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-   -   Are these LED lights legit? (https://www.dvinfo.net/forum/photon-management/482307-these-led-lights-legit.html)

Natan Pakman July 23rd, 2010 09:11 AM

Are these LED lights legit?
 
I am wondering about LED lights like this one:


In this same price range, for either LED or Fluorescent fixtures, does anyone have recommendations? I am looking for 3-4 lights with a total cost of 1000-1200 to light a small tv show set.

Marshall Levy July 23rd, 2010 01:22 PM

It's the same thing as what many other companies are selling, just with a rebranded image. They've received fair reviews, but for me, I wouldn't touch them. The Amazon price is quite a bit cheaper than what others are charging for the same thing, names being withheld.

Matt Shefford July 23rd, 2010 08:16 PM

I'm keen on picking up a few of these types /ebay if anyone has a good review on them, filming a small tv show later on in the year and would love to have multiple led panels at my disposal.

David Seguin July 23rd, 2010 09:10 PM

Those lights look awesome for the price.

Has anyone tried them out?

Mark Wheeler July 24th, 2010 07:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Natan Pakman (Post 1551409)
I am looking for 3-4 lights with a total cost of 1000-1200 to light a small tv show set...

Given your budget let's hope 'small' is a slight exaggeration.

Since you're not too forthcoming with what you're going to be doing I can only offer some really broad suggestions.

I'd start off with my usual PVC stand / clamp light suggestion (use PVC pipe and clamp lights from Home Depot/Wal-Mart) and about eight bulbs. I'd build the PVC 'stand' close to the wall and across the ceiling, running copper through/around the PVC and placing strategic four gang outlets where you think they'll do the most good. Paint the whole thing black if you want to impress. You should be into it for about $250 at this point and throwing somewhere around 45,000+ lumens into the room. You can always add or subtract as needed.

Then I'd get a couple of LTM Pepper 100 Fresnel... using 200W bulbs... (about $420 for both w/bulbs) and a LTM Focal Spot (about $285 w/retainer ring). Gel them to 5500K to match the CFL and find a couple of M series gobos to throw interesting patterns. At this point you're in for about $1,000.

Finally, I'd get a selection of Chinese lanterns in various sizes and color that'll accept your CFL bulbs.

Eight 85 watt CFL and two 200 watt tungsten will be pulling about 10amps so you should be fine.

Luck.

Natan Pakman July 24th, 2010 05:38 PM

Mark,

"Forthcoming." Nice one.

I am more than willing to explain the details of my shoot, but it's nothing too special: 2 subjects around a large wraparound desk with a couple monitors close by. I can't use hot lights for this location.

What CRI do the Alzo bulbs have?

What about the Coollights LED panels?

Also, could you send me a link to an example of a PVC Pipe and Clamp light from home depot?

D.J. Ammons July 25th, 2010 07:58 AM

A couple of years ago while searching online I found a company that sold a kit that included two four bulb light fixtures with soft boxes and a total of eight of those 5500k large 85 watt CFL lights. The total kit was under $400. Better than anything I had found on ebay or anywhere else at the time.

I have only had occasion to use them a couple of times but they have worked fine and the light fixtures have two on/off switches so I can use one fixture full power for my key light and the other for the fill light. I have used one of those aluminum clamp lights with a 5500k CFL from Home Depot as a back light.

While traveling on a business trip I wanted to visit an elderly uncle and aunt and video their recollections of my father growing up. I had one of my Sony V1U cameras, wireless mics, tripod, and that was it. I bought three clamp lights at home depot. I had my Aunt and Uncle sitting beside each other in chairs in a small living room. I used a mixture of the 100 watt and 60 watt equivilent 5500k CFL bulbs for the key, fill, and backlight. I had the lights clamped on a door, curtain rod, and the back light on something I can't even remember. The results were amazing. Watching the footage when I got home I would have sworn it had been lit with a real lighting kit.

Mark Wheeler July 25th, 2010 09:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Natan Pakman (Post 1551752)
2 subjects around a large wraparound desk with a couple monitors close by. I can't use hot lights for this location.

Well, the little LTM are not all that hot and I love that focal spot but you know best.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Natan Pakman (Post 1551752)
What CRI do the Alzo bulbs have?

No idea.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Natan Pakman (Post 1551752)
What about the Coollights LED panels?

Solid.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Natan Pakman (Post 1551752)
Also, could you send me a link to an example of a PVC Pipe and Clamp light from home depot?

I was looking for one on-line but I really don't have have the time to find a good example. It's really nothing more than a length of Sch80 PVC suspended below the ceiling. It can be held up there however your imagination dictates. IndyMogul has an example of PVC used for a green screen and you can use their example... just ditch the chroma key cloth.

Clamp lights are available Wal-Mart, Lowes, wherever. Just ask.

Mike Watson October 14th, 2010 03:00 PM

Pulled the trigger last night on one of those ePhoto 1000 LED and one 500. Amazon ships next day, and I am looking at "real" lights within the next few weeks... Will let you know how these do.

