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by David Fox and Christina Fox

A complete review of all the new lamps and other lighting products for 2002 - from small portable fluorescent kits for news broadcasting to DMX lighting consoles - as shown at IBC 2001.

Photon Beard
De Sisti Lighting

Kino Flo
ABC Products



Photon Beard's new Radiant 130 fluorescent soft spot is cool running for a long life, says Alan Gooch, its sales and marketing director. "Most of the linear type lamps were designed for general field background lighting, but there was a demand for key lighting, so we decided to develop a spot light using fluorescent tubes with a circular reflector and associated accessories, including barn doors and honeycomb, to create a more defined spot. This is the ideal product for close up work," he claims. It is available in switch control, analogue dimming, DMX dimming and phase control versions.


De Sisti Lighting has a new reflector to give about 40% more light, which is better than even its previous intensifier. The DeLux fluorescent light is available in two or four tube versions, which can be combined "to create a wall of light," says area manager, Massimo Lobefaro. They are aimed at news studio or virtual set use.

Its new CD light range includes a cool 70 or 150 Watt spotlight using a high-efficiency discharge lamp which should have a 10,000 hour life. It is designed for news studios to enhance fluorescents. There is also a broad light version.

De Sisti showed a new version of its software for controlling telescopic lighting hoists at IBC. The Windows-based Icarus 2000 can record horizontal and vertical positions, barn door, rotation, angle and height and recall any set-up in seconds. "It gives complete control of the system from the computer, and makes it much faster to change lighting between programmes," says Massimo Lobefaro. It can also be used for moving light effects and has recently been installed in Disney's Paris studios.


Brightline's new, smaller miniT lights are designed to fit in the space of half a standard office ceiling tile (300x600mm). Users can fit 1x4-lamp, 1x2-lamp or 2x1-lamp units. The larger T series can now also be more recessed in its tray, so it doesn't stick out from the ceiling when it is in its home position. There is also now a diffuser for the T and miniT series lights.

The complete range now has on-board DMX controllers, which can give 100% to 1% dimming without need for a separate controller. Brightline has also added analogue dimming control, for up to six channels, for its portable kit (which can have up to five heads). Recent sales include: Yorkshire TV and Channel 4 in the UK, and Lucent, Amsterdam.


Cosmolight's latest studio cool light, Brivido, is available with two, four or six lamps of 36W or 55W, and a choice of on/off, analogue or DMX dimming.

Its Mini Portable Torch, on-camera light, is available in a 30W version powered from the camera battery, or a 100W unit which works with a battery belt (which comes with integrated charger) or a battery pack with separate charger. Both include barn doors, diffusion glass, and dichroic filters.

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Lowel-Light's Flou-Tec studio fluorescent range has been updated with the addition of integrated DMX circuitry to its five dimmable fixtures with two to eight lamps. To make the most of this, Lowell has also introduced a hand-held wireless DMX controller, which allows dimming of up to ten scenes using 64 fixtures without the need of a console. There is also a new digital control panel on the back of each light that allows manual dimming, storage of four dimmer settings, and lamp-life monitoring.

Also new are LowelScandles: flexible, fluorescent fixtures for film, video or stills photography, which can be quickly changed from soft to hard light, or daylight to tungsten. The 200W units use either eight 24W lamps or eight compact 18W lamps (set in a cluster and switched in pairs, for variable output). It is claimed to be the first fluorescent fixture designed to be used with a Chimera-style softbox or lantern (as it comes with a permanently fitted universal speed ring). The lights are based on Gary Regester's original Scandles light, but are smaller, have a larger grip handle, are more easily adjustable and cost less.


Kino Flo has introduced new, more economical two-bank and four-bank fluorescent units which can be mixed with any other light sources. Its Diva Lite 400 and 200 units now have new full-spectrum, colour-correct bulbs. For high quality commercial and film work, there is also a new six-foot four-bank light.


Argentina-based Dexel Lighting made its first visit to IBC to show a new digital fluorescent range of two-, four- and six-lamp units which have four memories, DMX control, and will keep moving even if the control console fails. They also have manual controls.

It has also introduced a new, lower-cost range of fresnel lamps of 650W, 1, 2 and 5kW, and a new two- or four-lamp fluorescent unit with DMX and manual control for location use. It also has a range of digital consoles and DMX dimmers.


Bacar Octalite - eight lamp unitBalcar has moved to new 55W bulbs, replacing its previous 36W versions. The new design is claimed to give 20% higher light output with improved efficiency, construction and cooling. Its two-, four- and six-lamp softlight range has been added to with an Octalite, eight-lamp unit.

