100w LED Fresnel Review

At some point in the last few years ebay exploded with all of these cheap Chinese built lights. One of the newest things is LED Fresnel lighting. There are companies that have models that cost in the thousands of dollars. There are also a few companies that offer similar looking models that are in the hundreds of dollars. I am going to review the roughly $200 and so called 1000watt LED Fresnel light from ebay/came-tv.com.
So to start with I'd like to say that it is neither a Fresnel or 1000w. (BTW, they have changed the title on ebay to 100w LED Fresnel) Fresnel denotes a kind of lens. This unit does have a lens, but it is not a Fresnel style lens. It's just a thick glass lens. The reason they say it is 1000 watts is because LED manufacturers got into using the term watt equivalent. So a manufacturer might say this LED light is 1000 watt equivalent. LED are much more efficient that tungsten lights, so it's a legitimate way to tell consumers how bright a light is.
Here's my beef with this manufacturer, however. It is neither a 1000 watt light, nor is it a 1000 watt equivalent. It did a really quick test to see how much wattage this light is actually pulling. It clocks in at 50watts and some change. The standard is to say that 1 watt of LED light is roughly equivalent to 10 watts incandescent light. It's my opinion that even that is a little generous. So I would say that this light is roughly equivalent to a 300 watt incandescent, which is pretty darn good for an LED, I just wish the folks that made it didn't hide that fact behind misleading numbers.

From this point I'll hit a few of the high points.

Flicker: Geez I'm pissed. I was pretty excited, but then I thought I should go check flicker. This is a known problem with LED. At certain shutter speeds LED have been known to create banding or flickering. This light seems to create intense banding at any shutter speed above 60. 
Make sure you read that right because it was surprising to me. Anything above 60, makes bad banding. This is A BIG DEAL for me. It makes the light almost useless in many situations. I rely on my shutter speed to achieve my proper exposure on some of my cameras. This means that if I used this light I would be out of luck. I'm trying to think of a fix for this. Like I said, I have built some of my own LED lights DIY style. I'm considering gutting the electronics on this light and putting in some that won't freakin flicker. This makes me mad. Although the light was only about 200 bucks, we should be past this. This is why reviews are really important. I scowered the internet to find reviews of this light and didn't find but one. It didn't say anything about the flickering problem. I'm wondering if it could be because the unit is hot. I will let it cool down and see if it changes. If I don't revise the post, you can assume nothing changed.

Light quality/color: is pretty good. In the picture the So called 1000w Fresnel is on the left and the litepanels ENG is on the right. It's fairly close to my litepanels solaENG in terms of light color. It has a little less of a magenta hue than the litepanels, but overall it's a pleasing light. This was a surprise. I've built some LED lights DIY style and found them to be very green. This one is slightly greener than the litepanels light I own, but it's pretty good. I laid out two peaces of paper and pointed the. The color matches daylight pretty well in terms of color. The unit also comes with a lens filter that is supposed to match tungsten lighting. It gets it in the ball park but it's not great. I am probably more likely to use accurate color matching gel material than actually use the supplied filter.

Power output: As I previously mentioned this light clocks in at about 50 watts. This kind of makes me mad as well, because I bought this light from eBay under the title 100w LED Fresnel. What a bunch of liars. It's not that 50watts is bad, it's just that I want to trust the company that I buy things from not to lie to me. If you have worked with LED lights before you'll be aware that a 50 watt LED is bright. It's bright enough for most of the projects that I do, but that probably doesn't tell you much.

Build Quality: It's all metal. Heavy. It's feels well built.

Zoom range: The zoom range on this unit is minimal. I have a few true Fresnel, and their zoom range is about 5 times what the zoom range on this unit is. 

No fan: There is no fan so this thing gets a little hot. You can still touch it, but as LEDs get hot, the rumor is they are less reliable on color and other aspects. It's nice not having a fan for noise reasons so I guess that's good.

Man, this banding and flicker thing has really put me in a mood. I was so excited when this thing came in the mail, but I have to say the banding has pretty much ruined the experience for me. I would suggest not buying this light. On the off chance that it's just this unit, Which I'd almost guarantee it isn't, maybe it could be a good buy.

My vote as it stands right now is, DON'T BUY THIS LIGHT.



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