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Old January 20th, 2005, 01:54 PM   #1
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Most portable/durable lights

A friend of mine who owns his own studio mentioned what lights he would get next time (he owns a bunch of Arri kits) and he mentioned some brand that made Arri's seem cheap in price. I don't remember the name but they were super small and very portable, but the price made them sound like the Rolls Royce of lighting.

Anyway, what's the opinion on the best combo of portable/durable in lighting? I see that Lowell is very portable, but have heard less than glowing reviews on how durable they are. Since everything I will shoot will be done in a different place each time, I place a very high priority on portability. But durability is also important. I want gear to last years, so it should be rugged.

Considering these two criteria, what's the best bang-for-buck solution?
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Old January 21st, 2005, 08:03 PM   #2
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Your friend was probably refering to Dedolights, Greg. They are very good, certainly portable, but very pricey.

If by "portable," you mean you can load the gear in the back of an SUV, then you can buy two or three "milk cartons," or those utility containers you can get at Home Depot, and you can fill them with a lot of gear including light heads. Buy a hand truck and you can load in all your gear with a couple of trips. But you will still need to wrangle your light stands and C-stands. Of course you can always buy a kit from Arri or others. Like you, I avoid Lowel gear. It isn't only that they are not durable, but after using real pro lighting gear, they just aren't fun to work with and you know that you are compromising your results. But for some folks their portability is a big selling point. Whatever.

Please read my post "Here's a good starter lighting kit,"
and see if it answers any of your questions. I confess I am disappointed more of the experienced shooters haven't added additional suggestions to my comments. (Hint)

Wayne Orr, SOC
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Old January 21st, 2005, 09:00 PM   #3
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I like the Arri's as well. I used to use a Photoflex kit (that I originally bought for still photos and later replaced with Elinchrome kits) but the Arri's are much more rugged and flexible and the light quality is vastly superior. They have a bunch of different kits depending on what you need for power (or you could try to build your own kit). I had looked at the Kinoflo's but they were just a little bulky for my taste. They do have nice cases though, and the heat would be nice to get away from. I do have a friend who uses them (Kino's) and he loves them. I have no experience with Lowel Pro's but they just don't look very sturdy.
As for Dedo's, I would guess those are what your buddy was talking about. Yes, they are supposed to be super nice (I've never used them) and yes, they are more expensive, they also have kits with little-bity (compact) cases, but I didn't really like the idea of having a power-pack and separate heads (as I understand it, this is how they work) and that is also why I run mono-heads (the Elinchromes) for my still photo strobes as well.

The best thing you could do is find someplace to go and look at them and see what you like. Even if you go rent a few to try out or go try your friends Arri's. I can tell you the Dedo's will have a smaller travel case (about half the size)

I guess I would have posted something earlier, but I figured this has been discussed at such great length. Even the post you are referring to was put up (by you) just 5 days ago. I remembered seeing it.
Rhett Allen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 21st, 2005, 11:02 PM   #4
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Re: Most portable/durable lights

I would look at a Chimera 8000 kit
a lowel rifa light
a tota light with umbrella or Lightbank
A fresnel to use for focused hard light
Dedo of course are sublime
Chimera Frame panel or lastolite reflector.
if I can help drop a line.

Strength and Honor
Richard Veil is offline   Reply

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