Caselite 4 & Rifa Lites: A Possible Twosome? at DVinfo.net

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Old August 6th, 2004, 09:19 PM   #1
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Caselite 4 & Rifa Lites: A Possible Twosome?

I have a Caselite 4 and like it alot, but the Rifa lite looks rather interesting as well--what if any advantages as a light would the Rife offer other than its similiar compactness and quick setup? I assume the Rifa might have more intensity. Could these portables work together in some complimentary way?

Thanks!
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Old August 11th, 2004, 08:29 PM   #2
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It depends on what you're doing with them, but a general answer is match color temps and they can be compatible instruments in a number of configurations.

I use both for certain interviews, again depending on the needs of the specific shoot.

My pref is to work with a combination of soft and hard light.
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Old August 11th, 2004, 09:21 PM   #3
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Barry,
I have both and they're both excellent.

I agree with John, though. When building a kit you should basically plan on starting with one good soft light and perhaps two hard lights such as fresnels.

Remember, fresnels can easily be converted to soft lights either by soft-boxing them or by bouncing them off of reflectors. But you cannot make a Caselight or Rifa into a hard source.
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Old August 11th, 2004, 10:15 PM   #4
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Ah, okay. The only major hard light I have is an Arri 300w. I suppose the question should be is in having >that< light work with the other two softs, or one, as it happens. The Rifa lite looks real good for its portability and setup factor, something I'm appreciating more every day after using the Caselite. :D
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Old August 11th, 2004, 10:37 PM   #5
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Re: Caselite 4 & Rifa Lites: A Possible Twosome?

<<<-- Originally posted by Barry Rivadue : I have a Caselite 4 and like it alot, but the Rifa lite looks rather interesting as well--what if any advantages as a light would the Rife offer other than its similiar compactness and quick setup? I assume the Rifa might have more intensity. Could these portables work together in some complimentary way?
Thanks! -->>>

Barry, I'm sorry that I completely neglected to answer the first part of your question!

Honestly, I would say that the Caselite and the Rifa are pretty nearly equal in terms of overall setup/breakdown time and portability. The Caselite, of course, packs into itself, including a stand, and transports like a fat briefcase. That's nice.

The Rifa folds down into something like an umbrella and slides into a heavy nylon sleeve. But remember that you must also carry a separate stand with it. You can pack a lightweight Lowel stand in that sleeve but, in practical terms for flexibility in configuration you'll probably want a more robust stand and a boom. That gear will have to be packed/carried separately. (Also note that if you want to use a boom with the Rifa -- and you eventually will -- you will also need a special adapter to enable the Rifa to mount to it.)

The Rifa, being a hot tungsten light, takes quite a while to cool-down before it can be packed. The Caselite can be packed-up after just a few minutes of cool-down, even after running it for hours.

As I said earlier, I really like both instruments. I have had the Caselite longer and have used it more than the Rifa. But I've really grown to like my 1K Rifa a great deal. It's far more convenient than setting-up my Photoflex softbox with a Tota or Omni and it pushes out some gorgeous soft light.

Hope this helps with your planning.
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Old August 12th, 2004, 08:25 AM   #6
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Yes it does, thanks. I have a Photoflex softbox/Tota combo which is fine if a bit cumbersome--it's fine as a more studio-bound setup, or for an elaborate location situation. Right now easy transport is increasingly attractive for on-the-go interviews and other less complex events. I actually wasn't thinking 1k, but am wondering the advantage of that kind of wattage. How much spread does that light give?
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Old August 12th, 2004, 10:58 AM   #7
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It's not so much a matter of "spread" as it is softness of light. The 1k presents the largest face area and thus the softest light. Of course light from all soft boxes diminishes sharply a relatively short distance from the instrument. But the 1K is a big boy that can cover a small gathering.
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Old August 12th, 2004, 08:31 PM   #8
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I would imagine the 250w would be of rather limited use--maybe best for tight close ups? :D
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Old August 15th, 2004, 04:19 PM   #9
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yes, small lights have their uses, too, again, depending on what you're trying to do.

Tell us more about your uses and goal.

For an interview, I'll often use a soft source key, like a diva 400, with a small 200watt mole richardson frez for a backlight. fill may be bounced or a 200 diva. I also keep a snoot with a lens and sometimes use it on a small mole to get a sharp edge on the shoulder and hair highlight..

I use strand red heads or mole inbetweenies to light bg.

I'm assuming with all this, you're shooting DV of some sort... si?

LIghting kits, imho, are best built from experience as you need certain instruments, so you're on the right track getting info on different instruments from users and then judging how they may aply to your needs.

Sorry about not having info on rifa's, don't use them, but lots of folks do with great success. John Jackman, who posts and writes about dv lighting, uses one often as a key source.

I've set my kit up with a lot of flourecents and low watt hard lights. for heat reasons and lower power requirements.
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Old August 15th, 2004, 07:58 PM   #10
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Thanks for the info; yes, I use DV, and mostly for interviews at this time. I find the flourescents a revelation, because I was always concerned about long sessions with hot lights.

Soon I will be doing an instructional video on makeup (!) at a salon, and the cool temps of the flourescents I'm sure will be a plus.
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