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Isaac McCord

Investing in new RGBWW lights?

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Hey new user here!

Fairly new to investing in lighting gear and wanted to get a few opinions on the best way to invest into some new RGB LED fixtures. I’m based in Atlanta and mostly DP and gaff low budget music videos, commercials, corporate videos and have dayplayed on a couple shows as a union electric. 

My budget is $4000 and leaning towards purchasing a single used Arri Skypanel S60-c for $4k. Is that worth spending my entire budget on? What other options would you recommend if not? Should I wait to gain more capital and invest in something bigger and better? Should I wait for the seemingly ever evolving LED technology to plateau?

Really wanting my investment to be a desirable name brand light, preferably RGBWW, that productions would actually be interested in renting for an additional kit rental fee as well as useful for my own projects.

Thanks in advance!

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Well with all the new releases at NAB I’m starting my search for the best rgb lights up again! Lots of cool stuff, especially the LiteMat Spectrum and DP Lumi Pro!

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I don't know man, I know the whole RGBWW thing is new and exciting and maybe for music videos the color range is useful, but for commercials and corporate stuff I would just ask yourself: really how often do you need something outside of 3200 - 6000 and how often does that source need to be S60 output levels?

Would you be much better off spending way less on a Titan tube or two so you *have* a couple of RGBWW options for when you need them, but spend your main budget on Litemats or Aladdins or other non-RGB options.

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The technical reality is that Skypanels do not have the best colour performance on the market and they are very expensive. I fully understand the brand recognition issue and there may be business reasons to buy them, but as lights I would be cautious.

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I was about to buy an S60 when LitePanels announced their Gemini. I went with that instead, saving a bunch of money, and have made my money back three fold. Client desires though is a super important concern though. If nobody wants to rent it, it doesn't matter how much money is saved. Most of the DPs that I have mentioned it to we're happy to work with it and save money that can be put into something else. I have also recently purchased a LiteMat+4 as well and that is an excellent light if you're not married to RGB. You could definitely pick up one of those and a pair of 2' RGB Quasars for under the $4000 budget.

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On 4/16/2019 at 9:25 AM, Adam Belanger said:

I was about to buy an S60 when LitePanels announced their Gemini. I went with that instead, saving a bunch of money

Does the Gemini have quite the output of the S60 though?

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The Gemini has a beam angle of 93° compared to the Skypanel's beam angle of 105°, a difference of about 11%. At 5600°K from 10 ft, the Gemini puts out 97 foot-candles compared to the Skypanel's 111 foot-candles, a difference of about 13%. At 3200°K from 10 ft, the Gemini puts out 82 foot-candles compared to the Skypanel's 113 foot-candles, a difference of about 27%. This information is pulled from the Gemini data sheet on Litepanel's website, and from ARRI's Photometric app.

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