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Old November 11th, 2009, 08:32 AM   #1
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My Cool Lights Experience

Hello,

I have written a little writeup about a recent job where I used Richard A's "Cool Lights", LEDs and Flourescent.

I thought it might be of use to the lighting forum to get the opinion of one who has used these lights in a working situation.

The focal point of the article is the use of the new 250w LED lights.

I do not have an affiliation with Cool Lights, but I want to spread the word when someone like Richard makes products that I can budget for and also improve my end product.

Thanks
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Old November 11th, 2009, 04:22 PM   #2
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Tim nice review.
I just received the LED256 and LED600 myself a week ago and really like the results that I am getting. As a matter of fact I just ordered another LED256.

I've also been shooting with Tungsten lights, mainly Lowell Rifa lights, and have been migrating to LED for on camera purposes, and am now swapping out my tungsten lights for cooler LED based lighting. I find the Coolights well built with great output. The LED256 is much stringer than I thought it would be.
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Old November 11th, 2009, 05:05 PM   #3
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Yes, good job Tim! And thanks for your comments Michael.

Quite gratifying especially seeing the new 256 out in the wild and getting great use. And I like the PDF format for a review like this, makes it so much nicer the way you can intersperse text with pictures. If its okay, I'd like to post that on our site. Very professionally done. Thanks for that and for your time in putting it together.
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Old November 11th, 2009, 05:19 PM   #4
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That looks promising. I'm tempted to get the LED 256. How does it mount on light stand? Not sure should I get 3200K or 5600K version. Thanks
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Old November 11th, 2009, 05:54 PM   #5
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Thanks, glad you liked it.

Richard, thanks for making these lights, they are perfect for a lot of work. Feel free to post the review. Just reference me and my company - Metroplex Multimedia - metroplexmultimedia.com

Taky, I am pleased with the 5600k version. I recently shot a job using the full CTO in front of the lights and was very pleased with the amount of output. This would not be the same story with a 3200k light and a CTB gel.

The LED 256 has a 1/4-20 threaded hole in which you can put a light stand directly or thread in the supplied swivel which you can see in the close photo in the review pdf.
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Old November 11th, 2009, 06:31 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Taky Cheung View Post
That looks promising. I'm tempted to get the LED 256. How does it mount on light stand? Not sure should I get 3200K or 5600K version. Thanks
Thanks for your comments. As Tim said, it comes with everything you need to mount to a baby (or junior 1 1/8" for that matter) stand. The adapter is a kind of ball joint swivel mount that allows angle adjustment. Barndoors can be left off if you don't need that.

Taky, even though this includes a 1/4-20 mount on the bottom, it should be noted I don't recommend this as an on-camera light nor did I design it as such. I was more going for a smaller version of our 600 for those times that the 600 is way overkill like accent lighting (as Tim showed in the review) or the way Michael is using it to spot people at an event. At a weight of 1lb. 15 ounces its too heavy for hot shoe use. If you have a bigger camera in studio setup on tripod and you needed an "OB" light then mounting this to the rail system using the 1/4-20 mount on bottom of the LED 256 to a 19mm (or 15mm) adapter which has a 1/4-20 mount would be fine.

On the question of what color temperature to choose I think Tim's right. Unless you find yourself overwhelmingly in low color temperature (practical indoor around 2900K to 3200K) settings then I'd always choose the 5600K version since we do have the included full CTO filter panel. Time will tell if people think its too much weaker with that filter or not, of course some light is lost but its a great compromise to get 3200K when you need it but you most often will use the daylight version.

I hope event videographers can start using a smaller light like this, off camera, more often. IMO, it will improve their results if they can make the stretch to either bring someone to hold the light in positions, where they need it/when they need it, or on a stand in a corner of the room as unobtrusively placed as possible.

I think Michael's idea of a remote on/off is a great idea and we will look at doing that for a future version. I can see where that would be a big help for the event guy.
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Old November 11th, 2009, 07:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taky Cheung View Post
That looks promising. I'm tempted to get the LED 256. How does it mount on light stand? Not sure should I get 3200K or 5600K version. Thanks
Taky, this is the light that I mentioned in another post that I am looking at using for Receptions as a Reception style light on a light stand by the dance floor.

