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Earlier this year I went to CineGear Expo held in Paramount Studios and at The Rag Place’s booth I got a look at the SNAPBAG® OCTA softboxes.  Now, I have DP’d my fair share of commercials and promotional videos for beauty products and for these shoots I’m always looking for that big soft beauty light.  There’s nothing quite like having a large soft source wrap around your model.  When I saw the SNAPBAG® OCTA 3’, 5’ and 7’ softboxes I was really excited because it looked like an excellent way to get that big soft beauty light from my LED light panel.  The SNAPBAY® OCTA softboxes are specially engineered for LED panels and LED space lights and DoP Choice’s innovative RABBIT-EARS allows you to use the same softbox system for almost any 1x1 or 1x2 LED panel.

SNAPBAG’s octagonal softboxes come in 3 different sizes, the OCTA 3’, OCTA 5’ and OCTA 7’. An ultra-reflective fabric lines each version and they come standard with a magic cloth front diffusion.  Magic cloth is a highly reflective material that magnifies and evenly spreads the light across its face, eliminating the center hotspot.  It also comes with an inner baffle that you can use to further spread the light.



The SNAPBAG® OCTO 3’, 5’ and 7’ all mount to the same innovative mounting system call RABBIT-EARS.  For panel lights, DoP Choice makes a version for 1x1 LED panels – called the Rabbit Ears mini - and a version for 1x2 LED panels called the Rabbit-Ears Rectangle.  They also make the Rabbit Ears Space for space lights.  An extremely useful feature is that all versions work with the same softboxes with No speed ring needed!

The Rabbit-Ears are made to either slide into your panels gel holder or you can use the optional gobo head adapter and mount you panel to the frame.  Because of the weight of the OCTA 5’ or OCTA 7’, I suggest that you use the gobo head.  This puts all the weight on it instead of your light’s gel frame.


SNAPGRID for the OCTA 3', 5' and 7'

To minimize the light’s spill there is an optional SNAPGRID.  The SNAPGRID really helps to contain your light, keeping it from spilling everywhere.  Now, like all grids, it really sucks up the light, bringing your exposure down by a good stop.  So the SNAPGRID may only be practical if you’re using a powerful 1x2 LED panel fixture.

The SNAPBAG® OCTA 5’ with RABBIT-EARS in action.

At a recent shoot, I used the SNAPBAG® OCTA 5’ with my LUPO SuperPanel.  This worked really well because the SuperPanel has a really high light output (22,000 LUX), which provides enough punch to illuminate the large softbox while keeping up my exposure.  For this shoot I combined both soft and hard light to give my models faces a little more dimension.  I used OCTA 5’ as my main soft source but augmented it with a LUPO Fresnel DayLed 1000 at 10% power, placed in front of the softbox.  This hard light gives a little more of a light kick in the eyes and slight jaw shadows for more definition.  Now my models where young.  I wouldn’t use hard light if I was shooting an older model where I wanted to minimize lines and wrinkles.

soft-hard sample

The SNAPBAG® OCTA 5’ does take a little longer to set up than a regular softbox, but it’s worth it!  The soft light will really wrap around your subject making for a beautiful flattering light.

So, if you’re looking for that big soft light source which works great for beauty or hiding lines and wrinkles of your older talent then you should take a look at the SNAPBAG® OCTA 3’, 5’ or 7’ with the RABBIT-EARS!

Like all quality lighting and grip gear, this solution isn’t cheap.  The Rabbit Ears are $340 US and the OCTA 5’ will set you back $695.

They’re available in the US at TheRagPlace.com and in Europe from POPchoice.com.


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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