Latest LED Video Lights for DSLR Video

Ok, another product that's not out on YouTube or Vimeo. Nobody's got reviews on these items, why not? They just make sooo much sense. Lighting has always been an issue whenever we traveled. Halogen bulbs can break by the time your plane lands, and you're pretty much stuck. Hot bulbs are always uncomfortable to work with. Breaking down hot bulbs is a pain in the a$$. So of course the only real option is LED lighting. You've seen these panels before i'm sure, but here's the only video I know that shows what they look like.

You gotta love how fast products are duplicated and how fast pricing comes down with technology. These video light panels normally run from $800 dollars on up from other manufacturers. The LitePanels 1x1 is a great light, but that runs well over $1,800 dollars +. Totally not in my budget. Now this company on Amazon sells these video lights starting as low as $200.00 dollars. That I can afford. The closest thing on the market to these types of lights are those made by FloLight, which run a little more than twice the price.

FloLight 1000 LED Panel (Twice the Price)

After researching different models of this type of LED light panel, I settled for the lights from the Amazon links below since the seller is using Amazon fullfillment services for two of the items. This means these items are sitting in the Amazon warehouse for super fast shipping. The latest model with the Dimmer is coming directly from the retailer, possibly because it's a new product that just hit the Internet recently. Ok let's show some lights::

500 LED Video Light (no Dimmer) 500 LED Video Light (with Dimmer) - I like this one. 1000 LED Video Light Panel (no dimmer option)

I was able to locate this listing. This might be a mistake, but it looks to be the exact same 500 LED light (no dimmer), but this listing comes with a LightStand. Saving you at least an extra $20 bucks.

Wait, they just snuck in another combo deal - more savings. This one shaves a few bucks for buying two + they added light stands.

This is another LED Video light panel (below) that uses a different type of LED. The design on this LED I believe allows for a further 'throw' if your subject is further away.

56x 1watt LED





41 thoughts on “Latest LED Video Lights for DSLR Video

  1. Ben

    Hi,

    I bought these lights from a canadian company called Lumahawk : http://www.lumahawk.com. There are the same but I have a digital dimmer in the back which is cool. I pay 1250$ canadian for the 3x 500 leds kit. I buy another with Sony batteries for 700$.

    I want to buy the 1000 leds because I find the 500 leds panels brightness a little weak. Is it worth it?

    I find that the leds have a magenta cast but it's ok if you have all the same brand. My friend bought the F&V, no magenta cast but more shadows on the wall because it's only 400 leds. The milk filter is cool but you loose a lot of light.

  2. Sam

    We're using old bescor tungsten lights (50watt bulbs) similar to these http://www.adorama.com/BOVS50.html. This LED idea is making me very excited and I think an upgrade is long overdue. Is there an equivalent LED option that will keep us from lugging around a waist pack with 4 battery bricks (HEAVY, especially for my prengant wife!!)? Thanks for any tips!

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  6. Battery powered success! I got a full 4.5 hours run time with the 500 LED light at full power with an original White Lighting Vagabond I, 150watt power inverter and this 35 amp battery: http://www.batterysharks.com/Universal-Power-UB12350-D5722-p/ub12350_b12-35.htm?gclid=CKzzjtj80KMCFQ8E5QodI1PmtQ

    The unit was still going strong at 4.5 hours, but it had already surpassed my needs that I decided to stop the test since it is better not to take deep cycle batteries all the way to their max depletion. I may have had several hours left, who knows!! I will post some pictures of the contraption (mounted in a rolling crate) later. This is heavier that the Vagabond II, so you really need to use a rolling cart of some sort to hold everything, but the performance is there when you need to count on it. I think that this can now handle the 1000 LED light easily for at least two hours.

  7. Michael Sanchez

    Forgot to mention to admin I noticed in the main video here the barndoor protective film was on still for the video, don't know if you noticed they had a film too. I barely noticed that on mine when I was putting them away tonight. Fired one up after I took the film off the sides and it was a tad brighter :)

  8. Michael Sanchez

    Today I received my order for three of the 500 LED panels and 3 stands. First impressions of these lights was very good - they have exceeded my expectations thus far. I've used the Cool Lights CL-600 Food and Spot on different occasions and these 500 LEDs look just as bright and comparable. The main feature on the Cool Lights I liked was they came with a carrying case with the color filters and the diffusion filter, which these 500 LED lights do not unfortunately. The other plus with the Cool Lights for me is their barn doors, they're more what we're used to as far as design goes compared to the 500 LED version. But when I compare one CL-600 would've cost me just under $500 for 1 and I was able to get 3 of these 500 LEDs w/ stands for $629, well it was a no brainer for me.

