Get Lit: The LED Lights We Travel With


By: Chris Collins

When we travel we do it light! We carry on everything, and lights go in the camera bag. We started using the Lite Panel Micro Pro a few years ago and have since moved on to the Ikan 312 and Switronix Torch LED lights. I took 2 Ikan 312s to Sengal, Africa while shooting La Promese, and they turned out to be life savers. We continue to use them on The Board of Education documentary along with Switronix Torch LEDs. All three lights have a 1/4-20 thread on the bottom for mounting and are great for different reasons. We decided to do a quick test to see how the three lights compared with one another. We placed the lights about 8 feet away from the charts seen in the video.

Ikan 312
It’s fully dimmable, and you can change the color temperature from tungsten to daylight and anywhere in between with a dimmer knob. It can take 2 Sony Batteries, but just one fatty will keep it on for hours. This light comes with removable plastic diffusion that serves as protection for the LEDs. Take care of it.

TEST (ISO:400 24fps)
Full Daylight Output – f2.8 7/10
Full Output (~4400K) – f2.8 8/10

Switronix Torch LED
This one’s fully dimmable with two knobs… one for tungsten and one for daylight. You control the intensity of each for the balance you want. It packs a punch in the middle of the spectrum! It runs on one Sony Battery, and comes with its own removable plastic diffusion which slides right in front and comes out easily.

TEST (ISO:400 24fps)
Full Daylight Output – f2.8
Full Output (~4400K) – f4

Lite Panel Micro Pro

This light is daylight balanced and fully dimmable. It comes with its own CTO and Diffusion gels. It runs on 6 AA batteries. They run out quickly, but they’re accessable and inexpensive.

TEST (ISO:400 24fps)
Full Output (daylight only) – f2 7/10


LED lights tend to run a little more green than other lights. I’ve found that this is less of a problem when they are daylight balanced. I often use CTO on a daylight LED if I can afford to lose the light.

Jared Abrams is a cinematographer based in Hollywood, California. After many years as a professional camera assistant he switched over to still photography. About two years ago a new Canon camera changed the way the world sees both motion and still photography. He just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
  • Frank Apollonio

    Im at work (Sun Center Studios) and I have 3 312’s daylight balanced… I love these lights …

  • Unitedwelie

    It’s a good thing to keep a sheet of 1/4 minus green next to the CTO for these lights, to eliminate the greenish cast.

  • J.

    You mention that you use the 312’s and the Bolt, you also mention they are great for different reasons. What are those reasons in your opinion?

  • Anonymous

    Those LED light bulbs look great. LED lighting is a great way for people to save money on things such as energy bills and definitely something that I would recommend.