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Old November 30th, 2017, 10:09 AM   #1
Regular Crew
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Canton, MI
Posts: 109
New LED Fixture for my kit

Has anyone used the LED fixtures from Dracast? If so, what is your assessment?

Iím trying out the Dracast 1000 Silver, itís in my price range right now and it can be powered by a V-Battery product. I need a quick portable battery powered fixture thatís powerful and cost effective. My Kino-Flo Divaís are great but there more for studio or set work and my 1k PAR fixtures are just over kill (and hot).

Is there a comparison chart showing that the light output (Brightness/Lumens) in LED that are equivalent to the output of a hot lamp fixture? Not light color or quality just brightness. Iím wondering what this Dracast 1000, 30w fixture is equal to?

Thanks KPO,
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Old November 30th, 2017, 11:39 AM   #2
Major Player
Join Date: May 2007
Location: San Jose, California
Posts: 916
Re: New LED Fixture for my kit

I have the Dracast 500, amongst many other panel LED lights. Can't say I love it, but it was a B&H deal of the day that made me give it a try. Build quality is good, v-mount option is fine, color is okay, output isn't great. Throw is terrible, spill control non-existent. I would say it gets the least use of my LED panels.

I just did a travel shoot with 3 panel LED's, a 1x2 flexible, 1x1 flexible and a Aputure 672 (rigid) panel light. All of them can be battery operated (with power packs, for the generic 1x lights, at least). They served nicely as soft key/fill/hair lights and fit into a long case with my light stands, boom stand, tripod and stingers.

That being said, if you're not looking for the lightest weight, but just serious punch...the LED COB lights are hard to beat. The Aputure 120d or 300d are very versatile lights, as is the Alzo 3200 (which I own). It's my main light for punching through 2' or larger softboxes with double diffusion. Bowens mount on the front means you have access to a large selection of low-cost modifiers, including fresnel lenses for long throw and beam control.

Different horses for different courses. It's all about your priorities, lighting style, budget and needs.

BTW, this might also be of some help:

Last edited by Oren Arieli; November 30th, 2017 at 11:40 AM. Reason: added a link
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Old November 30th, 2017, 11:44 PM   #3
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Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Brooklyn, NY, USA
Posts: 3,840
Re: New LED Fixture for my kit

It may depend on your shooting situations and setup time.

Dracast 400B if a need a small soft source in tight spaces. May buy the 600D for more light output.
Good for locations where space or time prevent using soft boxes. downside is lack of spill control.

Sola ENG for fresnel like hard light. May get Aputure LS Mini20 (or two) for more flexibility.
Both have fan noise which may have impact. Mini20 has better power source flexibility and 4 barn doors for more control than Sola's 2.

Aputure 672S with D-Fuse Softbox and grid. Just got the Aputure Tri8 for more output and durability but it's a bit heavier.
Both have a narrow 25į beam angle which I like. Both can also use EZ Box with grid in addition to D-Fuse. No fans.

Two Digital Juice 128 and small Airbox. I'd probably get different but equivalent if I were buying today.

Also thinking about the Came-TV Boltzen 55W since it's small and can have Bowens mount options.
Has fan noise. Barn doors don't cut as well as the Mini20. Can use small soft box (but yoke not strong enough for larger boxes).

Various Flex lights do interest me but I have concerns about output.

Of all the above I may take between one and three depending on the shot situation.

If I needed larger I'd consider the Aputure COB120 and the LS1 but with lights like that I might want an assistant to help setup which goes beyond Single Person Crew.

Most important is to get the right lights for the shooting situations you find most common. For me, it may be interviews in rooms that are 10x10.

Last edited by Craig Seeman; December 1st, 2017 at 08:52 AM. Reason: Added to descriptions.
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Old December 4th, 2017, 11:48 AM   #4
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Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Canton, MI
Posts: 109
Re: New LED Fixture for my kit

Thanks for the feed back. I'm going with the B&H Deal of the Day also but the reviews on B&H all have a common complaint, the yoke for the fixture does not allow an vertical up right position. Apparently the yoke is too short, probable a part used on a smaller fixture. The pictures show it canter livered out in the horizontal position. It works but I rather have the weight (CG) more on center with the stand.. Although I have heavy C-stands so this should still work for me.

As for power (thanks for the link to the 28 light shoot out review. Apparently the Dracast 1000 performed well.

Thanks, KPO
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Old December 8th, 2017, 11:43 AM   #5
Regular Crew
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Canton, MI
Posts: 109
Re: New LED Fixture for my kit

I received the Dracast 1000S the other day and initial thoughts were I received a used or returned product. The carry bag was not in plastic wrap the power cord looked like someone tried to wrap it up again with no care and tossed it In the carry bag. Fortunately the fixture looked new and it all works. The B&H deal was very good so maybe I missed that this was a refurbished item although I agree with the reviews in B&H that the yoke is the worst thing about this fixture. What a stupid design blunder. The yoke is too short to allow the fixture to be placed vertical on a stand and tilted down like most other light fixtures. In order to tilt down the yoke must be canterlivered out (horizontal) from the center of the stand. If you have light duty stands you must sand bag the stand. I will probable make extensions for the yoke to correct this issue.

I have not used the fixture yet on a job but I have been evaluating battery life with it so far. The output (brightness) seems great, for a 3 light setup on interviews or small set lighting. With the fixture set to full brightness the battery life for a basic V-mount 14v battery is about 1.5 hours. This package deal came with a free Sony battery adaptor, which needs two batteries to equal 14v, but my Sony batteries must be old, they only lasted about 30-40min.

All said and done, I should have bought two at this price.

Thanks KPO,
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