VL-3Li vs VL-10Li light!? at DVinfo.net

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Canon GL Series DV Camcorders
Canon GL2, GL1 and PAL versions XM2, XM1.

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Old May 5th, 2006, 11:52 AM   #1
New Boot
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Canada
Posts: 15
VL-3Li vs VL-10Li light!?

I'm looking forward to buy an extra light for my GL2 and I was debating between the VL-3i and the VL-10Li. I'm interested to buy a light since I'm going to shoot a couple of music shows in bars, community centers, etc.

I have used the VL-10Li in the past on a XL1s and i worked great, but I found that the lighting was a little bit too much. I shot right in front of the stage and the skin tones were really overexposed. I didn't find any kind of diffusers available for the VL-10Li (correct me if I'm wrong) so I was thinking of going for the VL-3i since it doesn't need an extra battery (no extra weight) and I read that the lighting was pretty decent.

That way, I'd be opting for a more conservative light that wouldn't be heavier and would light just as much as I would need. On the other hand, the VL-10Li could be use to shoot outside at night, in public events, etc.

I'd like to have opinions/past experiences with the lights to make up my mind.

Thanks in advance!!
Julien T. Chartier is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 5th, 2006, 12:59 PM   #2
Old Boot
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: London UK
Posts: 3,464
You used a 10 watt lamp in front of a stage and the skin tones were over exposed? Interesting. What GAIN setting did you use? And just HOW near were you?

In any event, a 3 watt lamp will be effective - over that distance? - maybe, I estimate only 5 > 10% of the 10 watt - effective being the operative word. It might even be lower. Effectiveness in my world is judged by the old inverse square root of the distance Suck N See observation.

I own a VL3. In a 100watt lit room I cannot go beyond 4>5 foot of somebody's face BEFORE I need to add some gain. I really can't image using this directed at a stage and expecting to get anything decent - without lashings of gain or adjusting something else.

I have a paglight 20 watt C6 kit. In a just less than effectively lit environment I can go to 6-8 foot before I need GAIN. But GAIN I need. The XM2 is not a good low light performer. IMHO, asking to be sure about skin tones being OK is not near the mark for me. 3 watts effectiveness over say 15 foot or more? Can't see it .. . unless you know something I don't? Which after the day I've just had, is quite possible.

Bottom line? You get nought for nought. Hanging batteries and power conservation doesn't even come close or equate with the crucial need for getting the picture. But one does have GAIN!

Best regards,

Graham Bernard is offline   Reply With Quote
Old May 9th, 2006, 10:39 PM   #3
Inner Circle
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Saskatchewan
Posts: 2,948

Grazie is right about the light. I have not bought a camera light just because I know how much light it takes to make good pictures!!! Think what a still picture needs!! the only real difference is that you need the light all the time!! I used a light on my sony and it was a waste of time.

you have gain, but then you have grain!!
Dale W. Guthormsen
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Old May 10th, 2006, 09:12 AM   #4
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Shreveport, LA
Posts: 96
I have both lights

I have both the 3 watt and 10 watt lights from Canon. I use the 3 watt for my personal camcorder (Canon ZR50-MC) when I shoot some family video, eg. Christmas morning opening gifts. It is convenient for that purpose, but barely enough light for a large living room. Since it is just family video, and I want to be unobtrusive, it works. I also put it in my bag as a backup light for wedding receptions.

There are much better lights that the Canon 10 watt light. For example, during a wedding reception I don't want to point the light directly at the subjects unless absolutely necessary. The Canon 10 watt light has no way to tilt it up. Other lights can be tilted up slightly, or up enough to bounce the light off the ceiling. I leave the 10 Watt Canon light with the camera operator who catches the bride and groom leaving the church at night to go to the reception. It works OK for that purpose.

I actually use a Sunpak video lights that can be put on auto for 7 to 20 watt illumination, or manual for straight 20 watt illumination. They can be tilted up, and can be put on zoom or wide angle. I don't think they are available any longer. But similar products are available. Search the internet, or go to bhphotovideo.com and do search.
Mike Donley
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