I would recommend going with the 5600k version, as the output is much stronger than the 3200k version. And what was mentioned the 5600k will hold up better filtered for Tungsten, than the 3200k filtered for daylight. Plus, myself personally, will have more use for daylight balanced lighting than Tungsten. Even though I shoot receptions indoors, I find myself doing a lot of interview work these days, in which I have large windows pouring in light. So by using the LED600 and LED256, I can use that outdoor lighting and run the LED lights with all indoor lighting turned off. And even use the Comer1800's for accent lighting as well. All LED all of the time.

As I mentioned I ordered a second one today and will be replacing my two tungsten camera light, which I used to use on light stands for reception use. The output is stronger than the Comer1800 light, and being able to turn on/off selected backs and being dimmable will make this a nice solution for my reception use.

I can run the lights on Sony NP style batteries, and not use my remote control. Or run my battery belts to the light and use the remotes if needed.

All in all great lights. I'll be ordering another LED600 in the near future as well for studio/green screen work. And the upcoming LED2500 should rock as well for field/studio use.
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Old November 11th, 2009, 11:14 PM   #8
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Richard and Michael, I know this is not meant to be an on-camera light. Comer works well for me for that aspect. I am looking for solution to have off camera light on light stand. So this LED256 seems to be a good solution.

What if I want to mount 2 on a light stand, do I need to get that 59 cross bar from coollight?

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Old November 12th, 2009, 04:14 AM   #9
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The cross bar would be good for two on one stand. Would be even nicer if we had a shorter version of the cross bar to hold them closer together but I don't have a shorter one. The CL-LEDHBAR will work fine and you can angle the two lights off a bit so they're not pointing in the same direction as well.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 04:25 AM   #10
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I'm still saving up for a lighting kit from CoolLights, I really like the look of these new lights. I also have quite a few Sony long life batteries laying around from my Sony days (Canon now) so that's a great option to have! Richard it would be awesome if you could create a light to compete with the Litepanels MicroPro that uses Sony batteries. The MicroPro is completely overpriced!
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Old November 12th, 2009, 06:24 AM   #11
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Thanks for your comments Nicholas. There are a lot of on camera lights out there, it seems a crowded market to me. That's why I wasn't rushing into it quite yet.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 10:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taky Cheung View Post
Richard and Michael, I know this is not meant to be an on-camera light. Comer works well for me for that aspect. I am looking for solution to have off camera light on light stand. So this LED256 seems to be a good solution.

What if I want to mount 2 on a light stand, do I need to get that 59 cross bar from coollight?

Taky
Taky that bar woudl work, but why would you want to use 2 lights on one stand as opposed to using a two lights and two stands?

Wouldn't it be more beneficial to spread the light around the room to create more depth to the image. Like at opposite ends/ corners of the dance floor?

Simply doubling the light output in one location (even positioned differently) still limits your lighting ability. In other words the lighting will only help you while shooting in one certain area.

If you spread the lights around, then you can get a similar image from multiple room perspectives.

I guess it's not a big deal if you shoot on a tripod form the same location most of the night. But for myself, I move around a lot hand held most of the night and thus shoot from all perspectives in the room.

Just wondering is all?
Hey at least your trying to get your main lighting off camera which is the first step.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 04:25 PM   #13
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Michael,

There're pros and cons. For me shooting weddings, I already have many gears to bring. I just don't want to setup another light stand and another sand bag.

Also, having the LED256 as spot has limited throw and coverage. So I will want to have 2 lights to get a wider coverage.

I am still using two Comer 1800 on each of the XH-A1. Then adding a third light source on light stand would be ideal.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 04:37 PM   #14
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Taky,

Just out of curiosity, if you want wider coverage, why wouldn't you go with an LED 600? Its basically a bit more powerful than 2 256s.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 07:02 PM   #15
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that wont work. I'm shooting weddings. There're more than just the reception to do. Carrying that big light + the big battery won't be an option for me. I guess they are good for studio settings. But I do need portability.

Also to have 2 spot lights I can have a wider coverage, or coverage at two directions. More flexibility.

Let me think ...
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