Olympus OM system close-up and macro equipment

T10 Ring Flash 1


The T10 Ring Flash 1 is one of 4 macro flash units for the Olympus OM cameras that use the T Power Control 1 and provide automatic exposure using the camera’s TTL flash control, so that you do not need to calculate the additional exposure required by magnification. It was the first ring flash with TTL exposure control from any manufacturer. It is normally attached to the filter mount of one of the Zuiko macro lenses, and is designed to produce shadowless lighting at close working distances.

T10 Ring Flash 1

Olympus OM T10 Ring Flash 1, with T Power Control 1, Zuiko Auto-Macro 50mm f/3.5 lens and OM-2 body

To screw the flash head onto a lens, hold the connecting cable still and turn the black outer ring, which is connected to the filter threads at the rear; you do not need to turn the entire head.

When used with the Olympus OM-2, OM-2N, OM-2SP, OM-3, OM-3Ti, OM-4 or OM-4Ti cameras, automatic exposure using the camera’s TTL flash control is possible. Other cameras can also be used, but the exposure would need to be determined using a flash meter, trial and error, or the appropriate Calculator Panels.

To attach the plug to the Power Control, align the red dots on the plug and the Power Control, insert the plug, and turn it clockwise until it clicks and locks into place. To disconnent the plug, press and hold the small black button on the front of the Power Control, turn the plug anti-clockwise until the red dots are aligned, and then release the button and withdraw the plug.

Rear of T10 Ring Flash 1

Rear of Olympus OM T10 Ring Flash 1

The circular flash head contains 8 small bulbs that act as modelling lights and can be useful for focusing in dim light and to preview the lighting and any reflections. The modelling lights are much less bright than the flash, and so they do not need to be turned off when a photograph is taken. The socket at the rear of the ring for powering the modelling lights is a standard 2.1 mm DC power socket. Power can be provided from either the 6V Power Pack 2 or the AC Adapter 3. A ring around the power socket can be turned to switch the modelling lights on and off.

By reversing the Calculator Panel at the rear of the T Power Control 1, manual flash is possible, with a choice of 2 apertures.

Some time after the T10, Olympus introduced the T8 Ring Flash 2. Instead of facing forwards as in the T10, the light from the flash tube in the T8 is directed sideways into a large reflector that produces diffuse and shadowless lighting.

Guide Number (100 ASA) 10 m
Color temperature 5800° K
Coverage angle 80°
Filter mount sizes 49 mm and 55 mm
US catalog no. 107-013
Introduced 1980
Discontinued 2003


Only one version is known.


The T Power Control 1 is essential – the Ring Flash cannot be used without it. The Ring Cross Filter POL can help to reduce reflections of the flash tube in shiny subjects.

Calculator Panels were available for the T Power Control 1 with distance/aperture scales for 50mm lenses (including the Zuiko Auto-Macro 50mm f/3.5), the Zuiko Auto-Macro 80mm f/4 and the Zuiko Auto-Macro 135mm f/4.5. The panels have distance scales marked in both feet and metres. Self-adhesive labels were provided with the T Power Control 1 to stick onto a Calculator Panel to provide readings for manual flash with the Zuiko Auto-Macro 20mm f/2, Zuiko Auto-Macro 38mm f/2.8, Zuiko Auto-Macro 80mm f/4, Zuiko Auto-Macro 135mm f/4.5 and 50mm lenses (including the Zuiko Auto-Macro 50mm f/3.5).

Going digital

Jan Steinman has devised a way to modify the T10 Ring Flash 1 so that it can be powered by the Olympus FC-1 Macro Flash Controller, and you can read his illustrated article here: Converted Olympus T-10 and T-8 Ring Flashes. If you are not confident to do it yourself, Jan can modify your T10 for you.

Instruction leaflet

We greatly appreciate that you have acquired the special Olympus T10 Ring Flash 1. Coupled with the T Power-Control 1, this unit enables you to take shadowless pictures at ultra-close distances. For operation, refer to the instruction manual supplied with the T Power-Control 1.

