Panel Beating In The Studio - Phottix LED Panel

on March 14, 2024

Relax - I’m not going to ask you to straighten bumpers or de-dent doors. The panel I am reporting on is an LED one from Phottix.


I never needed an LED light before I started shooting videos with my Fujifilm camera. The lighting for outdoor scenic shots was done by  then sun and all the cameras I’ve owned coped with it. In the digital era I have and easy choice of colour temperatures and can pretty well match what old Sol and the atmosphere can cook up.


Perth readers will know that in February, that was us!


The indoor studio shots were at the behest of Elinchrom mono-blocks and they are dead reliable as far as colour temperature - the same every shot. Once discovered, never varied.


But going out to dance venues that were lit with glow worms and army searchlights - frequently at the same time - meant I needed to cope with whatever the venue could throw out. A small cube light was fine for intensity but rarely matched the rest of the illumination.


Phottix to the rescue, and particularly the big panels. I purchased a Phottix Nuada S3II from Camera Electronic - they are on special at present. I also grabbed some Jupio video batteries and a charging station to service the rig.


The panel is about 10% larger than an A4 sheet of paper and comes equipped with a light stand mount, a remote


 controller, and an AC power pack. It could easily sit in my studio all day and run for pennies.

I plan to mount it on a Manfrotto mini stand - the 156BLB that has never failed me yet ( Manfrotto stands are wonderful ) and either prop it on a table behind me or let it sit beside the video tripod. Its function will be to flood light for dancers that come down from the stage to the floor in front of the audience.


Up until now they have either disappeared into gloom or been picked out with a cube light - often at a different CT than the rest of the stage.


If the unit’s up behind me, I just use the little remote control to turn it on and off as required - and I am not in the audience’s line of sight.


And best of all - me being Captain Frugal and all - the whole rig fits into a Think Tank laptop bag purchased from CE years ago, and never got rid of. Moral of the story is to keep your old gear forever…     


Text and images by Richard Stein