Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

Aputure introduced the LS 300d II at NAB 2019, and I had a look at the new updated version on the present. The replace is substantial. Aputure launched the LS 300d again in 2017, and with numerous consumer suggestions, the Mark II was born with an all-new controller that has a fanless energy ballast built-in into it. This is perhaps essentially the most vital a part of the replace as the unique has a fan that’s fairly loud and requires a protracted energy cable to get it away from microphones. I take advantage of the 300d quite a bit in my studio setup with out situation, however the lengthy cable to get the ballast away is a should.

Aputure 300d II at NAB 2019

What’s New With LS 300d II? Rather a lot!

While the fixture appears related, the updates are huge from an all-new controller to a case that doubles as a seat.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

Included within the Kit

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Aputure 300d II Kit
  • Aputure LS 300d II
  • Controller with built-in ballast
  • Modifier/Reflector 2.0
  • Quick Release and clamp
  • Neutrik Power Cable
  • Neutrik XLR cable to fixture
  • Remote
  • Hard Case
  • Shoulder strap

Output, CRI & Kelvin Performance

Let’s simply get to it. I do know you need the nitty-gritty. The unique LS 300d output, shade, and Kelvin are fairly good. Check out my original review of the LS 300d. So, how a lot output does the brand new LS 300d II have? Well, to search out out I took some measurements with a Sekonic C-700 at a distance of 1m (3.28ft).

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
45,600lx at a distance of 1m (3.28ft)

Above you possibly can see that the 300d II utilizing the modifier produced an output of 45,600lx at a distance of 1m (3.28ft). It additionally recorded a Kelvin shade temperature 5197Okay.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
All new Modifier 2.0

The output is spectacular when utilizing the brand new Modifier 2.0. It has a 55° reflector versus the originals 60°. By barely narrowing the beam and including a brand new redesigned internal form and coating of the reflector, Aputure was in a position to enhance the output of the 300d II by greater than 3 times when in comparison with the unique modifier design. Impressive, to say the least.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

As for Kelvin. The shade temperature of the sunshine was greater than 300Okay off being a real 5600Okay supply. This isn’t too far off and if essential shade matching is required, including just a little CC gel will right it with out knocking the output down an excessive amount of.

It was fascinating to see that the Kelvin shade temperature of the fixture modifications barely relying on whether or not you’re utilizing it with or with out the modifier.

This could possibly be attributable to the brand new coating that’s current on Modifier 2.0. Very fascinating, certainly.

You can see the output for the sunshine with out the modifier hooked up. The gentle recorded an output of 11,800lx and a Kelvin shade temperature of 5352Okay.

Head to Head

How does the 300d II examine to the unique in relation to output and Kelvin shade temperature?

Aputure 300dAputure 300d II
Output: 8930lxOutput: 11800lx
Kelvin Color temperature: 5342OkayKelvin Color temperature: 5352Okay
Output with modifier: 10700lxOutput with modifier: 45600lx
Kelvin Color temperature: 5227OkayKelvin Color temperature: 5197Okay

As you possibly can see Aputure managed to squeeze 32% extra output from the 300d II. The Kelvin shade temperature is nearly equivalent to the unique.

The new modifier has a whopping 326% extra output than the unique modifier. I needed to do a double-take on the outcomes. With the general improved construct and elevated output is spectacular. This appears to be a theme right here with the LS 300d II.

Color Rendering

Now that we’ve got seen the output and Kelvin shade accuracy let’s take a look at shade rendering.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Color rendering scores for the 300d II

Above you possibly can see the colour rendering scores for the 300d II. The gentle had an common CRI (R1-R8) of 97.0 and an prolonged CRI (R1-R15) of 95.64.

These outcomes are very spectacular. As far as shade rendering scores are involved, with an prolonged CRI (R1-R15) of 95.64, the Aperture 300d II is true up there with a number of the finest lights we’ve got ever examined.

So how do the colour rendering scores examine to the unique 300d? Below you possibly can see a comparability desk.

