Ok this may sound noobish.. but can anyone help by educating me on how does manual flash works? auto flash or ttl flash seems pretty expensive.. so i can only afford a manual flash. But i have no idea how does it work
Ok... I've nothing constructive I can contribute to this thread anymore...
I just remembered that there I have a Emoblitz flash lying around somewhere that works safely on DSLRs. TS might want to try his/her luck at flea markets. Just buy, then come home and check online whether it's safe or not. But if Sunpaks can be had readily for less than $100......
I did get a used Sunpak Auto 383 Super on B&S for $100. Later saw one going for even less ($75 IFRC). It's an old school auto/manual flash in the vein of the Vivitar 283 / 285 -- 3 Auto apertures and 5 manual settings. I did check the trigger voltage (on the list Dream Merchant linked, and directly), just to be sure.
TS, not sure if you know, but auto flashes like these do the flash metering themselves -- there's a small window in the front with a photosensor inside. No TTL, multi-pattern metering etc. You may find it a little limiting, or more flexible, depending on how you like to work.
BTW, do be careful when comparing available flashes with those on the trigger voltage list. Some of the model numbers are very similar. For e.g. the Vivitar 285 has a high trigger voltage that may fry your DSLR; the Vivitar 285 HV is low voltage.
I've been using a $65 manual flash (Sunblitz A829 bought new at Orient Photo early this year) and have been getting fantastic shots bouncing off ceilings and walls.
I just put it to full power (only two settings anyway) and just vary the iso speed, shutter speed and aperture till I got it right. A bit of trial and error at first but after I've got the hang of it found that iso 400, f8 of bigger, 1/125 or about gets me the results I want indoors. With digital nowadays it's that simple, just do a few trial shots first with camera at full manual, get the desired exposure and fire away.