As part of my ongoing review of the Nikon D4s, I wanted to go a bit deep on Nikon's CLS flash management system. With the support of Chris Atkinson at Henry's Newmarket, I was able to use a Nikon SB-910 and a Phottix Mitros for a 48 hour period. Nikon's flash is great, but pricey and while I have had excellent experience with the Phottix Mitros+ flashes that have radio transceivers built in, this is the first time I have tried the regular Mitros.
The Mitros full integrates into Nikon's excellent Creative Lighting System. You can control it like any Nikon CLS capable flash using infrared. The Mitros can act as a CLS master or slave device. The flash runs in TTL, M and Multi (stroboscopic) mode. The TTL works beautifully for fill flash. The flash mounts with a metal foot to the hotshoe and has a very Canon-like foot lock.
The controls are simple and the LCD display is coherent and easy to follow. As far as the camera is concerned, it's a Nikon flash, the integration is that cleanly done. The head bounces and swivels as one would expect. In addition to a nice padded case, the flash includes a dome diffuser and a bag of cables for connectivity to those cameras or devices that do not have a hot shoe.
You can update the firmware on the flash via the included USB port. There is also a small flash stand in the case that will fit on a standard ¼-20 stand mount. The radio system flash does both High Speed Sync and rear curtain sync and can be controlled via radio using Phottix's proven ODIN radio system.
If you need to use the flash to be triggered via optical slave, that is built in, a feature missing from more expensive flash units such as Canon's 600 EX-RT. The unit has a guide number of 58 (meters at ISO 100) and runs on 4 AA batteries. I find the Mitros sells for around $350, less than the typical street price of the excellent Metz 58 AF-2 and $300 or so less than the less powerful Nikon SB-910. The documentation is clean and easy to follow. Phottix has been doing flashes for a while but availability outside of the US had been problematic. That's improving regularly and this makes the Mitros a strong buy for TTL flash buyers who don't want to spend the extra $$$ for the brand name units. The Mitros is available for Nikon, Canon and Sony.