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Rosco LitePad Loop Pro Kit Review

 rosco-litepad-loop-kit-lighting

The Rosco LitePad Loop Pro Kit is intended for an enthusiast or professional user, providing soft light for beauty shots or music videos.

This kit weighs in at about 8lbs., and comes packaged in a soft case with a custom cut foam insert to protect the kit during travel, although it will require additional protection if traveling with an airline. In the package you will find the LitePad Loop light, along with a 15mm rod system that attaches with a magnetic interface and tether. The camera attaches to the top of the main block, and can then be secured to a tripod or other rig. Since this kit uses industry standard rods, you will be able to easily adapt it to a DSLR rig.

Also included is an additional L-bracket and longer rods, in the event you are using a long zoom lens.

Powering the light is straight forward, with the included 12V power adapter which plugs into the rear of the light, an in-line dimmer switch, and a AA battery holder for powering in the field. Included in the kit are a number of international power adapters that are interchangeable from the power brick, so you can be assured that this kit is world-friendly.

Also included with the pro kit are lighting masks, such as circular stars, lines, and other patterns to create a unique effect in the eyes of your talent. Color correction gels are also included for maximum compatibility with your environment and lighting.

Impressions

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Upon putting the kit together, the organized case is a welcome addition, with each part and accessory having a specific spot, this is useful when breaking down after a shoot so you know you have everything you came in with. Assembling the unit is simple and straight forward and takes about three to five minutes to completely set up. Attach your camera to the main block, block to tripod, and LitePad Loop to block, and enjoy its strong magnetic attachment. At first, the magnetic attachment seemed like it could cause trouble, but while using the unit, we experienced no issues, and it does have a security tether just in case the unit were to release from the magnet. Due to the magnetic mounting system, we recommend staying aware of the unit's center of balance especially on a shoulder rig or monopod.

Using The Loop

The LitePad Loop is a ring light, and such lights are typically used for specialty shots in music videos, or when recording beauty shots of model's faces. Ring lights provide a light source that is perfectly centered with the camera lens, this means that no shadows are created on the face of your subject. We tested the light with a Canon EOS 5D Mark III with the EF 24-105mm f/4L USM lens, and the Rosco performed beautifully. No shadows were cast and it provided very nice light fall off on the side of the face. At maximum intensity, we found that in order to maintain an optimal exposure of around f4 at an ISO of 160, the subject needs to be around 1-2 feet from the light. Increasing to around 2000 ISO increased this range, but for a clean image we kept the ISO reduced. The circular effect in the eye is unique to ring lights and provides creative inspiration. We found that in order to see this effect the distance of 1-2 feet is optimal again. This may differ if recording in greater than 1080 resolutions such as 2K or 4K.

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We ran the LitePad Loop for an extended period of time and during this run, no flickering or loss of light was experienced. It's clear that the Rosco LitePad LED system is well made. To our eyes the color of the light seemed slightly on the green side, however this is easily corrected with the many included correction gels, of which there are minus green filters.

Creative Approach

We tested the LitePad Loop as an interview key light, even though that is not its primary purpose. We found the circular light in the eye turned more to an oval shape and looked unnatural. It's clear that this light performs best straight on and with a wide angle lens.

Conclusion

If you are shooting a music video and need a unique shot where your talent approaches the camera, this light is perfect for you. Additional uses may be interviews where the talent is facing the camera directly, as this light provides excellent light fall off on a person's cheeks for a very clean look. The LitePad Loop is a specialty light, and may be best suited in the arsenal of music video cinematographers or as a rental item. Due to the way the light is attached, it becomes a part of the camera, so prepare to use this light in a studio or static environment. This light is not well suited for widespread use unless a specific creative effect is required. It is an excellent piece of equipment that is recommended for portraits and soft, even lighting.

Tech Specs
Lamp Type: LED Ring
Color Temperature: 5800K
Power Output: 24W
Power Supply: 12V DC Input
Carrying Case: Yes
Accessory Mount: 8" and 4" 15mm Rod Mount
Total Weight of Kit: approximately 8lbs.
Kit Dimensions: 24"x 12"x 4.5"

Strengths

  • Smooth LED light with good fall-off.
  • Bright, but well diffused and easy to look at with naked eye.
  • Soft case helps to keep kit organized.

Weaknesses

  • Slightly green color.
  • Limited distance to notice ring light effect.
  • Awkward mounting system.

Summary

The Rosco LitePad Loop Pro Kit is intended for an enthusiast or professional user, providing soft light for beauty shots or music videos.

Rosco Laboratories
www.rosco.com
$1,100

Paul Hildebrandt is a documentary, narrative, and wedding filmmaker.

Tags:  April 2013
Paul
Hildebrandt
Mon, 11/05/2012 - 8:55am