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Old August 8th, 2009, 02:54 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Modesto, CA
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Lighting for weddings/receptions/parties

Hello all,

I stumbled across this site and have found it to be very informative and inspirational.

I have searched this forum and regarding lighting for weddings/receptions. My question is regarding off camera lighting. I currently do not have a lighting setup and am starting fresh. I would like to know what you recommend for lighting. I will be using a Sony HVR-Z1U.

As of right now, I will be using the Comer 1800 on camera but would like to know which light (when used on a stand) would do a better job of getting better video quality.

* The weddings and receptions I will be recording (Punjabi) do not place limits on the lighting.

* From what I've read on the forums, it seems as though LED seems to be on most peoples wish lists but are cost prohibitive. I would like to go the LED route though (< or = $2k) - which ones do you recommend?

* If not LED, what lighting type and specific recommendation?
* On a different forum, someone recommended this Chimera | Video Pro Plus 1 Triolet Lightbank Kit - Small | 8000


* Dedolight | SM241E Tungsten 1 Spotlight Kit (230V) | SM24-1E

Gabroo Singh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 8th, 2009, 05:12 PM   #2
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,505
For weddings and receptions I would highly recommend against using large studio production lights. This will draw the ire of venues.

What I did was build 3 Reception Light style lights.
These are simply on camera lights mounted on a light stand, self powered, with large Bescor battery belts at the base of each for long lasting power and also added weight support.

The Wireless Wedding Reception Video Light

As I said I built my own lights but purchased the remote controls from Reception light. This way I am able to turn the lights on and off as needed. I shoot with Sony FX1's myself and usually will run my lights for the entire reception, with the exception of during dinner when the lights are powered off.

I don't like to run cables, and being battery powered enables me to move the lights wherever they are needed at a moments notice. Usually they are placed near the dance floor at opposite sides/end of the floor. The lights are just strong enough to give nice depth of light to the dance floor without overpowering the DJ lights or disturbing the mood. And I run my camera all manual at around 9-12 db with no problems. I do have an on camera light for fill purposes only.

Studio lights are way too bright and overkill in my mind for event work. I do have several studio lights and Lowell Rifa lights (which I love BTW), but I use these strictly for production shoots and not for live events such as weddings and parties.
Michael Liebergot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 9th, 2009, 09:42 PM   #3
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Location: Tulsa, OK
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I agree with Michael. We started using two of The Reception Lights a couple of months ago, and they are great. For the last two years I have used a Lowel Rifa 55 with a dimmer. It greatly enhanced the images, but I was never fond of the big white box up by the DJ or band lighting. It really stuck out, at least to me. I never had a client comment on it, but it just looked out of place at some of the high end events we were doing. The Reception Lights are very low profile and I love the wireless remotes.

I use two of them with the optional 75 watt bulbs. Darrell, the owner of The Reception Light, recommended I go with the 75 watt bulbs since I was used to using a 500 watt Rifa 55, even though I usually ran it at about 50% with the dimmer.

I timed myself at Fridays wedding and it took about 5 minutes to set up two of the lights. I am going to cover reception lighting in our next episode of Von Real.
Mark Von Lanken
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