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New LED Lights from L&M


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#1 videodan

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Posted 29 September 2007 - 04:32 PM

I'm going to share an e-mail I received from Paul at Light & Motion regarding two new LED lights. The first one should be available in December. Remember, L&M is a leading producer of bike lights, which is where they got their start. One thing not included in this message but they told me previously is that they are expecting about 6 times longer burn time compared to the HID's. Just don't quote me on that. They have been experimenting with these for a while and have said the higher lumen LED light penetrates the water much better than any other type of light. Again, please don't quote me on this yet either. These were mentioned to me over the phone a few weeks ago, and I'm relaying this to the best of my recollection. With all the advantages of these, and being only $400 more than the HID's, I think they will be a great addition to anyones housing. They should have some on display at DEMA, October 31-November 3. I'm going to be there and will take pictures of all the new gear that's coming out. Here's the e-mail:

Hey Dan,
Attached is photo of the new Sunray LED video light. This is a tight shot so you can see the peened reflectors.
Our 21w HID output is 1302 lumens. The new LED light will produce 2000 lumens. That’s a 35% increase in light output. The beam angle is the same.
There are 18 LEDs in this head. It’s the same body as the current 21w HID but with a new bezel.
The bezel will feature a 52mm thread system so a user can attach filters to change the color temperature.
The batteries are Li-ion and will burn for 90 minutes on high.
One of the cool things about LEDs are that they are “Instant On”. You can turn them ON/OFF like a light switch, unlike HIDs which of course take time to warm up.
Also cool, LEDs are solid state. Customers will NEVER replace a bulb again. Compare that to the cost of a replacement HID bulb ($350).
A dual light system is anticipated to sell for $3,799 retail.
We are also making a 9 LED version for around $2,999.
The 9 LED version will ship in December. The 18 LED version will ship around March/April because we have to make a new battery pod.
Feel free to post this if you want.

Best Regards,

Paul Barnett

Light & Motion

831-645-1525

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#2 Steve Douglas

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Posted 03 October 2007 - 12:27 PM

I look forward to seeing these at Dema. They look promising and I love the burn time
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#3 Art99

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 04:37 PM

I"m really looking forward to further technical details from DEMA. LEDs are already better than HIDs in luminous efficacy so with the good implementation which L&M does, this should be a really neat unit!
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#4 wagsy

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Posted 06 October 2007 - 02:08 AM

$3,799 US retail...man and my two 24watt Darkbuster HIDS cost me less than $800 AUS. :D
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#5 Nick Hope

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Posted 06 October 2007 - 02:55 AM

"Luminous efficacy", now there's a term. Does that mean they're brighter?

Love those little reflectors and a proper threaded front to the light head will mean no more snapping in a flimsy bit of gel (like the blue gel I use on my halogens). Should be able to screw on some ND filters for macro night dives.

Looks like they'd make cool topside lights too.

I'll ask Paul what the colour temperature is likely to be.

#6 goslin_1

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 02:26 PM

"Luminous efficacy", now there's a term. Does that mean they're brighter?

Love those little reflectors and a proper threaded front to the light head will mean no more snapping in a flimsy bit of gel (like the blue gel I use on my halogens). Should be able to screw on some ND filters for macro night dives.

Looks like they'd make cool topside lights too.

I'll ask Paul what the colour temperature is likely to be.


Nick,

Paul and I dove the new Sunray 2000 a couple weeks ago here in the Bay on my FX 1 housing and its brighter than any other video light I have used. We did some comparison testing with some of our competitors lights including twin 50W HID lights and the Sunray 2000 was in a league of its own. LED's give you the abitlity to have multiple light levels, instant on/off, longer burntimes and skip across the boat deck durability. We are also testing some cool new "thread on underwater" filters that will allow you to adjust color temperature.

The future is here and I am really excited, all other LED light systems I have tested/own are lacking in output and the quality of the light/reflector just hasnt been comparable to our HID lights. The current temperature of the Sunray 2000 LED's we are testing are 6600 Kelvin, but we have not yet determined the ideal color temperature that we want to speck.

I will keep you guys posted on the test of the new smaller 9 LED Sunray 1000 thats due out soon, it will allow you to use your existing battery pods and will boast longer burntimes, multiple light levels and increased durability like its bigger brother the Sunray 2000.