Instruction manual

Reproduced with permission from the copyright owner, Olympus Optical Co., Ltd
Printed 0381

T Power Control 1
T10 Ring Flash 1

The T Power Control 1/T10 Ring Flash 1 combination is specially designed for short working distances where conventional flash units cannot be used. With the OM-2 it extends the advantages of TTL “OTF” Auto flash to the fields of shadowless close-up, medical, scientific and outdoor action macrophotography. Manual flash with the OM-1, OM-10 and cameras other than OM can also be achieved more easily than ever before.



T Power Control 1

T10 Ring Flash 1


Insert four 1.5V AA, size batteries properly.

Alkaline batteries last about 4 times longer than manganese batteries.


Switch the Power Control ON. Wait until the charge signal lights on. After confirmation, switch the Power Control OFF.


Screw the T10 Ring Flash 1 into the front of the lens.

(4) Connect to the T Power Control 1.

Align red index marks, press and rotate the connecting plug until it stops.

To remove the plug: (1) Press release button (2) Turn plug towards the release button.


Slide the Power Control into the accessory shoe and turn the lock knob in the direction of the arrow to lock the Power Control in position.

Put the spiral cord away from the flash surface and the aperture scale on the lens.


With the calculator panel in the ‘full automatic control by OM-2’ position, the guide number is set automatically to 10 (ASA 100, meters) or 33 (ASA 100, feet).


Insert the output plug of the power source and switch on the illuminator.

For composition and focusing with dark subjects (8 lamps).

Two optional power sources are available.


If the identification mark engraved on the top plate of your camera is “OM-2” (and not “OM-2N”), set the synchro terminal to “X” by aligning the red dot on the X and FP selector lever with the “X” indication on the flash socket. Your camera performs TTL Centralized Control Flash with Shoe 3 as described in the following pages, but the charge/auto check indication is not seen in the viewfinder.


With the calculator panel in the ‘full automatic control by OM-2’ position, turn the power switch to the “ON” position.

* Set the camera’s selector lever to “AUTO”.


Wait until the charge signal lights on.

* The charge signal can be seen both in the viewfinder and on the back of the Power Control.


Any aperture can be used for TTL AUTO Flash photography with the OM-2, within the TTL AUTO range. Determine the F stop according to your photographic purpose.

For guidance (ASA 100)

Lens Magnification F stop
135mm Macro* 0.1 × – 0.5 × F 8
80mm Macro* 0.5 × – 2 × F 32
50mm Macro 0.1 × – 0.5 × F 16

* with Telescopic Auto Tube 65–116 or Auto Bellows

By positioning the calculator panel in reverse and setting it to ‘G. No. 10’ you can read effective aperture range at a glance. See page 23.


Focus and press the shutter release.

(Turn the aperture ring until the meter needle points to 1/30 sec. or slower, and shoot.)



If the signal light blinks repeatedly, the picture was properly exposed by flash.

* The signal light blinks repeatedly also at overexposure, so be sure the subject distance is within the TTL AUTO range shown on the exposure table.

The correct auto flash signal can be seen both in the viewfinder and on the back of the Power Control.

If the signal light goes out, the picture will turn out under-exposed. Choose a larger aperture.

If the signal stays lit (the ring flash did not fire): The subject is bright enough and the picture was taken properly by existing light. The electronic flash was not needed. (In case exposure must be achieved by flash illumination: Turn the aperture ring until the meter needle points to 1/30 sec. or slower, and shoot.)


If you want to take pictures with existing light, turn the Control Power off; the charge lamp goes out and the ring flash will not fire even when the capacitor is fully charged.


Controlling Depth of Field

at F22 at maximum aperture

By stopping your lens down, the zone of acceptable sharpness can be increased.

Flash Exposure Compensation

To compensate dark background Turn the dial to the (−) side.

To compensate bright background Turn the dial to the (+) side.

RING FILTER POL (optional)

Iridology without POL with POL

Reflection-reduced flash photography is possible with the cross polarizing filter on TTL AUTO mode.

* Screw into the T10.


The ring flash unit can be used on TTL AUTO mode together with other T-series flash units for multiple flash effects.

* TTL Auto Multi Connector (optional)


  1. Normally, ultra close-up and macrophotography with manual flash requires complicated calculations for exposure compensation. However, with the use of the calculator panel designed for each macro lens it can be performed with ease.
  2. Set the camera for flash photography according to the instruction manuals supplied with your camera and Electronic Flash T32 (or T20).