Aputure 300dAputure 300d II
CRI (R1-R8): 97.0CRI (R1-R8): 94.4
Extended CRI (R1-R15): 95.64Extended CRI (R1-R15): 92.49
R9 (pink): 91.1R9 (pink): 79.8
R13: 98.7R13: 95.2
R15: 97.7R15: 95.6

As you possibly can see, Aperture has managed to extend the colour rendering scores whereas additionally growing the lights output. Sometimes producers enhance the output by sacrificing a number of the shade accuracies, however that’s definitely not the case with Aputure.

Spectral Distribution

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Spectral response of the 300d II

Above you possibly can see the spectral distribution of the 300d II. The gentle has a very nice full-color spectrum for a 5600Okay fixture and no huge spikes.

This is among the finest spectral responses I’ve seen from a 5600Okay fixture.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Spectral response of the unique 300d

Above you possibly can see the spectral response of the unique 300d. Aputure has considerably improved the spectral response on the 300d II.

LS 300d II Controller

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

I discussed earlier the controller is an enormous replace with the brand new multi functional design with out a separate ballast, and it’s constructed like a tank. The controls are much like the unique however with extra options to select from.

The antennas at the moment are contained in the controller. I at all times felt I used to be going to interrupt these off. It hasn’t occurred, but it surely did fear me. Not anymore! With the construct being a lot improved, the general weight is now 2.270 kg or 5 lbs nevertheless, the size is way shorter. I’ll take the elevated weight for fewer elements and general higher construct high quality. Setting up the brand new 300d II can also be sooner with fewer cables and litter.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
The unique was like a surfboard hanging from the sunshine stand.

The controller is fanless and makes use of heatsinks to maintain it cool, making it fully silent. This alone is a big enchancment.

The LS 300d II now has some built-in results much like the LS 120d II.

built-in lighting FX

  • Paparazzi
  • Fireworks
  • Lightning
  • Faulty Bulb
  • TV
  • Pulse
  • Strobe
  • Explosion
  • More coming in future firmware updates

Mounting Options for the Controller

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Quick Release System on the controller

The new quick-release design is an enormous improve from utilizing a strap. On the facet is a mounting plate that pops into the locking stand clamp. The complete factor could be very stable and safe, plus it’s straightforward to take off.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Heavy-duty rope for the hanging controller.

On prime is a military-grade paracord strap for hanging on a light-weight stand lock down knob. This could possibly be an incredible counterbalance on the tip of an arm as nicely. It’s good to have choices.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Red shade on battery mount is for single battery use.

The facet with the QR plate has metallic ft added for setting on a flat floor or the bottom.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

On each side are the place the V-Mount or Gold Mount batteries slide on. A pleasant improve is the choice to make use of one battery however at the price of half the output. Aputure recommends a 15 amp steady discharge batterie with 12-16.8 volts.

The controller has a USB enter for future firmware updates.

Upgraded Power Cables

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Without a ballast your right down to solely two cables

I like that Aputure features a high-quality 6m or 20-foot NEUTRIK cable with the 300d II. This may permit me to not must seize an additional stinger.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
NEUTRIK connector and 5-pin XLR

By using a regular 3m or 10-foot male-to-female 5-pin XLR, you possibly can simply substitute the header cable in a pinch if misplaced or broken. An optionally available 7.5m 5-pin XLR can also be accessible, letting you retain your management field inside arm’s attain whereas supplying you with the flexibility to rig your gentle anyplace you need, from a menace arm to a tall goalpost rig.

Wireless Remote

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

Seems numerous new lights today are utilizing a smartphone to regulate them. The 300d II additionally shall be appropriate with an app at a later time nevertheless, the equipment features a wi-fi distant. I do favor a devoted distant so my iPhone isn’t draining on set controlling a number of lights.

A brand new characteristic I like is the fixture may be powered up utilizing the distant with out having the fixture powered on first. This is useful if the controller shouldn’t be reachable. Simply double press the ability button and the C300d II is powered on and prepared. The distant controls the output stage in addition to the particular results supplied.

Output from 0%-100%

Aputure added the a lot needed 0%-100% step-less dimming management. Now you should use the LS 300d II in low- gentle environments or go full blast when wanted. Another new setting for DMX use is 4 totally different dimming curves: Linear, Logarithmic, Exponential, and S-Curve.

