Article ID : 00031612 / Last Modified : 03/29/2019Print

What is High Speed Synchronization (HSS)?

    IMPORTANT: This article applies only to specific products and/or operating systems. Check Applicable Products and Categories for details.

    High Speed Synchronization (HSS) is a function that allows the camera to use fast shutter speeds with an external flash. Cameras have a limited flash sync speed; this means the fastest shutter speed that can be used with a built-in flash is generally 1/125 to 1/250 second depending on the camera. However, an external flash with HSS allows up to the maximum shutter speed of the camera to be used if needed.

    IMPORTANT: HSS cannot be used if the flash is set at an upward angle, such as when using it as a bounce flash. Make sure the flash is facing forward when mounted on the camera to use the HSS feature.

    In normal flash photography using the built-in flash of a camera, the flash instantaneously illuminates the subject when the shutter is fully open. Therefore only shutter speeds up to 1/125-1/250 of a second can be synchronized with the flash.

    Shutter fully open

    An HSS flash operates by sending multiple bursts of light at high speed and with the shutter blades of the camera only partly open. This enables you to illuminate a scene similar to that of a built-in flash, but with the flash synchronized to use the faster shutter speeds on the camera.

    Shutter partly open


    • Wireless HSS is possible using certain combinations of (alpha) camera flashes.
    • Wireless HSS is also possible using the 5600HS(D) or 3600HS(D) program flashes manufactured by Konica Minolta.
    • A Konica Minolta™ wireless remote controller cannot be used.
    • High-speed flash recharge cycle takes about 5 seconds.