right Arrow button
There will be a new menu option called "7. service menu"
Go into that menu by pressing the select button marked with the Elinchrom symbol.
Scroll down to see the options. I don't know what most of them do. I haven't tried them
To recalibrate a battery I was told to select option 9 and then option 10.
It only takes a few seconds and should now mean that the battery level display will show the number of bars which reflects the actual capacity of the battery.
Exit the menus by pressing the menu button (ringed in green in the first photo) or switch off the unit.
I'll be keeping an eye on how much better mine is an will update this blog post when I get some results.
Until then, I hope you have found this useful.
p.s. if anyone knows what the other options do let me know and I'll add notes here.
N.B. I was only told to use options 9 & 10. I don't know if the other options require test equipment to be attached to the unit so select them at your own risk!!!
Keywords: ELB400, Elinchrom, elinchrom elb 400, Hidden Menu, Li-Ion calibration, Li-Ion LED update, Service Menu
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