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Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives

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jim bachalo
Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 10, 2011 at 12:09:58 am

After much research decided I need to invest in a Kino Flo Diva or 4X4 kit for shooting interview and interior set ups.

Has anyone used one of the various KinoFlo clone kits or even one of the CoolLight options?
http://www.FloLight.com/fl-220.html
http://www.coollights.biz/softlight-fix ... 5906837a57

How do they compare?

is the 30-50% saved worth it, or should I stick with KinoFlo?

Local is the new global


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Mark Suszko
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 10, 2011 at 9:55:15 pm

BTW, Videssence are another less expensive alternative to name brand Kinos.


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david braman
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 16, 2011 at 1:28:15 pm

I've used the FloLights. Not a fan. First I like the 4' units. Nice and soft. Also you can't retube them with the available tubes at the location your shooting in (a real help sometimes). Which brings me to the cost issue, you mention the Divas; these can't be retubed with existing units either since they're dimable. But the old school units can be retubed and cost pleasantly less. Granted you can't dim them, but between switching of tubes and throwing up a single or double and you get a lot of adjustability.


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jim bachalo
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 16, 2011 at 2:52:43 pm

Thanks David!
I've read elsewhere that many people prefer the Diva-Lite for its portability, but for consistent light quality go with the non-Diva versions. Still not clear as to why there would be any difference.

When you say 4' units, could you be more specific? Did you mean the 4', 4 bank?http://kinoflo.com/Lighting%20Fixtures/Tegra_4Bank/Tegra_4Bank.html


One more affordable option I am considering is to go with the Coollights fixture+ballast
http://www.coollights.biz/cl455p-cool-lights-portable-watt-softlight-p-67.h...

and then perhaps spend an extra $100 and get the kinoflo bulbs

Local is the new global


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david braman
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 16, 2011 at 3:07:19 pm

Yes, the 4' x 4 tube unit gives a very broad, soft light. It looks like the Coollights also use the same "4 pin at one end" tubes (forgive my non-technical nomenclature) that the Divas and FloLights use; and won't give you that field adaptability.


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Richard Andrewski
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 16, 2011 at 10:18:12 pm

Sorry I don't understand this comment about 4 pin tubes. Something about that you can't "retube" because its dimmable. Please explain further.


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david braman
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 16, 2011 at 11:45:16 pm

the Divas and Flowlights use tubes that have four connecting pins on one end (I suppose that's part of being dimable,) as opposed to the standard fluorescent tube which has 2 connecting pins on each side.

Check out the difference on KinoFlo site.

http://www.kinoflo.com/Kino%20Flo%20lamps/True%20Match/True%20Match.htm


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Richard Andrewski
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 17, 2011 at 12:05:38 am

A 55w tube with 4 pins on one side is really no different other than form factor-wise from other tubes. Its literally just like a linear flo tube, bent in half (or in an H configuration) and all the pins are on one side rather than on opposite sides. Thus, they all have 4 pins. If you could unbend the 55w tube, it would almost be 4 feet long so its just a more compact design from the newer T5 family. The four foot tubes commonly used in media production are generally T12 types and are a much older family and less efficient from a light output standpoint. Yes they are larger sources since they are linear long tubes and that is why many prefer that form factor because they feel it gives a softer light.

Being dimmable or non-dimmable has to do with the ballast driving the tubes, not the tubes themselves for the most part. The four foot tubes could be dimmable as well but some companies choose not to use dimmable ballasts with them. T12 tubes for the most part don't have dimmable ballasts because there isn't much new development for the T12 tube these days. The T5 family has been far more standard in use of fixtures for film and television with just about everyone that makes such fixtures offering a 55w version and there are so many manufacturers offering a 55w tube so you can find standard replacements relatively easily.

As far as color temperature changes, there is change in color temperature in any fluorescent tube after dimming about 50%. Up to 50% they are fairly stable. Hope this helps.


Richard Andrewski
Cool Lights USA


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Bob Cole
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Aug 17, 2011 at 5:36:07 pm

[jim bachalo] "is the 30-50% saved worth it, or should I stick with KinoFlo?"

In a word, no. My rule of thumb for equipment of this sort: if you're going to be at this game for a couple of decades, buy quality. If not, rent. I really like my Diva and am extremely glad I own it. I'd say this is especially true for something involving the electronics that a dimmable fluoro requires.

But I admit that I did read this entire thread in hopes of finding a solid recommendation for something less expensive and just as good as a Diva. And another admission: I still use my old Tota lights inside Chimeras and occasionally just to help boost the base lighting for a large room.

Good luck and let us know your experiences.

Bob C


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John Fishback
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Oct 4, 2011 at 1:35:14 pm

Checkout Alzo Video's Pan-L-Lite. We own 2 and they are excellent. They use OSRAM bulbs, come with barn doors, flozier, honeycomb, are designed so their tilting stand mount can be placed on any side of the unit, and have 2 dimmers. If you mix 3200k & 5600k bulbs you can dim each pair independently. Very impressive product. I'm not connected in any way to Alzo. It's just that every so often a terrific production comes along that you're glad you bought. This is one of those.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz 8 GB RAM OS 10.5.8 QT7.6.4 Kona 3 Dual Cinema 23 ATI Radeon HD 3870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.3, Motion 4.0.3, Comp 3.5.3, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.3)

Pro Tools HD w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec Monitors, PrimaLT ISDN


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Bob Cole
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Oct 27, 2011 at 3:20:00 am

Just looked at the Alzo website. Even more interesting than the PanL light is the HID light. Does anybody know more about this? They bill it as similar to but better than HMI lighting.

bob c


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Todd Terry
Re: Interview lighting-affordable Kino Flo alternatives
on Oct 27, 2011 at 4:27:52 am

Sorry to say, Bob (because I'm actually a fan of some ALZO products), but I wouldn't recommend the HID lights they sell at all.

I actually bought one of their smaller HID setups a year or two ago (just a ballast/bulb combo). I didn't care about the blub... I actually bought it just to get the ballast for a "real" small 150w HMI head that I have, since their ballast/bulb combo was actually cheaper than buying a a real HMI ballast alone (and the combo works fine, by the way).

Of course though, I did fire up the globe just out of curiosity. Uggh. Of course, it's nowhere near a "real" HMI... the HID globe is basically just a big industrial type screw-in blub. Its output is nowhere nearly as bright as an equivalent-wattage HMI instrument, the color is ghastly (very green), I think the CRI is pretty darn low (at least it looked that way to my eyeballs), and I'm not sure it is UV shielded in any way, even though they appear to sell it in open-faced instruments. I can't prove it was leaking UV, but after just a couple minutes with it on in the studio my eyeballs started having that familiar burn you feel with UV leaks. That was the first of two times I turned it on. The second time was right after that, just to confirm that it wasn't hot re-strike (it isn't), but took a wait of about 15-20 minutes before it would strike again.

Also, the ballast I have did crap out pretty soon... but to their credit ALZO did quickly send me another one, which is still going strong with the HMI.

I wouldn't recommend any setup though that uses the HID lamps.

Other ALZO products seem pretty good, though.

T2

__________________________________
Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.
fantasticplastic.com



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