Edited by goslin_1, 08 October 2007 - 02:36 PM.

Best Regards,

Russ Sanoian
Backscatter U/W Sales Team
831-645-1082
russ@backscatter.com
www.backscatter.com

#7 Mini Dive

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 02:49 PM

What would the beam angle be on both the Sunray 1000 and the 2000?
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#8 videodan

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 03:58 PM

Hi Russ, great info you have provided on the new lights. Everything about these new LED lights sounds awesome.
Nick - from what I understand the 18 LED Sunray 2000's will burn too hot for extended topside use. This is true of all high power LED's, they need to dissipate heat to function properly. Underwater will not be a problem. Same for just about all types of uw video lights, they should only be used underwater as they were designed for.
Wagsy - the price is for the entire system, including new battery pods with Li-Ion batteries, at least for the 18 LED Sunray 2000. Many advantages to this system, as Russ has mentioned.

Correction to my original post - I said that L&M started with bike lights, which is wrong. L&M started with underwater video lights. About two years later they made their first underwater video housing. About seven years after that they began making bike lights. Sorry for my error.

One more correction - The 18 LED Sunray 2000's have a 50% increase in light output compared to the HID's, not 35%.

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#9 wagsy

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 05:12 PM

Well I would be interested in the price just for the lights then to use with NiMH bat packs I already own.
The fact that they are so bright with long burn times and are tuff certainly makes them look good.
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#10 herbko

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 05:19 PM

Has there been other work on making videos with a white LED as a light source or are we breaking new grounds here? I would be concerned with the spectral output of the white LED. Here's a reference to the devices I'm familiar with.



Maybe the L&M ones are something different.

If the spectrum of the LED is like the one in the above reference, you'll only get to use a small percentage of the light by the time you filtered and white balanced for a day light spectrum.
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#11 craig

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 06:26 PM

It's fair to be concerned with spectral content, but HID lamps have poor CRI too. From what I've read, CREE white LEDs have CRI ratings in the range of 75-80 which is similar to HID. Which produces better spectral content for video is not revealed in such low numbers, but LED may not be worse. Halogen may be inefficient but it sure is beautiful.

"Full spectrum" lighting traditionally means at least 90 CRI so neither LED nor HID qualify. Comparing color temperatures of lights that aren't full spectrum is unreliable and potentially misleading. Even if these LED lamps have the same CCTs as the HID models they compete with, they may not look the same.

Love the screw-on 58mm filters. Limiting a light head to that configuration may mean not getting wide angle coverage though. Hopefully these lights will be wide enough. When I had 58mm filter-capable light heads (that used MR-16 bulbs), I got less than 50 degrees despite the claims of the manufacturer. I think it's pretty hard to get 90 degrees or better without a convex front element.
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#12 videodan

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 07:24 PM

In a simple google search, I found high power full spectrum RGB LED's with up to 120° beam angles. These LED's have a separate red, green and blue anode to give full spectrum emission. No one said L&M were using white LED's, and I have no clue what LED's they are going to be using. L&M have said that their new LED lights are far superior to their already excellent HID's, so I'm sure their engineers know what they're doing. Look at this for an example.
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#13 craig

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 07:50 PM

Separate RGB elements do not produce good CRI and CRI is what matters. Tristimulous may look white but it's not full spectrum. Regardless, Light & Motion is claiming over 100 lumens per LED and I think there's only one supplier of LEDs that powerful. That's CREE.

There are no sources for LED lighting with CRI ratings over 90. That's an area of active research since such lighting would be highly desirable as a replacement for incandescent bulbs.

120 degree LEDs may be wide, but when run through a flat port the beam becomes narrower. The theoretical maximum beam width through a flat port is about 100 degrees with a 180 degree source behind it. In reality, it will be considerably less than 100 degrees.
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#14 Nick Hope

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Posted 08 October 2007 - 09:30 PM

The guys I've met using Litepanels LED video lighting topside seem very happy with them.

Russ/Paul, how about adjusting the light level of these new lights? Are you planning multiple levels without filters so that we can do some stealth low-light shooting at night?

