New Zylight F8-200 // Tool Talk


The new bi-color Zylight F8 200w LED Fresnel is a very thin, single-chip fixture with a CRI of up to 97 and the output of a traditional 400W HMI. It also has an IP54 resistance rating, meaning that it’s built to withstand splashes from any direction and can handle a light dusting.

The light is nice and simple, with two knobs for adjusting Color Temperature and Power respectively, with a third bigger knob on the back to extend the bellows on the lens to adjust between flood and spot.

Now, while Zylight released the F8 a few years ago, this version is variable bi-color, whereas before you could only get a tungsten or a daylight version. Now, the one they let me borrow is technically a prototype, but as it stands can be adjusted between 2800K and 6000K.

Aside from the nice little knobs, there are also DMX and “Zyconnect” options, the latter of which being Zylight’s proprietary connection situation.

In filming a promo for Chase Lock’s new solo gallery at The Olympia Club in Santa Monica I used the light to act as sunlight from the big windows that were present at each location since we were always in “shade”.

The light was simple to set up, powering up immediately when plugged in. From there I would just dial in the color temp and intensity to match the ambient light by eye, which I was able to do easily because of the simple knobs on the back. Nothing is worse than setting up a light only to have to take it back down because you need to physically see the menu screen or buttons on the back. In my conversation with a rep at Zylight, this simple layout was done intentionally and on some new products, they’re even working on differently sized or textured knobs so you can tell what you’re adjusting tactilely without ever needing to see the menu.

The cable is kind of short, but it’s the power brick kind where one end can be removed and comes in a nice little bag for you to hang off one of the knuckles of your light stand. The cable that goes into the bag is a standard power cable like you’d find on a computer or monitor, so I’m sure you could just find a long one somewhere online or at a computer store and be good to go.

As far as the light is concerned, I really like this thing. LEDs tend to be either too soft or not powerful enough, but this Fresnel hits a nice sweet spot. The Fresnel lens gives the large single-chip a lot of throw and focuses the light into a nice semi-hard beam.

I took a few readings in a dark room, metering for ISO 800/24fps,  with the Zylight as the only source of light and got pretty decent numbers. The results like “f13/11/8” refer to the readings I was getting in the center vs going towards the edges. If it’s just one number, it was essentially uniform: 

2800K 100 f13/11/8 SPOT
1 f1.7/2 SPOT
100 f8 FLOOD
1 f1/1.2 FLOOD
6000K 100 f16/13/11 SPOT
1 f2 SPOT
100 f9.5 FLOOD
1 f1.2 FLOOD

In my opinion, hard-light is undervalued these days. Kinos and LED Panels give off beautiful soft light but it’s not very precise without a decent amount of grip. A Fresnel can be softened if needed, but generally has a ton of punch and allow you to be more aggressive with your lighting.

Now, one thing I will say is that LED lights are not, or at least rarely are, full-spectrum sources. One of the reasons we like tungsten light so much is that it’s a light that gives off a bit of color from across the spectrum with no spikes in it, obviously having more intensity in the reddish-orange end of the spectrum. This fixture does an excellent job of replicating daylight and tungsten sources, but I will say that it did seem to skew somewhat green on the tungsten side of things. Color meters are like $1500 so obviously,bag I don’t own one, but just comparing it to the tungsten lights around me, I did note that it was a touch green. That being said this is a prototype model so for all I know that can be corrected out. It didn’t really affect me but I figured it was worth mentioning.

Overall this thing travels great, is super simple to set up and use, and adds a lot of versatility to your lighting kit. You can even power it with regular cinema batteries making it an incredibly attractive option for filmmakers on the go or even newscaster types. It’s so thin and the case is so durable that you can easily chuck a few in your trunk with a few light stands and you’re off to the races.

The variable white balance F8 will apparently retail somewhere in the neighborhood of $2,000 once they start making them for real, so that’ll be a pricey trunk to be sure but that’s a relatively competitive price considering the benefits of the super slim profile and low power draw compared to regular Tungsten Fresnel fixtures that go for a quarter of the price and give off *way* more heat.

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IBC 2019: Panasonic shows LUMIX S1H prototype with 5.9K/29.97p RAW output

IBC 2019: Panasonic LUMIX S1H prototype with 5.9K/29.97p RAW output

Panasonic showed at IBC 2019 a prototype of the LUMIX S1H able to output of maximum 5.9K/29.97p RAW video data to the Atomos Ninja V 4K HDR monitor-recorder over HDMI.

