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Who loves the Diva?

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James Mulryan
Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 6, 2005 at 6:18:43 pm

Thinking about buying a Diva to use for keying interviews. The heads seem a bit hefty, 14 lbs for the 400, 8 lbs for the 200.
Built in ballasts might be tough to deal with if they go down.
How does the light output and quality compaire to a Lowel DP w/ 500 w bulb on
a Video Plus Chimera?
Would a Joker 400w HMI on a Chimera be more versatile?
Want to get away from all the heat associated with tungsten.


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Leo Ticheli
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 6, 2005 at 6:37:21 pm

Divas are absolutely brilliant. Don't know what you're comparing them to, because I find them very light-weight and easy to rig. I've heard stories about the older ones having ballast troubles, but I've never had a Kino Flo failure in the several years I've owned them. I actually much prefer the built-in ballasts to having them all over the floor.

Even a 400 Diva has not enough punch to key a subject in front of a daylight window; I use the Mole Biax Eight for those shots, or a Chimera on an HMI. I've got several Diva 200's that I find very versatile, and fine for soft kicks. Kino has some new fixtures with more punch.

A 400 HMI and a Chimera is a tough combination to beat, but it costs considerably more and the soft box takes up a lot more space than a Kino. Still the most beautiful key, in my opinion.

Tungsten has had it's day, at least for me, except in the studio and for special location shots. Too hot. Too heavy. Too power-hungry. Wrong color temperature and practically worthless with enough blue gel to go to daylight.

Good shooting!
Leo

Director/Cinematographer
Southeast USA


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James Mulryan
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 6, 2005 at 8:12:31 pm

Leo:

Thanks for the info. The Biax looks pretty cool.
Are you still using tungsten fresnels for background lighting?


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Leo Ticheli
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 6, 2005 at 8:17:52 pm

Yes, I still use small Moles for background lighting when I want it to have a nice warm look.

I must confess I'd love to have a bunch of very small HMI's; they simply cost too much! When we need things we don't own, we rent.

Good shooting!

Leo
Director/Cinematographer
Southeast USA


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James Mulryan
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 6, 2005 at 8:33:34 pm

Leo:

Do you miss the light qualities of a tungsten bulb from your key?
Fluorecence verses halogen verses HMI comments?


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Leo Ticheli
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 6, 2005 at 10:13:41 pm

Certainly color temperature is important to the look of a scene, and we may choose to warm a daylight key to a much lower Kelvin than the ambient & background lights. I don't think tungsten lights have a different character, just a different color temperature.

I'm not sure what you mean by tungsten bulb quality, unless you're speaking of keying with a naked Fresnel rather than a diffused soft light. Sometimes a hard source makes a perfect key; it just depends on the look you're after. A Fresnel with diffusion looks very much like a Kino with diffusion. With perfectly smooth diffusion in either case, it's the size of the aperture of the light source relative to the subject that determines the softness of the effect.

Shooting in the studio with all tungsten lights, I frequently put warming gel on the background where I'm suggesting interior lighting is playing against cool daylight. Of course we light in-studio "exterior" windows with HMI fixtures so the light will be bluer than the "interior" lights.

Good shooting!

Leo
Director/Cinematographer
Southeast USA



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Todd at UCSB
Re: Who loves the Diva? 2 follow up question on the subject.
on Jun 7, 2005 at 12:08:41 am

First off, I love the two, 2 Divas I have. Having the ballast on the fixture is much easier.

At NAB I finally got a chance to look at the Moles in person. I knew about them from my sales rep, about a year ago, but didn't get to touch one until a month ago. They seem like they have a sturdy construction. The thing that blew me away about the Moles was that they are voltage dimmable. This is a hugh feature for our TV Studio. I already have some ParaBeams hung from the grid, but I have to control them from the ballast on the back. I wish the Moles Biax were around when I bought the ParaBeams. Don't get me wrong, I love the Parabeams. But to be able to control the light output through our existing dimmer board would have been a big benefit.

You really can't lose with Kinos or Mole's.

Not to confuse anything, but Leo, would you recommend the Kino's over the Mole's?

Leo, do you use the Mole's for Keylights? Or just for background?

Todd at UCSB
Television Production


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Leo Ticheli
Re: Who loves the Diva? 2 follow up question on the subject.
on Jun 7, 2005 at 1:42:21 am

I find both Kino Flo and Mole to be excellent. The Kino's seem more modern in physical design, much lighter and easy to rig in tight places. The Moles seem more traditional, a heavier, perhaps more robust design. I love them both.

