YN560IV Manual: A Helpful Illustrated Guide

How to control your flashes with the YN560IV is simple and very powerful!

YN560IV Manual: A Helpful Illustrated Guide

The YN560 IV is a low cost flash unit made by third party Chinese manufacturer Yongnuo. This company makes a whole bunch of really great lighting devices for today’s digital photographer. This device is one of the very best in terms of value and utility. It is a fully manual flash with wireless 2.4Ghz technology built in. It came in after the very popular YN560 III was such a hit with many photographers and is the exact same flash performance wise (a few buttons are different)  PLUS the amazing ability to be used as a wireless master controller  base station for your other YN560 III or IV flashes.

This article will clearly explain the functions and capabilities of this great flash unit. The manual it comes with is of the poor Chinese translation type and isn’t very clear nor easy to understand with some poor wording and terminology used.


  • Supports Wireless Master Function
  • Supports Wireless Slave Function – Fully supports YN560TX, RF-602 and RF-603 wireless transmitters.
  • Multiple trigger possibilities – In hot shoe, 2.4Ghz wireless along with optical slave modes S1 and S2.
  • Control multiple off camera flash devices (YN560 III or IV) via built in “TX” mode using the radio within the YN560 IV flash. You have access to 16 different channels in 3 groups.
  • Sinlge PIN on hotshoe that will work with any camera with a standard hotshoe.
FIGURE 1 – Front view of YN560 IV
Figure 2 – Button Layout


  1. MODE BUTTON – This button will toggle between Manual (M),  Multi Mode (Multi) and OFF (- -) when in TX and RX modes.
  2. Backlight/Sound button – When pressed it will toggle the LCD backlight on or off. When long pressed, it will toggle the “BEEP” on and off. This beep signals that the flash has recycled and is ready to fire.
  3. Pilot/Test – Shows RED when charged and ready to fire. Also, it can be used to WAKE other flashes that have gone to “SE” sleep. Additionally, it can be used as a test to make sure all flashes connected are firing and to sync all the settings which have been made to the various flashes being used when in “TX” mode.
  4. Signal Indicator – This will blink blue when the unit receives a signal from either a RF-602/603, YN560 TX or another YN560 IV when it is in “RX”
  5. Trigger Mode Toggle – Pressing this will toggle between Hot shoe (M/Multi), TX mode, RX mode, S1 and finally S2 modes – the two optical slave modes.
  6. Flash Head Zoom – Set the zoom of the flash head to 24, 28, 35, 50, 70, 80 and 105mm). Pressing this button while in any mode other than “TX” mode will adjust the zoom on the flash head itself. When in “TX” mode, pressing zoom will adjust the flash or flashes that are currently selected as a group on the LCD of the YN560 IV.
  7. Power Button – Hold for 2 seconds to turn on/off. Can also be used to wake up flash from “SE” Sleep mode when timer has rendered the unit into the dormant mode.
  8. Set / Selection controls. Moving up and down or left and right in various option settings and then hitting the center “OK”  button to set that option to your choice.
Figure 3 – Display Layout


  • A) This will display what mode you are in. It goes left to right and starts with M/Multi, TX, RX, S1 and S2 modes. 
  • B) Output Power from full 1/1 to 1/128 power.
  • C) Channel Settings. This sets the proper radio channel so this can be used with other Yongnuo flashes or controllers. In either TX or RX mode, this must be set to be in the same modes as the other devices for proper communication.
  • D) Group Information. This will display what group your flash is in OR what group you are controlling when in TX mode.
  • E) Audio beep indicator on or off (as shown).
  • F) Multi (stroboscopic) flash information. This number indicates how many total bursts from the flash that will be produced.
  • G) This second number to the right is the flash frequency – how many flashes per second.
  • H) Focal length setting of the flash when out of TX mode. When in TX mode, it will be the setting of the flash or flashes in current group.


The YN560 IV takes 4 AA Batteries. For best batteries in Speedlights, see my previous article on this exact subject here. To turn on, simple press the ON/OFF button for about 2 seconds. The first thing you'll want to do is enter the FUNCTION menu. This gives you access to a whole slew of features and settings that will stay with the flash unless you change them or use the CLEAR function and reset to factory settings. To enter the FUNCTIONS area, simply hit the two buttons together as shown below in FIGURE 4 that are connected with that little line between them. When you see these little lines between any Yongnuo product, that means pressing them together will activate that command – in this case “FN” is achieved by hitting the BACKLIGHT/SOUND MODE button and the MODE button at the same time. Once you do this, you will see the various screens shown in figure 5 and you can toggle through these using the UP and DOWN keys in the SET/SELECTION keys (#8 in Figure 2). Here you can select which groups to control, Sleep Modes of the flash, LCD Timer (How long it will stay on before going dark), Sound, How quickly unit shuts off or on, Flash Fine Tuning of Power Increments, Radio Transmission mode (RF 602 or 603) and clearing settings. Use the RIGHT AND LEFT selection buttons to make changes to currently selected parameter.

