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Old August 4th, 2003, 11:08 PM   #1
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Running an Omni on Batteries

I'm considering running one of my Lowell Omni lights with a 100w 12v lamp off of an NRG 87044-A Field-Pro NiCd 12V/86WH battery belt for lightweight hand-held accent/fill light outdoors.

Is this a viable option? If not, can anyone recommend a battery-based alternative? (I already own the Omni.)

Thank you, in advance, for your guidance.
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Old August 5th, 2003, 11:40 AM   #2
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The Field Pro will handle a 100 watt load. You will get around 25 minutes of use untill red-light time depending on the age of your belt.

I run the 100 watt VariLight Pro off of one with no problems.

You must lift weights to consider the Omni a 'light' light. :-)))
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Old August 5th, 2003, 11:57 AM   #3
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Thanks very much, Mike. That's reassuring. I was also looking at some of the $900+ Anton Bauer battery belts which have greater capacities. But, jeez, I just can't quite see my way to such an expense for such a specialty need. All I really need is a bit of a fill/kicker for outdoor close-ups where I cannot get good reflection.

Re: weight, hey, compared with my Arri fresnels that Omni is a feather-weight! Actually I got the idea while at an auto show. I was watching a local tv crew shooting segments and a human light stand was following along lighting scenes with an Omni attached to a battery belt.

Thanks again.
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Old August 5th, 2003, 04:25 PM   #4
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When I can, I take along a deep cycle lead acid cell with a distribution box I made. I can run two 100 watt lights and the camera for quite a while with that. I use it mainly at exhibitions where I have a smooth floor on which to move my shooting cart.
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Old August 6th, 2003, 02:38 AM   #5
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I've been thinking seriously about the exact same setup as Ken for portable "human tripod" fill light. Do others think that's the best way to go? Using an Omni with daylight bulb and battery belt for fill light? What about diffusion? Or is there another type of light you'd recommend for outdoor fill that is either better than or equal to but cheaper than the Omni?
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Old August 6th, 2003, 03:15 AM   #6
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I think that will work..

I will always say when I am not sure.. like now..

battery packs are not my forte but the voltage sounds right I can't see why it would not work. I think it is a matter or how long it will last. I would guess about 30 minutes.
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Old August 27th, 2003, 11:40 PM   #7
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Ultimately, I discarded the idea of using one of my Omni's. Too mush hassle.

Instead, I bought a Lowell i-Light. This is a 12v light fixture designed for on-camera use, stand-mounted use or hand-held use. It can also use the same collapsible gel frame as the Omni and Tota (which I already have). It can use either a 55w or 100w lamp. I got a set of barn doors for it as well as a stud-link handle (for hand-held use), a flip-out accessory frame and a dichroic filter (to convert the 3200K light to daylight).

For power, I chose the NRG Power-MAX 13.2v battery belt. This is one of their "Perpetual Power" belts whose cell packs can be replaced on the belt without service interruption. The belt features dual 4-pin XLR power inputs and dual 4-pin XLR outputs, is rated at approximately 95WH and can handle loads up to 13 Amps. The cells are memory-free NiCad and the belt weighs just under 9lbs.

So far this appears to be an ideal solution for my goal of having a very compact, flexible supplementary light principally to punch-up medium to close outdoor shots on overcast days. I've been using a lightweight Lowell light stand for mounted use and the NRG belt serves as an excellent sandbag weight at the stand's bottom. The light is easily converted to hand-held use, as I did recently to push light through the windshield of a car.
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Old August 28th, 2003, 08:22 PM   #8
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IDX makes an accessory called the Power Base Station. With the 4-position model, you can get up to 650Wh for lights, monitors, or whatever.

Of couse, you'd have to have the budget to buy 8 of the IDX Endura Li-Ion batteries, but it is one possible solution for battery powered lights.

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Old August 28th, 2003, 08:43 PM   #9
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Ken,

Check out the Bescor Nickel Metal Hydride batteries. I just picked up a super small Bescor NMH65V which packs the same punch as a starved-electrolyte brick twice the size.

- don
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