Its new 120cm Strip Lights for low ceilinged studios (under 3m) and Chromakey work are available as Quadstrip (four-lamp) or Duostrip (two-lamp) versions, with or (more fashionably) without grids. They are available in non-dimming, manual dimming and DMX options, but an increasing number of its systems are selling with DMX dimming, despite the added expense, because it is more economic in the long term.

Balcar ZoomliteIts ZOOMLITE 45 ENG light, can now be used with 110 and 220 volt power supplies, switching between them automatically. The focusable, fluorescent compact fixture comes with a detachable reflector, and is fully dimmable from 5% to 100% with no change in colour temperature.

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ABC Products showed its new ABC Spirit Light configured as a wall of fluorescent light at IBC 2001. Clever design of the lamp cases means they can be quickly linked together to form a large area of light. "Each lamp connects to the other, so you only need one cable to power the whole wall of light. The dimmer also controls the whole wall or each lamp separately," says ABC sales manager, Frank Bjornsen. The Spirit Light is dimmable down to 10% without flicker. "We work together with Osram to make sure the lamp is stable and the colour temperature is stable," he adds.

The lamp comes in several configurations. The Spirit 4 has four fluorescent tubes, one above the other. The Spirit 22 has 2+2 lamps and the Spirit 44, a 4+4 lamp arrangement. As well as linked together, the 55W lamps can also be used independently attached to a stand or scaffolding rig.

Tubes are available in tungsten (3,200K) and daylight (5,600K) with a range of accessories including barn doors, grids and universal mounts.

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K5600 is launching a new HMI next March which it believes is unique in being able to cover from tight to wide angle in one lamp. It uses different lenses allowing it to work as a spot (covering 5 to 40 degrees) and a wide fresnel (40 to 80 degrees). It can also be operated with no lens, making it a very wide (115 degree) broadlamp. It is the same idea as a PAR, but more controllable. It also gives a more even (if less intense) light. "It is a very new approach. It is about half the depth of any existing focusable fixture," says Marc Galerne, K5600's president. He also claims it weighs about 2kg less than any comparable unit.

It has also introduced a new 800W Softube, to add to its 200W and 400W units.


Kobold Lighting has introduced four new weather-resistant lights "which you can use outdoors without any additional protection from the rain," says its product manager, Toni Schneider. The IP54-rated lights are available in open-faced and PAR versions in 200 and 400 Watts.


Mole-Richardson marked its first appearance at IBC with the introduction of its new DigiMole line. The 200W and 400W open face HMIs come in kit form and are "affordable daylight sources," says Don Phillips, its vice president for sales. There is also a 200W HMI softlight version.

Its MoleBeam is now available in tungsten and HMI, delivering parallel beams which mimic shafts of sunlight shooting through windows. The company has been out of the European market since the early 1960s, but now has a dealer (Lights, Cameras, Action) in London.


Sachtler's new daylight Reporter 400D open face luminaire is compact, lightweight, and completely silent. The 400W MSR/HMI has a wide focus range, for broad as well as selective scene lighting. It uses a modular design frame holder for accessories such as optical front ends. No tools are needed to change the bulb.

Its new onboard camera light, the Reporter 75H, weighs 350 grams and can use 12-volt halogen lamps between 30 and 75 Watts. It includes a connection socket with cable and built-in electronics that can remain attached to the camera, so the light is ready to use as soon as it is clicked in to place. Its focusing knob also serves as a lamp socket, allowing bulbs to be changed with a single turn of the knob. A rotatable four-leaf barn door and a dimmer are optional.


Dedolight's new 400 series includes a 650W tungsten lamp, and a daylight 400W, which have built-in framing shutters and can take all the main projection attachments Dedolight is known for. All the add-ons for its smaller lights are now also available for its larger models too. And all the lights now have glass Gobos. Coming soon is a continuous dimmer for the 24V Dedolights.

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Chimera has introduced soft boxes for the small Dedolights to soften their hard light. It also has new, flatter Pancake Lanterns for use with a wide range of lights. These come in three sizes, which can take up to 2000 Watts. They have fabric barn doors and deliver very soft, omni-directional light. A removable, zipper-panel skirt allows considerable fine-tuning in how the light falls off.

Chimera Strip Banks have been around for a long time for still photography, where they are widely used as hair lights. New heat-resistant fabric means they are also now available for hot lights as the Video Strip Bank. It gives users a long, narrow source of even, soft light, which is especially useful for cramped spaces.

Its new Shallow Lightbanks are about 30% shallower than its previous versions, which also makes them more useful in smaller spaces.


