Aputure Releases the 300D II — with Lantern Attachment
The much-anticipated successor to the highly successful 300d LED light fixture, the 300d II comes jam-packed with all of the new features we were looking for in a powerful on-set light package.
If you saw our post covering the announcement of both the 300d II and the lantern attachment during NAB week, you might know how excited we were to check it out in person. It checked off all of the items on our wishlist: more brightness, an attachable ballast, and even app control from their new Sidus app. The 300d II is available for purchase now, but before you go off and buy it, take a look at some of the new features.
All-New Redesigned Control Box
One of our biggest gripes with the original 300d was its convoluted power ballast system. There were two separate boxes — one for power, and one for the controls — and they were constantly just . . . in the way on set. But we have nothing to gripe about anymore. Aputure’s all-new control box is a marvel in the lighting world. There’s really nothing else like it out there right now. It uses a fanless design that utilizes heatsinks, which renders the box completely silent.
The control box can also attach directly to a C-stand using the new quick-release tool, which makes organization a whole lot easier on set. If you’re shooting in an area without access to power, you’re in luck: you can power the 300d II with two V-Mount or Gold Mount batteries — or even with just one battery at half output. That’s pretty useful if you don’t have access to a generator.
On top of all the other crazy-good ballast features, there are now built-in lighting FX that we’ve seen on Aputure’s other products, like the AL-MW, that include useful on-set effects such as “Paparazzi,” “Fireworks,” “Lightning,” “Faulty Bulb,” “TV,” “Pulse,” ” Strobe,” and “Explosion.”
Sidus Link Control
We’ve been absolutely psyched to find out more about Aputure’s new light-linking app Sidus, and it’s looking like we’ve got our first product that will feature connectivity to the software. Here’s what Aputure says about the connectivity features with the 300d II:
Featuring all-new Bluetooth SIG mesh network technology, the 300d Mark II will also the first app-controllable Aputure lighting fixture. This technology will allow you to control a 300d Mark II from up to 400 meters away, by linking multiple lights up to 80 meters apart. Using the Sidus Link app, you’ll be able to access all of the functions of the control box, in addition to being able to save presets, finely tune and trigger additional lighting FX, as well as install firmware updates, all from your smartphone or tablet.
Aputure has said that it will be making backwards-compatible attachments that can connect to your non-Sidus Aputure lighting gear to the app, but we’re just going to have to wait on that release.
More Power and Efficiency
Having more available power on set is always a good thing. The 300d II is 20 percent brighter than its predecessor. It also comes with Aputure’s brand-new, hyper-efficient, 55-degree reflector. After redesigning the shape and coating of the inside of the reflector, Aputure increased the output by more than three times, compared to the original 300d.
Bonus: The Aputure Lantern
Now I’m not going to lie: I’ve been excited about this for a long time. I am a huge fan of using china balls on set, but they can be a nightmare to work with. The paper rips constantly, and they have the penchant to accidentally catch fire if exposed to too much light. The Aputure Lantern fixes that problem by providing ample soft lighting with just a quick attachment to your 300d II. It’s also a tension-based system that can fit in a small carrying case, which makes it incredibly portable and easy to access for run-and-gun filmmakers.
One of the coolest features of the Lantern is the skirt attachment. It’s a black cloth that can direct and block your soft light toward your desired target. It’s great for lighting a table scene — or a single person in a crowd.
Both the Aputure 300d II and the Lantern attachment are available for purchase on the Aputure website.
All images via Aputure.
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