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The Photographer's Toolkit
Product Review: Manfrotto Hybrid ML 840 H LED Light
by Jim Austin, M.A. www. Jimages.com
Categories: Business of Photography, Camera Equipment Review, Flash Lighting, Camera Gear
Manfrotto includes three gels that
slip easily in front of the 84 LED array: a 1/4 amber warming gel, a clear
white diffusion gel and a daylight/interior correction filter. With the
gels, you can easily and professionally add what used to require expensive
The image below shows what the light looks like: 1) without a gel, 2) with the clear white softening gel, 3) with the slight amber warming gel, and 4) with the full amber warming gel.
The company has been making lighting and camera supports for 40 years and their experience shows with design, such as the 3 diffusion gels that slide easily in front of the 84 LED array. There was no holder for the gels, so including one would have been a good idea, since in my experience plastic gels can get scratched with use.
While ball head tripod foot on the unit did not appear sturdy at first, in practice it worked well, slid easily into the flash hot shoe and allowed for portrait and landscape orientation.
at 1/1000th of second, the ML 840 H flash worked consistently
through all testing when connected to my camera with the sync cable.
Notably, the unit stayed cool with no heat issues. The flash increases the
video output by 2 stops. The light is most useful in low light and for fill
flash. Its presence in the scene, as a fill light in bright sun for
example, is not overpowering. Manfrotto designed a flash “ready light” on
the back of the MH 840, where it is easy to see. I would have preferred
having the power indicator light on the back as well as it was difficult to
see in daylight due to its placement on the bottom of the unit. The unit
connects to the camera with a standard sync cable.
This new lightweight unit with its LED and flash lighting will open up new possibilities for videography and still photography.
You can view an edgy video of night shooting with Manfrotto's LED lights here: http://vimeo.com/23044318.
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars ««««
Manfrotto Distribution to choose from a wide array of camera gear and
Text and photos:
© 2012 Jim Austin. All
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