LED’s are changing the face of lighting

I’m continually amazed, maybe even startled, at how the LED revolution is transforming our business. Over the last two years we’ve added more LED fixtures to our inventory than I can keep track of in my head. In the beginning LED’s were basically confined to the flood light category. The LitePanel 1×1 revolutionized the market and is in the flood lamp category. Soon LitePanels made the 1×1 in the Spot series which behaved more like a par light. Then along came Aadyn Tech  with the very powerful Punch Plus and soon after its little brother the Jab (and the waterproof Jab Hurricane). All of those are in the par category and behave much like the tungsten and HMI par lights we’ve all been very accustomed to for some time. Lots of Lumens per Watt. That is, a measurement of how much light you get out of the fixture for the amount of power put in. These lights are the workhorses of the industry and give you a lot of raw output but lack in control. They almost always need to be diffused or bounced to be useable on people and they don’t cut well with barn doors or a flag. Because of the multiple LED sources in each head, or the “array”, the cut from the barn doors or a flag often looks stair-stepped or multifaceted. Recently manufacturers have been trying to make LED sources that work well in the other light types. Fresnels (Fres-nel) and ellipsoidals as well as soft sources are now entering the market. Last year at the NAB show Mole Richardson introduced their line of LED fresnels that really changed the way everyone thinks about LED. We’re now doing installations for local TV stations that are saving them thousands of dollars per month in electricity. Not only are the LED’s using less electricity but they’re putting a lot less heat into a room so there’s a huge savings on air conditioning costs as well. Finally we see the introduction of the LED soft light type fixtures. Kino Flo’s newer Celeb line uses an array that is conformed into a single source using a permanent heavy diffusion installed at the factory. In addition, we have seen the introduction of multi-color sources. While the Film/video market has focused on 3200K/5600K blended fixtures the theatrical market has brought us multi color sources that eliminate the need for color gels and through DMX control give us the ability to change colors on a light during the shot. I could go on for hours about all of these changes and the features of each but showing you would take less time for us both. Stop in sometime and ask for a demo of any of our new equipment. We’d love to give you some new ideas to put in your lighting toolbox. I’ll be heading out to NAB in a couple of weeks to check out the newest lighting treats. I’ll come back with a full report and post it here for you.

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