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Philip Fass
have to choose now!
on Mar 4, 2010 at 2:09:37 pm

I've read everything I can find on fluos vs LEDs for key/fill light in interviews. Already have a Mole 4-tube fluo and want to add one more light.

What confuses me is that the advantages I read for LEDs also apply to fluos: cool to touch, dimmable, long life, etc.

Since an LED costs considerably more, is there another big advantage I'm missing? If not, I've been happy with my Mole and would probably add a smaller fluo to the mix.


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Mark Suszko
Re: have to choose now!
on Mar 4, 2010 at 2:57:24 pm

Easier to run off a battery, I suppose. If you plan on shooting on location where there is no power supply, then that would be a factor.


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Philip Fass
Re: have to choose now!
on Mar 4, 2010 at 3:31:01 pm

No, shooting in people's homes. I'm starting to think there really isn't a significant advantage in my situation with LED.



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Bill Davis
Re: have to choose now!
on Mar 5, 2010 at 12:20:41 am


Look, these are two TOTALLY different ways to generate light. They work very differently in practice.

A typical fluor is from 4 to 8 tubes of gas. The tubes glow evenly sending photons out in all directions.

You can put them in a reflector box, and even put barn doors on them, but they DO NOT cut like, for example a fresnel. The barn doors AT BEST narrow the angle of dispersion down a bit. The ones designed with MIRRORED barn doors are a bit more useful, since if you set the mirrors correctly, they will make the fixture appear approximately 50% bigger than the tubes alone and that spreads the light's WRAP even more for close up beauty work.

LEDS are anything but soft. Each LED is it's own focused instrument. Putting them in rows or grids makes the light hitting a surface spread out somewhat - but it's NOT the equivelent quality of a soft box or a soft bank of flos. OTOH, that same bank of LEDS will typically have a MUCH, MUCH farther reach since the photons are directed by the LED lenses. So you can punch light with an LED panel in ways you simply can't match with flos.

Also, Flos and LEDs typically have different colorometry. So they mix pretty poorly, IMO.

These are two TOTALLY DIFFERENT TOOLS. Period. Each with their own unique characteristics that makes them preferable in certain situations.

But if you're thinking to pull them out of the same kit and mix them together I'd STRONGLY suggest against that.

FWIW.




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Philip Fass
Re: have to choose now!
on Mar 5, 2010 at 11:34:39 am

Well, that settles it. There's nothing about my Mole fluo's quality of light that I DON"T like...just need more of same. So I'll go for fluos and not aim for the trendy option.



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Richard Crowley
Re: have to choose now!
on Mar 6, 2010 at 3:29:55 am

LEDs are intrinsically orders of magnitude more rugged. Fluorescent tubes are in many ways even more fragile than their smaller incandescent cousins. They are physically larger (more area to get broken) and the glass tube is usually thinner as well. If you are not careful, the chances of arriving at the location with a broken tube(s) is significant. vs. LEDs which are practically indestructible, limited only by the design of the light fixture. And, as Mr. Suszko observed, LEDs are much easier to operate in portable and/or battery applications.

Neither fluorescent or LED sources have color handling (CRI) anything like traditional sources. But both have specialized (and higher-cost) versions that are designed to be far better than the mass-market (industrial, domestic) design.


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