Lowel Now Has Three Pro-Level LED Light Banks
Lowel makes a lot of lighting products, some of which like the Tota have been used in mobile pro video for what seems like ages. Lowel has completed a line of LED light panels that are designed to bring studio quality to productions of all types and sizes. They recently announced the Lowel Prime LED Model 800 to go along with the Model 200 and 400.
Lowel totes the Prime LED 800 as ideal for studio or EFP-style location productions. The Lowel Prime Power LED Light collection includes the 200, 400, and now the 800 models, each available in dedicated Daylight or Tungsten color versions. With a high CRI of 90+ for accurate color, Lowel Prime Power LED lights have both a brighter and wider beam output than the LED competition in their price class. A trademark feature of the Prime 800 LED is its 50-degree beam angle that allows considerable light output to be spread across a wider area, reducing the need for additional fixtures to light a set.
With 126-foot candles at nine feet, the 800 model has almost twice the output of the 400 model. Like all Lowel Prime Power LED Lights, the new model 800 is dimmable (via DMX or manually on the back of the unit), with “tweakable” color for critical balancing against other light sources, and offers silent fanless air convection cooling. Components are secured in a rugged all-metal housing. Each Lowel Prime Power LED comes with a hanging C-clamp and female Stand Fitting. Users can also choose from an assortment of light controls.
If you want to grab one of these for your next video project, they don’t come cheap. The Lowel Prime Power LED Model 800 will retail for $3,895 from dealers (when it’s listed). You can get the Model 200 for $1500 and the Model 400 for $1900.
Before I was ready to drop that kind of cash on a light, I would want to make sure to check the throw. Lowel’s specifications state it has a 126-foot candle power at nine feet, which is pretty impressive. LED has always worried me since the falloff tends to be rather quick and drastic, but Lowel looks to make me into a believer in LED. If you’re considering LED, remember that shadows can also look weird due to the number of little light sources. Rather than one dark shadow, you can end up with a bunch of lighter shadows. You can solve this with a soft box, but at the cost of a partial stop and the aforementioned throw and you’ll have to find someone who makes a box that will fit the specific size of your LED panel. I have high hopes for the Prime LEDs overall though, as over the past couple years LED lights have seen considerable improvement. At Lowel’s price point, I expect these suckers to be powerful and durable.
One other thing: the common misconception with LED is that they are cool lights (with regards to temperature). Granted, they’re cooler than a standard light bulb but they are by no means “cold.” I would wager that these suckers put off considerable heat if they are left running for any length of time.