Lastolite has added to its range of Dianira Softboxes. The 5401 (small) and 5403 (medium) have been joined by the large 5405 (90cm x120cm x 75cm) and extra-large 5407 (140cm x 180cm x 100cm). They all come with a removable polyester front diffuser, but the large and extra-large also have an inner diffuser for use with bigger hot lamps.

Similarly, there is now a large 5415 and extra-large 5417 softbox to add to Lastolite's Heracles range. These come with a fibre glass outer diffuser to withstand extreme heat.


Due by the end of 2001 is Photoflex's QuartzDome softbox. Suitable for lamps up to 6kW, "it has ultra-high heat resistant fabric," says Alex Fuentes, Photoflex's export and sales manager. It comes in three sizes: medium, large and extra-large.

Because soft light gets everywhere, Photoflex also has three sizes of softbox grids to reduce light spill. Angled at 40 degrees, the grid squares ensure accurate control of light. Their nylon webbed fabric with Velcro sides ensure easy attachment to its softboxes.

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New from Pana-Tek is its U3 tri-light, which can contain three 35W or 20W lamps in one lamp head, all independently switchable. It is flexible, so could be configured with a spot lamp on top and two floods, mixing 35W or 20W lamps as you wish. It comes with daylight conversion filter and diffuser.

It has also introduced a Cool-Lux on-camera light, the SL300, a 100W softlight. "It gives you a very nice, smooth, soft light. It can be used as a soft light, or a broad light. It is very lightweight and very fast cooling. It is made out of aircraft-grade aluminium, and can be stand- or camera-mounted. It also gives quite a good throw," says Lee Rickard, projects manager with its importer, LCC Photon Technik.

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OpTex has introduced a Micro Fibre Optic Ring Light for Toshiba's miniature "lipstick-type" cameras. It means that users can more easily use these type of cameras in confined unlit spaces. The fibre optic micro light array contains 25 tiny light spots and is encapsulated in a stainless steel sheath which fits around the camera head and lens and currently comes in two sizes with outside diameters of 12mm and 23mm to fit the Toshiba IK-SM50H and the larger IK-M50H cameras. The light source box has a 12v 100W bulb. It is available in 230v/50hz and 115v/60Hz versions. Both have an adjustable brightness controller to give accurate exposure and longer bulb life.

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ADB's Phoenix range of control desks has been augmented by the new Phoenix 10, which can control up to 4,000 DMX channels and has extended moving instrument control combined with conventional lights. It is networkable over Ethernet so that multiple desks can work on the same show.

They all run the same ISIS software, which controls all panel changes. "All the functions on the biggest desk are on the smallest desk, but not necessarily on a separate button," says Raph Janssens, ADB's sales manager.

It also has modular systems to create purpose-built desks for different applications, but running on the same external processor. Its new Eurodim 3 high density, high quality broadcast dimmer cabinet can hold up to 108x5kw dimmers.

Spain's Antenna 3 has bought a lot of its follow spots and two desks for its main studio, and SDR, Germany has bought the Eurodim system. It has also installed cool lights and controllers and some conventional lights in a studio for the new Belgian music channel JIM TV.


Lupo introduced a new DMX console at IBC and now offers its complete range of two-, four- and six-lamp lights with DMX control. The low-cost console (about 300 Euros) is aimed at small studios and can control up to 16 lights using two faders (scrolling between pairs of lights).

ETC's new ethernet network, ETCnet 2, gives complete control of the network using WYSIWYG, CAD and programme control. Users can draw the studio on the computer and pre-visualise their lighting set-ups in advance. It can also work with the lighting consoles to record all lighting changes. It uses a standard, low-cost Cat 5 ethernet installation rather than DMX to link consoles and can control up to 32,000 individual DMX addresses. Its first European installation was at the Royal Opera House in London, but existing broadcast users with its previous ETCnet 1 can upgrade.

On the dimming side, ETC can now fit relay modules instead of dimmer modules in the same dimmer racks, adding controls for turning on motors or moving lights without the need for a separate rack. It has also won a 2001 Emmy award for its WYSIWYG lighting program.

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Lighting gel manufacturer, Cotech, has introduced new reflection material which has silver on one side and gold on the other, mainly for location work.

It is continually adding effects colours in the 700 number series to its range, with 14 so far. It has about 98% of the 0 - 700 numbers already available.

Cotech's sales manager, Kevan Wilson, says it does a lot of specials for lighting directors who have specific requirements. "As a small company, it is easier for us to do than the bigger filter companies can," he says.

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© 2000 - 2010

Lighting Update - The evolutionary progress of broadcast lighting is slow but steady. We look at what's new in studio and location lighting for 2001.

Christina Fox and David Fox