Broncolor: The Light Video Series: Kobold

Kobold is the industry standard in daylight lighting systems. Because of its innovative technologies and ergonomic style, broncolor Kobold products have exceptional quality without compromising their unique components. In the broncolor: The Light video “Kobold,” Amber Gray and Julian Bernstein talk about their favorite Kobold lights, and the reasons why they are standard in their studio.

Kobold HMIs boast some impressive features:

All the fixtures (200,400,800) and ballast units are weatherproof. The fixtures have an IP 54 rating and the ballasts have an IP 43 rating. The heat-dissipating reflectors that would typically heat up the lenses actually provide superior UV radiation protection. In addition, lenses do not crack when splashed with water, making them a great investment. Because the products are so durable to weather damages, they are also dust resistant as well, which helps solve the problem for dust-sensitive igniters on HMI heads.

From the smallest and most compact HMI on the market, the DW 200, to the DE line of event lighting, all of the products are of superior quality. The lamp head housing is made of high-strength aluminum and the igniter is hermetically sealed to allow hot and cold starts even in humid weather. The heat-resistant ceramic safety glass ensures that the product is safe to use.

The lenses and the spot flood adjustment provide a wide range of great optics and light intensity. The improved optics optimizes usable output. In addition, the lights are brighter and more even than the competitors. Gray describes the lights as “clean” and “spectacular.” The reflectors emit a continuous spectrum of light, the same type as daylight (two and a half times brighter than tungsten). A filter is also available for running the unit as tungsten balance (3200) if needed.

The reflectors and accessories are quickly interchanged with the quick-release bayonet, making it easy to convert from Open Face to PAR lenses within seconds. No other manufacturer features a setup that is that easy. With the broncolor adapter, you can use your Kobold lights with your favorite broncolor reflectors. The switch between still and video has never been so simple.

The ballasts are flicker-free up to 5000 fps, multi voltage, and make running four, four-hundred watt units on a 20 amp circuit possible. Unlike other competitors, Kobold is on-the-go and ready for anything. Its hot strike is impeccable with a quick recharge and it is the fastest ready unit available on the market.

Broncolor: The Light Video Series: Satellite Reflectors

In this episode of “broncolor: The Light,” entitled “Satellite,” Julian Bernstein returns to talk about the 3 different broncolor satellite reflectors: the Mini-Satellite, Satellite Evolution, and the Satellite Staro, which are small, hard and soft satellite light modifiers, respectively.

The Satellite Evolution is perfect for simulating natural light atmospheres. It has a high light output and narrow angle; it is also a completely directional light. Its homogenous illumination is perfect for advertising, fashion and still-life photography, giving harder shadows and detail similar to those produced by sunlight.  The focusing shaft allows a lamp head to be moved back and forth, focusing the light.

The Mini-Satellite is the smaller version of the Satellite Evolution, coming in at a little over 5 lbs. Its size makes it perfect for traveling, as it is an extremely portable and compact reflector. Like its big brother, the Mini-Satellite has an extremely high light output and an adjustable light angle.

However, when a diffused light is needed, the Satellite Staro is the reflector that gives that soft, but brilliant light. A matted sheet of plexiglass allows for a diffused surface, and helps the Staro give off softer shadows.

Broncolor: The Light Video Series: Senso

The broncolor Senso powerpack is every photographer’s dream: it is a lightweight system that is super adjustable and, true to its name, sensible. The next video from the broncolor: The Light video series featuring Amber Gray and Julian Bernstein is entitled “Senso” and is an as straight-forward-as-you-can-get review of the broncolor Senso power pack.

The Senso is, by far, the best start into the broncolor system. Senso comes in 2 forms: the A4, a 2400 w unit, and the A2, a 1200 w unit. They feature asymmetrical and symmetrical power, a 6.5 f-stop range, RFS 2 triggering system, short flash duration and fast charging time. Max output is 2400 J and min. output is 26 J with the Senso A4, or 1200 J and just 13 J for the Senso A2. Made for about any adventurous situation you can dream of, the Senso is lightweight, compact and extremely rugged. In addition, the 2400 w Litos lamp head was developed especially for the Senso with an umbrella reflector as its head cap, and a compact body ready for on-location work.

