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How to power a Kino with battery?


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#1 Jack Lam

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 07:25 PM

I am prepping for an upcoming shoot with some gun-and-run scenes at night. I'm looking for a larger soft source to light the subject that runs on battery to keep it mobile.

A 4'x4 Kino with some 216 diff would fit the bill in terms of the look that I want. Considering its lower amperage requirement, how hard is it to hook it up to battery?

If Kino isn't viable, what other lighting unit would you suggest?

Jack
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#2 Rob Vogt

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Posted 14 February 2011 - 11:52 PM

I've seen short men on battery belts, no reason to doubt a tall man wouldn't work. Talk to a rental house see what they can do, worst case scenario you get two short men.
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#3 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 04:41 AM

...short...what?

And yes I've run fluorescents off inverters before, but I was careful to use a traditional iron-ballast type, even though they have a particularly unpleasant negative-impedance characteristic that will bother some inverters. Some of the electronic ballasts actually manage to be even worse, although for the price you would hope a kino ballast would be properly suppressed...

If you end up doing it with an inverter, get one advertising "true sine wave" to minimise problems.

P
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#4 Ari Schaeffer

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 09:50 AM

Can you send us pictures if you do end up having a grip run around hollywooding a 4x4 kino while chasing after your actors? Has to be a spectacle to behold.

Why not get a more portable fixture? Battery powered LED? Sun gun with gel/diff?

Also, count me in on the never having heard kino units being called "men" before thing. What do you call a wall'o'lite? "wall o' men"? "really tall guy"?
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#5 Ed Conley

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 10:44 AM

You can use one of these, which may be available in your local rental shop

http://www.dynalite.com/?page_id=428

I haven't used them in a while so I don't remember the run time but you can rent extra batteries.
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#6 Mathew Rudenberg

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 12:26 PM

Can you send us pictures if you do end up having a grip run around hollywooding a 4x4 kino while chasing after your actors? Has to be a spectacle to behold.

Why not get a more portable fixture? Battery powered LED? Sun gun with gel/diff?

Also, count me in on the never having heard kino units being called "men" before thing. What do you call a wall'o'lite? "wall o' men"? "really tall guy"?


I've heard the terminology before, but in a different way -
man = 4', boy = 2'
fat = 4bank, skinny = 2bank.

Therefore skinny boy, fat man, etc. rather than tall man, short boy, which doesn't make as much sense because 'boy' implies 'short' but whatever works works.

I guess fat man is quicker to say then 4 foot 4 bank but it never caught on for me. Like a gaffer I knew who called black wrap 'run DMC'

A wall'o'lite would probably be an obese Robert Wadlow :)

Anyway, even the DC powered kinos means batteries, inverters and ballasts, which leads to a messy bunch of cables and gak.

My approach in this situation would be to get a couple of 1x1 litepanels powered off anton bauer batteries and join them together to make a source of whatever size you like. I think it would be easier to deal with and to carry.
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 01:27 PM

I tend to say "four by two" or whatever, the first number signifying the length and the second the tube count.

P
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#8 Ross Neugeboren

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 06:26 PM

I know that Kino themselves offers deep-cycle marine batteries with an 1800w sine wave inverter for rental, but that's geared towards running I think 4 heads for some acceptable duration. A rig that's becoming popular for a large, mobile fill is the combination of a small (125 pocket par, 200w joker) HMI Par with a chimera all mounted to a 40" grip arm. Ballast on the back, light on the front. Both can be run off a battery belt, and you can switch up the light modifier to change spread. GEM balls are great for them, too. The gaffer on the first show i saw them dubbed ours the "blowtorch." Powerful and mobile, less cumbersome than a flying kino.
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#9 Ari Schaeffer

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Posted 21 February 2011 - 12:00 PM

I tend to say "four by two" or whatever, the first number signifying the length and the second the tube count.

P


Same here, I thought this was kind of the standard term, but I learned something new I guess. Though I had heard the short boy thing before referring to the 2' units. I always thought that was more confusing because it doesn't take single bank units into account at all...unless you start asking for the emaciated boy or something.
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#10 timHealy

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Posted 25 February 2011 - 10:27 AM

I have seen 24 volt battery powered 4 bulb ballast but it looked like a third party made it and not made by kino flo.

best

Tim
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#11 Guy Holt

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Posted 18 March 2011 - 03:44 PM

A 4'x4 Kino with some 216 diff would fit the bill in terms of the look that I want. Considering its lower amperage requirement, how hard is it to hook it up to battery?


I have experimented a great deal with running Kinos on batteries and I have found that the Diva lights work well on battery belts when used with a small 300W True Sine Wave Inverter. The inverter is small enough that it can go right on the belt and the heads are more efficient than the older style Kino fixtures that use T-12 ballasts. Unlike the older style Kino fixtures, the Diva fixtures use ballasts that include Power Factor Correction (PFC) circuitry. As it does in HMI ballasts, this advanced electronics contributes to a more economical use of power than conventional electronic ballasts. For example, a Kino Flo Diva 400 draws less than half of the power (2 Amps) of a 4’ – 4 Bank (4.6 Amps) while putting out about the same amount of light. While this nearly 3 amp difference is not a major consideration when using house power, it makes a difference when your power is coming from a battery belt. The non-pfc ballasts of the older style Kino fixtures that use T-12 ballasts (the Single, Double, & 4 Bank Fixtures, the Wall-o-Lite fixture, as well as the Image 20, 40, & 80 fixtures also return harmonic currents into the power stream that can generate voltage distortion.

If you are not familiar with Power Factor Correction in Kino ballasts, I would suggest you read an article I wrote for our company newsletter on the use of portable generators in motion picture lighting. In it I cover some of the basic electrical engineering principles behind harmonic distortion and Power Factor Correction in HMIs, Kinos, & LED lighting fixtures. Harry Box, author of “The Set Lighting Technician’s Handbook” has cited my article in the just released Fourth Edition of the handbook. In addition, he has established a link to it from the companion website for the Fourth Edition of the Handbook, called “Box Book Extras.”

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If you haven't yet read the article, or looked at it in a while, it is worth reading. I have greatly expanded it to be the definitive resource on portable power generation for motion picture production. Of the article Harry Box states:

"Great work!... this is the kind of thing I think very few technician's ever get to see, and as a result many people have absolutely no idea why things stop working."

"Following the prescriptions contained in this article enables the operation of bigger lights, or more smaller lights, on portable generators than has ever been possible before."



The “Box Book Extras,” site is also worth checking out because it includes other source material used for the handbook, articles by Harry Box published in other periodicals, related websites, a list of production oriented i-phone apps, as well as more in depth discussion of topics touched upon in the handbook. You can log onto the Box Book Extras site at http://booksite.focalpress.com/box/setlighting/ with our pass-code "setlighting." Use this link for my news letter article on the use of portable gas generators in motion picture production.

Guy Holt, Gaffer, SceenLight & Grip, Lighting and Grip Rental in Boston.
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