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Affordable RGBW Light: Lupo Superpanel Full Color 30

Lupo’s new Superpanel Full Color 30 users in a full featured RGBW light that’s in the price range of independent producers and shooters.

The latest trend in cinema lighting is RGBW lighting. A good RGBW light gives you a ton of options and features that have previously only been available through using gels or modifiers. Being able to dial in almost any color, saturation and white balance gives a DP, gaffer or lighting director an amazing tool in their toolkit. But up until now, RGBW instruments have been expensive. You haven’t been able to touch one for under $4,000.

When I heard that Lupo had developed an RGBW light based off their popular Superpanel 1x1 LED panel, I knew I wanted to test it out. When I found out that the light is priced at $1,598, that’s when I really got excited!

 

Superpanel Full Color 30 vs. Arri Skypanel s30

 

The big boy in the cinematic RGBW lighting space is the Arri Skypanels. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a Skypanel to test against, so I went off the specs provided. Lupo’s Superpanel Full Color 30 is comparable to Arri’s Skypanel s30. While it might not have as many bells and whistles, it’s light output, CRI and functionality are very similar – albeit Arri scores are slightly higher. What’s not similar is the weight and the price. With its power supply the Skypanel s30 comes in at a little under 23 lbs (10.4 kg) where the Superpanel Full Color 30 weighs 9 lbs (~ 4 kg). And where the Skypanel s30’s street price is a little over $4,100 USD – Lupo comes in just under $1,600. Now, for me, this is exciting because it puts a good quality RGBW light in the reach of us independent producers and shooters.

 

One other impressive feature of the Superpanel Full Color 30 is that you can run if off ONE standard V-lock battery – compared to the 2 batteries needed for the Skypanel s30. And while Lupo recommends a 14.8-volt battery, I’ve been running it off my 150 Wh 14.4-volt battery without any problem.

Arri vs Lupo

Features of the Superpanel Full Color 30

There are 3 main modes that you can work in: 1) CCT Mode, 2) HSI Mode and 3) RGBW Mode.

  1. CCT Mode, which stands for Correlated Color Temperature.
    • The CCT mode correlates with the standard bi-color mode, which is now prevalent LED lighting fixtures. This is the mode you want to be in if you’re trying to match tungsten or daylight or a mixture of the two.
    • However, instead of the standard 3200 – 5600K range, this light is fully tunable from 2,800 K to 10,000 K. This gives you that extra spectrum on the top and bottom of the range which is handy if you’re trying to match candle or fire light (~ 2800K) or extra blue sunlight (up to 10,000K).
    • There is also a plus/minus green correction so you can match Superpanel Full Color 30 to existing lighting.
  2. HSI Mode, which stands for Hue, Saturation, Intensity.
    • In the HIS mode, the top left nob is your hue, where you can easily dial up different colors in the spectrum, from blue to green to red to everything in between.
    • The lower left nob is your saturation. You can dial in the amount of saturation you want for 0 – 100 depending on if you want the color to be subtler or fuller on.
    • In all modes, the right “INTENSITY” dial works as a dimmer.
  1. RGBW Mode, which is for Vibrant Color Selection (RGB+W Color Gamut)
    • In the RGBW mode you can dial in exact RGB numbers and add or subtract white light.
    • Adding white light both desaturates your colors and increases the light output.

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Other Features:

  • DMX – If you’re working in the studio or staged event, DMX allows you full control over the light through a lighting desk. You can change between 16 bit and 8 bit DMX.
  • LINEAR – Choose from LINEAR, QUADRATIC or LOGARITMIC dimming curves for the light.
  • FILTRO – This is a function that insert a smooth factor in the regulation by DMX or potentiometer. Choose from Standard, Low and High
  • PRESETS – There are 14 preassigned presets made by Lupo, and 5 user assignable presets. This is a great way to save and quickly access the looks you’ve created for a film or project.
  • SPECIAL EFFECTS – Currently there is Strobe, Police Siren Lights, Party and Disco. Coming soon will be simulated fire light and TV flicker
  • DISPLAY – The back display light can be on constantly or it can be set to timeout after 30 seconds.
  • FAN – The fan can be turned off, but this will limit the power to 50%. The fan noise in barely audible when standing right next to the light. I’ve never had any audio techs complain about fan noise with my original Superpanels.
  • RESET – A reset of all the settings.

Scott RGB

The Lupo Superpanel Full Color 30 has the same solid, work horse construction as the original Superpanel with a technopolymer body reinforced with carbon fiber. Now I’ve had a couple of the original Superpanels for about a year and a half now and I can attest that they’re really good, durable lights that haven’t given me or my crew any problems.

So that was a quick look of the Lupo Superpanel Full Color 30. If you’re looking for an RGBW light, then this is an instrument that you should definitely check out.

About Scott Leslie

Scott Leslie is a respected award winning TV Producer with 20 years experience and owner of Eugene Scott Productions, Inc. Since graduating from UCSD in 1993, Scott has been immersed in the film and video industry. In his early years he worked on several films a an assistant cameraman, b-camera operator and eventually a director of photography. In 1996 he opened Eugene Scott Productions, which mainly focuses on direct response commercials but is also involved in music DVDs and documentaries, a children's show, and health show programming. Scott directed over 50 episodes of Responsible Health, a weekly health talk show, and Eugene Scott Productions was responsible for all the post production. He has also produced and directed a children's fun and education DVD, Kibbles Rockin' Clubhouse. Scott also directed and produced Sign of the Dragon, an award winning kid's action adventure/magic short film. Scott has garnished several Telly Awards as a Producer/Director and as an editor for clients such as Jenny Craig, Vistage Connect and others.

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