Thread: Westcott Ice Light versus newcomer Genaray SpectroLED SP-LR Light

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  1. #1 Westcott Ice Light versus newcomer Genaray SpectroLED SP-LR Light 
    Senior Member Mark Phelan's Avatar
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    Full disclosure, I have not tried Westcott's Ice Light, but I like the idea. It's a handy form function that can work well for interview settings when one is wanting to work lightweight. I've been following the various articles and blogs talking about it and was going to pull the trigger until I stumbled upon the brand new, Genaray SpectroLED SP-LR Light.

    The SpectroLED is roughly the same size, being an inch and a half longer and a half-inch larger in diameter at 2.25" versus the 1.75" of the Ice Light. It also weighs about a half pound more at two pounds versus 1.3 of the Westcott light.

    But there are a couple huge differences that are not immediately apparent. First, the battery life is two and a half times longer (2.5 hours at full power/full charge) over the Ice Light (60 minutes). That in and of itself would make for a deal breaker, but wait, there's more.

    The SpectroLED has two sides, one daylight, one tungsten, both dimmable from 100% to 10%. The Ice Light is only daylight balanced, if you want tungsten, you may buy a separate snap-on plastic filter, which works well, but also cuts the power output because you're putting on a filter.

    Those two selling points were what won me over. Oh, one other small bit, it is HALF the price of the Ice Light. $249.95 versus $499.90. (B&H has the Ice Light on sale now too at $449.90, so not quite half)

    Game, set, match. I've just received four units to inspect, at first glance the build quality seems great. Comes with a nifty soft padded case for each light that should make for some easy packing. Zippers seem a bit flimsy on those puppies.

    Looking forward to seeing how these can augment the light kit. Have to start testing and see how they do.
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  2. #2  
    I'd be interested to hear your testing results. I use Icelights quite often and love how practical they can be, but there are definitely a few things I dislike about them, mainly the battery life (though the do have an extra battery adapter) and that you have to run it at full energy for it not to flicker on video... and though I do think they have been worth the price to me, I obviously was never a big fan of how expensive they were, so if there is something out there that is better and cheaper, i'd be all over it.
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    Senior Member Dominik Muench's Avatar
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    Ice been looking at the ICE for a while, very keen to see some shots lit with either system, those spectros sounds great. Probably being a bit optimistic here but do you think they output enough to give some fill for a medium/ closeup shot during daytime ?
    Dr. Dominik Münch D.O.C.A
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  4. #4  
    Senior Member Mark Phelan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dominik Muench View Post
    Ice been looking at the ICE for a while, very keen to see some shots lit with either system, those spectros sounds great. Probably being a bit optimistic here but do you think they output enough to give some fill for a medium/ closeup shot during daytime ?
    Ces,

    Interesting about the flicker, thanks for the heads up, now I'll be on the lookout.

    Dominik,

    My first reaction playing with one tonight would be yes, but will have to see after some testing. Having purchased them sight unseen, I'll need to see how harsh they are. At the moment, they seem soft enough, but I'm also going to play with some diffusion filters tomorrow to see what happens. For my intended use, i.e. interviews, they are definitely bright enough, too bright at 100%, which is good, I'll have to turn them down a bit or back off so I don't blind the subject.
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  5. #5  
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    Colours on skin tones is probably also something to test for.
    DOP / Digital Lighting Camera Operator
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  6. #6  
    Senior Member Mark Phelan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ces Peynetti View Post
    you have to run it at full energy for it not to flicker on video
    Ces,

    Are you seeing flicker when running it off the battery versus AC as well? Reason I ask is the battery would be direct current, regardless of power level, so there should never be a flicker, versus alternating current which could introduce it. Some of the various articles I've seen online have mentioned this so it made me curious as to your experience.

    UPDATE: I sent a note to the manufacturer and their reply was, "The SpectroLED SP-LR is flicker-free at all settings." Will still want to verify but that's their word from on high.
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member Curt Pair's Avatar
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    Mark,

    When I was at the Westcott HQ last week... The President received an email from Genaray saying "check out our new light, and buy them at these dealers..." She INSTANTLY got on the phone to their attorney, as this violates their US Patent! I asked "can you really do anything if they are a Chinese company?" Her response: "No, we can't stop them from making it... but we CAN stop them at the border! They are definitely infringing on our patent! We'll put a stop to this immediately! Just like Light Panels did with everyone else until they complied!"

    So if you can get them now... do so... I'm not so sure you'll be able to get them much longer!
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  8. #8  
    Senior Member Mark Phelan's Avatar
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    Curt,

    Well how about that? I certainly don't want to see Westcott harmed by patent infringement. That's a shame. I like these lights and would like to see things worked out because they do have a couple nice features such as much longer battery life, the daylight/tungsten combo and most of all, price.

    Mark
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member Dominik Muench's Avatar
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    thanks Mark, would love to see some screen grabs when you have some. Im thinking of ordering a pair if their output is that great.
    Dr. Dominik Münch D.O.C.A
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  10. #10  
    Senior Member Mark Phelan's Avatar
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    Dominik,

    Here is a quick sample.

    1. Natural light, no fill.
    2. Fill light ten feet from subject, full power, 5600K.
    3. Fill light five feet from subject, full power, 5600K.

    Canon G9
    Settings: ISO 400, 1/25 shutter, f3.5.

    That is actual measured lamp distance from the subject, not just the stand.
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