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Old April 25th, 2004, 12:25 PM   #16
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Check out this link.

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/showthread.php?s=&threadid=7023

As was suggested there, I went the Tota/translucent umbrella route, and it has proved to be one of the best purchases I've ever made. The whole setup is very portable and sets up in seconds. Another nice thing about this strategy is that there are a number of other ways to use a Tota, and If you ever upgrade to a real softbox, you will already have a decent stand and you can use the Tota with your new softbox. Another cool thing about umbrellas is that there are different sizes to choose from, and you can cheaply go from silver, to gold, to translucent.
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Old April 26th, 2004, 11:10 AM   #17
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hey thanks wayne and marco! i will look into both solutions. i have a little over $1000 to spend and was thinking of going w/ the jtl softboxes or the tota/umbrella solution. in addition, i was thinking of going w/ the lowel dv creator kit 1. i shoot w/ the dvx100a and need a lighting solution not only for interviews but location lighting as well. portability is a must since i'm mostly alone in my shoots. is this money well spent? thank you very much for your comments/suggestions!
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Old April 26th, 2004, 04:27 PM   #18
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Hi James. I'll be happy to help you spend some money. Of course, I suggest you go for the JTL Everlight Kit versus the Tota combination. I would stronly recommend adding a LTM Pepper 420, with a set of barndoors. This will add a around $300.00, additional. You might want to include a single and double scrim to knock down the output when necessary, for an additional twenty bucks. This compact fresnel is a professional lighting instrument, unlike anything in the Lowel kit you are looking at. With the Pepper you can focus light for a harder source when necessary, to give you a strong backlight, key, or background source light. The glass fresnel lens puts it so far ahead of any of the Lowel lights in the Creator kit, as to be in another universe. You can pull one of the JTL lights and softbox out of the kit, and replace it with the Pepper to keep your kit tight. The Pepper will mount nicely on the third JTL stand.

Hey, we still have some money left over. If you want to add a more exotic lamp to your kit, I highly recommend the ETC Source Four Jr. with a 50 degree lens. (http://www.etcconnect.com/) You can lamp this unit with a couple different size bulbs. This ellipsoidal lamp will allow you to add break-up patterns, which make wonderfully interesting backgrounds for interviews. This is a very versatile lamp with many uses, including standing in for a follow spot! The downside is that it is a somewhat large unit, and requires a sturdy stand to support it. The lamp, with proper cable, a couple of patterns, bulbs, and stand, will run between $350-400.00.

If that is too much, you can spend a couple hundred dollars on various grip equipment that will make your life and your lighting much better.

You would do well to search these posts for comments on the Lowel product line. You will find a number of posters who have had problems with Lowel. As of yet, I have not received one major complaint with the JTL Everlight Kit from anyone who has used it. And I continue to welcome comments on the Kit.

Happy hunting!

Wayne Orr, SOC
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Old April 27th, 2004, 12:59 PM   #19
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thanks wayne!

thanks for the suggestions wayne! so if i go w/ the pepper and possibly the etc source four jr, will this give me a pretty complete lighting set up? what about eyelight/hairlight?

also, what do you think of the b&m 650's? and 2 maclite 200's as opposed to the pepper 420?
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Old April 27th, 2004, 01:51 PM   #20
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"if i go w/ the pepper and possibly the etc source four jr, will this give me a pretty complete lighting set up? what about eyelight/hairlight?"

If you go with these lights in combination with a JTL kit you will have an excellent kit for interviews and various other scenarios. Is it a "complete" lighting set-up? Obviously, no. But it is a great beginning, that will give you many years of service, and grow with you.

I don't really know why you think you need an eyelight. One of the reasons for using a softbox is to get a nice wrap that eliminates the need for an eyelight. If you are talking about getting a nice "glint" in an eye, you can use anything for that, including a bare household incandescent that is dimmed way down, or a Maglite with the lens removed to expose the bulb.

As far as a hair light, use one of the softboxes in close and tilted down. Gives a great wrap. Also, the Pepper can be used for a harder source back light or kicker. But you don't always want to do the "hair light" thing. It really is kind of passe. Check out the stills at http://www.digitalprods.com/LSmontage which were done with the JTL kit, the Pepper, and bounce boards. A spare grip stand to hold a bounce board is a good investment. Also, the grip stand can be used as a boom to get your back light in closer to the subject.

I don't personally recommend any of the Bardwell and MacAlister products. Just my choice.

You might also want to order John Jackman's book, "Lighting for Digital Video," if you are new to all this. It's not great, but it does provide a reasonable introduction to the craft.

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