Figure 4 – Functions accessed by pressing two buttons together that are connected with those little lines – FN, ACT, and CH. Yongnuo uses this method with many of their great and extremely low priced  products!

This is one area in the Manual that comes with the flash that is pretty well written and easy to understand. It is on page 52 of the YN560 IV user manual. You can access the PDF for that user manual RIGHT HERE if, for some reason, you do not have the user manual.

This image shown as Figure 5  shows you the different FUNCTION options you have within this menu. Simply toggle through them to get from one screen to the next as described just above (UP AND DOWN BUTTONS to choose the parameter and RIGHT or LEFT to select the options).

Figure 5 – Advanced Options obtained by hitting the two key combo “FN”


If you are going to be controlling other YN560III's with this YN560IV, you first need to ACTIVATE  the GROUP mode on YN560III flashes. The YN560III's  do not come out of the box with this feature turned on. It is a very simple process. You must make sure that you have the flashes on the same channel and in the correct RF MODE. As mentioned above, hitting the two button combo to get into FN mode is simple. Once there, toggle through and make sure both flashes are set to either RF 602 or RF 603. They both have the same button combo and placement on the flash units to get here (560III and IV).  Same is true for the channel selection.

The YN560III and 560IV are ALMOST identical in appearance. The Group Mode access is different as shown in this image.

To change channels on the 560III or IV just hit the Trigger Mode Toggle button and the ZOOM button together – they are connected with the little line above “CH” for channel. Really quite simple if you look at it. So once they are set up, we are ready for remote CONTROL!!!


To activate the ACTIVATE function, press the
two buttons connected by the little line above “ACT” for activate on the YN560IV which happen to be the MODE button and the Trigger Mode Toggle button (#5 in Figure 2). This will cause the YN560III display that you are attempting to connect with to go HAYWIRE – so it seems. Every character on the LCD will be activated – it looks like its gonna crash!  While the flash is in this state, hit the center SELECT button (#8 In Figure 2) on the YN560III. This SELECT button is the center button in the middle of the UP/DOWN & RIGHT/LEFT buttons in center of flash button layout. Once you do this, you'll see a “Gr” box with the letter A near it! You have activated group mode on your YN560III and it's like that forever now – no way to reset it and that's just fine and what we want.


Initially, you need to set which group you want your YN560III's or IV's to be in. You do this by hitting the TWO buttons on the YN560III that are connected by the little line with “GRP” under it and thats the MODE & Trigger Mode Toggle button. On any YN560IV that is going to be an RX SLAVE, make sure it is in RX mode and not TX.  TX mode is for another 560IV that will be the controlling flash. To change the GROUP on a YN560IV, just simply hit the CENTER SELECT button and the group box will start blinking. Toggle UP and DOWN to choose between the 6 possible groups – REMEMBERING that the YN560IV can only control 3 groups – so choose group A, B or C. If using the optional YN560TX controller, you can have up to 6 groups controlled. Once you have your desired group chosen, hit the same button and the blinking stops. Your flash is now set in a group. You can have many flashes in that same group if you'd like. The YN560IV will only control three different groups however. I have seen some people get confused by this thinking they can only use 3 flashes. That isn't the case at all.


So now we know how to activate the flashes (If needed using the YN560III's) and have the proper group set in the flashes, how do we control them remotely? Simple! With the YN560IV on your camera and in TX mode, the ease of use is great. Suppose we have three remote flashes being controlled by the 560IV on our hot shoe. One is in A, one in B and one in C. We want “A” to be our key main light, “B” to be a fill light and “C” to be our back light. Also, in this example, let's say we don't want to even use the flash on the hot shoe mounted 560IV in this case. With the hot shoe mounted flash that is our controller in TX MODE, hit the center select button to toggle between groups A, B and C. When in TX mode, you only have access to 3 groups.  Each time you hit that button it will change. After Group C you will see “–” after you hit this button which is the settings for the SHOE mounted flash which happens to be our YN560 IV controller flash unit. Once here, hit the MODE button and the power setting will toggle to “–” meaning that flash is off – BUT it is still controlling the other A, B and C flashes.


