In our ongoing series S.U.P.E.R. (Scubaverse’s Underwater Photography Equipment Reviews), Scubaverse.com’s underwater photography editors Nick and Caroline Robertson Brown review new underwater photography equipment, general diving equipment, and some older favourites too.
For the nineteenth instalment of S.U.P.E.R., Nick and Caroline take a look at the Radiant 3000F Video Light from Fantasea.
We were delighted to get the opportunity try out this new video light from Fantasea after we found out about it at DEMA late last year, so we were really pleased when it arrived in time for us to take on our trip to Sharm el Sheikh in January. The Fantasea Radiant 3000F is a good looking piece of kit that gives off an air of quality. But, much more importantly, is packed with useful features.
The 3000F has 4 Lighting settings: Flood, Spot, Red and UV. It also has flashing SOS modes which you hope you never have to use, but is reassuring to have available to you. When in the Flood setting, the light provides 3000 lumens over a 100 degree beam angle. So there is plenty of power for lighting your subject and also makes this a lovely light to shoot when it is being handled by your buddy. In Spot Mode, the beam angle is reduced down to a 15 degree, 1000 lumen concentrated light, which is great to focusing on smaller subjects or areas. You can adjust the brightness of both of these beams depending on the conditions you are in, whether you want the battery time to be extended, perhaps based on the images you want.
For anyone that likes to shoot at night, the red light is very useful for illuminating shy subjects such as mandarin fish so that you can photograph and video them without affecting their natural behaviour. The UV light is a great new tool for underwater photographers and videographers who are looking for something a little different. You can use this light to bring out the flouro characteristics of many corals, anemones and small critters that only come out in the dark.
The Radiant 3000F package comes with 4 batteries, but the light only uses 2, so you can have replacements charged and ready to go at all times. The light also has a battery indicator to let you know how much life is left, which is another really useful feature. In flood mode, on full power, the batteries will last around 50 minutes, perfect for the standard recreational dive. This light also has a useful Standby mode, which will again assist you in saving batteries. To get the light into Standby, you have to press the mode button 3 times in quick succession. It is then ready to use, but if you do not use it within 20 minutes, it will turn back off again. This also prevents the light being accidentally turned on in your gear bag!
The light comes with both a YS mount and a ball mount, so can be fitted to whatever video or photo arm system you are using. It is depth rated to 100m, and one of our favourite features of the Fantasea Radiant 3000F is that is has a “memory” so if you use a particular setting regularly, this light remembers what it was last set on, and when you turn it on again it will come back on in that same setting. Simple but genius.
There is a lot to like about this new video light from Fantasea. It has lots of cool features, and it has a lovely light quality. It looks good, and it comes with a nice package of useful accessories. We enjoyed using it both as a light for our own photography, and as the light being held by the model in our shots. It should be hitting the shelves this month and so if you are in the market for a new video light, it should be on your short-list.
Distributed in the UK by Blue Orb Distribution.
For more from Nick and Caroline, visit www.frogfishphotography.com.