I recently got my hands on the new Siros Monolight 800 S Expert kit and couldn’t wait to test it out. Since I didn’t have any shoots planned before the holidays I decided to break it out of the box for a one-on-one workshop with another photographer at my studio in NYC.
When I was first introduced to the Siros kit, I was immediately drawn to the built-in Wi-Fi and the ability to control the heads via my iPad or iPhone with the bronControl app. I was also very surprised at how intuitive the interface is; everything is controlled by a click and wind of a dial on the back of the monolight. The dial (and on the app) is changed via 1/10 stop or full stop increments. Gone are the days of getting my 5”3 self up a ladder in heels to change the settings of my light on a high boom (or having an assistant change it!). Then I wondered – would I actually use it? Will the novelty of the app wear off? It’s easy to doubt these things when you are comfortable with the equipment you currently use.
On the day of the photo mentorship I pulled out my iPad, opened the bronControl app and began to connect the lights – easy. I changed the light scenarios 4 times – one Octabox as a key light, one Octa and Softbox as a two light full length set up and one small Softbox pointed towards a scrim to create a natural feel. We also changed it up by using a beauty dish with two diffusion socks. The best part (and easiest) was the fact I just had to switch over the accessories – everything else was controlled via the iPad app, all in one place.
Whilst my student was shooting and I was demonstrating the lighting, I was able to help with posing and talk through other aspects of the shoot whilst also changing the desired settings from my hand. Throughout the shoot, my iPad wasn’t far from me – I realized that for my own shoots my assistant would most likely have this at hand when lighting changes are required. I also realized how helpful it would be if I was hosting a seminar or demonstration of lighting – to be able to talk through the settings whilst also changing the light. In a nutshell – the bronControl app has replaced the battery pack.
I couldn’t help but grab a few of my own photos during the mentorship whilst demonstrating poses. The quality of the light is easily on par of more expensive broncolor equipment such as the Move & Senso kits.
I am looking forward to making this a permanent part of my studio in 2015 – the Siros kit compliments my 2 head Move kit very well. It’s also very easy to transport - you can easily fit 2 heads, 2 stands, various accessories and more inside! Perfect when I’m transporting my kit around NY to studios and location houses.
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