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Old January 17th, 2004, 05:23 PM   #1
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Stupid question from a stupid man (Contains lighting and stupidity)

Ok. So I decide it's time for me to up my professionalism a bit and buy a lite kit to help out when I do interviews and what not. So I buy this setup, www.metzgermedia.com/sale.htm from a very nice guy on these forums.

I figure I'll have 3 nice looking lights, and although I know nothing about lighting, I can figure it out. How hard can it be right?

So the lights arrive and they look great. I'm excited thinking about how impressed my clients will be when they are professianally lighted with these cool looking lights. So happy as a clam I begin setting these things up.

I get them on the stands I get the gels put in front of the lights. All goes well and I'm estatic. The I turn them. Holy cow! I've stared into the sun and not had my retinas scorched as badly. It soon became clear that there no way you can point one of these at someone, much less all three of them.

So do I need to just by dimmer light for these bad boys like a 250w? or is there some trick I'm missing here that would make these things usefull to me in my current situation.
As alwys any help and guideance in this matter is much appreciated.
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Old January 17th, 2004, 08:43 PM   #2
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You can get some diffusion material to soften the glare or you can use umbrellas or soft boxes.

Still, you shouldn't have your talent look directly into the lights. Usually the lights are off at about 45 degrees from the camera axis and higher than the subject.

It is bright but it is bearable.
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Old January 17th, 2004, 09:06 PM   #3
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What are the model numbers of the lights. Are there any bulb types listed in the literature. if nothing else post the bulb type here and we can check the catalog and see if a lower wattage exists.

looking on the NRG site there is a 600 watt light listed that takes a DYH 600 watt bulb. they also show a 250 watt bulb as fitting (GCA bulb)

http://www.nrgresearch.com/
http://www.ushio.com/files/entcatalog3.pdf (PDF)
see page 11
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Old January 18th, 2004, 10:00 AM   #4
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Also, you can get a piece of foam core and attach it to one of your stands, then point your light at the foam, thus bouncing the a pleasing soft light at your subject instead of having something looks like a car headlight.

I looked at the pictures on the site where you bought the lights and it looks like it comes with gel holders. Get some diffussion. Bogen makes gel packs which comes with 6-8 different gels. There's a diffusion pack. You might want to pick up pack of colored gels.

Also, check out www.rosco.com for info on gels and diffusion.

Scott
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Old January 18th, 2004, 10:47 AM   #5
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You can also
1. buy scrims. they are wire screens that cut the value of the light by one or two stops. (25% and 50%)

2. Use a dimmer. using a dimmer will effect your color temperatuire. For a 600 watt fixture use a 1000 watt dimmer. Tou can make your own using a dimmer, a utility box, a few feet of 16 or 14 guage rubber cord and a good quality male and female recepticle and plug cap. Going higher than 16 guage for a 600 watt load is meaningless. 16 guage will handle 1000 watts.

3 . Use an umbrella to bounce the light or filter the light through the umbrella.

4. Use a softbox

http://www.photoflex.com/photoflex/index.html
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Old January 19th, 2004, 09:44 PM   #6
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softbox

If you are doing interviews I suggest you first get a softbox. I picked up an inexpensive one here for $87:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2980277672&category=30082

That works very nicely with a similar 600 watt light I have. Make sure you light will fit the speed ring before you order it.
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