Olympus OM system close-up and macro equipment

T8 Ring Flash 2


The T8 Ring Flash 2 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 is normally attached to the filter mount of one of the Zuiko macro lenses.

T8 Ring Flash 2 with large reflector T8 Ring Flash 2 with small reflector
Olympus OM T8 Ring Flash 2
with Reflector 1
Olympus OM T8 Ring Flash 2
with Reflector 2

The light from the flash tube in the T8 is directed sideways into a large semi-matte aluminium reflector that then illuminates any subject smaller than the reflector with a diffuse and shadowless light. This arrangement avoids the circular reflections of the flash tube that can sometimes occur with conventional ring flashes. Two reflectors are supplied. The larger one is normally used; the smaller one is intended to be used when the size of the larger one makes it inconvenient.

To screw the flash head onto a lens, turn the grey ring at the front, 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 stick-on label for the 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 T8 Ring Flash 2

Rear of Olympus OM T8 Ring Flash 2

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.

The T8 was the second ring flash that Olympus produced for the OM system. The first one was the T10 Ring Flash 1, which is a conventional ring flash with the flash tube facing towards the subject.

The Zuiko Auto-Macro 20mm f/2 lens is not suitable for use with the T8 Ring Flash, because its working distance is too short.

Guide Number (100 ASA) 8 m
Color temperature 5800° K
Coverage angle 80°
Reflector diameter 198 mm (Reflector 1)
148 mm (Reflector 2)
Filter mount sizes 49 mm and 55 mm
US catalog no. 107-014
Discontinued 2002


Only one version is known.


The T Power Control 1 is essential – the Ring Flash cannot be used without it. 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 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 T8 Ring Flash 2 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 T8 for you.

Instruction leaflet

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






Modelling lamp

Taking pictures

Refer to the operation manual provided with the T Power Control 1/T10 Ring Flash.


Objective Macro 135mm Macro 80mm Macro 50mm Macro 38mm
Magnifications 0.2×–0.5× 0.5×–2× 0.1×–0.5× 2×–4×
F/stop F8 F22 F16 F22

Any aperture can be used for TTL AUTO Flash photography with the OM-2, within the TTL AUTO range.

Care and storage

Specifications (T Power Control 1 + T8 Ring Flash 2)

Type: TTL Centralized Control, system autoflash.
Guide Number: TTL AUTO: 8 (26). MANUAL: HI 8 (26) and LOW 3.2 (10) at ISO/ASA 100, meters (feet) at 1 m flash-to-subject distance.
Coverage Angle: 80°.
Number of Flashes: 100 – 500 with AA alkaline batteries on TTL AUTO.
Recycling Time: 0.2 – 10 sec.
Mounting to Lens: 49/55 mm screw.
Flash Diameter: 64⌀ × 5.2⌀ mm. (2.5⌀ ×0.2⌀ in.)
TTL AUTO Centralized Control flash with OM-2 (OM-2N).
MANUAL Selection of full flash GN/aperture/magnification: Via exposure calculator.
Illuminators 8 bulbs built in, operate on four 1.5V D batteries in optional 6V Power Pack 2, or AC Adapter 3.
Spiral Cord Length: Approx. 30 cm (1 ft.)
Dimensions & Weight: Reflector 1 200⌀ × 32 mm, 80g. (7.9⌀ × 1.3 in., 2.8oz.)
Reflector 2 150⌀ × 32 mm, 40 g. (5.9⌀ × 1.3 in., 1.4 oz.)
Main body 91⌀ × 18.5 mm, 110g. (3.6⌀ × 0.7 in., 3.9 oz.)

San-Ei Building, 22-2, Nishi Shinjuku 1-chome, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan. Tel 03-340-2211

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Created 18th May 2001   —   Updated 1st June 2017
Copyright © 2001–2017 Alan Wood

Olympus OM system close-up and macro equipment