    Now that I've seen what they can do, I'm pleased with my purchase and will be using these shortly for some interviews.

  9. I just got one of these last week and haven't had the chance to use it on a job yet, so don't have any real world examples to show. But I did do a couple of quick test setups with it using my Canon HV30. You can see the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3LDvVLJvCfs . I know it's not the best testing job but should give you guys some idea of what this light is able to do.

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  11. I am doing ten head and shoulders interviews using the standard 500 led light. The setting is outdoors and I keep my subjects in shadow, then light them up with the 500 led. I set a Canon 5DmkII on shadow white balance. The led light blends perfectly with the natural shadow light and it becomes the key light for the face. I can't post anything right now because my client hasn't released the videos for the web yet (I will as soon as I am able). But I can tell you that the shots look fantastic! The light is very soft with the light about four feet away from the subject.

  12. Joel

    We got one of these at work after finding them on this site. We wanted two, but there was only one in stock. Anyone know where to find another?

  13. Emm

    Post author

    Yeah my mistake for shooting with the Sony NEX. I wanted to test the video on the Sony, but it didn't do justice for the light test since the camera was consistently 'Auto Exposing'. So as things got brighter, the video automatically went darker. The LED lighting is much more powerful than the calumets, and yeah much cheaper too.

  14. Randy

    As with the other post, I'd like to see how these 500 LED lights look in an interview situation. The calumet light you show has three fluorescent bulbs and a diffuser, and it looks to be more powerful. What is the Calumet rated at? 500 watts like the 500 LED? Are you actually getting 500 watts from this led light? And 1000 watts from the 1000 led?

  15. SECOND THOUGHTS ABOUT VAGABOND II PERFORMANCE!!!

    On the previous day I had a good performance run with the Vagabond II power pack of nearly one hour, I used it again on the following day on the same type of project, after at least a 16hr. charge time from the wall AC. This time I got only about 25 minutes of run time before the unit started to shut down. White lightning does say that this unit is designed for flash units only and they don't guarantee performance with any other items even though it WILL run most anything within it's power rating. I'm beginning to think that this battery is just not well suited for continuos current draw, rapid depletion and re-charge. I am looking into other inverter systems that use a full size car battery with major amp hours that would be capable of deep recharge cycles with full recovery. I may have to assemble this myself. Right now I would hold off buying the Vagabond II for use with continuos lights like the 500 led light. It will likely work great for a few cycles then loose performance run time quickly. If I find something more reliable in a professional setting, I will post it. I NEED TO FIND A SOLUTION!

  16. Here's a photo of the Vagabond II in action: You can count on about 45 minutes of run time with this light at full power. A full hour can be had with the unit beeping (fairly softly) for the last fifteen minutes and then finally it begins to shut the light off in momentary shutdowns, until finally all power is cut. In the right circumstances, it delivers just fine. Plus it uses a pure sine wave inverter, so you can power computers and other sensitive electronics into it safely. http://i787.photobucket.com/albums/yy155/gravitypush/VagabondIIinaction.jpg

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  18. Emm

    Post author

    That is cool. I was wondering how those would be best powered on location. If you got a video of photo of that setup, would love to share it with others.

  19. Thanks for the tip! The light is fantastic! Blends perfectly with outdoor light. What an amazing value compared to the $1,500. Lightpanels.

    For portable power I use a Vagabond II portable battery power pack from White Lightning. It sells for $299 and I can get full power light for about one hour of run time before depleting the charge. (Although, there's a low volume, low battery warning beep that goes off during the last fifteen minutes of time.) ( I'm thinking of disabling the beeper if possible.) http://www.white-lightning.com/battery.html

    I won the 500 led light at auction from ephotodiscounters.com on ebay for $157.50 plus $23 shipping ($180.50). Use Auction sniper.com and put in $160. They list these lights all the time. Or you can buy it now for $199.00 with free shipping. But if you have a little time you can likely save near $20.