Press the button and remove the calculator panel. (1, 2)

Calculator panels for MC Auto Macro 135 mm F4.5 or MC Auto 1:1 Macro 80 mm F4 are available optionally.

Set the ASA film speed. Slide the calculator panel to the left as far as it will go, until it clicks into place. (3)


The standard type (for 50mm lenses) comes equipped with the T Power Control 1.


  1. Determine the working distance (flash-to-subject) or magnification factor.
  2. Find the working distance or magnification factor (on the exposure table) which is nearest to the value you have determined.
  3. Read the F number (any in-between value) off the aperture scale positioned at the right of the W.D. or magnification factor, indicated by 0 or o.
  4. Set the lens aperture at the F number.
  5. Switch ON the Power Control unit.
  6. Fine-focus and press the shutter release after the charge signal begins to glow.

Lens: MC Macro 50mm F3.5
W.D.: 17 cm
(ASA 100)

  • The aperture scale (3rd from above) corresponding to ‘W.D. 15 cm’ is applicable.
  • GN 10 setting cannot be used as • mark indicates beyond ‘F22’ which is not available on the lens.
  • The correct F number is ‘16’ indicated by 0.
  • Set the GN switching knob to ‘4’ and the lens aperture to ‘16’

* At the GN 4 setting the signal light blinks repeatedly to show that low power output has been emitted.

* For more detailed exposure table, refer to MANUAL FOR MACROPHOTOGRAPHY.

Set the selected F number on the camera lens and the shutter speed to 1/30 sec.


With 50mm Macro


Multi-unit Flash (1)

Multi-unit Flash (2)


MAIN SPECIFICATIONS (T Power Control 1 + T10 Ring Flash 1)

Type: Series-circuit type TTL Centralized Control.
Guide Number: 10 (ASA 100, meters) or 33 (ASA 100, feet) at 1 m flash-to-subject distance and full power flash. Low – 4 (ASA 100, m) or 13 (ft.)
Coverage Angle: 80°
Recycling Time: 0.2 – 10 sec. with AA Alkaline batteries on TTL AUTO (varies depending on flash-to-subject distance).
Number of Flashes: 100 – 500.
Color Temperature: 5,800° K.
Electrical Contact with Camera: (1) Clip-on type with hot shoe and lock. (2) Off-camera type with TTL Auto Cord and TTL Auto Connector (w/wo Power Bounce Grip 2).
Exposure Calculator: Reversible plate type – blank for OM-2N (OM-2) for TTL Auto flash; calculator for OM-1N (OM-1), OM-10 and non-OM cameras for Manual flash.
TTL “OTF” AUTO (with OM-2N or OM-2): Aperture Setting: Continuous, couples with aperture ring setting of camera lens.
SBC Sensor Acceptance Angle: Matches view of camera lens.
TTL AUTO Check: Neon-flicker indication. Viewfinder indication contact provided.
Ready Light Cheek: Charge lamp and viewfinder indication contact.
MANUAL: Guide Number: 10 (ASA 100, meters) or 33 (ASA 100, feet) on full power flash. Low – 4 (ASA 100 meters) or 13 (ASA 100, feet).
TTL Auto Cord Socket: Plug-in type with automatic lock.
External Power Socket: Plug-in type.
Power Source: (1) 1.5V “AA” battery × 4 (incl. NiCd) inside T Power Control 1. (2) 1.5V “C” battery × 4 (incl. NiCd) inside Power Bounce Grip 2. (3) AC house current via Electronic Flash AC Adapter 3. (2) and (3) are activated by on/off switch of power-control unit.
Illuminators: Eight electric bulbs are built into the front of ring flash unit. (Power source: 6V Power Pack 2 or AC Adapter 3).
Recommended Macro Lenses: MC Macro 135mm F4.5, MC 1:1 Macro 8Omm F4, MC Macro 50mm F3.5
Dimensions & Weight: T Power Control 1 – 81 × 70 × 104 mm, 320 gr. (less batteries) (3.2 × 2.8 × 4.1 in., 11.3 oz.)
T10 Ring Flash 1 – 86∅ × 18 mm, 95 gr. (3.1∅ × 0.7 in., 3.4 oz.)


Replace all four batteries at the same time with new batteries.

