We’re big fans of flexible LED lights at Newsshooter. FJ Westcott are one of the leading makers and their Flex 10″x10″ panels have become very popular. They don’t consume a lot of power, they’re punchy for their size and they pack down really small so they’re great to travel with.
But for some users the original panels just weren’t big enough so Westcott announced a comprehensive range of larger Flex lights last year. Now the new units are finally available at retail.
The new lights start with a 1’x1′ unit (although it seems to feature the same number of diodes as the smaller original panel); the Flex is also now available in 10″x3″, 1’x2′, 1’x3′ and 2’x2′ and bi-color versions. The largest 2’x2′ mat offers a whopping 9100 lux at 1m, as compared to the 1900 lux output of the original 10″ squares.
The new panels also address the one weakness of the original units – the mounting system was a little, er, eccentric, involving bending flexible metal arms into pockets and attaching diffusion to spiky metal arms. The new ‘Cine’ versions attach via velcro fastenings to modular aluminium frames, and are compatible with Westcott’s Scrim Jim system of flags and diffusion.
There’s also an optional Westcott battery for the smaller panels (up to 1’x1′) that connects via D-Tap and also has a USB output, as well as a simple D-Tap cable for running the lights from your existing broadcast batteries.
B+H list the 1’x2′ panels as a stock item and the others as special orders; the Westcott press release suggests general availability by ‘January 2016.’ Either way, if you’re looking for a high quality portable lighting kit you should definitely check out the Flex system. I bought a couple of the 10″ daylight panels earlier this year and couldn’t be happier with them. Perhaps the best news about the new range is that those original panels are starting to be discounted at some resellers. Maybe there’s time to redraft that letter to Santa…