    Thanks again!!

  20. Ron

    As Hans wrote, CRI would be good to know, but it's unlikely to be published even if they actually knew it. CRI is measured as a scale relevant to the source of light; Tungsten lights are high because it's actually heated metal and is measured against the properties for light emission for Tungsten. LEDs that are 5500K with a 30-degree beam angle and massed together in a fixture to produce a set quantity of light. Because they are daylight temperature, they would need to be evaluated against daylight, not Tungsten or other sources. Unfortunately, such LEDs in a mass fixture be are claimed to have a relatively low CRI.

    I have a (much) more expensive, higher-rated CRI LED light. If I get a crazy urge, I'll have to buy one of these (although there's a 100 watt difference in output) and take photos to see if a difference in color becomes apparent in the camera. One thing I believe is likely, these 30-degree beam lights are going to act more like spots than floods and may need diffusing for best use (or move them back and try to contain the beam).

  21. Well, let me ask you couple more things. 5500k is the temperature you want to go at sunlight and even inside the studio (i mean, these days is kinda easy to color balance on edit or maybe use some filters)? This one don't come with lightstands isn't it? but any lightstand can handle it or must be a 'special' one ?
    thans Emm

  22. There's anyway to put umbrella in it ? Or it's just too well distributed the light that you don't need any type of diffuser or reflector umbrella ?

  23. The draw of power on the lights seems very small. I'm wondering if you could power a 500 led with your Black and Decker 100watt portable power? Probably not long, might be worth a try. Thanks.

  24. Hans

    Thanks for your info. These LEDs look great. I'm thinking of buying. But I've done some research with regard to LED lighting for film. There's also a thing called Color Rendering Index (CRI). The CRI of a light source tells us how well the light shows the whole color spectrum. Tungsten light has CRI 100 (the highest). LED's can reach up to 95 (expensive) but should at least reach 90 to be of any use for film.
    Do you know the CRI of these LED's?

  25. Hey guys, maybe I missed it somehow, but I don't think I see the link the the LED panel that Emm is talking about? somebody help?

    Thanks!

  26. sloan

    Hey,

    This looks awesome... only thing I worry about is the color. Are their any problems? How does skin tone render under these lights?

    Thanks

  27. Gerry

    I have also been looking at these lights. I like your review, but it was missing one very major thing. At least one major thing that I wanted to see. I wish you had a small section with a lighting setup using these lights in application. Instead of just turning them on, it would have been fun to see something shot with one of your cameras using those lights to light the setup and then a second camera documenting your set up. Yes I realize you are but one man. You're doing a great job. Thanks.

  28. Herb

    Thanks so much for showing these off. I've been looking at them for quite some time and can't believe the seller's don't have any video examples of them in use.

    Were you able to check the color temperature?

    I've also come across this light: http://gadget.brando.com/the-professional-studio-600-led-light-with-color-filters_p01393c067d003.html

    Made by this company that also has:

    1200 LED:

    http://nglbg.en.alibaba.com/product/...ilpageLocation

    900 LED:
    http://nglbg.en.alibaba.com/product/...ilpageLocation

    Herb

  29. admin

    Post author

    Yes Halogen's are cheaper, but you're dealing with all the light from a very small source. Lighting will be harsh, so you'll need to bring some type of diffusion. The color is also very very Yellow, so you'll need to bring some blue Gels. It also generates lots of heat so forget using them in a small room or close to a subject. There are pros to being cheap, but there are way too many cons. If these LED panels were more expensive, most people would probably settle for halogen. I think LED's are priced nicely now, which is why LED on camera Video lights are becoming more popular than Halogen on camera Video lights.

  30. lex

    just when i was about to order 2 of those 126 led. can you test out the dimmer light in a dark room without the other lights on? does it come with a battery pack so you dont have to plug it in on the field?

  31. Jeff Morris

    Awesome find!! That's a much more manageable price. It's exciting to see more and more film equipment become more and more affordable as time passes. I think next I'll throw on some DIY barn doors for the 126 LED light I'm getting, I think it would be very convenient, in case I'm not just blasting light at something, and I just want a sliver or a shaft of light on something/someone. Black wrap is a great investment as well.
    Thanks for sharing the info, and the great lighting video!

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