Litepanels 1x1 LEDs are everywhere in the film world, especially among documentary filmmakers and TV news crews.
The ASTRA is the next evolution of their 1x1 panels, and they've now announced a new model, the ASTRA 1x1 Soft Bi-Color LED, which should have similar output as a soft 2K Tungsten light. This panel takes the same power from the original ASTRA (power draw is 110 watts), but adds a soft diffusion in front:
The diffusion is designed to all but eliminate the multi-source shadow effect and lend a soft wrap-around aesthetic to your subject while covering a larger, less concentrated area of illumination. Like the rest of the ASTRA series, the Soft Bi-Color is designed for professional production, with high output and high color fidelity in its full 3200K to 5600K temperature range. Adjustments of color and brightness are stepless all the way through, and the output is flicker-free at all settings. A quiet fan at the rear cools the electronics; it can be turned off during critical scenes, although the light output will be less while the fan is inactive.
Courtesy of News Shooter, here's a look at the ASTRA 1x1 Soft in a production environment:
And the specs:
- Variable Tungsten 3200K to Daylight 5600K Balance
- Acts Like a Soft 2K Tungsten Light
89 fc / 955 lux @ 5' / 1.5 m
27 fc / 295 lux @ 10' / 3 m
15 fc / 161 lux @ 15' / 4.6 m
72 fc / 780 lux @ 5' / 1.5 m
22 fc / 240 lux @ 10' / 3 m
12 fc / 130 lux @ 15' / 4.6 m
- Dual Cooling Modes
- Beam angle: 46°
- Optional Communications Module Allows Everything to Be Controlled via DMX or Bluetooth
- 100-240 VAC with Included AC Adapter (3-pin XLR jack)
- 13-24 VDC with Optional Battery
- Mount is 5/8" / 16 mm with Two alternate 1/4"-20 mounting points
- Optional Gold Mount and V-Mount Plates
- TIR Optics, High CRI (93+)
- Power Draw: 110 Watts
- Weight: 7.6 lb / 3.4 kg
- Available Now
- Price: $1,620
An optional barn door accessory can also be added to further control light spill, though even if light does spill, it's not nearly going to be as harsh as with traditional LED fixtures without diffusion. A lot of you may be asking why you'd want a permanently soft fixture like this, and the answer really lies in what you're shooting. By incorporating the diffusion directly into the panel, Litepanels is hoping to keep the light as thin as possible. Could you get a similar quality of light from their standard ASTRA with the right diffusion? Probably, but you'll have to decide what works best for your workflow on set, and whether space is an issue.
The panel is available right now and costs $1,620 for a standard package, which is essentially right in line with their other models. You can also add an adapter frame for other gels or diffusion, and honeycomb grid. You can check out all of these and more over on the Litepanels site.
If you're wondering how durable these fixtures are, Litepanels released a drop test last month:
And here's a look at how their control modules and smartphone app can work with these panels: