The moment these new F&V R-300 LED Ring Lights were available to order, I quickly grabbed three of these units to build out a portable travel light kit. Since blogging about my decision to purchase these lights, there has been several questions about how efficient are these lights compared to the larger 600 LED Light Panel. So here's a quick example of the light output and spread from the R-300 in comparison to the popular 600 LED panel. (all tests are with bare LED lights - no diffusers)
Hopefully this video example provides a small idea about how practical these little lights are (for me at least) when used as an off-camera lighting kit. The results from the R-300 LED ring light when compared to the larger (and more expensive) 600 LED Light Panel are similar light output and broad diffusion. Other benefits of the F&V R-300 include smaller size (easier to pack and travel), lighter weight, and the option to battery power with inexpensive common Sony Batteries (as seen here).
These lights have only started to ship about a week ago. I just wanted to note that according to F&V, inventory on these lights are down to a small amount right now and following orders will consume inventory from the shipment next week. The R-300 LED Ring light can be found at the product page (Click Here)
Meking has some new inexpensive LED video light panels, and from the listing it states it can be switched to power through 110V or 220V. It's dimmable with barn doors, and if you've got the juice, you can go portable with the available port for 24V DC. Starting at around $230 dollars, these seem to be fairly new stuff on the cheaper side, and does not resemble the typical 600, 900, or 1200 LED panels i'm using. Typically on Amazon the 600 LED light panel i'm using can run about $350 dollars (see it here on Amazon). As pointed out by Adam, if you're looking for the same 600s i'm using, there's a few good deals on eBay where you can get (2) 600 LED Video Light Panels + Light Stands for about $518
Not quite sure what's mounted to the back of the Meking LED units, but I don't think it's a battery. They say they have a 15% sale for another three days, but could all be marketing. Find more info on these LED video lights at the Meking store (click here).
Meking Pro 500 600 900 1000 1200 LED Video Light Panels
Mike writes in and asks if anyone has any feedback on a couple of Camtree 2000 LED video light panels. The lights can be powered optionally through a set of V-Mount batteries, are dimmable, and come with a few of colored gels. I don't know anyone who uses any of the Camtree stuff, so I can't really speak to the accuracy of color, build quality, or light output. Maybe you guys can chime in.
These look like (2) 1000 LED panels sandwiched into one housing. Personally I don't know if that's a good thing if you're trying to travel and pack down small. It's almost the same as buying two separate 1000 LED lights and mount them to one stand. If it were up to me, i'd stick with getting two 900 LED light panels which can also be powered via V-Mount batteries and can pack up easier. I've pretty much abused a few sets of the lights and only experienced one broken power cord. I guess the wiring inside the cable must have broke, but for the 600 and 900 panels, it's just a basic 14V DC (laptop type) power cord. Very common to find on eBay.
They do have a 1200 LED light panel version, but unlike the 600 and 900 it requires 24V. This doesn't make it compatible with V-Mount or any average battery power. I like the option, so I stuck to several 600 and 900 LED panels. The 600 and 900 LED panels are also a bit smaller making them easier to pack in common sized luggage when traveling. All of the lights still work great, so I can safely recommend these over other lights in it's price range.
This test is in reference to my eariler post (found here). So I charged up the Tekkeon overnight and setup this Timelapse test. The reason I used a Timelapse method was to determine if the light output would change during the duration of battery use. I locked the exposure on the camera to 1/25th F/4 and ISO 100 to see if the light output would dim towards the end. The big 900 LED light was set to full power.
It was interesting to see that the Tekkeon remained at a full 14 Volts during the entire test, and when the indicator was down to the last bar, the battery just shut off instantly. If there was a voltage drop during the test, the 900 LED light would start to dim (it didn't dim). Total run time in this test was about 1 hour 6 minutes (1:06). Keep in mind this is a larger 900 LED light on full. If performed at lower output, or for smaller lights like the 600 LED, or 312 LED at only 12 Volts, it would probably run for several hours.
Caleb over at DSLRVideoShooter.com, reviews one of the ePhoto 600 LED Video panels, and seems pretty happy with them. I agree that they could have done a better job with the power cords because if you have your lights fairly high, they are dangling at the barrel connector. I'm in the habit of tying my cables to the Yoke to prevent stress on the connector. I guess using batteries would solve that problem. [Thanks for the shot out Caleb]
I've got a 3pc set of the 900 LED panels, which I chose specifically because it has a bit more power than the 600s, but still has the battery mount option. They are also not too big so that I can pack them in a roller travel carry on luggage. If you have no plans for a battery mount, the 1200's will give you the most amount of power. I'll be honest to say I don't really have a proper bag, and these lights get bumped around quite a bit. They have been in constant use lately for the last few weeks and are still operating perfectly.
New in that lineup of LED panels is a '1200 Bi-Color' (color changing) version, but keep in mind that's only 600 LED's actually going full power in either Daylight or Tungsten temperatures. While they are back in stock, you can find them on Amazon available for Prime - Click Here.
Dimmable LED Video Light Panels
Don't forget that there are some bags available to make them easier to travel with. Not so much protection from dropping, but keeps the buttons, switches, and barndoors from getting snagged. Those baggies can be found on Amazon (click here).
I actually had no clue these were out of stock, but thanks for the emails and information that they are available again. For anyone waiting on these to come back to stock, here they are. As a reminder, only the 600 and the 900's I have can fit into travel size 'Carry On' airplane roller (not the 1200s). The 600 & 900 have the optional V-Mount battery plate so they can be used remotely and the 1200s don't have that option.
I couldn't make it out to the studio just yet, so I decided to shoot a 'First Glance' video of the new LED Light Panels hitting the market. This one in the video is the 1200 LED version, but they are available in 600 and 900 LED counts. Some versions are available with V-mount battery adapters and all lights are dimmable. We ran some color temperature tests just using the meters in the Sony EX1 and they had excellent results being 5600K and 3100K with the provided tungsten (yellow) filter.
I'll have to do a side by side comparison, but the 600 LED version of this new panel is said to throw light further than the older (more popular) 1000 LED panels. The 1200 LED panel i'm playing with here is 'extremely' light weight. Much easier to pack, travel, and handle than the other versions. Uh and FYI, I'm considering posting my (3)pcs 500 LED kit online very soon to upgrade to more of these. When that happens, you'll find it in the Cheesycam Classifieds.
There's been some new LED Video panels floating around the Internet, but mainly coming from over seas companies. Not much has been said about these panels, probably because someone is waiting to hear what the quality is like. Well now it's finally available via Amazon and ships from the US. I got my hands on a set and I'm going to try to make it into the studio today and throw up some examples of these new LED Video Light Panels. So far we've been drooling over them for the past few days. These are from a different manufacturer and priced higher than the popular 500 and 1000 LED panels found here: http://cheesycam.com/bts-sample-with-cheap-500-led-video-light-panels/
These new 600, 900, and 1200 panels are thinner than the other models, extremely lightweight, dimmable, and can be powered via DC batteries. It sits centered in a Yoke mount which makes it easy to reposition and keep the units balanced. The biggest difference with this light compared to other ones is the 'throw' and color temperature. These LED panels throw light much further and is very bright. Putting the 1200 LED panel against a Sony EX1, the temperature was detected at 5600K - Yes! Throwing on the provided Tungsten filter, the Sony EX1 registered it as 3100K - very close. These new LED Panels come in 600 LEDs, 900 LEDs, and 1200 LEDs - all dimmable and options for Sony batteries V mount.
I'll have more information soon, but there's only a limited amount available from Amazon so im just giving you all a heads up. You can find out more information about them here.