Condensation due to sudden movement from a low to a high temperature area can prevent the flash from firing.

When the flash is not to be used for a long period of time, remove the batteries to prevent leakage.

At sub-zero temperature, the batteries will not function normally. So warm them sufficiently before use.

Leaving the switch ON shortens battery life.

If illumination bulbs burn out, have them replaced by an authorized Olympus service center. NEVER try to do it yourself.

Do not use with flash units other than the T32 (or T20).

Have repairs performed by an authorized Olympus service center. Dismantling a flash unit involves a hazard.

  1. As the color temperature of the ring flash is similar to that of daylight, use daylight color films.
  2. At the working distance of over 2 m (0.7 ft.) the picture edges may darken (with MC Auto Macro 135mm F4.5 and 50mm F3.5).
  3. The ring flash can be used with ZUIKO 35 mm F2.8, 50mm F1.8, 50mm F1.4, 85mm F2, 100mm F2.8, 135mm F3.5 and 135mm F2.8 lenses. The picture edges may darken if the working distance exceeds the closeup range.
  4. In TTL AUTO flash operation, use Accessory Shoe 3 when combining the Power Control with the OM-2 (not OM-2N). In MANUAL with the same combination, set the shutter speed at 1/30 sec. or slower.
  5. Do not exert stronger force upon the Power Control than it needs, when it is attached to or detached from the camera.
  6. Do not hit the flash unit and do not let it strike any hard object.
  7. Do not leave the unit in places with temperature over 122°F (50°C), or high humidity.
  8. The ring flash may cause “redeye” effect to occur in portraits.
  9. For multiple manual flash, set each G.N switching knob to “10”
  10. If cleaning is necessary, wipe the units with a soft cloth only.
  11. The Lens Pouch 150 can accommodate the T Power Control 1.
  12. Do not overtighten the T10 (or POL) when a filter has been mounted on the lens.
  13. The ring flash equipment does not feature explosion-free construction. Never use it in the presence of flammable gas.


Medical close-up and macrophotography conventionally require sophisticated and complicated techniques involving difficult exposure calculations, unwieldy equipment and undesirable directly reflect light. However, this form of photography can now be accomplished in the TTL “OTF” AUTO mode accurately and easily merely by pressing the shutter release, when Olympus ring flash equipment is used.


1. Accurate and easy autoflash exposure
The OM-2’s electronic brain centrally controls all exposure data to do away with complicated calculations. It automatically shuts off the ring flash emission when the correct amount of light has reached the film surface.

2. Continuously variable magnification
By sliding the Telescopic Auto Tube 65–116, changes in magnification can be monitored continuously in the viewfinder.

3. Convenient working distance even for high image magnifications
The MC Auto Macro 135 mm lens features long working distances 37cm (14.6″) – ∞ enabling the photographer to take enlarged images of a lesion without interrupting surgical procedures. The MC Auto 1:1 80 mm Macro is designed to provide optimum resolution at life size.

4. Although the Macro 135 mm has a maximum speed of F4.5, it allows full-open aperture viewing as bright as F4 to facilitate focusing and composition.

5. Ring Filter POL
With the aid of the cross polarizing filter POL, the ring flash reproduces glossy surface objects, reducing undesirable annular light reflection.

6. Hand-held functionality
The compact and convenient design of the equipment ensures mobility not only for medical, but also for outdoor action photography.

7. Choice of power sources
The ring flash operates off batteries (inside the T Power Control 1 which is mounted to the camera, or a 6 V Power Pack attached to the waist) or the AC Adapter 3.

8. Wide range of applications
Together with other modular OM System components, ring flash is useful in a wide variety of photographic situations (Recordata Back, Winder, etc.).


  1. The ring flash equipment does not feature explosion-free construction. NEVER use it in the presence of flammable gas.
  2. To prevent overheating, do not cover the AC Adapter 3 with a cloth, etc.
  3. Depending on the film used, the Ring Filter POL can cause a slight change in coloration (gold tends to turn out bluish; and red, bright red).
  4. The POL cuts down light by 3 – 6 stops, so open up the lens aperture accordingly to compensate for the light loss.

Exploded parts diagram

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Created 18th May 2001   —   Updated 28th February 2021
Copyright © 2001–2021 Alan Wood

Olympus OM system close-up and macro equipment