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I am currently writing my dissertation, assessing the quality of light produced by established diffusion and bounce materials in comparison to LED fixtures compatible with new diffusion solutions, such as those with variable electronically diffused panels.

In order to support my secondary research, I have created a series of questions to gain insight from industry professionals and specialists on the future of lighting and diffusion. If you feel you can answer all or any of the following questions and are and industry professional or specialist, I would appreciate it greatly!

Q1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of colour tuneable LED lights?

Q2. What are the advantages and disadvantages of diffusion filters/materials?

Q3. What is your opinion on new LED electronically adjusted diffusion panels and what do you know about them?

Q4. Do you think electronically diffused LED panels can replace industry standard diffusion filters/materials and why?

Q5. How popular are electronically diffused LED panels and do you think manufacturers will produce more?

Q6. Where do you see electronically diffused LEDs in the industry currently?

Q7. What is the longevity of electronically diffused LED panels compared to diffusion filters?

Edited by Jordon Pollard
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3 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q1. What are the advantages and disadvantages of colour tuneable LED lights?

Advantages. Their greatest advantage is the output remains, whether you want warm or cool light (as opposed to losing output by gelling).  It keeps you from buying/renting/storing dedicated fixtures each for tungsten setups and daylight setups. The RGB lights can match to the surrounding atmosphere, say to the green spill in a jungle or the green cast of fluorescents. — Disadvantages. They are not spot-floodable like our traditional hotlights.

3 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q2. What are the advantages and disadvantages of diffusion filters/materials?

Advantages. Diffusions are great at scattering light (making soft light). Can be cut to specific sizes, say for practicals. Disadvantages. The frames require storage. 216, 250, 251, 410, Hampshire frames in 4x4, 2x3 and tubes take up space. If you've selected the wrong one, it needs to be replaced. They cut light, but that is physics and no way around it.

3 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q3. What is your opinion on new LED electronically adjusted diffusion panels and what do you know about them?

I assume you mean Rotolight and Zylight.

Advantages. I can see the adjustability used for a panel light's version of spot-flood. This would allow the panel LEDs to be fitted with directional reflector cones like an Astra or Digital Sputnik for the spotty throw, and the active diffusion pane inches ahead to intercept the light for scattering. As for Rotolight's Titan X2, I can't tell if they did this. This would be awesome as an attachment on an Astra!

Disadvantages. None really. I can see newer shooters thinking they can create soft light by simply cranking the diffusion knob, and that's not true in this case, as the panel and diffusor are the same size. So I see potential for confusion, or worse, marketing misinformation.

3 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q4. Do you think electronically diffused LED panels can replace industry standard diffusion filters/materials and why?

In all the gizmos that technology has popped out, few of them have 1-for-1 replaced the prior equipment. Most of them open new doors.

It's important to remember that diffusion is used commonly in 4x4, 6x6, 8x8, 12x12 frames. A 1x2 panel, whether a Skypannel or Rotolight, is not large enough for naked use if you need 4x4 sizes. Some people may place diffusion on a fixture, but that will spread it more, and only soften minimally. So no, I don't see it replacing anything.

I see a 4x4 or 6x6 size enticing. But that would still need power, and delicate grippy hands, which I don't think is feasible on set. Also, such large sizes would probably be so expensive that they'd never get rented. BUT. If one 6x6 active diffusion can replace 1/4, 1/2, and full grid, it may be advantageous.

But even in terms of one active frame replacing the 4x4 frames of 216, 250, 251, opal... Those frames will still get used on set at the same time. So again, it wouldn't replace the 4x4 frames either. Unless storage space was a concern, like with an owner-operator who only ever uses one frame and doesn't need to truck 6 with him up an elevator.

4 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q5. How popular are electronically diffused LED panels and do you think manufacturers will produce more?

Unknown. I live in commercial land away from L.A. Here, I've never encountered it.

4 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q6. Where do you see electronically diffused LEDs in the industry currently?

I'd love to see them as a softbox add-on for Astra panels and anything else that has directional spot LEDs to give them spot-flood! The power can plug in-between the main cable and the fixture with a new type of siphon-like cable.

4 hours ago, Jordon Pollard said:

Q7. What is the longevity of electronically diffused LED panels compared to diffusion filters?

