What about LED arrays for constant light?

Discussion in 'Filmmaking' started by roverT, Jan 16, 2012.

  1. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    I am wondering if there are any decent LED lights that can be connected to the hotshoe of my GF2 to give constant light for videoing people in low lit atmospheres? I know most LED has high temperature so it would be a huge contrast to regular lighting in most venues. I'm very new to this part of video photography so any advice would be great!! Thanks!
     
  2. SZRimaging

    SZRimaging Mu-43 Regular

    124
    Nov 16, 2011
    There are a few out there, and they aren't all that expensive.

    As for temperature, you can gel them to match, so not really a concern.

    What is a concern, is the color response from LED. I can't remember which, but they are actually lacking in one section of the spectrum (think it's Cyan). So there will always be a kind of tint/look to them that you don't get in other types of lighting. Some of the more expensive (i.e. Litepanels) do a better job at eliminating it, but it still isn't as good as tungsten or other sources. Just my 2 cents on the matter.
     
  3. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    I have 8 LED lights in my kit that I use with my work. For small on camera LEDs I use the Z96. Its powered by AA batteries or a sony pack. They come with a crummy hot shoe adapter thats made out of plastic but the lights are 100% pro. They are even repackaged and sold by other companies for over $400 each but you can find them on ebay for $89 each.

    The cool thing is that you can combine the Z96 lights into larger panels.

    Check out cheesycam.com for up to date coverage of LED and DIY lights.
     
  4. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Wow thanks!! That 312 LED sounds great. The one you have looks great from the reviews too. I guess the only difference is that the bigger LED is wider/farther reach and the ability to change colour temp on with a knob instead of just a set colour temp from one filter?

    Cheesycam is a great site to just start learning about video equipment. The Flycam Nano Video Stabalizer looks like a great device to for the cost which would be great for the GF2 and hopefully down the line, a Canon 60D.
     
  5. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    Cheesycam is a great resource. Glad I could help out. Actually I'll be selling a stedicam merlin here in a few days. Perfect for small cameras!
     
  6. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    I'll be in the market for one very soon!! I need to have nice smooth pans! Human stabilization is not good...LOL.

    Does yours support a larger 60D or only smaller m4/3s?
     
  7. speedandstyle

    speedandstyle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    How far do you need the lights to throw? The cheaper LEDs work good if you are not very far from your subject but suck at longer range. I have seen the Lite Panel and Flolight brands in use and they are great , but they are more expensive. I have found that the cheaper LED lights tend to be too blue{or cyan}. Also find a unit that uses the battery system you prefer. Some run on simple AA but others use proprietary batteries.
     
  8. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    I want to keep the subject near the camera since the GF2 has no external mic option. Later on down the road I will get a camera with that option. So I guess my subject won't be farther than 20 feet away if I want to be able to hear them talk! This'll be used for more interviewing on the go like a CNN reporter... :D
     
  9. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    It works with my 5D so it should work with the 60D. I'll post some info about it tomorrow in a new thread and will PM you then link.
     
  10. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
  11. John M Flores

    John M Flores Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 7, 2011
    Somerville, NJ
    Any hotshoe mounted light will give a flat, deer in the headlight view. Not flattering, but if you are a CNN iReporter, it's fine. I got a good deal on a pair of used Switronix TorchLED TL-30. Sturdy, compact units with decent battery life. Gels help balance with ambient lighting. FWIW, be wary of banding issues with LEDs. IIRC, I had some trouble with the GF2, but switching from 1080i to 720p (or was it the other way around) fixed the problem.

    Check out the Marketplace of DVXUser for deals on lightly used video gear. And think about a monopod or Cowboy Studios shoulder rig for stability.

    Ultimately, the GF2 offers very good video quality for what it is. I use it for my unboxing videos.

    [ame=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KEyop8KK70s]UNBOXED! - ContourHD FPOV video camera - YouTube[/ame]

    [ame=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxpgfcl3rJA]Unbox Promise Pegasus R4 Raid (with Thunderbolt!) - YouTube[/ame]

    Good luck!
     
  12. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    Im addition to the 4 Z96 lights I also use a ring led light and two 1200LED panels which put out more light then the Litepanels brand at a fraction of the price. Anything more then that I rent.

    They are great lights for the price but keep in mind the color can be a bit weird at times and the power is not great so youll be shooting at high iso unless you combine them into banks which is what I do when needed. I use mind for both motion and stills.
     
  13. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
  14. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    For anyone who want to know more about the 312 dimmable and adjustable colour, I found this video which was a great working demo of the light!

    [ame=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0p7drJCcC8]On Camera 144 LED vs 312 LED output comparison - YouTube[/ame]
     
  15. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    So I chose the 209 LED version instead of the monster of a 312 LED. haha. 209 makes my GF2 look like Frankenstein but I think that I will be using it off camera for accent lighting most of the time. I'll always make sure the place I am in has decent lighting to capture my subject and direct LED would only be used in desperation of poor lighting circumstances.

    My quasi light box using a white fuzzy towel with a spot light forgetting that the towel has texture that'll give shadow...haha:
    P1020953.

    A magnetic diffuser...
    P1020954.

    Metal hotshoe mount:
    P1020959.

    The cool thing about the 209 LED is it's just barely light enough to use the Jobi magnetic tripod:
    P1020970.

    Since Audi's are made of aluminum...they aren't magnetic but good thing the feet are fully rubberized too! This was my light setup with my subject talking just in front of the car under great lighting to begin with. It created a nice accent light to the edge of the face/body. Good thing for matching lighting temperature colour too!!
    P1020942.
     
  16. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    Trevor, can you test how powerful the light is. Say at ISO 200, 6ft away @f/4? Nice light BTW looks like my Z96 only bigger and more refined.
     
  17. roverT

    roverT Mu-43 Regular

    121
    Nov 27, 2011
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Sure...is there a certain shutter speed you want too?
     
  18. Noble Soran

    Noble Soran New to Mu-43

    1
    Mar 16, 2012
    I have found that the cheaper LED lights tend to be too blue.


    [​IMG]
    --------------------------
    flexible led strip lighting
    led outdoor lighting fixtures
    mini led light bars
     
  19. SimonL

    SimonL Mu-43 Regular

    97
    Apr 15, 2009
    NW England
    There's a book recently out on LED lighting by Kirk Tuck.

    Not sure how relevant the content will be compared to your requirements but it might be worth a look.
     
  20. gsciorio

    gsciorio Mu-43 Top Veteran

    636
    Dec 29, 2011
    Miami, FL
    Sorry! Just saw this. Curious of shutter speeds of 1/30th.

    Thanks!