Bob Krieger October 15th, 2010 12:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mark Wheeler (Post 1551996)
.... IndyMogul has an example of PVC used for a green screen and you can use their example... just ditch the chroma key cloth.

Clamp lights are available Wal-Mart, Lowes, wherever. Just ask.

Also, take a look at this vid I made a while back for a stand alone light stand with clamp lighting.

Mike Watson October 15th, 2010 01:39 PM

ePhoto 500 and 1000 (both from Amazon) arrived today. Initial impressions are that they are solidly built - body feels to be made of aluminum. Barndoors are solid (though they seem to get loose fast - phillips screws though, so it'll be an easy tighten job), but the reflectors inside are very thin and a little flimsy - we'll see how they hold up. A thick piece of foam was included as packing material between the barndoors and the LEDs, which is nice -- I can keep it for travel.

I bought the 500, but wasn't sure if I could use it as a key or not. Turns out it is plenty bright for a key in certain situations. The 1000 is certainly bright enough - probably not as strong as a diffused 1k fresnel but close. Both are *very* soft, and though I had planned to use the 500 as a back light, I think I need something with more edge. Furthermore, closing down the barn doors starts to create visible led "stripes" on the subject. I hope a little spun will take care of this, but we'll see.

Both lights have 4 switches to turn of 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, or all of the LEDs (plus a master switch). There was a light with a dimmer available, but I didn't see how one would need a dimmer with all these options. Turns out I was right, it is very versatile.

Haven't had the camera out yet, but the visible light is around 5600k. No noticable green spike, but again, haven't seen the images it's produced yet. We'll see how she does with a sheet of CTO on, as I shoot a lot indoors.

Updates as they come.

Bill Zens October 16th, 2010 04:59 PM

Mike, I am interested in how those work out, so keep up dialed in with some updates...

Bob, interesting stands. Not sure about their stability for lights, but like you stated at the end, for reflectors, flags, cookies, or other lightweight things that need to be held up they would be perfect.

Anthony Auci October 16th, 2010 06:20 PM

Would two of these 500 watt leds equal one cool light 4x55 watt portable flo?

Mike Watson October 27th, 2010 07:50 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bill Zens (Post 1579412)
Mike, I am interested in how those work out, so keep up dialed in with some updates...

Used these lights filter-less today for a simple shoot. No noticeable green spike (mixed them with diffused daylight), and everything looked good. They are *really* diffused... going to need 1/4 blue on a hard light for any noticeable backlight effect.

Have used them a few times now, and they get a lot of notice from passers-by. Moreso than the ordinary 1k fresnels do.

I had the opportunity to put the Kill-A-Watt on the 1000 light panel. 44 watts. The 500 is (predictably) 22.

More as I come up with it.

Mark Boardman October 29th, 2010 11:34 AM

Hello Mike,
I have a few questions about the 1000w version.
For a keylight...do you think diffusion in front is needed? Is it harsh for talent to sit in front of?
I have the Lite Panel 1x1 but it can barely make it as a hair light without getting close.

Mike Watson October 29th, 2010 05:40 PM

I think a sheet of opal wouldn't hurt, but you wouldn't need much. Sometimes when you close the barndoors a lot, you do start to see visible lines of LEDs on your subject. Obviously for that, you'd need more. (IMHO the only reason you'd be closing the doors that much would be for a harder edge, and these lights won't really provide that anyhow.)

The 1000 is plenty bright/big for a key light, and it doesn't have to be especially close.

Mark Boardman October 30th, 2010 07:46 AM

Thanks Mike,
I get my 1000 next week so I'll try out some opal first. I did some experimenting last night with some of my silks and diffusion from my Lowell Riffas in front of a 6 bank Flourescent. The obvious solution was to use a extra C-stand to create some distance between the source and diffusion. My next experiment is too somehow attach an eggcrate/louvre to the silk frame. I know all this seems a little silly when you can just use a chimera video pro or a riffa as an all-in-one unit. I know CoolLights has a soft box for their LED light.
Mike.. do you have any screen shots of a talking head interview style setup?

Doug Carlyn November 1st, 2010 12:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike Watson (Post 1582971)
Used these lights filter-less today for a simple shoot. No noticeable green spike (mixed them with diffused daylight), and everything looked good. They are *really* diffused... going to need 1/4 blue on a hard light for any noticeable backlight effect.

Have used them a few times now, and they get a lot of notice from passers-by. Moreso than the ordinary 1k fresnels do.

I had the opportunity to put the Kill-A-Watt on the 1000 light panel. 44 watts. The 500 is (predictably) 22.

More as I come up with it.

Thanks for the reviews, Mike!
I was looking at these too after seeing them on CheesyCam. Any footage of it in action that you could link to?

Mark Boardman November 5th, 2010 02:28 PM

I received my 1,000 LED from ephotoinc today. Seems pretty solid. A whole lot more output than my Lite Panel 1x1. It is much heavier so something to consider if you boom it from a c-stand. I'm going to try some diffusion and see if it will punch thru as a keylight in an interview type situation with some open windows in the background. Too bad it's snowing today.

