The Metz 45 CT-1 older series (High Voltage) is more useful in Manual mode if you can find  this part called a 45-20.  I have two in stock. Try eBay and/or I might have one in a kit with flash and high powered battery, I grab all I can.  It adds an additional external sensor with more electronics and a myriad of settings.  Using the Wein or Vello Safe Synch allows this all powerful flash to be used on Digital (newer) cameras safely.   The other option is you are safe if the CT-1 serial numbers over 534,000.    READ MORE - SEE BELOW

NOTE:   Metz has produced a number of different versions of the Mecamat for different models of the 45 model. Mecamats can ONLY be used with the model they were designed for.    

•   High Voltage CT-1 can only use the 45-20  Serial number under 534,000    
•   Low Voltage   CT-1 can only use the 45-43  making sure your serial number on the hood is higher than 534,000.  
•   They are not interchangeable. 


1)  In Automatic mode it extends the number of usable Apertures to nine instead of five.

2)  In Manual mode it allows manual power setting in full stops  from 1 to 1/64 instead of full power only

3)  It has a spot meter option. 

4)  The CT-1 flash came onto the market it represented a lot more power than most flashes available at that time and even today.  It had a large head, great light distribution, and in full manual settings took care of slow film better than anything else.  It effectively extends its usefulness to the present day. 

5)  And with the Mecamat it can handle almost anything with the additional variables it performs.

6)  In the mode for micro shooting off a stand this is an incredible setup,because you will be in manual settings anyway.

7) Standard F stop in Auto Mode simply turn dial, goes to next f-stop. This was at the lowest possible settings, not intended to be a technical shot it is for showing versatility of the units using just a dial. Nothing changed in camera and the flash only has five stops, with the Mecamat that opens to nine more.

In the auto-mode you have 2 options, a green one and a red one... There is a switch with which you can select what indicator you are using.... If you set the red indicator to f/8 or f/16 and have the switch to green, you'll probably get overexposed pictures... But if the other way around (green on scale, red on switch), you'll get underexposed pictures... Mind you, you also have to set the switch at the back of the mecamat to the right side 


#14  On top is the left right switch. It activates either the extended automatic dial on the left side or the manual dial on the right side. A white indicator shows which side is activated. 

#15  Below in the middle is the flash ready lamp which replicates the flash ready status from the main unit. 

#16  Below the flash ready lamp is a red led which lights up shortly if there was sufficient light.

#17  Adjuster for angle of the sensor. At the bottom of the housing is a screw dial that allows to adjust the angle of the Mecamat upwards or downwards, in order to point the sensor when using the spot metering mode. 

#18  The unit will point downwards by using the adjuster and is designed for and perfectly suitable for Macro work, when the subject is very near to the camera.  The little red button on the hot shoe can be used to trigger the flash for a test shot. (#18 Grey in photo)

The front can be tilted to the side and the hole then acts as a visor so that you see where the Sensor is aiming. In the back a plastic part can be pushed out to be used for aiming with the visor.  You can see it in the next picture at the left side near the bottom of the case in its pushed in state. The sensor itself can be turned with its black plastic rim and then pulled out to give a spot metering effect.

NOTE:  On the right side is a dial that looks very similar to the one on top of the flash itself. When the Mecamat is attached the dial on top of the flash is without function and it does not matter how it is set. 

ADVANTAGE:  The inner dial is used to select the ISO. The outer dial can be set from Manual full power to 1/64 power. For each stop the table indicates the flash duration time between 1/300 to 1/16000 of a second. The upper part matches apertures with distance for the chosen setting.
The highest ISO setting is only 400 but that does not matter as it is anyway only for informational purposes. A good shooter shooting digital will get the right power setting by test shots and can ignore the ISO setting completely.

On the left side is a second similar dial and a switch. The switch can be selected to activate a “green” or a “red" mode. Each mode represents 5 automatic apertures can be selected by turning the big dial. 

•   The “ red” mode allows lower apertures.
•   The  “green” mode allows higher apertures. 
•   The two modes overlap and one in the middle resulting in a total of 9 selectable apertures.
•    For ISO 100 the apertures range from 2.8 to 45. The scale also shows the maximum distance for each aperture.
•    Someone mentioned well it only goes to  ISO 400.  Duh!  
With a flash as powerful as the 45 who cares, I want as low an ISO  as I can use for massive clean files.  The ISO settings dial is just there to mechanically align the values printed on the dial. 
If higher ISO values are set in the camera simple adjust the aperture by the number of stops necessary.  Each doubling of the ISO means one stop, simple, a third grader can math that one out.

