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Thread: Studio lights for a hack

  1. #11

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    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    A "hack"?

    A taxi cab driver?
    "My forumla for successful printing remains ordinary chemicals, an ordinary enlarger, music, a bottle of scotch - and stubbornness." W. Eugene Smith

  2. #12

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    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    Since I've been doing this for a long time I have a bunch of studio strobes which I can use with soft boxes or umbrellas. My favorite is a compact DynaLite M500 pack with two heads, I also have a Paul Buff moonlight strobe, and another cheapie pack and two more heads, too lazy to run to my basement and check the brand. While studio strobes with their modeling lights are great, you also need a flash meter, and they can be relatively bulky and costly, even used.

    BUT I remember seeing a YouTube video on inexpensive continuous lighting (it was geared towards digital) and they used LED panel work lights. If you Google "LED Adjustable Work Lights" you will find lots of tripod-mounted LED panels. They are relatively inexpensive (say $50-$125) and since classic setups are usually two lights, you might want two. The main disadvantage I see is that the ones I looked at quickly for this post are not adjustable in intensity, just positioning.

  3. #13

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    Dec 2014
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    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    I picked up some used Alien Bees back around 2010 - I used them maybe 3-4 times for product shots, but I don't do studio or portraits.
    Adventure is worthwhile in itself. ... Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done. -- Amelia Earhart
    http://www.searing.photography

  4. #14

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    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    I have used some 1200-LED units for filming video and they were quite good. Watch your light balance when you're buying. It seems to vary all over the place. The ones I used were switchable between daylight and tungsten and had continuously variable output settings. They were quite bright at full output and we had to use a lower setting. The gentleman that owned them said he paid a bit over $400.00 each for them, so they were a bit pricier than some of the ones you see. If I could afford them I'd get a set for myself. They threw out virtually no heat. Sorry. Can't remember what brand they were.
    Michael W. Graves
    Michael's Pub

    If it ain't broke....don't fix it!

  5. #15
    Tin Can's Avatar
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    Dec 2011
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    17,188

    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    Lights are just the beginning

    Light modifiers are needed most of the time

    I would love a huge North Light 16X20 feet studio, not going to happen

    I now have one of these always setup as it almost too big to setup. I am going to buy another one day. They are cheap. Reflectors can be almost anything, GOBOs also

    I am still learning how to use it, I store it fully open facing down at 11 feet, and out of my way

    Today I will fiddle about with it and my DIY V Flats

    Modelling Light Not Flash by TIN CAN COLLEGE, on Flickr
    image

  6. #16

    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    I prefer Broncolor, which can be expensive, but I have bought in a frugal way and now I am set.

    I have four Impact 21 strobes, 200 watt seconds each, and four Impact 41 which are 400 watt seconds each. This are monolights built with quality components, in a simple circuit, and all parts heavily overrated. Extremely safe they are even approved by Underwriter Laboratories and have their seal. I love these Impacts they are ideal for a lot of uses. They are getting long in the tooth but recently I have been buying them for $50 each which suits me just fine.

    I also have the older Broncolor Pulso Monolights, the C171 and C70's I have owned for twenty years and they are still going strong. A full range of older Broncolor reflectors I have at my disposal.

    Also this year I have added the older 404 Broncolor Pulso Power pack, 1600 watt seconds in one pop and takes all my older Pulso reflectors.
    I have four 1600 watt second rated heads for this so far, and a Hazylight head as well.

    I have two 6000 watt second Pulso 606 packs and heads, these are wired into 220V lines I had installed. A Broncolor Hazylight mounted on a heavy Matthews rolling stand is one of my studio focal points. This came from a British fashion photographer in New York City who was shooting 8x10 chromes.

    All this was purchased used over a long time and at low prices. So I am set with the world's finest lighting.
    Last edited by Daniel Unkefer; 31-Jan-2021 at 14:26.
    “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”
    ― Mark Twain

  7. #17

    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    Great stuff here, i do thanks all for the ideas and will look to this tread as i go forward. I will try some muli-source lighting shots with what i have and play with it. The bigger purchase will come but i need some simple practice at this point. Thanks again!

  8. #18

    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    Broncolor Pulso Quad Head Never Used by Nokton48, on Flickr

    This arrived yesterday. Broncolor Pulso Quad Head, which allows four 1600 watt second Pulso 404 power packs to discharge into four flash tubes in this head. So 6400 watt seconds in one pop. Quite awesome and super rare, I don't see this in any of my old catalogs.

    This unit is an amazing deal for $150 and is never used. It also came with a large metal screen which goes on the front of the quad head.
    “The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”
    ― Mark Twain

  9. #19
    Exploring Large Format Exploring Large Format's Avatar
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    Sep 2019
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    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    +1 to importance of modifier when discussing lighting gear.

    For large modifier, i like the Glow Wing-Like Umbrella. Mine is 88", but smaller available. With low ceilings, you can still get wide light spread. Can use included black cover to block light, akin to barn doors. Shaped like an elongated curved wing. Bowens mount. Super easy & quick setup/takedown.

    Sent from my SM-G981V using Tapatalk

  10. #20
    Functional moron
    Join Date
    Jan 2021
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    Re: Studio lights for a hack

    Show us some examples of photos that you like, we can help you reverse-engineer them and achieve similar results at a low cost.

    I always recommend to my assistants: start with only one light and master it, you can always add more lights later.

    -Ryan
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    @ryandarcyphoto

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