Power supply NOT included.
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I was blessed to have some folks ask some great questions about my previous post:
What were the benefits of using the Reflex specifically for these shots and what problem does it solve?
I do a great deal of low-light, old Hollywood style, and film noir inspired portraits. Especially when using hard lights even a half and inch in placement and direction of light can make a huge difference. By using a constant light, a photographer can precisely place lights to achieve the exact effect one is trying for. The second aspect of the Reflex light is that it has the ability to overcharge the LED chip achieving a “flash” of sorts. I know some critics might claim that the Reflex will not compete with a standard speed light in terms of power. In one respect, that’s true as it will only output about the same as a speed light at 1/16 power or so, BUT (and this is a significant BUT), It maintains that “flash power for 1/200th of a second. What that means is that there is no sync speed restriction. The Reflex is much better than a standard speed light if one is forced into using high speed sync with the speed light. I can set my lens at f/1.4 or f/2.8 to achieve a shallow depth of field while shooting at 1/4000th of a second in order to eliminate ambient room light and the Reflex provides all the power I need.
Does the Reflex provide enough LED power to be used as a constant light source?
I have used the Reflex lights inside a 24-inch octabox and have never even been up as high as half power. In using the spot fresnel lens attachment, I have had to use the lowest power setting and even then I have a touch of sympathy for the model because the light is incredibly bright.
How many lights do I use?
Presently I have two lights that I use as a main (with an octabox or with a fresnel lens if I’m looking for hard light.), and the second light I use directly opposite from the main as a hair light/rim light. I have already ordered a third light so that I can have a main light with two edge lights or a main light, rim light, and background light.
What is my lighting setup?
I rarely (if ever) use a light directly in front of the model because I don’t prefer flat lighting. With low-key, film noir images I like the dramatic look that side lighting or Rembrandt lighting affords. Old style Hollywood lighting relies on the hard light that the Reflex fresnel lenses provide. Positioned higher and giving a Paramount or loop lighting pattern mimics what one might see in the Hurrell Hollywood images. Even using a second or third light with a cookie and/or gobo also lends itself to the film noir style portraits. Honestly, I would recommend experimenting with your own setups. I emulate Hurrell on occasion, but I’m not doing exactly what he does . . . , I want to be me not him! Likewise, don’t use my exact setup; I’ve got a 68 year head start on you if you are trying to be me. In addition, I’m just a hillbilly. You might not want to be like me after all. :-)
What are my camera settings?
My camera settings are probably irrelevant. It really depends on where you’re shooting and what effect you’re trying to achieve. I like a shallow depth of field, dark background and hard light. You might want light and airy with soft light. Set your camera to get what YOU want.
Anyone who has additional questions is more than welcome to contact me at [****]. I’d be delighted to talk with you!
Let me begin by saying that I shoot low-key film noir style images, and the Stella Pro Reflex has become my "go to" lighting tool. The constant light component is far more powerful than what I'll ever need for my constant light setups even when using a modifier (softbox, umbrella, etc.) What is game changing for me though is the "flash" component. Technically it's not truly a flash, it's actually an overcharge of the LED chip. (Disclaimer: It's not as bright as a conventional speed light, maybe a speed light at 1/32 or 1/16 power.) However, the selling point for me is that the duration of the flash is 1/200 of a second. That allows me to shoot at ANY shutter speed without having to worry about the sync speed of my camera. What this means is I can shoot with a wide open aperture if I choose to and increase my shutter speed up to 1/4000 of a second to darken the ambient light indoors. As a photographer who looks for low-key images this is nothing short of magic. The Reflex can be triggered with your current Godox or Elinchrom triggers. I haven't had the opportunity to experiment with this light in a direct sunlit situation yet, but for indoor photography, I have yet to find ANY light that competes with it. I presently own two and am looking to add a third to my setup. Also please note that I'm powering mine with the included rechargeable battery. One may choose to order the optional plug in AC power supply which allows one to shoot with even more light than what the battery provides. Thus far, I have not needed the additional light, but it's always nice to have that option. It comes standard with a medium focus fresnel lens which installs via a quick half turn mount. Also available are a wide throw fresnel lens and a spot fresnel lens. For my purposes the spot fresnel lens is much preferred. It also comes standard with an Elinchrom mount if you choose to use it to mount an octabox or other modifier. Additional mounts are also available as optional equipment. It’s also possible to use the constant light as a modeling light while still using the “flash” feature for the actual shot.
Try these lights out. I think you’ll find there’s nothing that fills this niche better than the Stella Pro Reflex.
Update of original review.
To test the Reflex vs a Stobe in HSS, I took images of my son and put the noon day sun behind him.
Set the camera on Manual, ISO 50, and shutter speed at 1/1000th and placed light stand 3 feet away.
I used a Bare Bulb Godox V1 at Full Power and used Reflex with Spot Lens. Reflex was powered by 100w PD battery. Used the same Godox remote to fire both units.
V1 measured f4.0
Reflex measured f4.5
I shot the test several times until the cold made my son run inside. But I repeated the test inside with same parameters and the output was still the same.
But the real plus was that the V1 missed frames while recycling but the Reflex kept outputting the same amount of light while never missing a frame. I'm going to try the same test again when I get my Sony a9 and see if the Reflex pumps out 20 frames per second with no missed frames.
