Using a Nikon P6000 with remote flash triggers

Thanks to a tip I came across on a Flickr group, I discovered that my Nikon Coolpix P6000 could use off camera flashes (Strobist style) via my cheapo Cactus Triggers (aka Poverty Wizards). These are a cheap set consisting of a transmitter and receiver for any flash that I got off ebay for about $25 that works almost as well as the $200+ remote triggers (which are probably worth the money if you’re doing this professionally).

Coolpix P6000 with Cactus trigger

Now don’t get me wrong, Nikon’s creative lighting system (CLS) that is built into almost all their recent cameras (except their point and shoots) and speedlights is amazing but it relies on infrared line-of-sight to work. Sometimes you want to put a flash somewhere that can’t been seen by the IR window on the flash unit and these remote triggers make it happen.

The trick is to disable the built-in flash completely (via the menu) as simply not popping up the flash won’t work:
Nikon P6000

You don’t need to pop up the built-in for it to work but it’s worth noting that it doesn’t matter either way since it doesn’t fire.

This opens up a bunch of new options for playing around with the P6000…including more goofy shots of me standing in front of a mirror with the gear:
Coolpix P6000 with Cactus trigger

The more I play with this camera, the more I love it.


  1. Tyler says:

    Poverty Wizards! lol too funny.

    I was looking at PocketWizards. It would be cool to use for low light photography, like sports. Primarily I would have liked to use them during the Grenade Games up at Whistler…

    How many channels are they?
    How far is their range too?


  2. John says:

    I forget what the range of the Cactus triggers are but it’s pretty decent…especially for the price. I know a guy in the Vancouver Strobist group that modified his to get about 1500ft by simply adding an antenna to the top of the transmitter.

    They only have a couple of channel options and you set them via dip switches on the devices. I’ve had mine for a couple years and think that yesterday was the most use I’ve put them through since the Nikon CLS usually works fine.

  3. Cool post, John! I’ve been looking for this info, actually… So that was timely! I need new equipment. And… I’m cheap :)

  4. John says:

    Thanks Tanya! Wait til you see my next post about the P6000 (hopefully tonight)….more cheap workarounds ;)

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