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Old April 3rd, 2007, 03:49 PM   #1
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Is the Frezzi Mini Fill Worth It?

Hey all - so I'm getting ready to shoot my first documentary. It'll be a run and gun style and, like many others, a one-man show production. And because of my budget (very low and since this is my first one, I don't want to spend too too much), and where I'm going, bringing along lights is not really feasible. So I'm thinking of restricting myself to an on-camera light for those situations where I'm in a really dark room or cellar or something.

I've got a cheap-ass 10/20/30W on-camera light, but I'm wondering if it's worth investing in something like a Frezzi Mini-fill. I've browsed the threads and the concensus seems to be that on-camera lighting is sort of a last resort kind of thing so I'm wondering if I'm screwed lighting-wise either way.

I'll be outdoors, but also inside my family's ancestral home: lots of stone, and probably quite dark. Oh, and I'm shooting with a PD170.

Thanks for your help (and sorry if I'm being a bit too vague for useful advice).
Wayne Chu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 3rd, 2007, 05:44 PM   #2
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If you're getting a Frezzi, at the very least I'd recommend the dimmer version, also with the flipdown daylight filter, with maybe a 50W bulb with at least a 40 degree or more beam.

Bill Busby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 4th, 2007, 09:23 AM   #3
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Wayne, on camera lighting is used a lot of the time in run and gun news and docu work. Espceially loacation shoots, where no additional lighting kits can be used.

A light with a dimmer is highly recommended. Frezzi, NRG Varalux, or even Videled or Lightpanels cold work well in these situations.

teh nly bad thing about the Feezzi or Varalux and such is that you need god battery power (usually belts or bricks), and that can get heavy.
The new LED lights are compact, lightweight, have low power consumption, and can use camera batteries for power, such as the long lasting Sony NP series.
Varizoom, Sony, Vidled, are all good low cost options for you if needed. Lightpanels is great too, but gets a bit pricy.

The good thing about the PD170 is that it rocks in low light. So you would really be using the onbaord light for fill anyway. A good 50w light with bard doors for directional lighting, and a dimmer should do you well.
Michael Liebergot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 4th, 2007, 09:49 AM   #4
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I'm using our 50W on camera lights all the time, they can be very helpful in many kinds of situations (as the only source of light, as a fill or even when it's only to provide for similar white balance when you have to move quickly from one location to the other without a chance to white balance your camera).

Everything below 50W isn't that useful in my opinion, but 50W is good for most situations (though 80W ain't that bad as well...)

Get a bunch of gels for the light, my standard repertoire is 216WD, 1/2WD, 1/4ctb, 1/2ctb, 1/4cto and cosmetic rouge
Heiko Saele is offline   Reply With Quote
Old April 4th, 2007, 11:08 AM   #5
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Hey thanks all - that's awesome advice. Confirms a bunch of stuff I've been hearing elsewhere too.
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