In a recent post I documented my new live rig with a drawing and a time-lapse video sans lights and light controller. I’m happy to report I just received and have been testing the brand new LED SlimPAR™ 56 and Obey™ 3 compact DMX controller so I thought I’d share some notes.
I used this system to light this Teaser Video (the horizontal scan effect is from a video effect not the light):
Update: After finishing this pots I shot a follow up video demo.
My Lighting Needs
My initial objective with this light setup was to come up with a very portable system that would provide ambient fill lighting to augment but not overpower the light coming from my Percussa AudioCubes, Tenori-On and Launchad. If possible I also wanted a way to do easily add chase and strobing which led me to the brand new SlimPar and Obey3. I also wanted to get a one light system that would integrated into a larger setup should I decided to scale my setup. While I'm happy to use house light reinforcement, I definitely want to be self-contained if need be. This also allows me to do smaller performances where there is no light reinforcement.
First off both the SlimPar and Obey are very small and backpack ready. I took a picture of the light with the controller below it with a Novation NIO 2|4 and Launchpad on either side to offer some perspective and scale.
LED SlimPAR™ 56
This light is simply fabulous. Small, thin (only 2 inches thick!), light-weight, and runs cool. it has a y-yoke so you can mount on a light stand or set on the floor. The yoke is tall enough that you can plug the power and DMX cables into it and rotate to any angle. Here the specs:
- Beam angle: 21°
- Field angle: 32°
- Lux: 1,290 @ 1m
- Light Source: 108 (36 red, 36 green, 36 blue) LEDs
- Weight: 2.7lbs (1.2kg)
- Size: 9.5in x 8.8in x 2.2in / 241mm x 224mm x 56mm
The light offers basic functions without a controller including static RGB and automated sound activated programs with timing coming from a built-in mic. Instead of old-school dip switches, settings are programmed via buttons with feedback from an LED making setup a snap. With 108 red, green and blue LEDs, it is plenty bright and the colors are great. You can also use the SlimPar56 with 3 and 7 channel DMX controllers.
Obey™ 3 Compact DMX Controller
While I am using MIDI to control the LED lights on the Percussa AudioCubes, I decided for fill lighting I’d start of small with some basic control and went with the Obey 3. What attracted me to the Obey 3 was that it was loaded with presets so I didn’t have to worry about color mixing or setting up chases. Here are the specs:
- Compact DMX-512 controller for LED fixtures (3-channel mode only)
- Works with all 3-channel LED fixtures
Channel 1: red
Channel 2: green
Channel 3: blue
- Playback options include automated, sound-activated or manual RGB
- Playback modes:
Preset: 9 built-in colors
Chase: triggers automated programs
Macro: scrolls through the color spectrum
- Variable fade times for all playback modes
- Variable strobing on the fly (2Hz – 33Hz)
- Fader for master dimmer
- Adjustable blackout allows fixtures to fade out
- Adjustable audio sensitivity