Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 37

Thread: Norman strobe packs query

  1. #1

    Norman strobe packs query

    I'm looking to get my hands on a Norman strobe pack or two and a few heads. Most probably the older 2000 and 4000 watt packs.

    What I'm not finding is information on-line about the various models of packs that have existed in the past, and am wondering if there is a resource for this out there?

    If not, anyone know the line well enough to help me out?

    In particular, excluding the current models, there were models called the 2000 and 2000D and possibly a 2000X, and similar models for the 4000 series as well. Can anyone tell me what the real differences are between them?

    Secondly, these things will be used in the field, and I don't have control over the power available all the time. Is it possible to plug two of the 2000 watt packs into a standard 15-amp circuit and not blow a fuse or trip the breaker? If I don't use the modelling lights, I'm hoping that should be possible...


    ---Michael

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    113

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    Michael,

    If you settle on a particular model, Norman will send you a copy of the manual. A couple of years ago, it was free, but that may have changed.

    I would be afraid to plug 2- 2000's into a single 15 amp circuit (or even a 20 amp for that matter).


    Mike

  3. #3
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    7,701

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    Some late-model 2400 ws packs have a "slow charge" switch to allow use in situations where the power supply is marginal, such as on a household 15 amp circuit. From research I did while shopping for a power pack last year I know that at least Calumet/Bowens and Profoto currently offer this feature, though neither brand is cheap.

    My recollection from asking around last year was that Norman pack/head combinations had a reputation for being not especially efficient in terms of light output per rated ws, which would make the problem worse. Also, if you're planning to double up to achieve 4000-4800 ws, you're going to be pushing it for sure.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Rondo, Missouri
    Posts
    2,030

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    A few years back, I had a 2000D. I switched to speedotron after the capacitors in the Norman died the second time. The first was under warranty and they fixed it. The second time they wanted more to fix it than I paid for a really nice Speedo 2400 with 2 102 heads.

    Two tips. A 2000D will suck every coulomb out of a 15A circuit. Two will most likely pop the circuit breaker. Secondly, I get more output out of a single head in a 1200WS outlet on the 2400 than I ever got out of a 2000D. Norman wouldn't be my first choice.
    Michael W. Graves
    Michael's Pub

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

  5. #5
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    Honolulu, Hawai'i
    Posts
    4,658

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    You might also want to hunt around for information about safety upgrades on Norman packs. I forget what the serial number is, but with some of the older ones, it's recommended that the pack be turned off and discharged before throwing any switches on the pack to prevent arcing, but after a certain serial number, this isn't a problem.

    I think Ellis Vener posted some comparisons of different heads with similar reflectors on photo.net somewhere with regard to the efficiency issue. His assessment is that the Norman heads are less efficient than others, but if you like the quality of the light (as I do), then you can decide how important efficiency is to you. As I recall, he had also had a Speedo head adapted to Norman (uses the same plug, I believe) but the pins are wired differently, so don't mix and match without re-wiring), and the Speedo head put out more light than the Norman at the same power setting.

    I've been using Norman lights since about 1991. The packs are cheap and durable, and there is lots of Norman stuff out there, so it's not too hard to expand the setup. They also made a great fresnel head adapted from a Bardwell & McAlister adjustable spot housing, if you like Hollywood style lighting.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    9,472

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    In the day, the 800 watt/sec Dynalite heads, in a softbox, were within 1/2 stop of the 2400 watt/sec Speedos, so there is a pretty wide range and watt/sec ratings don't mean alot between the brands. And guys tell me the Profotos are even more efficient than the Dynas... so go figure.

    The Normans I used in the mid-80s all would arc and kill you (well, maim you) if you unplugged the cords while hot. Speedos too. Arcs of flame, whipping cords, not fun.

    I wouldn't invest in them unless they were dirt cheap.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    1,791

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    How powerful are the other brands? Not to take this too far off the question.

    With my Speedotron 200ws is often too much for smaller formats. I ended up buying ND gels for it. More control at the pack would be nice

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    113

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    I have one of the, shall we say interesting, Norman powerpacks. I have never had a problem with it but I always use a switched extension cord (powerstrip) to plug it in. Then when I'm done shooting, I turn off the strip, discharge the power pack by firing the shutter, and then turn the pack off and disconnect the cables. It's a ritual I follow.


    As for relative power, truthfully I haven't noticed. I use the Normans mostly for fill and backlight and a monostrobe for my key.

    Mike

  9. #9

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    OK, thanks. I've heard of this issue with efficiency before, so I need to look into it a bit.

    I'm interested in large amounts of output on location for architectural shooting in larger volume spaces. While the Dynalites seem to be pretty small for the output, They aren't seemingly as available on the used market in the higher wattage packages. Norman packs are fairly plentiful.

    Cost is an issue, of course, and I really don't need the added features of the modern packs, so it doesn't seem to make sense to me to be getting the modern packs from most of those listed, and when it comes to reliability, I have heard good things about the Normans and the Black Line Speedotrons to be sure.

    I guess I'll look around a bit more to see what other information I can find.

    Are there any used dealers that carry lots of lighting?


    ---Michael

  10. #10
    Whatever David A. Goldfarb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Location
    Honolulu, Hawai'i
    Posts
    4,658

    Re: Norman strobe packs query

    B&H always seems to have a lot of Norman packs in the used department, and Calumet usually has a good selection of used lighting equipment. Also check Norman's website for clearance items (http://www.photo-control.com/). There are often good deals there (or there used to be. I just checked and couldn't find the clearance listings.)

Similar Threads

  1. Kodak film Packs - mystery film
    By Dan Dozer in forum Cameras & Camera Accessories
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 31-Jul-2010, 11:40
  2. Filmholder Belt Packs
    By David A. Goldfarb in forum Gear
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 16-Jan-2005, 12:31
  3. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 24-May-2002, 08:53
  4. P4000 Norman Power Packs
    By neil poulsen in forum Gear
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 29-Jul-2001, 03:49
  5. Replies: 7
    Last Post: 31-Dec-1999, 22:59

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •