Phosphor beam gives Foton bright future1 December 2011
The new PRG TruColor Foton is a small, lightweight and colour accurate variable-beam light that is claimed to be powerful, inexpensive and water resistant. It uses remote phosphor technology, which provides more accurate colour than LEDs, writes David Fox.
It is the first portable broadcast lamp to use remote phosphor, where an internal light source strikes a crystal impregnated with rare earth elements that then glows brightly. The large surface of the emitter allows for a precise mix of the phosphorescent material for accurate colours across the visible spectrum.
This results in a colour rendering index of more than 95, and "virtually eliminates the challenges of lighting with the discontinuous spectrum inherent in most LED lighting sources." The remote phosphor technology generates natural-looking light, requiring no colour correction, and correlating perfectly with professional light and colour meters. It is dimmable from 0% To 100% with negligible colour shift. It currently matches tungsten sources (3000K). Daylight models will be available in early 2012.
The Foton is a 1.3kg go-anywhere light, able to operate at temperatures from -20 to +50 degrees, while its sealing means it is suitable for use unprotected in wet locations, being able to withstand water saturation.
It has just been added to the range of lighting equipment distributed by Ianiro UK, whose Managing Director, Nick Allen-Miles, said: “The Foton will be welcomed by everyone from ENG camera men shooting outdoors in European drizzle to film makers facing wintry mountain conditions.
"Its small size, high output and low power consumption means it will also be a welcome addition for specialist crews working underground, in disaster zones or desert environments.”
Cost-saving features include an estimated 50,000-hour life, and, in spite of its more than 1,000-lumen output (roughly equivalent to a 150W tungsten PAR light), the Foton draws less than 30 Watts and requires no cooling fans. This is achieved despite employing a direct-drive array that eliminates flicker at any frame rate. By physically separating the phosphor plate from the light source, heat management keeps the material from baking and changing colour over time.
Options include both AC- and DC-powered versions and a variable beam angle of 10˚ to 120˚ using quick-connect reflectors. List price is £549, including three reflectors (wide, medium and spot), and the Foton is the first of a new series of TruColor lights from PRG.