For the Metz 45 and those cameras that don’t come with a synch socket, only a hotshoe.  And for any legendary Minoltas with their proprietary tank tread hotshoe.

We simply take the standard synch socket cable and snip the end and mate it internally so we can utilize it in the hotshoe male units shown. 

The unit shown in white is a simple single pin contact found on most cameras.   HC-31A is a Minolta Old Style hotshoe with two tracks and five pins hotshoe, proprietary only to older Minolta and Sony.  Works great.

 If you have a conventional hotshoe you can use the CT-1 volt synch units below... with the lower synch numbers under 534,000 and simply plug the standard synch cord in.  Simple, protection and added power.


The big boy on the right and below  is a dual setup with my Perfection bracket, two Metz 45’s, and a power controller with 3800 dual 9.6 volt batteries in NIMH in tandem for the two ports on the pack. 

It is powerful and allows many modes for bounce flash, single or dual wide flash, 110 degree super wide coverage for Weddings and events.  I also use Mary Ann with an umbrella, low settings for portraits, and the second head a bounce for background.  Few other units on the market can do this.   About a 10th, the price of the Profoto and similar rigs... especially at the beach.

OK, my sense of humor sometimes runs away from me. I call her Mary Ann.  She works all day, all night, and now Mary Ann, down by the seaside sifting the song goes.  And she works down by the seaside... where you are either fighting the sun or the lack of it.  I plant her on a smooth painters pole into a two inch three foot piece of conduit sharpened at one end and into the sand, A two x four works great.


Mounted on one of my sand poles ( see DIY section) she shoots great shots on back-lighted beach settings, and sundown work with large groups such as beach weddings and corporate cookouts popular here in Florida.  And they all want shots with the skyline lit on the background after the sun goes down.  

No problem, thats if they are all standing and not passed out from alcohol.  When the wedding parties are six to ten per side and you really need wide coverage, I simple move each head 10 degrees off center.  

At weddings or events I also use it in one head bounce, one head direct with diffusion, cool results and again one Metz is powerful, two is incredible. Thats a guide of about 300G hit on max.  I can build you one with the same setup you see for 250  to 400.00 depending on what you have to contribute to controllers, batteries, transmitters, receivers,  etc.

The kit in the picture finished includes Two MetzCT-1’s, one perfection bracket, Two Yong-Nuo receivers, One transmitter, a backup transmitter, One 9.6  4000 mah power pack custom cables, end of the year price 375.00 plus shipping good till FEB-15, only one per customer at this price, it’s called a loss leader.    WANT TO LIGHT A BEACH...

Does not include light stand. This was my demo for trade shows. There are no more affordable trade shows.   A Mecamat 45-20 is also available to use as a macro rig. ( $55.00 Extra) 

You have to manually check the voltage on your unit. You are forewarned that, all Metz, Canon, Nikon products and others are voltage and amperage sensitive and nothing any of them builds or sells is inexpensive either as a replacement or repair.  

Thus older CT-1 are units stronger than bulls with higher synch if their serial numbers are under 534,000.  BUT they have a high voltage synch rate.  Those units below 534,000 we have no hesitation using them on lightstands especially the dual mounts with a transceiver or on my beach rigs using my Mary Ann.  

For the under 534,000 simply use a WEIN Safe -Synch voltage regulator available at B&H or Transceivers that are rated at 200V.


The Wein Safe-Sync Hot Shoe to Hot Shoe regulates and reduces the flash sync voltage of the flash from up to 400V to less than 6V. This is especially important for current automated SLRs or digital cameras when used with older flashes or lighting systems.

This model mounts directly to a camera’s hot shoe, great because it allows the unique synch cord we use with the Metz to plug right in the front. and provides a hot shoe on top and a PC female flash connection on the side.  Y

You can have a flash connected to the hot shoe and a flash being triggered by the PC female connection-and unlike so many other offerings of this type, both will fire simultaneously from the same signal. The exception to this rule pertains when using 1 or 2 flashes that are already under 5V sync voltage. In this case, the flash or flashes will not fire.