That's a great question. Again, it might be best suited for owner-operators who will take care of their equipment. This is what makes the Litepanels Gemini attractive to owner-ops. They're less robust than a Skypannel but more affordable. Rental houses would see this stuff destroyed, folded instead of rolled, plugged in wrong, scratched, clamped, overstretched, baked in the sun, etc.

Hope this helps.

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13 hours ago, Stephen Sanchez said:

Advantages. Their greatest advantage is the output remains, whether you want warm or cool light (as opposed to losing output by gelling).  It keeps you from buying/renting/storing dedicated fixtures each for tungsten setups and daylight setups. The RGB lights can match to the surrounding atmosphere, say to the green spill in a jungle or the green cast of fluorescents. — Disadvantages. They are not spot-floodable like our traditional hotlights.

Advantages. Diffusions are great at scattering light (making soft light). Can be cut to specific sizes, say for practicals. Disadvantages. The frames require storage. 216, 250, 251, 410, Hampshire frames in 4x4, 2x3 and tubes take up space. If you've selected the wrong one, it needs to be replaced. They cut light, but that is physics and no way around it.

I assume you mean Rotolight and Zylight.

Advantages. I can see the adjustability used for a panel light's version of spot-flood. This would allow the panel LEDs to be fitted with directional reflector cones like an Astra or Digital Sputnik for the spotty throw, and the active diffusion pane inches ahead to intercept the light for scattering. As for Rotolight's Titan X2, I can't tell if they did this. This would be awesome as an attachment on an Astra!

Disadvantages. None really. I can see newer shooters thinking they can create soft light by simply cranking the diffusion knob, and that's not true in this case, as the panel and diffusor are the same size. So I see potential for confusion, or worse, marketing misinformation.

In all the gizmos that technology has popped out, few of them have 1-for-1 replaced the prior equipment. Most of them open new doors.

It's important to remember that diffusion is used commonly in 4x4, 6x6, 8x8, 12x12 frames. A 1x2 panel, whether a Skypannel or Rotolight, is not large enough for naked use if you need 4x4 sizes. Some people may place diffusion on a fixture, but that will spread it more, and only soften minimally. So no, I don't see it replacing anything.

I see a 4x4 or 6x6 size enticing. But that would still need power, and delicate grippy hands, which I don't think is feasible on set. Also, such large sizes would probably be so expensive that they'd never get rented. BUT. If one 6x6 active diffusion can replace 1/4, 1/2, and full grid, it may be advantageous.

But even in terms of one active frame replacing the 4x4 frames of 216, 250, 251, opal... Those frames will still get used on set at the same time. So again, it wouldn't replace the 4x4 frames either. Unless storage space was a concern, like with an owner-operator who only ever uses one frame and doesn't need to truck 6 with him up an elevator.

Unknown. I live in commercial land away from L.A. Here, I've never encountered it.

I'd love to see them as a softbox add-on for Astra panels and anything else that has directional spot LEDs to give them spot-flood! The power can plug in-between the main cable and the fixture with a new type of siphon-like cable.

That's a great question. Again, it might be best suited for owner-operators who will take care of their equipment. This is what makes the Litepanels Gemini attractive to owner-ops. They're less robust than a Skypannel but more affordable. Rental houses would see this stuff destroyed, folded instead of rolled, plugged in wrong, scratched, clamped, overstretched, baked in the sun, etc.

Hope this helps.

Thanks you so much for the detailed responses , this is great stuff!

I know that you haven't had any experience using them but have you heard of anyone you know that has had any experience with them, mainly the Titan X2 since they advertise it as professional cinematic lighting?

Thanks again, really appreciate it!

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No experience in Florida. We don't have specialized stuff like that (Hive Plasma lights, Grip clouds, Softsun, etc.)

If you want users, I'd search Instagram for tagged gaffers and contact them. It may benefit to contact Rotolight and ask for known users for research purposes.

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38 minutes ago, Stephen Sanchez said:

No experience in Florida. We don't have specialized stuff like that (Hive Plasma lights, Grip clouds, Softsun, etc.)

If you want users, I'd search Instagram for tagged gaffers and contact them. It may benefit to contact Rotolight and ask for known users for research purposes.

Thanks for the advice!

Planned on emailing Rotolight anyway so will ask them also, and I'll definately scroll on Instagram and see what i can find.

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