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Lasolite Hilite

ray1 13 546 1 England
16 Jul 2011 9:36AM
Is anyone using the lasolite hilite high key background. If so whats are your thoughts and have you found them worthwhile. thanks

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scottishphototours 14 2.6k 2
16 Jul 2011 11:09AM
Yep, using the 7x8 foot version with the vinyl train.


Good results when used properly
Nice clean white background
Good size when set up, easily stored when not
Great for 3/4 shots, full length not so good


Expensive for what it is
Train too small and oddly shaped
Train too expensive
Front material could easily be punctured by a child throwing themselves against it
Subject needs 3 feet space in front of hilite to prevent "glow" from background
Needs 2 lights to get even white across hilite
7x8 feet too big for most houses (we use in studio)
Train difficult to light - always required post processing
Edging around hilite is black - why not white??

Would I buy again - probably not. Would probably go with 2.5m width by 4m length of vinyl from Tony Beal in Glasgow (do a search) - far cheaper - 1/5th of the price.

tomcat606 8 108
16 Jul 2011 11:43AM
All the above really but when you get it right itís a great piece of kit

timbo 15 596 United Kingdom
16 Jul 2011 12:47PM
Interesting that you get 'glow' if subject is close to the background. I've had people stood right next to it with no obvious effect.
Paul Morgan 17 19.1k 6 England
16 Jul 2011 2:25PM
I`ve found it better to use one large soft box placed behind sitter, just as good and a whole lot cheaper.
cameracat 14 8.6k 61 Norfolk Island
16 Jul 2011 4:45PM

Quote:you get 'glow' if subject is close to the background

If this is the case, Your light output is far to high, Or the position of the lights inside the " HiLite " need adjusting to bounce of the back, Rather than shooting through the front material.....Grin

Same as Timbo, I never get any glow even with peeps right against the hilite, In fact this feature is one of the main reasons for using one of these units, Rather than the conventional system.

Something else too, The " HiLite " can be used as a " Giant " softbox.....Smile Works superbly in large commercial or industrial product shoot situations.

scottishphototours 14 2.6k 2
16 Jul 2011 7:12PM

Quote:you get 'glow' if subject is close to the background

If this is the case, Your light output is far to high, Or the position of the lights inside the " HiLite " need adjusting to bounce of the back, Rather than shooting through the front material.....Grin

Agreed, the light setting can be critical as well as the positioning of the lights inside the unit to acheive the best effect. Bouncing off the back is the secret as you say...
ray1 13 546 1 England
16 Jul 2011 8:06PM
Thanks for your thoughts guys. I have a pop up white background that I can use with a couple of strobes to do the job but I am trying to minimise the space needed. I want to push mobile baby/child portraits as I get asked quite a bit so wanted to add high key as part of the range of shots on offer. lasolite do a small highlite 3ft 6" x 4ft 6" i think which will be ok for babies and product work but not much more so I'm exploring my options.
johnp 13 141 United Kingdom
10 Sep 2011 3:26PM
Having just bought an 8x7 HiLite and used it just once in trials, I'd like to add a comment and ask for some advice.

The 8x7 is so big that if a subject stands right up to it their sides (as seen by the camera) will be illuminated. Think about it - some of the light from four feet to either side will be directed to the subject. My experience in early trials bears this out. See the girl's arms and sides.

Of course, you canturn this to your advantage:

Her head was up against the HiLite - it's just outside the frame and I shot straight across the front of the HiLite. You can see how beautifully the light has wrapped round.

I attended a lighting workshop a couple of weeks ago and the advice was to measure background exposure using an incident light meter held just in front of it, pointing straight at the background. When I tried this on my own HiLite the exposure came out at f/16. Mark Cleghorn says to allow 2 stops overexposure so I went for f/8 on the main light.

When I put the results onto the computer I found that I had been getting flare reducing contrast and, on a few, bright iris shapes.

So my question to readers: How do you meter the background? How much overexposure do you give the background? Do other members ever get flare?

bppowell 16 2.2k 2 England
10 Sep 2011 9:58PM
I have the 8 x 7 and have found it ok. Use it mainly for event work, balls and socials.

I must admit that I do not measure for the light, I have four lights 2 x250w and 2 x 300w.

I use the 300w in the Hi lite midway up pointing to the back and the 2 x 250w for the main lighting. I then adjust the camera setting to get the result I want.

This works for me.


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