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Old April 24th, 2005, 05:28 PM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Las Vegas
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Looking at a starting Kit.

I just recently got the chance to use my first professional lighting kit, which I borrowed from school for a week. It was a mole-richardson 300, 650, 650 fresnel kit. It was like the one below, but without the 1000. I was so impressed by it, compared with my $10 worklights, that I really want to buy the kit below:


But then I look at some of the Lowel kits, and you get alot more with them. Is there a reason that mole-richardson is so much more expensive than other brands? I was very impressed by the quality of these lights, and the results I was able to get with them. Are other brands of lesser quality? What main things do you think the kit I linked to is lacking?

Would the kit below be better?

It comes with a softbox, and I'm not quite sure I need a 1000. The 650s seemed to be enough light for my previous shoots.

Is the kit I got to try out from my school + the 1000 softbox. This, I think, would be Ideal, but it's getting pretty expensive.

The majority of my work is with short films, mostly stories that take place at night. I don't do interviews or documentaries right now.
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Old April 24th, 2005, 06:22 PM   #2
Capt. Quirk
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Melbourne/Palm Bay Fla
Posts: 3,594
Stay away from the cheaper Lowell kits. I had the VIP Go kit, and it worked properly for the first few times. After that, the knobs couldn't be tightened down enough to hold the light in position.

Buy good stands, and pick up your lights as you go. Start with a key light, then a fill light. Barndoors and flags should also be on your list.
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Old April 24th, 2005, 08:02 PM   #3
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Location: Northridge Ca
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Bryan, if you can handle the price of the first Mole kit you listed, go for it. This is a light kit that will last you a lifetime, and still be worth a good deal of its purchase price if you sell it.

With the Mole kit you will be working with true professional lighting instruments, unlike that other name you mention. You will have true fresnel lights that will focus the light where you want it with the intensity you want. You will learn the proper use of scrims and their value in lighting. And should you want to add a softbox in the future, the 1K Mickey Mole is an excellent light for those purposes. Plus, with the 1K output, you can add a daylight correcting gel to the Mickey and still have sufficient punch to light in sunlight.

Two things to be aware of with this kit: number one, it does not come with bulbs. You must buy them seperately. This is common for professional lighting instruments. And number two, it weighs 78lbs. You won't be carrying this up a flight of stairs alone.

Good luck to you, Bryan!

Wayne Orr, SOC
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Old April 30th, 2005, 07:30 PM   #4
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Anyone else?
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Old May 1st, 2005, 07:30 AM   #5
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Location: Brighton, England
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I heartily second Wayne's opinion - if you can afford it, get the moles. The lowell kit might do you for a bit but essentially it'll be dead money in a year or two - as Wayne said, the moles'll probably outlive you!!!

If you're going to spend that kind of cash, though, then I'd also look at Arri and Dedo kits. Arri's are *awesome* - everything they make is the very best. The Arri lights will be very similar to the Moles (although somewhat lighter) wheras dedos are much smaller, more dedicated fixtures - not so good for large spaces. Dedo's however can be very useful, especially in smaller environments and are becoming really quite advanced.

Fresnel fixtures (as opposed to open face fixtures) are, imho, definitely the way to go - you've got far more control of the quantity, quality and coverage of your light this way, and that's what it's all about after all...

Last edited by Dominic Jones; May 2nd, 2005 at 05:18 AM.
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Old May 5th, 2005, 09:28 AM   #6
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Location: Cereal City USA
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If you have the money, go with fresnels. Moles are very high quality, but expensive. Consider Arri's and use the money to buy some extras...Softbox, Gels, reflector, spare globes, black wrap, even a dimmer or two if you can swing it.
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Old May 18th, 2005, 12:47 PM   #7
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I got this and have never been sorry - 5 lights, every accessory.

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