Panasonic and Atomos announced during IBC 2019 the development of a firmware program for the LUMIX S1H full-frame mirrorless camera which enables the output of maximum 5.9K/29.97p RAW video data to the Atomos Ninja V 4K HDR monitor-recorder over HDMI. The program is scheduled to be launched in early 2020.

Panasonic has established a good partnership with Atomos, a global company that creates video equipment for professional film creators, through the development of digital cameras such as the achievement of 4:2:2 10-bit 4K video output over HDMI in the LUMIX GH Series of cameras.

Working together with Atomos, a new firmware program that enables maximum 5.9K/29.97p as well as C4K/59.94p RAW video data (corresponding to 4K – 4096×2160 . as defined by DCI – Digital Cinema Initiatives) over HDMI has been developed. With this firmware program, the Apple ProRes RAW can be recorded on Atomos Ninja V, which is one of Panasonic’s commitments to provide innovative solutions for professional film creation.

Record ProRes RAW or ProRes RAW HQ

“We are very proud of developing new ground-breaking technology with a company of the calibre of Panasonic. We are both highly committed to the democratisation of filmmaking for creators, and the ability to record ProRes RAW or ProRes RAW HQ from the S1H to a Ninja V 5.9kp30 is a major leap forward in this endeavour.” said Jeromy Young, Atomos co-founder and CEO.

Jeromy Young  also added: “Our advancements in screen technology now allows creators to accurately monitor RAW video in real-time as it would be viewed in the home or cinema for perfect preservation of creative intent. Our pristine custom Atomos HDR screens are second to none in colour accuracy and representation of brightness from RAW signals. When combined, these advantages create a dream workflow for filmmakers, from image capture to post production. The speed and quality ProRes RAW delivers in real-time multi stream Final Cut Pro X editing on a Mac is truly remarkable.”

LUMIX S1H arrives late September

The LUMIX S1H is the world’s first camera to combine the professional-level video quality and high mobility of the mirrorless camera. It is capable of video recording at 6K/24p (3:2 aspect ratio), 5.9K/29.97p (16:9 aspect ratio), and 10-bit 59.94p 4K/C4K. The LUMIX S1H will be introduced to the global market from late September, 2019.

The LUMIX S1H prototype installing this firmware program is being exhibited along with the Atomos Ninja V in the Panasonic booth (Booth No. C45, Hall 11) at the IBC2019 (International Broadcasting Convention)  in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, until 17 September, 2019.

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Digistor has been appointed as an Australian Avid Learning Partner – Professional and now provides the full range of certified Avid video, audio, media storage and asset management courses for the Australian industry.

Courses on and including Avid ProTools, Media Composer, MediaCentral, and NEXIS storage run by Digistor will be available to clients needing to use Avid’s creative tools and those that need to provide technical support for Avid tools and infrastructure.

Avid Country Manager, ANZ, Richard Wray said, “End users and support personnel will no longer have to travel overseas to get training and attain Avid Certification as this will now all be available through Digistor. To ensure only the very best courses are provided, Digistor has engaged Australia’s leading Avid experts to provide the training. This makes Digistor an Avid Elite Partner that offers a “one-stop-shop” for all things Avid including consultation, systems, services, support and training.”

The Avid Learning Partner (ALP) program is designed to attract the most skilled training organisations in the industry, be they independent training companies, corporations, universities, or other educational institutions that provide training on Avid products.

Wray continued, “By combining the market presence and instructional excellence of Digistor with the content, curriculum and certification developed by Avid product experts and course developers, we ensure Avid customers achieve the highest level of success possible. Also, as an Avid Learning Partner, Digistor has access to the official Avid curriculum and certification exams, dedicated program staff, and co-marketing resources to support implementation of Avid training products.”

Digistor’s appointment was made only after the company met multiple stringent criteria including having the highest level of in-house Avid product expertise, a strong focus on quality and customer satisfaction, comprehensive sales resources, suitable dedicated training facilities and equipment and experienced instructors who have completed the Avid Certified Instructor (ACI) process for each course they will deliver.

Wray added, “The ALP program enables Digistor, having met all the criteria not only to deliver training and certification in the traditional classroom environment but now with the ALP Online Extension it also allows the use of online, mobile and blended learning models. The Avid Learning Partner (ALP) program is designed to provide the assurance that you can get the quality of training on Avid products and solutions to the standard and location that meets your needs.” 

Richard Wray concluded, “Now by taking and completing an Avid course through Digistor you can be sure that it’s run by professionals who have attained Avid Certification, have proven expertise as an Avid user, administrator, instructor, developer or support representative. It also provides you with the peace of mind that you have access to only the very best skills and competencies to fully harness and manage your investment in Avid products and solutions.”