NO the total output of the Reflex is Not more powerful than the V1 in NON HSS mode. But when used as a HSS vs Digital Burst, the Reflex is 1/3rd more powerful and seems to never miss a shot.
The Reflex is already proven to be a Great lightweight yet Powerful LED, but coupled with the Digital Burst shows how this is such a versatile and powerful tool for wedding, event and portrait photography.
I was impressed when I used the CL8000 for the first time. The results were great! Now I’ve added the Reflex! In my eyes they’ve added a pop to my images that I would have to add in editing. I would highly recommend your products!! I’m looking forward to purchasing one more CL8000! Eric Anthony, 4 E’s Photography, Denton, TX
Let me start by saying the Light and Motion Reflex and CLX10 are the BEST Lighting products that I have ever use. Period!
NO, they are not the most power lighting solution I have used, but they are the Most Versatile, Most Powerful LED and with the Reflex, the Smallest 10,000 Lumen LED light in the World. Yes, I said 10,000 lumen LED. I will explain shortly. Let’s not get hung up on whether the Reflex is a Stobe or LED, instead focus on what it is. A Powerful Lighting Tool that can work wonders for any skilled photographer.
As a professional photographer who has shot weddings for over 30 years. I am a huge fan of adding light via on or off camera flash, strobes and now LED’s. After investing into the StellaPro LED System, they are now my most used and valued part of my Lighting Kit. To be clear, I am not a sponsored photographer from any company, I purchased two CLX10’s and two Reflex’s with my own money. So, I am sharing an unbiased opinion based on how these products have performed in my workflow on fast moving wedding days and for portraits.
These lights are Crazy Bright, I use them with the Fresnel on Bright days for Engagement couples and single subjects and they work great with the Sun as Back light and the Reflex as the Main Light, wonderful for outdoor portraits. And I have already used them in the rain twice with a problem.
Compared the 10,000 lumen CLX10 to the Reflex. To me the Reflex is a Variable Lumen light based on what Power supply is attached. It’s rated as a 6000-lumen light but when you attach a 100-Watt PD battery to the Reflex you get an entirely different light.
For this test, each light was placed 3 feet from light meter, side by side on stands, ISO 100, shutter speed at 1/125th.
CLX10 @10000 Lumens f8.0
Reflex @6000 Battery Handle f10.0
Reflex @9000 Lumens f12.7
CLX10 @10000 Lumens f7.0
Reflex @6000 Battery Handle f8.0
Reflex @9000 Lumens f10.0
CLX10 @10000 f8.0
Reflex @6000 Battery Handle f8.0
Reflex @9000 Battery Handle f9.0
The consensus was the Reflex @6000 with the Battery Handle was equally as bright as the CLX10 @10000 lumens. But with the 100-watt PD battery attached via USB-C the Reflex output MORE Light than the CLX10. And that is amazing because the CLX10 is the Brightest Compact LED with a built-in Power supply that you can buy.
Using Battery Handle, Digital Burst Measured f20 using the Medium lens. This is extremely useful for wedding photographers who shoot with manual flash.
Battery Life is AMAZING using the 100 watt PD battery. At 9000 lumens I got 50 minutes and at 5000 lumens you will get at least 2 hours of run time. And Keep in mind that the 100 watt battery cost me $41, which is less than an OEM camera battery.
The On-Board LED Chips for the Reflex and CLX10 or different from what I can see and measure. The Reflex creates a tighter light pattern than the CLX10 no matter what Direct Modifier and with slightly softer edges of the light. The CLX10 makes a Larger, very even light pattern in comparison.
The Reflex lights have a ¼-20” mount on the top which I have placed a MagMod Cold Shoe Screw adapter on each one and so that I can mount them in my MagMod Handles. The Small size of the Reflex allows easy discrete mounting. I mounted one on a Wooden beam with a clamp that had a mounting stem at a wedding barn this weekend, eliminated one light stand.
Of course, the best benefit of LED lights is the WYSIWYG, but we also get Better AF reliability because the Reflex creates contrast on the subject which allows Contrast Based cameras to not hunt in low light situations.
I have also placed the Reflex inside of my MagMod MagBox and my Westcott Rapid Box Switch using the Light and Motion Bowens Mount Adapter, great for family group shots. And the StellaPro lights have been God send for the Video teams and 2nd photographers because with indoor ceremonies and receptions we are all using the same light set up. And they can be easily gel for Tungsten venues.
To summarize, experienced wedding photographers who shoot all year round know that we don’t shoot most of your wedding in bright mid-day sun. we shoot in all kinds of light situations and subject, from the people of the wedding to the details and amazing for Sunset images. I cannot think of a wedding this year that I could not have used the Reflex and CLX10 and I know that they will be used on EVERY wedding day from now on. They make setting up lights easy, they allow guest with cell phones to get a better shot, which I don’t mind at all, and they let us see the shadows before we shoot. I average about 350-400 images per hour on a wedding, so having the versatility of the Reflex and CLX10 has been refreshing and liberating. These are my New Favorite Tools for Weddings and Portraits. I am sure that anyone who tries one will feel the same way.
Light and Motion has created an Exceptional Tool for us Working Pros. The only limitation is our imaginations with these lights.