This three light LED video lighting kit from FloLight is certainly no lightweight when it comes to versatility, convenience and ease of use. Video producers at any level would be pleased to have a set of these in their lighting bag of tricks.
FloLight kits may be configured in any number of ways including your choice of color temperature – daylight (5,600K) or tungsten (3,200K); and beam spread – flood (60 degrees) or spot (30 degrees), with or without the optional battery plate and either individual padded soft carry bags or a preconfigured hard case.
Our particular kit arrived in an ATA rated (Air Transport Association) wheeled flight case with handles. It consisted of two MicroBeam 1024 Daylight Flood lights, one MicroBeam 512 Daylight Flood light and three power cords and adapters. It was accompanied by three 8-foot stands in their own carry bag with handles and shoulder strap.
The output of each 1024 is equivalent to a 1,000W “hot light” while consuming only 97W, and a CRI of 93 provides a high degree of color accuracy. A light source’s CRI (color rendering index) is a measure of the light’s ability to faithfully reproduce the colors of various objects. Independent of color temperature, CRI refers specifically to the accurate representation of the colors of the object being lit rather than to the color of light emanating from the light source itself. The 512 has an output equivalency of 500W with a power consumption of a mere 48.5W and a CRI also of 93.
High output, high CRI and low power consumption all have a number of very positive benefits for the video producer. Of course we’re always trying to make sure there is plenty of light; zoom and exposure settings can dramatically affect the ability of the camera to capture available light and we may quickly find ourselves dealing with excessive video noise. Bust out your FloLight MicroBeam 2500W Equivalent kit and problem solved. For those times when less is more, each light is equipped with a dimmer knob for full dimming control. Accurate color reproduction is also very high on our list of concerns. We expect it from our cameras; we tweak it with white balance, color temperature gels and color correction in post. The more accurately we can capture accurate color reproduction up front, the less time we’ll spend tweaking it later. Low power consumption means less heat output, making it easier on the talent and safer for those handling the equipment – and how often do you get to set up 2,500W of output without fear of popping the circuit breakers?
We were fortunate to be able to try out the MicroBeam kit in several different scenarios. In each case the results were excellent and the benefits readily evident. In the first situation we shot a portion of a music video in a hospital room. Not the greatest lighting for video, the room was rather dark, with the only practical light coming from fluorescents over the bed and in the ceiling. The dimmers came in handy because the full power of these lights was a bit much for this particular location, more than enough to eliminate noise.
In the next case we shot a segment on Lighting for Night Video Shoots in which we used one of the 1024s and the 512 to light the interior of a car at night. The 512 fit nicely into the instrument panel recess behind the steering wheel. The daylight balanced LEDs rendered a nice bluish hue on camera that was an appropriate representation of dashboard lights at night. The lights’ battery power capability is perfect for this type of application. Alternatively, the included adapter may be plugged into a power inverter and run off the car’s battery. A second light, the 1024, was set up on a light stand in the cargo area of the SUV and stabilized with sand bags to provide a bit of backlight to separate the driver from the surrounding darkness. The results can be seen at Videomaker.com under the video tab, tutorials and the video, Lighting for Night Video Shoots. (www.videomaker.com/video/watch/tutorials/685/lighting-for-night-video-shoots/)
Finally, we spent one weekend shooting a short film using the FloLight LEDs and practicals to light the location. One of the huge advantages to these lights was used fully on this particular shoot. With lots of shots to gather on a very tight schedule, we were able to save time on setups by not setting up lights but keeping them handheld. This is something you would absolutely never even consider doing with traditional hot lights. LEDs, however, emit virtually no heat so it was easy to hold the light and move it closer or further away as needed without having to move light stands, sand bags and cables. Again, battery power rocks in this situation.
We threw several different lighting scenarios at the MicroBeam kit and it performed exceedingly well in every way. For variable intensity high output, accurate color rendition, low-temperature safety and vast versatility these lights should be on every video producer’s short list of future acquisitions.
Output: 1024: 1,000W equivalent; 512: 500W equivalent
Power Consumption: 1024: 97W, 1.2A; 512: 48.5W, 0.6A
Power Factor: 0.7 (both)
CRI (Color Rendering Index): 93 (both)
LED Life Expectancy: rated at 25,000 hours
Color Temperature: Daylight –
~ 5,600K (Tungsten – ~ 3,200K also available)
Beam Angle: Flood – ~ 60 degrees (Spot – ~ 30 degrees also available)
Power Source: 12 VDC input (110-240VAC power adapter included); optional battery
MicroBeam 512 Dimensions: 12″ W x 3″ D (including switches) x 6″ H
MicroBeam 1024 Dimensions: 12″ W x 3″ D (including switches) x 12″ H
- Variable intensity
- Low power requirements
- Generates very little heat
- Barn doors not included
- Gels not included
For truly versatile lighting suitable for all users check out FloLight’s MicroBeam 2500W Equivalent video lights.
Mark Holder is a video producer and trainer.