** If the number is higher than 534,000, no problem the 500,000 indicates low-synch voltage and I will gladly shoot with Nikons, Canons, and Sony’s off the hotshoe or synch made today.  Now you have two choices with the Vello at B&H

Use an older-style shoe-mounted flash unit on a modern digital camera body with this HSA-PVU Hot Shoe Adapter with Safe Voltage Conversion from Vello. It works with voltages up to 60V and reduces it to less than 6V to protect the delicate circuits of your camera system. 

This adapter also offers a PC terminal for connecting the camera to another flash or studio light. Additionally, it runs on a CR2032 battery and has a battery check button with an LED indicator light that lights up when the adapter is working.  B&H sells Vello for 39.95. Smaller profile, newer more modern design than the Wein and is cheaper.

There are three versions of the Metz clip. (Battery Holders) Look inside the handle. You see three pins but your module only has two contacts.  NOTE: Thus, eliminating all BS and those who say it doesn’t matter, it does.   I once said stupid never needs an intro to the web.   I work on these things and as usual misinformation is prevalent on the web.  

For me the modules serve one purpose, remember this is an improvement process, not how to rebuild the mess the old way.  Modules are best used...disassembled and rebuilt into a power cord, pack models otherwise useless.  

The modules all come from overseas, the true Metz Alkali from Germany about $28.00 for one, the TYPE three very underpowered with NiCads and/dead, are expensive.  The knockoffs made by SONIA BRAND from Karnataka, India are about three for 25.00 dollars.  Every five of the cheapie’s I use, I throw one away, poor fit, won’t lock in the handle, thin plastic.  Just like China.

The first module is the solder-welded cells factory issued NiCad pack.  If it is welded, not soldered.  Soldered batteries are homemade refills. Also look for corrosion, not a good choice, thus good for a pack when I gut it, I don’t need the insides. Most are dead by now, but send them to me.

TYPE 2 - MODEL 5312   45-39  METZ and 

The second, type is simply an unfilled empty holder you fill, with ALKALI only, not rechargeable batteries, it is designed to work with the ground and PIN A which is in a different location from the Ni-Cad/NiMH  pack and it is the 9.X volt version. 

The third version is the newer Ni-MH offered by B&H and more current, marked new, when? How long has it been current on their shelves. Which is why I have an expensive load tester on my bench. Most likely it is what they call  “Old new inventory”  Pass if you are smart. Waste of money. NiMH has a one to two year life expectancy when not used.

I can convert all of these holders to a battery pack cable module by rebuilding the unit and we’ll save you about sixty dollars.

Some tried using Sanyo Eneloops in the former Metz NiMH 45-39 battery holder, and it might make a good backup when a pack is not needed.  Recycle times are relatively better than alkalines. But you do have to convert the pack to the 7.4 side if you use the SONIA’s.  The genuine Metz that came with NiMH is a 7.4. 

Eneloops cells won’t discharge as fast by themselves like normal rechargeable’s do. Unfortunately, the cells are expensive and you must use the same cells from one batch.  If you mismatch cells especially rechargeable’s you might have a first hand encounter with failure or other anomalies.

To increase the life of your cells, you might want to use an "intelligent" charger that monitors each cell individually. One good entry-level model is the La Crosse BC-700, which can be had for less than 30 dollars US on Amazon

If one any one of those cells ( Remember this is a China product) decreases they all drop to the lowest capacity setting, it a law of electricity and resistance.  If  cell dies completely the pack stops working.  Thats why I don’t use them.


  1. The Metz Ni-Cad modules were great for film, today they are useless. They had a  50 shot capacity, were OK in the days of film weddings when you carried two packs, barely made it and only shot 120 pictures. Sub 1000 Mah
  2. However do not pitch them.  They might,  if not killed by age and neglect be rebuildable for a real power pack module and cable and save you big bucks.   
  3. Also there is an old Quantum Cable I modify and also one by PC- Cords sometimes found on eBay. See picture.
  4. I can make a module from any of the Sonia aftermarket modules.  
  5. Some of these modules are old, very old and made of components that click together and then a couple screws lock things together.  But when dismantling them, they snap apart sometimes into more pieces than you thought you wanted to have. The term brittle and weak comes to mind. 
  6. In some cases the contacts will have to be resized and re-soldered to work. If not, that popping sound might be a meltdown and the smell will be the first indication as the plastic melts and you just ruined it,  I use heat sinks and certain techniques like MEK integration glueing and plastic welding.