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Best and most basic Lighting kit for a very low budget narrative - for GH13 &GH2
  • I decided to start a thread to see what kind of lighting gear people would recommend for a narrative type of shooting (with GH13 and GH2) on a very low budget. We all know that in terms of ISO GH13 is far from Canon DSLRs, so when I was getting my GH1, I knew that I'd have to supplement with lighting gear.

    There are quite some cheap lighting solutions out there ranging from worklights to cheap 800W Redheads on eBay. But then the question becomes, is 800W not an overkill for GH13 and GH2, and what is an "okey" kit that would work well with GH13 and GH2.

    Hopefully, others, who are in the same kind of searches as I am, would find this thread useful, so do post your ideas and advices.

    To make this fun, lets set a limit of ~ £400 ($650) for the entire kit (including all the accessories, stands, softboxes, gels, lightmeters etc).

    So here is my list:

    • 1x 800W Redhead (£29.80 from eBay) - great for floodlight or bounce light or artificial sunlight, but might be an overkill for Gh13 and Gh2, so you might want an extra dimmer for £19. Pack of 5 bulbs £11.

    • 1x 650W "As ARRI" fresnel light from eBay £120, or with dimmer £135 (Is 650W an overkill for Gh13 and Gh2 if you can shoot up to 320 ISO without any grain? Is it not better to get a 500W or 300W instead???). Also, I heard that there are at least 5 factories in China that manufacture these knock-offs. I'm personally going to stay away from a brand called "JieTu".
      That's why "As ARRI"s have mixed reviews, so you need to find an eBay seller who sells good quality and reliable "As ARRI"s. (that alone would be a good thread)

    • 1x 300W "As ARRI" fresnel light £108.

    • 1x Yongnuo YN-160 LED (£37.50) (+ 6600mAh batteries for Sony NP-F970 ~ £14 each. Will last ~10hours on YN160. + £5.70 for the charger.). Not the best light, but if you have a dark night scene, and don't have generators for your "As ARRI"s or permission for location, these YN160 (+ a diffuser umbrella and a long painter's pole) might save the day night. Nicely placed, it can also work as a hairlight or some other minor kind of light on set. Just remember that with YN160 every time you switch it on and off, it doesn't remember your settings and goes back to medium power - so you have to bump up the light intensity every time.
      You might also want to get the bi-color LED 312 AS or ASZ that are often posted on for £107 ($168) for entire pack (with 2 batteries and dual charger).

    • Gels ~ £35 (Lee gels are good. I'm still deciding on which pack to get. See this discussion

    • 4 light stands (£20 each) - don't go for the ultra cheap ones . See this topi Sandbags, you can make them DIY.

    • a fake eBay Gorrillapod (£7) - great for holding things in weird places

    • a pack of bulbs for your Redhead and "As Arri"s. You never know when those bulbs will blow up, and they will blow up.

    • 110cm - 5in1 Reflectors - £9 (it also contains a diffuser, in case you don't have a softbox, and you don't need a softbox if you can make a DIY wooden frame with a shower curtain)

    • 33" Reflector umbrella - £3.70

    • 50m Gaffer Duct Tape - £3.50

    • Metal Spring clamps and wooden clamps of all sorts and sizes - ~£10

    • Lightmeter ? Do we still need one for shooting digital? In 16mm world it's a must-have, but in digital...? Sekonic L-308DC is said to be designed for digital video, but quite pricey. Will a second hand Sekonic L-308S for ~£70 do the same job?

    So that's it - we have a kit of 4 lights + all the accessories that may be needed on a low budget narrative film shoot. Any ideas as to how this list could be improved? Any thoughts?

  • 3 Replies sorted by
  • This is the existing topic -

    Please copy your post to it.

    Thanks for understanding.

  • @Vitaliy_Kiselev yes, I do understand - you want to keep threads as topic-specific as possible (so that content is not repeated over and over again). I did as you asked - copied the post there. But before starting this thread, I read through that thread beforehand and realised that it was specific to a documentary lighting requirements. And I wanted to start a thread that would be specific to low-budget narrative style, whereby light is a lot more "stylized" and meticiously planned, rather than a simplistic "3-point lighting".

  • And I want to keep "selecting light kit" things in one place.

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