Suppose we want to test one light at a time and see how it looks? Easy. Press that center select button to get back to Group A. Put it on a power setting – let's say 1/4. This is done by pressing the selection keys RIGHT or LEFT to increase or decrease power of the chosen group in 1 stop  increments or UP and DOWN to fine tune power by 1/3 stop or 1/2 stop increments – or both – depending on your flash increment settings under the FUNCTION portion explained above and on page 54 in the YN560IV user manual. You can also change the ZOOM of the selected flash or flashes in that group by hitting the ZOOM button that will toggle from 24, 28, 35, 50, 70, 80 and 105mm with each touch of that button.

Now hit the center select button and go to Group B. Hit the mode button and it will go from M to Multi and then to off “–” and then hit the SELECT button in center again to get to Group C and do the same thing.

This will now have you firing ONLY group A flash and you can build up your flash setting this way. It is often best to use one light at a time and “build” your lighting set up. To get a real grasp on using off camera flash, check out Improve Photography's LIGHTING IN A FLASH course!!

You can purchase this flash RIGHT HERE on Amazon!!

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below.

Also, be sure to check out the Improve Photography Podcast Group HERE on Facebook where you can post questions or just join in on the conversations. Enjoy 🙂

25 thoughts on “YN560IV Manual: A Helpful Illustrated Guide”

  1. Thank you! Love the article. I knew a lot of this, but not all of it and it is really really helpful. You will get my new affiliate purchase. Looking to grab 3 more.

  2. Great article, just got my first 560 this week. I have been using 685 but needed a flash with a transmitter built in for wedding receptions. The 685s are just receivers.

  3. Hi there, just came across this as looking for an error occurring on my flash. I am a novice and have only had this external flashlight a short time. So far I have only used it indoors to try it out – when it was working fine. When I tried today, however, whatever the setting, only the very top of my picture is lit. Literally a light stripe at the top and the rest is dark. Any idea what is wrong here? I was planning a shoot tomorrow morning so a prompt answer would be extremely helpful. I am wondering could it actually be the bulb? But then it has hardly been used at all, why would that be? HELP…!

    1. I would Check your flash Sync speed and make sure that the shutter speed on your camera I not set to be faster as this can cause the issue you describe

    2. This is due to flash sync speed is exceeded. For example, lots of cameras have a flash sync speed of 1/200th. If you are shooting at 1/400th, the flash is popping while the shutter is closing and you’ll see a black bar on image. Try shooting at 1/200th or less. Make sure to look up the flash sync speed of your camera. Any other questions please post 🙂

  4. Hi Brian,
    I think I once saw a similar user’s guide for the YONGNUO YN560-TX transmitter. Do you have that?


    Greg Kopriva

  5. Thank you so much, I bought this flash a year ago as my first flash, but have not used it as I cannot figure it out, I thought the manual should at least allow me to set it up and fire it but I could not really even get that right. But this year I am determined and this is just what i needed.

  6. I am having trouble. My flashes (three Yn560 IV’s off camera; YN560TX on camera hot shoe) fire once and when I try to take a second shot right after, they don’t fire. I have to press any button on my YN560TX each time I want to fire.

  7. my YN560IV is suto shutting off while it is in RX mode. Is there a way besides turning off sleep, (which I have done) to prevent an auto shutdown? Is my unit faulty? Is there a way to reset the whole flash unit to factory default?

  8. I have a problem, when I use the flash on my yn560iv, half of the picture (upper part) is illuminated, such that the upper part of the picture is bright while it’s darker below. What could be the problem? Please help.

  9. How do you sync a Yongnuo YN622c II (on shoe of Canon rebel SL1) with this speedlite? Please help have spent hours on line searching for help.

  10. Barry Delaney

    Thank you for a very good article. I bought one of these flashes a couple months ago. So far I’ve had no problems whatsoever using it on my two Nikons. I plan on getting a couple more!

  11. Hi Brian,

    Your article was great! However I followed all your instructions to a T and the off camera flash (560 IV) still won’t fire after the first fire. I am very frustrated that I cannot figure out what I am doing wrong. I use a Nikon d800. Could it be my camera? Could it be the batteries? Do I need another piece of equipment?

    Your help would be greatly appriceiated.


  12. Just change the zoom to high option had the same issue using 55 – 200 mm just set the zoom on flash to 70or higher

  13. Hi I bought the Yongnuo yn560IV can not get it to turn on. You press the on/off button turns on then shuts itself down. Can you help ..????

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