Stonestreet Studios Overcomes Challenges Using Track LEDs
As a photographer and filmmaker, Gary Bennett, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Stonestreet Studios, a Film Studio and Conservatory, is no stranger to FotoCare—a full service photo retail and rental photography shop in New York City. And it was here that Bennett happened upon a demo of the Fiilex (pronounced felix) LED lighting system that really piqued his interest and it’s easy to see why.
In addition to film production and classes in screen acting, Stonestreet Studios also includes a 70-seat small theater space that they rent out for live performances and also utilize for a monthly comedy hour. According to Stonestreet Studios’ Lighting Designer, Charles Davis, the theater used standard tungsten halogen lamps: “ellipsoidals, fresnels–pretty standard theater fare.” However, he adds, “One of the main issues [with the halogen lights] was power. Our facility, like a lot of those in New York City, couldn’t handle it.” And, given the theater’s relatively small 2000 square foot space, with 10-11 ½ foot ceilings, the heat from the lamps was “too intense.” Davis explained that, in addition to the power and heat issues, “It was difficult to balance the levels of the lights,” to “create an even wash of light.”
Enter the Fiilex T360 Pro Plus DMX track light to solve those problems. Because they’re LEDs, they don’t draw much power (about 90 Watts) nor do they emit a lot of heat, qualities that Davis and Bennett both appreciate—especially given the theater’s 10-foot high lighting grid. Additionally, with a >95 CRI and a CCT (correlated color temperature) adjustable between 2800K-6500K, Davis points out that “These new lights create a nice even color temperature for our small space.” (The Fiilex T360’s are also available in 5600K and 3200K models.)
Other typical drawbacks to LEDs are not found on the Fiilex T360’s. For example, “Typically with LEDs you get color fringing on the edge of the field, which bleeds out but these have a nice even wash of color.” And there was no flickering when he adjusted the T360’s intensity, an issue sometimes found with other LEDs.
These track lights offer some practical benefits as well. Bennett points out that “you can run one cable to a light board and can control all the lights from DMX.” Davis agrees and is grateful for the lack of messy wires and the ability to control everything from the DMX. And, Davis adds, “with the integrated ballast, it’s very easy to move the lights along the track—you don’t have to worry about changing the power or the digital components.”
Stonestreet Studios may be the first (and possibly only) all-LED theater space, bringing a new option for those seeking the same functionality at halogen lighting but without the issues mentioned above. Replacing the 20-year old lighting system with 16 Fiilex T360 Pro Plus units was an excellent move for Stonestreet Studios. “I think these lights from Fiilex are perfect for smaller, intimate studio settings like the one we have.”