April 22, 2019

Relio² Wants to Be the Most Flexible LED Cube Light

Designed and Made in Italy, the Relio² wants to let you Adruino, 3D print, and LUT your way to precisely the light you need.

Way back in 2014 the original Relio light launched and gained popularity as a small unit that packed a lot of punch. The Italian company is now back with the Relio². A tremendous focus not just on light quality but light flexibility makes this an exciting addition to the toolkit.

The Relio² boasts a stunning 98 TLCI, which is a measurement of how accurately the light can be used to reproduce colors. TLCI is a more modern version of CRI, which you'll occasionally see boasted about but doesn't really give a good indication of quality for an LED source. What's particularly fascinating is that Relio² will allow for installing a LUT which they claim will give the unit the equivalent of 100 TLCI. While this might seem like a cheat, if it's accurate it's accurate, we use LUTs all the time to get a monitor to "accurate" when it's not right out of the box. Among the things we want to test are if the LUT cuts down on output at all (we imagine it might, though maybe only the 2% that the unit needs to get to 100). Also, something we'd love to find out is if you could install a LUT to perfectly match another source, such as an HMI or a fluorescent.

Credit: Relio

Why would that be useful? Well, it's rare in reality that you get to work in situations where you control all the light. Maybe you are shooting a supermarket and can't afford to re-bulb all the lights.  A floor unit that is a different color will mean your actors might not match the background, requiring extensive work in post-production. By matching your "floor unit" Relio² precisely to your "location" overhead units, your life in the color grad will be easier.

The unit comes in three common "film friendly" color balances, (3500°K, 4000°K, and 5700°K) but is also available in precise wavelengths that will be useful and interesting to scientific users and for certain special filming applications. For instance, we might consider using it for future Schott noise tests.

On top of the high accuracy and LUT capability, the Relio² focuses heavily on flexibility, including the ability to tie units together magnetically, and a wide array of free downloadable pre-built 3D printable accessory. It's no secret we love 3D printing here at No Film School; we dug it when Blindspot offered accessory designs, and we dig this too. Yes, you can easily design your own, but it takes a lot of trial and error to make sure it fits, and manufacturers designing accessories and releasing them for free is just a cool way to engage with their users. To take their commitment to flexibility even further, the Relio² is fully compatible with Arduino, Raspberry Pi and works with an open Bluetooth protocol, which should allow hacking minded end users to configure units in ways far beyond the flexibility found in other lights.

Credit: Relio

Relio have generously offered a discount to NFS readers: add the phrase NFSROCKS to the order for a flat 5% discount on every amount ordered.  Check out Relio.it for more info.

Tech Specs:

  • 98 TLCI, 100 with LUT
  • MicroUSB connector
  • 1A at 5V DC draw
  •  IP53 water resistance with magnetic microUSB plug-end inserted, otherwise IP42
  • Creative Commons CC-BY-4.0 license for 3D printed accessories
  • Wavelengths available 3500K, 4000K, 5700K, 660nm, 590nm, 520nm, 470nm, 450nm, 850nm, 1050nm, full- spectrum IR850~1050nm, 360nm, 395nm
  • ARM Cortex M0 32bit 40MHz, with integrated Bluetooth® LE 4.2 antenna CPU
  • 50,000 hour predicted lamp life
  • User swappable lens, 10º, 25º, 60º, 90º, 10×70º
  • AL 6082 “Anticorodal“ aluminum alloy, AISI 316L low-carbon stainless steel alloy body

The Relio² is available now    

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