Is the battery pod for the Sunray 2000 going to be a complete redesign? I had 2 mystery floods in the past with your existing pod design, hence the guard that I've built for my Bluefin to protect those wee doors on the front. I think the pod design could do with a bit of beefing up. Also I can rarely get the IR light control from my handgrip to work properly. It's hit or miss and I end up having to use the red buttons on the pods to synchronise the levels of my 2 lights (halogens). Would much prefer a simple 3-position switch and some visual feedback about what light level I'm at without cycling through the levels to find out.

Also I'd love you guys to change cables from Subconn to EO. I've had the steel conductors in your Subconn cables fatigue through a few times at either the cable gland or at the change in diameter at the pod end. Never had that problem with EO connectors on various products I've owned. I think they might be copper rather than steel and so survive the repeated bending better. I've now converted the crimped connection inside the lamp heads to a tiny connector block so it's more easily serviced in the field by replacing or shortening the cables when they fatigue through again.

Oh, and I had a lamp head flood completely the other day when a cable gland worked loose without me noticing. That could be improved. It only cost me a new bulb after washing everything out.

And last but not least I'm converting my light arms from Locline to Gorillapod links as the Locline just gets noisier and noisier with age. It's kind of embarrassing and I've recently noticed critters actually flinching when I move my lights. In contrast the similar Gorillapod links are silent. I don't know whether that's because of different material from Locline or the fact that they're less hollow.

Sorry for all the negative stuff. My L&M halogens are brilliant lights when they're working properly, which is most of the time. Nice wide beam with no hotspots at all, having multiple levels is fantastic, and I've only ever had a bulb fail when the light head flooded or I turned the light on with a hot, very freshly charged battery.

Will shortly send a fuller report on my Bluefin and lights to Paul as discussed by email.

#15 videodan

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 08:34 AM

Craig - take a look at Phillips Luxeon K2 LED's. L2K2-MW14-11-BV00 113.6 @ 1A 140 @ 1.5A 6500K. 140 max lumens at 1.5 amps. How do you think these would be? There are many other manufacturers making 100+ lumen LEDs.
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#16 craig

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 09:31 AM

Yep, could be. My LED info is out of date. I'd just got through looking at those too! In fact, my 75-80 CRI numbers came from Luxeon now that I remember. Philips claims "White LUXEON® LEDs offer the industry's highest CRI".

I'm happy to see higher power LED lights. The CRI might not be good (yet) but it's not worse than HID and all the other aspects of the lights are better. No fragile, expensive bulbs, no startup delays, heavy ballasts or high voltages.

I'd love to see a modeling light that uses these 100 lumen LEDs. Halogen modeling lights need to go away. The way I figure, a 20W halogen modeling light can be matched in output by 4 of these LEDs at 1/4 the power drain and that would enable effective use of AA batteries. The beam might not be as wide but modeling lights are best with moderately wide beams anyway. 4 LEDs and 4 AAs would provide 2.5 hours of burn in a tiny light.
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#17 herbko

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 10:22 AM

I'd love to see a modeling light that uses these 100 lumen LEDs. Halogen modeling lights need to go away. The way I figure, a 20W halogen modeling light can be matched in output by 4 of these LEDs at 1/4 the power drain and that would enable effective use of AA batteries. The beam might not be as wide but modeling lights are best with moderately wide beams anyway. 4 LEDs and 4 AAs would provide 2.5 hours of burn in a tiny light.


For a modeling light, the CRI is not a big deal. Actually I sometimes wish for one with red LEDs which would be less disruptive to the critters. I tried using a red filter on a white LED light and found almost no red light coming out. That was what got me starting looking into the output spectra of these LEDs.
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#18 craig

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Posted 09 October 2007 - 02:32 PM

I think a combination of red and white LEDs might work well. Running both together might make the beam easier to see and you could have the choice of disabling one or the other. I don't think the red LEDs are as bright, though, but you could use more. 6-8 LEDs is nothing, 48 is a lot ;-)
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#19 Mini Dive

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Posted 10 October 2007 - 05:10 PM

I am interested in buying some new lights for my Gates HC7, so let me try this question again:

What would the beam angle be on both the Sunray 1000 and the 2000?
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#20 Drew

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Posted 10 October 2007 - 05:26 PM

Just a short note that even LEDs have a CRI of at most 80ish in high output bulbs. The higher the K°, the lower the CRI... now back to the boat. :)

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