Litepanels' New Astra Soft Bi-Color Earns Rave Reviews From Industry Professionals

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CINE GEAR 2016, BOOTH 64/65 BROADCAST ASIA, BOOTH 4D6-10

Last Updated: May 31, 2016 5:56 pm GMT
(Chatsworth, California--May 31, 2016) Litepanels®, an innovator in LED lighting solutions for the film, photographic and broadcast industries, a Vitec Videocom brand, and part of Vitec Group, plc, has received fantastic responses from industry professionals about the new Astra Soft Bi-Color LED panel. With a new diffused lens, the one-square-foot Astra Soft provides a soft light alternative to the original Astra 1x1 Bi-Color, mirroring the effect of a softbox in a compact, portable design. The reaction to these new lights has been overwhelmingly positive from key industry insiders.



Bill Russell, gaffer for the hit drama series The Fosters, has been using the Astra Soft on set every day with Director of Photography Kees Van Oostrum, A.S.C.“It’s all about soft light,” said Russell. “We can do so much straight off the head, and it can fit in so many easy places; if you had to rig it, you can just use the light as it is. You put [the Astra Soft] in the right space, it doesn’t light the whole scene up; it just lights your talent up. Or you can flip it around, go full power and get a nice rake across the background.”



The Astra Soft Bi-Color’s impressive output rates the highest among most soft LED panels, illuminating a wider area effectively with just a single fixture and competing with strong exterior light sources. Ultimately, this higher intensity combined with continuously variable color temperature settings eliminates the need to install expensive fixed color temperature plates.

Freelance Director of Photography Damon Hennessey – whose clients include the George Lucas Foundation, Smithsonian Institute, Comcast Media, CNBC, and the Travel Channel – commented, “the new Astra Soft Bi-Color is a welcomed addition to the line. The source is soft and even; you can run it straight with no diffusion and get a nice even key. Soften it out a bit with a frame of 251 or opal and it becomes a sweet key source with a very nice wrap. The Astra has been a game changer for me. I can work fast, which my clients love, and get great results, which we both love.”

Following the functionality of the classic Astra 1x1 Bi-Color, the Astra Soft panel features high CRI and TLCI that yields exceptional color reproduction and precise color temperature. With smooth transitional dimming and no noticeable color shift throughout the entire range, the panel conveniently adjusts between daylight and tungsten to accommodate any lighting situation and supports a flicker-free performance at any frame rate or shutter angle.

"My Litepanels Astra Bi-Color kit has taken over the 'shotgun’ position in the back of my van,” continued Hennessey. “Once the camera and sticks come out, the Astras are the first thing I grab on every shoot. They have proven to be the most versatile light I own. I find myself pulling off setups that I could not have done nearly as fast or beautiful before I bought the Astras.”

Like all Astra panels, the design of the Astra Soft Bi-Color boasts superior quality surface mount LEDs while the internal microprocessor includes dual cooling modes – active and passive – that manage the temperature of the panel ensuring consistent color and assure long panel life. Additionally, the new Astra Soft Bi-Color lets the user control the lights via 512DMX standard protocol with the DMX communication module or wirelessly on your smartphone using the Litepanels SmartLite app and the Bluetooth communication module. The app also allows users to control multiple lights at once with individual controls for the fan, intensity, color temperature, and more. What helps create the soft wrap-around quality of illumination for the Astra soft Bi-Color is the integrated medium diffusion panel that is spaced from the LEDs to help create an even beam from end to end. The 93° beam is perfect for a variety of lighting situations such as green screen set ups and proved to be very flattering when lighting talent or used interview set ups.

Hugh Brownstone, the founder of production group Three Blind Men and an Elephant, did a thorough product comparison featuring the Astra Soft Bi-Color, mentioning the convenience of its design and quality of light, “I have never seen a diffuser this good. Using this light, working with it, it is the cleanest, most neutral LED I have ever used by far. Everything about the Astra just screams engineering and thoughtful design, even down to the knobs.”

The Astra Soft Bi-Color LED panel is now available and shipping worldwide.


About Litepanels

Litepanels®, a Vitec Videocom brand, was founded in 2001 by five professional gaffers and engineers who saw the future and pioneered LED (light emitting diode) lighting for motion pictures, television, and the audio- visual industry. Their Emmy® award-winning technology has now been used on thousands of productions worldwide and is trusted by the world’s leading broadcast organizations. Litepanels continues to expand its suite of flicker-free, color accurate, fully-dimmable soft lights that talent and lighting directors admire. These environmentally friendly fixtures can pay for themselves with power savings and long life, setting a new standard in professional lighting. More information can be found at www.Litepanels.com.


About Vitec Videocom

Vitec Videocom, the Broadcast Division of The Vitec Group plc, brings together some of the most respected, innovative and sought-after brands in the industry: Anton/Bauer, Autocue, Autoscript, Bexel, Camera Corps, Litepanels, OConnor, Off Hollywood, Paralinx, Sachtler, SmallHD, Teradek, The Camera Store and Vinten.Vitec Videocom is the parent company for these market-leading broadcast, film and pro video products, encouraging multi-brand system sales and simplifying the way that customers worldwide do business. Vitec Videocom is the parent company for these market-leading broadcast, film and pro video products, encouraging multi-brand system sales and simplifying the way that customers worldwide do business.

The Vitec Group is a global provider of premium branded products and services to the Broadcast and Photographic markets. The Vitec Group is based on strong, well-known, premium brands on which its customers worldwide rely.

Vitec Videocom – advancing the quality and science of media production.

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