Kino Flo has a much wider range of fluorescent fixtures; I could replace the Biax 8 with a Kino product, but none are as compact as the Mole.

I use the Mole Biax 8 as a key.

Good shooting!

Leo
Director/Cinematographer
Southeast USA



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James Mulryan
Re: Who loves the Diva? 2 follow up question on the subject.
on Jun 7, 2005 at 3:56:45 am

Thanks for all the great info. Creative Cow is a fabulous resource, great way to learn how to ramp up production values.
I love the look of a 1200 through a 4X4 w/ two fields of diffusion, but in the past, when I set up such a rig on a small shoot, I would find the sound man holding onto his boom pole like a security blanket and the p.a. sweating like a pig, and the producers gasping when they see all those cutters and c-stands associated with such a rig.
I still wonder if there is a difference between how an HMI verses a tungsten verses a Kino through the same size diffusion and at the
same intensity balanced at the same color temp. reacts on a subject's face. There has to be a difference.


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john sharaf
Re: Who loves the Diva? 2 follow up question on the subject.
on Jun 7, 2005 at 1:43:52 pm

James,

The comparison you request really does not compute, because the tungsten equivilent of the 1200 HMI would be a 5K unit or a 10K unit if corrected for daylight (in order to match intensity and color as you specify). The largest convenient fluorescent unit is probably the Kino Wall of light and with daylight tubes it probably would equal or surpass the 1200 HMI. Furthermore it's advantage is the smaller footprint in exchange for the large source size and also it';s current efficiency.

There are some DP's and LD's who prefer the tungsten source because of it's predicable color over HMI's and fluorescents, but with video, I'm confident that I can white balance any varients or spikes away.

I agree with Leo, when he says that outside of the studio, it's obvious to favor the fluros and HMI's because of the lack of heat, daylight capabilities and efficiencies. If they were the same price as tungsten units we wouldn't even be having this discussion!

JS


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James Mulryan
Re: Who loves the Diva? 2 follow up question on the subject.
on Jun 7, 2005 at 3:05:21 pm

Thanks John. I'm ready to throw my Lowell DPs away!!!


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john sharaf
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 7, 2005 at 1:42:24 am

James,

You can not go wrong with a Diva 400 for the purpose you specify, however there is no doubt that the 400 Joker is a more versatile light; you can use it as a strong soft daylight source in the Chimera or as a hard key with the varios par lenses. In addition it can be used to light a back wall or even punch through a window. For this versatility you are going to pay more, about three or four times more, but if lighting is your business, ultimately you will pay for it, and then it turns into a profit center.

Owning lighting equipment is very much like a drug habit; most folks start with a tungsten kit light set and grow to owning kinos, hmi's and entertainment lights like Source Fours. Add in the grip equipment, cable package and even a generator set and you'll get the idea. Of course you'll need a truck to carry your kit to location and/or a sound stage to make best use of your lighting stash.

JS


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Ken Zukin
Re: Who loves the Diva?
on Jun 7, 2005 at 3:38:09 pm

Just to follow up on James' guestion, which I think is a good one - Is there much of a difference in terms of quality of light (softness) in using a large HMI thru a couple layers of diffusion vs. a Kino type fixture?

BTW, I've owned a Biax 400 for about a year and it's been nothing but a positive experience.


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Bill Crawford
Re: Who loves the Diva? - biax bulbs
on Jun 10, 2005 at 12:34:22 am

Hi all,

I just picked up a pair of diva 400s. I was a little surprised to see the color meter reading on the Osram bulbs kino sent with them. They were supposed to be 3200, and neutral, but read out at 3950, and +6. Pretty far from the rating. Is this something common for biax bulbs?

I had the fixture on for 30 minutes, and at full power.

Anyone have experience to offer? To use these with my Kino 4 bulb, 4' selects that do read out neutral, I'll have to gel them. Not something I'd like to do.

Thanks,

Bill


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Teemu Niskanen
Re: Who loves the Diva? - biax bulbs
on Jun 10, 2005 at 12:07:01 pm

Osram bulbs? Not Kino's own? What are the specs? Here are Osram Dulux models:
http://tinyurl.com/cjw6v


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Teemu Niskanen
Re: Who loves the Diva? - biax bulbs **Sorry wrong url***
on Jun 10, 2005 at 12:37:09 pm

Here are the Osram Dulux L series 55W bulbs:

827: http://tinyurl.com/8vrs6
830: http://tinyurl.com/dpggu
840: http://tinyurl.com/ceo6c

930: http://tinyurl.com/d5ehj
940: http://tinyurl.com/7dpqt
954: http://tinyurl.com/dco8b


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