The 300d Mark II additionally encompasses a “studio mode” that permits the lights to activate and be managed instantly upon receiving energy, making it excellent for DMX lighting grids.

Redesigned Carrying Case

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

Most circumstances that include merchandise don’t work that nicely and get changed. The newly designed LS 300d II case is one I’d use. The new 300d Mark II carrying case has ABS honeycomb partitions with a delicate exterior lining that may help as much as 100kg or 220 lbs. Pull the fixture out then use it as a seat. Sorry apple field 🙂 The backside of the case can also be lined with a straightforward to scrub, slash-proof materials.

Lamp Head

360° of rotation

The new yoke permits for 360° of rotation. This permits the pinnacle to rotate all the best way round. The handbrake locking mechanism from the LS 120d Mark II is now on the LS 300d II.

The COB

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
Aputure COB within the 300d

The COB (chip on board) design is kind of spectacular. It is made up of a bunch of micro diodes making one very brilliant supply. It’s a blast of sunshine that goes in all places. This could possibly be useful utilizing it with out a modifier to bounce right into a nook for a really huge delicate gentle. Direct it’s harsh. I do just like the design and choices the COB affords. When paired with a diffusion modifier the COB gentle could be very delicate and versatile.

Sidus Link App Control

Aputure Sidus Link

An addition to the management wheel, the 300d Mark II additionally options DMX512-compatibility, a brand new 2.4Ghz Aputure Wireless distant with an FX toggle button, and the flexibility to be managed by the Sidus Link App utilizing Aputure’s Bluetooth mesh community protocol.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

Using the Sidus Link app, you’ll be capable of entry the entire features of the management field, along with with the ability to save presets, finely tune and set off further lighting FX, in addition to set up firmware updates, all out of your smartphone or pill.

Featuring all-new Bluetooth SIG mesh community know-how, the 300d Mark II can even the primary app-controllable Aputure lighting fixture.* This know-how will can help you management an LS 300d Mark II from as much as 400 meters away, by linking a number of lights as much as 80 meters aside.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

*Support for the Sidus Link app on iPhone, iPad, and Android shall be launched at various occasions all through 2019

The Versatile Bowens Mount

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

The Bowens mount makes the 300d II appropriate with a large verity of third celebration equipment together with the favored Aputure line of diffusion modifiers. The Light Dome II and Light Dome Mini II work rather well with the LS 120 and LS 300d fixtures. Even higher is the up to date Light Dome II that units up in seconds.

  • Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
  • Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
  • Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
  • Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
    Aputure Barndoors filter holder
  • Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
    Aputure Barndoors on 120d
  • Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II
    Aputure Barndoors palms on evaluate

The updated barn doors and new Fresnel 2 spherical out the accessible choices Aputure has… oh wait. The extremely anticipated Aputure Spotlight shall be a really good addition too with the up to date 300d II. Always yet another factor. I’ll say Aputure has created an ecosystem across the Light Storm COB line with numerous choices accessible to get essentially the most out of it from laborious gentle, targeted with filters and delicate utilizing the Light Dome diffusers plus the various different modifiers accessible for the Bowens mount.

Conclusion

Here is a joke. The 300d II arrived at my home on Saturday at round 3 pm, giving me solely 24 hours to guage and take a look at the brand new fixture. While I want I might have accomplished some real-world testing, it simply wasn’t doable within the extraordinarily brief period of time, I had with the 300d II earlier than launch.

Hands-on with the Aputure LS 300d II

I shall be utilizing the LS 300d II within the subsequent few weeks and report again if I discover something not working accurately nevertheless within the brief time I had to make use of and take a look at the sunshine I’m impressed with it general and really feel Aputure took the 300d to a complete new place. With top-of-the-line spectral responses, we’ve got seen from a 5600Okay fixture Aputure positive appears to have a brilliant future for the Light Storm 300d II.

Retail price is $1099 and available today, July 22nd. This is similar worth the unique was supplied at and now the 300d Mark I is discounted with $270 off making it $829. Would I’m going for the financial savings? Nope. The updates and upgrades are price the additional money.