Broncolor: The Light Video Series: Optical Reflectors

Photographer and director Amber Gray, and cinematographer and lighting designer Julian Bernstein are featured in a new series of lighting videos on the Bron Video Group on Vimeo.  broncolor: The Light videos are designed to help photographers define their toolbox.  Each light shaper has a specific light characteristic; this series will explain the light quality produced by the key light shapers in the broncolor arsenal, as well as some of the advanced features and functionality of the broncolor packs.

“Opticals” is the first of a series featuring Amber Gray and Julian Bernstein. This video is an overview of the broncolor optical light modifiers including the Pulso-Spot 4 and the Flooter. The Pulso-Spot 4 is a 3200 W flash head that is compatible with broncolor packs and designed to create sharp and precise projection.  Optical spots are available for user creativity, and allows the Pulso to be used for background effects with optical attachments such as the Optical Snoot and fresnel lens. However, when a narrow light angle isn’t needed and larger objects are being photographed, the Flooter is perfect for giving you that contrast and dramatic lighting effect. The Flooter is the largest fresnel spot that broncolor has to offer, producing light with a spot characteristic that has unique qualities such as homogenous light distribution and adjustable light spread. It is compatible with Pulso and Lito flash heads as well as Kobold HMIs with the broncolor adapter.

More about the photographer:

Originally from Northern California but now based in NYC, Amber Gray is known for her eclectic taste in the photographic elements and her unique outlook on modern photography.

Gray’s photographic collection includes conceptual, beauty, fashion and ad photography as well as film and video. Among many, some of her clients include Maybelline, Sony and Marie Claire. Gray partners with Julian Bernstein, who specializes in lighting design and cinematography.

Gray’s recent work includes a series for Marie Claire China called “Waterworks” in which the photos contain an Amazon-style set with waterfalls, animals, wild flowers, and an alluring mysticism.

This is none-from-the-ordinary for Gray, however. The characters portrayed in Amber Gray’s work inhabit a world more colorful, dramatic, and whimsical than our own. Strong, beautiful women burst forth from narrow, mile-high staircases and mysterious gypsy girls conjure black stallions from fire. From “Night Swimming” to “Distorted Beauty,” Amber’s sense of humor and penchant for glam-rock peek through the controlled chaos revealing unique, memorable, and bewitching personalities.

Although she has focused primarily on photography, Amber has recently turned her attention to film with commercial video for Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent campaigns. She is in the midst of directing her own short film.

Amber Gray Photography

Flexibility of Broncolor and Kobold Together – All in the Family

We get a lot of questions about our HMI products.  Kobold HMI is our flagship HMI line.  We also sell broncolor HMI products.  But everyone wants to know what works with what products.    …Well pretty much everything works with everything else.

Heads:  The Broncolor HMI heads are fan cooled.  The fan makes the HMI head compatible with a broader array of light modifiers, but makes the unit generally unsuitable for use in video production (fan noise=bad).    The Kobold DW HMI head does not have a fan, in fact it has no moving parts – it is completely sealed and weatherproof.  The Kobold DW HMI heads are by far the toughest HMI heads on the market.

Ballasts:  The Kobold 400/575/800 Ballast will work with the broncolor HMI. The Kobold heads will work on the broncolor HMI ballast as well.

Light Modifiers: Kobold has a a wide variety of light modifiers screen scrims, barn doors, open face reflectors, par reflectors, par lenses, conversion lenses, diffusion filters, softbox adapters and more.  And broncolor has an absolutely massive array of light modifiers.  So here is where we have a limitation.  The broncolor HMI heads will take most broncolor strobe reflectors with some limitations.  The limitations are due to fire hazards.  Some softboxes and other sealed reflectors will simply be too dangerous to use with HMI because of heat or the small size of the mofifier.  So a few are not recommended for use with HMI.  Another limitation of the broncolor HMI head is that it will not take Kobold reflectors.  The Kobold 200 and 400 heads, on the other hand, will accept Kobold reflectors and most broncolor reflectors with the same fire hazard limitations that apply to the broncolor HMI heads.  Simply use the Kobold broncolor adapter (pictured below).  Come see the whole thing in action if you happen to be coming to Photokina 2010 next week.