SmallRig makes its grand entrance into the LED lighting space with the new 120D and 120B chip on-board video Lights. The new models greatly outshine the previous credit card-shaped M series lights, and thanks to their tightly-packed, ultra-bright LED array, the new 120 series packs a punch in either daylight or bi-color. 

If a gaffer wants to control the lights at a distance, SmallRig has an app for that. Let’s take a deeper look.

SmallRig RS 120D w/ SoftboxCredit: SmallRig

Spec’d Out

SmallRig has been feeling out the LED lighting space for a while now with compact and portable LED camera lights, and the 120 COB lights are a leap into a much larger, and more flexible, product category. 

Looking at the 120 series, your first reaction may be that it’s very similar in design to the Amaran 100D, with a removable reflector and square power and cooling unit. And you would be right.

But that’s where the comparison largely comes to a halt. The 120 Series has a 120-watt chip on-board LED fixture which is ideal for energy efficiency, longer battery life on set, reduced light loss, and less glare. While the 120D is a fully daylight-balanced 5600K offering, the 120B enjoys a respectable CCT range of 2700-6500K. 

Both lights have strong output, with 5370 lux at 3.3' for the 120D and 4450 lux for the 120B. Tack on the hyper reflector, and the light output gets a massive boost to 62,600 lux and 52,800 lux respectively, making these lights a solid workhorse for any small film crew working out in the field or on a studio set. 

However, the reflector does create a hotspot in the center much like the Amaran lights. Changing to a different reflector could mitigate this, but you will lose some light. 

SmallRig RS 120D HotspotCredit: CVP

The CRI rating is 95+ while the TLCI is a tad higher at 96+, making the consistency and color rendering accuracy ideal for capturing natural skin tones and color reproduction.

That kind of power is bound to get a bit toasty for the light circuitry, but thanks to a combination of heat sync and a super quiet internal fan, the LED's temperature can be kept cool regardless of how hot it is on set, especially during long shoots. Unless you’re in Death Valley during the summer—then, well, best of luck. 

SmallRig RS 120 Power SystemsCredit: SmallRig

As for power, in addition to connecting to AC via a three-pronged XLR connector, there is an adapter that gives the 120 series a bit of mobility through the use of 12-30 volt VDC power supplies, or to a 14.4-26 volt V-mount battery that supports a similar connection. 

For accessories, SmallRig has also included a standard Bowens mount for optional parabolic or lantern style softboxes or grids, as well as umbrella mounts. 

There’s an App for That

The 120 series can be controlled by the SmallRig GoGo app, which is a rather basic lighting control that can connect via smartphone. But since the user has to log into it with an email address, it seems to be a bit clunky and a veiled attempt to grab some data while doing so. 

Nevertheless, the app does do the job and enables users to power on/off, adjust the brightness, and color temperature. The real strength of the app, though, is that a user can deploy and control multiple 120s and control them with the light’s mesh networking capability. 

SmallRig RS 120D App FunctionsCredit: SmallRig

Set up all the lights and then trigger them all with a touch of a button, dialing in your desired look. That’s powerful.

Lastly, the 120D/B also have pre-programmed lighting effects, including paparazzi, fireworks, lightning, faulty bulb, TV, breath, flash, party, and flame. You know, the usual. 

Pricing for the SmallRig 120 series is $219 for the 120D, and $259 for the bi-color 120B, making them a very affordable option for the filmmaker looking to outfit their first three-point light kit, which will also grow with them as they improve at their craft.

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Source: CVP