Lighting Technology Joins the Digital Age
LEDs poised to dominate, HMI holds for high outputsFebruary 26, 2015
BOSTON—While high-profile advancements in cameras, image capture and fancy displays have been stealing the show, motion picture lighting has been left sitting backstage. Yet, lighting technology has been undergoing a steady transformation that may change broadcast and motion picture production more than anything.For those who haven’t been watching closely, here’s a quick update.
Not long ago, the industry lived in an incandescent bubble. Tungsten lights had been the industry standard since the advent of motion pictures. As digital technologies transformed camera sensitivity and mobility, lighting packages were slow to evolve.
In recent years, alternative lighting technologies were introduced, including fluorescent, halogen, LED (light-emitting diode), and LEP (light-emitting plasma). HMI lights have been a standard for daylightbalanced instruments for decades.
Each lighting alternative enters the market and is evaluated next to the tungsten or HMI standard. The primary goal at this point is to produce a lighting instrument that emulates a tungsten or daylight color profile, is as bright or brighter than existing lights, produces less heat, and requires less power. That’s a list that sounds like the quest for alchemy. But surprisingly, these ambitious goals seem to be within reach.