Mike Watson November 8th, 2010 11:43 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Doug Carlyn (Post 1584150)
Thanks for the reviews, Mike!
I was looking at these too after seeing them on CheesyCam. Any footage of it in action that you could link to?

Today I shot a couple of interviews, keylit with the 500 LED ePhoto and backlit with a 500 watt fresnel (that I had to knock down A LOT). The sun was shining through some heavily tinted windows that had a cool window-sheer with a crazy pattern that gave a decent cuc pattern on the wall as the sun set. The two practicals, I had dimmers for, but forgot that every hotel anymore uses CFLs and couldn't use the dimmers - so they're a bit hot:

I'm always interested in suggestions.

Mike Watson November 9th, 2010 10:22 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Two more from today, these using the LED 1000 as key and LED 500 as back/fill.

Mark Boardman November 10th, 2010 09:56 AM

2 Attachment(s)
Very nice. What was your aperture and ISO?


I am do a talking head shoot tomorrow so I can send some examples as well. I'm bringing some 1650 flos with me just in case. My clients often ask for a super diffused key look. I even considered a ring light at one point. I usually shoot thru heavy diffusion and use egg crates on the key and bounce cards for fill.

Here are just 2 quick examples using the 1000 LED as a key with no diffusion and a 1x1 lite panel as a hair light.No fill. Just letting the sun do it's thing.

Of course this is not a perfect example since the room had many windows and it was backlit by the sun. Also I don't usually shoot my talking heads this way either. But it does show how you can use LEDS to supplement a natural light environment. Canon 5D/50mm 1.8 ISO 320?

Bob Krieger November 10th, 2010 10:15 AM

Mike, I like the look of your school shots. Just two lights? 1000 and 500? Were the classroom lights on as well? Any other practicals?

I've seen a lot of examples of people using LED lighting, but I'd love to see a "shootout" using the standard 3 point lighting scheme (key/fill/back) with all of the LED contenders.

I'd like to see a side-by-side comparison, in actual conditions, of the ePhoto 500/1000 vs. the CoolLights 256/600, lightpanels, flolights, etc.

Has anyone done this as of yet? Would anyone else be interested?

Mike Watson November 10th, 2010 12:14 PM

ISO was 320 for most of the above. Shutter speed 1/60th, and apertures between f/2.8 and f/4.

For the hotel room shoot it was the 2 practicals, the sun coming from camera left, a 500W fresnel (w 1/4 blue) from camera left, and a 500LED from camera right.

For the school, it was one 1000LED camera left and one 500LED back/fill camera right, overhead lights on (and a disappointing black hole in the background of the man... should have shot a light over there).

I was most concerned when buying new lights not about LEDs or Flos, but about using 5600k (ish) lights as my main kit (after a lifetime of 3200k). So far, it's not been an issue (and in fact, less concern about windows and stray sunlight).

Bob Krieger November 10th, 2010 12:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike Watson (Post 1586717)
...For the school, it was one 1000LED camera left and one 500LED back/fill camera right, overhead lights on (and a disappointing black hole in the background of the man... should have shot a light over there)...

Mike, I guess it depends on individual feelings, but I kinda like that darkness in the background, though it doesn't lend the "light and airy" feel I guess a classroom shoot should have.

Mike Watson November 10th, 2010 01:14 PM

Thanks, Bob -- I'll spin it that way for the client. :-)

I also thought the desks were a bit too hot for something so prominent in the frame, and so close to the focus distance.

Just nitpicking, as I always do after a shoot. It's how we get better. :-)

Anthony Auci November 12th, 2010 04:26 PM

to match the throw of a four bulb 500 watt equivalent flo. Would the 500 watt do it or go with the 1000 ?

Mark Boardman December 6th, 2010 05:19 PM

Now that I've had a chance to use the 1000 on a few shoots I have a couple of comments.
I like the output. It is quite a bit heavier than a LitePanel. I'm not crazy about the mounting hardware.
I prefer a u shaped yoke like other units.

Anthony Auci December 12th, 2010 01:13 PM

Got two of the 500 watt ones from ephoto. I love them , no heat ,they're build well. Im very happy with my purchase. I just recommend buying a good surge protector for them, one spike and it can be bye bye.

Mike Watson January 28th, 2011 03:06 AM

The 500LED is now available in a 3-pack for $670, but the 1000LED isn't available at all anymore. I'm disappointed, I had spec'd them out for a studio I'm working on putting together.

Daniel Weber January 29th, 2011 03:06 PM

You can buy them cheaper directly from EPhoto Inc, then from Amazon.

I don't know anything about the lights though. I think that I like the size of the Coollights LED 600 better.

Ben Edwards February 1st, 2011 08:35 AM

Check out cheesyCam, they have revews for this type of thing
 
CheesyCam DIY Video and Photography Projects. Great DIY/Budget site. They review lots of eBay stuff too.


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