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L&M Sola 1200


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#41 MJvC

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Posted 04 June 2011 - 01:36 AM

Is the Sola 4000 available yet or has any one tried a prototype.
Looking to get 2 for my 5DMkII rig

#42 Drew

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Posted 04 June 2011 - 05:40 AM

Apparently it's not yet ready.

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#43 MJvC

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Posted 04 June 2011 - 11:48 PM

Apparently it's not yet ready.


Thanks Drew any idea on when it will be available?

#44 cavey_dave

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 04:54 AM

Thanks Drew any idea on when it will be available?


Backscatter and L&M are estimating August at the moment.

#45 MJvC

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 11:28 AM

Backscatter and L&M are estimating August at the moment.

Thanks I better start saving now.
:)

#46 Steve Douglas

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Posted 11 June 2011 - 09:05 AM

What do you do when the rechargeable battery runs out? I don't believe they are user replaceable. If you send them back to L & M , how much for a replacement battery?
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#47 peterbkk

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Posted 11 June 2011 - 06:35 PM

What do you do when the rechargeable battery runs out? I don't believe they are user replaceable. If you send them back to L & M , how much for a replacement battery?
Steve


We've all been firmly conditioned by all manufacturers, (cars, electronics, etc.) to the "planned obsolescence" concept, right?

I doubt if too many users will ever get through the 1,000 cycles before they buy the latest and greatest lighting system...

Regards
Peter

#48 Drew

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 12:16 AM

Maybe for you, Peter. I've repacked my NiMH a few times over for my Halogen, HID and HMI lights. And it's never close to 1k times. more like 5-600... if that!

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#49 pmooney

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 12:48 AM

Maybe for you, Peter. I've repacked my NiMH a few times over for my Halogen, HID and HMI lights. And it's never close to 1k times. more like 5-600... if that!


:)

Drew , while this is a fair comment based on your experience with NiMH batteries - Peter's post is about his SOLA 1200 lights that use Lithium Iron batteries.

Lets keep on track.

#50 Drew

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 02:31 AM

Mr Mooney,
Actually PeterBkk's comments looked to me like a comment on marketing of products in general, so it's an open comment. :) Moreover, repacking of Li-Ion is also common so the principle of repacking instead of purchasing a new battery aptly applies, so long as the cells are the same. In fact Li-Ion die after a certain time (age) more often than the number of recharges, which is a factor with NiMH/NiCad batteries.
Now with the SOLA1200, L&M sealed the batteries in, which would mean a bit more work to repack. I haven't ripped one apart yet so I can't tell but I can't imagine for ease of assembly, that L&M would make it difficult to pull the cells out.

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#51 pmooney

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 03:20 AM

Mr Wong ,
Just keeping you focused :) ( pardon the pun )
The intention for SOLA battery replacement is a return to authorised LMI service centre process .

#52 nathicastro

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 08:21 AM

Hi,

I might be escaping a little bit of the subject, but can you tell me wheter you prefer a Sola 1200 or a Big Blue VL 1300?
I'm just starting in the uw video world... I might buy only one light to see how it goes and then, depending on the results, buy a second one.
Do you think it is worth it to have only one video light? Or if I'm not using two of them it's better not to use any at all?
So far, the only difference I've seen between these two video lights is the beam angle... and that the solas are flooding proff.

I really appreciate the help.

Thanks.

#53 MikeVeitch

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 08:41 AM

We've all been firmly conditioned by all manufacturers, (cars, electronics, etc.) to the "planned obsolescence" concept, right?

I doubt if too many users will ever get through the 1,000 cycles before they buy the latest and greatest lighting system...

Regards
Peter


Missed this thread.. am interested in these lights actually, i like your idea of 3...I would need 3 for sure, good thinking.
I would definitely go through 1000 cycles though, i dive a lot and am very cheap.. i don't upgrade more than once every 10 years or so :)
The new Gates are also intriguing but these may be more my style.. hmmm.. decisions

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#54 jcclink

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 04:45 PM

Sola 1200 is still a new addition to video light options, so not a good history of reliablity yet. But based on past history with L&M electronics, I'd buy 4 units if I normally would be using 2 lights. I've had 2 strobe fail on the same trip, so like to plan for worst case. Murphy is always looking over your shoulder.

Edited by jcclink, 06 August 2011 - 04:46 PM.

