Last week, at my session Producing a Webcast from Soup to Nuts at Streaming Media East, Lowel Light Inc. was kind enough to loan me a Lowel TRIO light kit. I was looking for a light kit that I could setup in minutes, with focusable lights that I could use to demonstrate a number of different shooting scenarios. I’m happy to report that the kit delivered all that and a whole lot more.
The Lowel TRIO, on location at the Hilton in Manhattan.
As the name suggests, the TRIO is a light kit with three lights, each with three fluorescent bulbs that ship with either daylight or tungsten bulbs. My lamps had tungsten bulbs, so matched the lighting in the room perfectly. The unit ships in the case you can see below, which makes it ultra-portable.
Setup time was about 2-minutes per light; really one of the kit’s key strong points. Each of the three fixtures comes with a quick locking release plate that you can use in either portrait or landscape mode, and a tilt-bracket you can see on the light to my left that affords significant configurability. Take the fixture out of the case, click in the locking plate and either mount directly on the included light stands (7/2.1 m) or use the tilt-bracket for additional flexibility or height. Each power cord was about 20 feet long, which provided lots of placement flexibility.
According to the product specs, the three 55w lamps in each fixture deliver up to 2000W of conventional tungsten light (119 foot-candles of light at 6 ft distance) of output, and you can turn each lamp within the fixture on or off with controls on the back of the fixture. Each fixture comes with an easily removable egg-crate grill to prevent light spill and focus the light, plus small clips for gels. You can see the barn doors on the lights above; these are reversible, with a reflective surface to amplify the light on one side, and black on the other to block it. You can buy side-mounted barndoors for additional light control, and a hanging clamp to hang the TRIO 1 from an overhead support.
Here’s the official Lowel glamour shot of the kit showing the case.
The light kit isn’t cheap; the best price I could find was $2,969 at Adorama, and I’m not sure a case was included. Still, these lights can save you 20 minutes of setup and teardown time at each end of a shoot, and provide excellent, focusable, and controllable light. A review on Adorama said it best.
If you’re looking for a portable, durable and high-quality light kit, check out the Lowel TRIO.