Shortly after my first close encounter with a Rotolight Aeos, Rotolight announced the Neo 2, successor to the original Neo LED light, three of which I have in the form of a Rotolight Neo 3 Light Kit.
That kit was great in its day and I use it still but with the two new and even more powerful and versatile Rotolight LED lights that appeared after the original Neo surely something even better would be possible.
One Aeos light, two Neo 2 lights, high speed synchronization (HSS) to control all three and for flash sync with my Fujifilm and Panasonic cameras, three light stands, a soft case to carry them in and barndoors and soft boxes as needed, now that would be the perfect lighting kit for on-location portraiture and video projects, it seemed to me.
Oddly enough, Rotolight has yet to come up with such a lighting kit but even more oddly enough Park Cameras, a retailer with outlets in London’s Fitzrovia and Burgess Hill in West Sussex has beaten them to it.
German cinematographer turned entrepreneur Dedo Weigert gave a public presentation on his dedolight and Tecpro lighting systems at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School at Moore Park next to the Fox Studios complex on Friday, March 16 2018.
I was lucky enough to attend and learned a great deal about the many lighting products and innovations of this amazing cinematographer and his company.
Dedo Weigert presentation at AFTRS in Sydney on Friday 16 March 2018
I am not entirely a stranger to Dedo Weigert’s products.
When I was getting back into video with the advent of the then groundbreaking Canon EOS 5D Mark II, I went looking for suitable lights to use with it.
I had owned and used a range of movie lights during my analog days, including those made by Lowel and Ianiro.
I even owned several old fresnel lights whose brand name escapes me.
The original version of the Dedolight Ledzilla caught my eye on a visit to a movie industry supplier in Artarmon as a possible on-camera LED light, but they could only sell me the light itself minus AC adapter or battery pack.
Instead I picked up a couple of Tecpro Fillini AA-battery-powered LED mini panel lights for more general use and they still come in handy for less demanding uses.
Later I invested in circular LED lights made by Rotolight for stills and video but still miss focusable lights with barndoors for their ability to shape light with more versatility and fine control than panel lights permit, whether square or circular.
The Dedolight 3-light kits look excellent but even one focussing, dimmable LED light with accessories such as barndoors, mains power supply, battery and battery shoe, would be a terrific supplement to my Rotolight kit.
The problem now is to work out just which Dedolight is the right one for me.
Is there a showroom where I can see and try before I buy, and an online reference to help work out which will be the most powerful yet most portable and affordable Dedolight that will fulfil my needs?
While the Dedo Weigert GmbH company website looks like it contains most of the information I need, buried somewhere in there, it has a look and usability that dates back to before 1997 and badly needs a complete rebuild for the modern age.
“It was four years ago to the day Blind Spot Gear launched the Kickstarter for the original scorpion light. Frustrated by the expensive and unintuitive professional-quality lighting rigs the market offered we set off to take the lighting industry by storm.
In aiming to bring accessible professional lighting within the budget of your average film maker Blind Spot Gear brought a unique company ethos to an industry where affordable lighting was largely dominated by a few big players and mass produced low quality options.
The Scorpion Light did not disappoint, proving dependable in the world’s most extreme locations. Its rugged portability, dependability, and flexible nature has made it the light of choice for professional photographers and filmmakers working with productions across the world in the most demanding environments.
Since introducing the Scorpion to the market we have been working and learning from our customers and we’ve drawn on this experience and knowledge to redesign the Scorpion Light for the mobile professional….”
I follow just three makers of LED lights for use in moviemaking and stills photography, Blind Spot Gear, Dedo Weigert GmbH and Rotolight, due to their innovation, manufacturing quality, affordability and especially for their ability to “Think Different”.
Blind Spot Gear is the only one of the three whose lights I have yet to see and try but all indications are that their products are on par with the other two in my LED lights list.
“Sometimes the sequel fails to live up to the original, so how does Rotolight’s new NEO 2 stack up against its predecessor? On paper the NEO 2 looks to be a significant improvement over the original NEO….”
I have the original Rotolight Neo LED light in a three light kit with barndoors and Chimera softbox, and highly recommend them for use in video production and stills photography, so I look forward to adding a Neo 2 to my kit or replacing all three first version Neos with three version 2 Neo lights.
For applications where the pulpit of the Neo lights is not enough, then I recommend looking at Rotolight’s Anova and Aeos lights.
I am especially impressed by how portable but powerful the Aeos lights are and even one would make an excellent on-location main portrait light, especially with the addition of barndoors and a diffuser.
Also impressive is how Rotolight has added High-Speed Sync with Flash (HSS) capability to the Neo 2 and Aeos LED lights.
Rotolight Neo 2 LED Light with HSS Capability, and Accessories
Rotolight Neo 2 LED light
Rotolight Neo 2 Barndoors
Rotolight Neo 2 Barndoors
Rotolight Neo 2 Barndoors and Softbox
Rotolight Neo 2 Softbox and Barndoors
Rotolight Elinchrom EL-Skyport Transmitter Plus HS for Sony for use with Rotolight LED lights including Aeos and Neo 2.
Rotolight Neo 2 LED 3-Light Kit
Rotolight Neo 2 LED 3-Light Kit in hard case
Photograph by Jason Lanier made using Rotolight Neo LED lights.
“We went along to Rotolight’s HQ in Pinewood to have a look at the new Neo 2 light, announced this week. Dave sat down with Luke Curtis, Rotolight’s Sales Manager to find out more, not only about the Neo 2, but also Rotolight’s other light[s] – the Aeos and An[n]ova.”
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“Join Rotolight Master of Light Jason Lanier for a whirlwind trip where he shows you video footage and stills that he has shot for the brand new Rotolight Neo 2 where he does a review answering tough questions and giving real answers about this brand new light….
… In this video Jason shares footage from shoots done in London, Ireland, Miami, Nebraska and other places that he’s been able to use the prototype Neo 2 lights that Rotolight sent him to test.
Shortly after completing a European press trip where the Neo 2 was announced, a buzz started coming around about these lights and what their capabilities truly are. Videos, blog posts and more were posted with questions about power, battery life, and the various applications that the lights could be used in….”
“Rotolight, an award-winning British LED lighting manufacturer, has teamed up with Elinchrom one of the world’s best known photographic lighting systems manufacturers, to integrate its unique Skyport Protocol across its product range, starting with NEO 2 to be unveiled at a major launch event on September 4th…
… Rotolight has collaborated with Elinchrom to integrate its Skyport 2.4Ghz high speed sync (HSS) wireless flash receiver into NEO 2, eliminating the need to purchase a standalone flash receiver, while also providing rock-solid reliability, range, flexibility and control for multiple off camera lighting setups. Skyport enables users to wirelessly control up to 10 lights, in four groups, at a distance of up to 200m(656ft) with the new Rotolight HSS transmitter (capable of 1/8000th), which has been optimised for Rotolight by Elinchrom. It is available on launch for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Olympus and Panasonic camera systems (with Fuji to follow next year), and is compatible with all other Elinchrom Skyport devices….”
“Rotolight’s AEOS is a a lightweight, power efficient, colour temperature adjustable LED light with an impressive range of features….
… My only niggling concern about the AEOS was that I feel it is slightly underpowered compared to some of the 1×1 panel lights that are available….
… I really like the AEOS. The low power draw is a killer feature that other companies offering similar solutions just can’t compete against. The AEOS is well priced, and the low weight, compact size, and ability to use a ball mount instead of a large yoke all help make the AEOS a very good choice for shooters who travel a lot and want to keep their gear to a minimum.”