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#55 peterbkk

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 06:23 PM

Missed this thread.. am interested in these lights actually, i like your idea of 3...I would need 3 for sure, good thinking.
I would definitely go through 1000 cycles though, i dive a lot and am very cheap.. i don't upgrade more than once every 10 years or so :)
The new Gates are also intriguing but these may be more my style.. hmmm.. decisions


I've used the Sola 1200s for several months now, over about 100 dives. So far, very reliable. If diving somewhere with a lot of waterborne silt or sand, make sure you rinse the slide switches properly so they don't get sticky.

Using 3 lights (60 degrees each) works quite well. They give you WA coverage without have to be too precise about alignment. It allows you to point the centre light downwards so, if you truck in on a subject, you don't get a shadow appearing from the bottom of the image.

I run them on 1/2 power on night dives and when there is little natural light and on full power when competing with the sun for some fill/color light. Because the charging is so easy (wipe dry, plug-in, switch-on) I usually charge between dives but can nurse them through 2 or 3 dives if careful.

With the 1/2" locline, they are light to carry and easy to position. They curl up out of the way alongside the housing when out of the water. The locline wraps around the light-head to protect them when travelling.

Replacing the battery might be possible but I doubt it. Not sure how you could even open the light unit.

But they are not that expensive that you'd mind replacing them after a few years.

Regards
Peter

PS. I believe the Sola 4000 is imminent. A pair of them will light up the ocean. Built in blue filter, switches from 60 to 90 degrees. Double the price and double the weight of the 1200.

#56 peterbkk

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 06:28 PM

I might be escaping a little bit of the subject, but can you tell me wheter you prefer a Sola 1200 or a Big Blue VL 1300?


Preference is personal. I've had good experiences with L&M over many years.

For a beam test comparison of the Sola with Big Blue, go to http://www.uwimaging.../sola1200v.html click on Beam Test, select the lights you want to compare and drag the slider to the middle.

Regards
Peter

#57 nathicastro

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 06:37 PM

Preference is personal. I've had good experiences with L&M over many years.

For a beam test comparison of the Sola with Big Blue, go to http://www.uwimaging.../sola1200v.html click on Beam Test, select the lights you want to compare and drag the slider to the middle.

Regards
Peter


Thanks for the response Peter...
I took a look at it... is this beam test accurate? Because it seems that the sola light has smooth edges while the vL1300 has it more abrupt.
If thats the case, as I'll start with just one head, the sola has a pro point there.
The point is, the VL1300 comes with the filters and its easier to attach to my housing (an equinox). Does these filters make much of a difference?
Oh my, I didn't think i'd be so hard to decide...

Thanks again for the info.

#58 peterbkk

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 06:46 PM

Oh my, I didn't think i'd be so hard to decide...


Don't complain. Not so many years ago, you had to make the housing yourself... :)

The point is, the VL1300 comes with the filters and its easier to attach to my housing (an equinox). Does these filters make much of a difference?


Attaching the Sola 1200 with its locline arms to any housing is quite easy. Just went through the process with my new BS Kinetics housing. Took a bit of shopping in a marine supplies shop to get the right size SS screws and couple of hours getting the locline base drilled and mounted right.

A blue filter might be useful if you are trying to color match with the sun. I tried doing that for a while but found that it didn't make a huge difference and added another complication.

Regards
Peter

#59 nathicastro

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Posted 07 August 2011 - 03:20 AM

Don't complain. Not so many years ago, you had to make the housing yourself... :)



Attaching the Sola 1200 with its locline arms to any housing is quite easy. Just went through the process with my new BS Kinetics housing. Took a bit of shopping in a marine supplies shop to get the right size SS screws and couple of hours getting the locline base drilled and mounted right.

A blue filter might be useful if you are trying to color match with the sun. I tried doing that for a while but found that it didn't make a huge difference and added another complication.

Regards
Peter


Thanks again for all the info Peter.
Regards,

Nathalia

#60 Drew

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Posted 07 August 2011 - 04:39 AM

Thanks for the response Peter...
I took a look at it... is this beam test accurate? Because it seems that the sola light has smooth edges while the vL1300 has it more abrupt.
If thats the case, as I'll start with just one head, the sola has a pro point there.
The point is, the VL1300 comes with the filters and its easier to attach to my housing (an equinox). Does these filters make much of a difference?
Oh my, I didn't think i'd be so hard to decide...

Thanks again for the info.


I don't think L&M tested the VL1300... the light in their chart is the TL 1x30 a spot light. Apples and oranges.

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