Whether the application is a large venue stage show, a theater, an on-location shoot or a small production studio, the quality of the lighting will be a significant factor in the success of the production. High luminance, beam control, strong color characteristics, stable light output over time, easy lamp replacement and long lifetime are all factors that contribute to the high quality of the products in this category.
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About Stage & Studio Lighting
From small theatrical events to professional television and film studios, specialty lighting is used throughout the production process. The technology used in these specialty lamps range from incandescent to the latest generation of LED bulbs and arrays, with metal halide, fluorescent, and short arc lamps being used for even more specialized applications.
Halogen bulbs used in stage/studio applications come in a wide range of wattages, shapes, sizes, and applications. They can also be manufactured with longer life filaments, extending the life of the lamp up to five times compared to traditional versions of the same lamp.
Halogen light bulbs can be designed to maintain a constant color temperature throughout their lifetimes, and they are also dimmable. Manufacturers like Osram and Ushio have manufactured lamps with special bases for quick exchanges or heat dissipation, as well, making halogens a versatile solution for many fixtures.
Metal halide stage/studio lights provide a high intensity light and can simulate daylight color temperature. They come in a wide range of sizes, bases, and wattages. The color temperature can be around 6,000K with a CRI over 90, providing daylight-quality light and crisp, clear colors. Wattages can range from 200 to 24,000 watts, making these bulbs ideal for everything from small studios and fixtures to larger outdoor floodlights.
One additional benefit of metal halide lamps is they can be dimmable, giving lighting designers and equipment operators flexibility on set or on location.
Specialty stage/studio fluorescent bulbs are most commonly designed with one of two color temperatures, 3200K or 5500-5600K. They are manufactured to provide accurate color rendering for video applications and some can be dimmed while not sacrificing color stability.
Stage/studio fluorescent bulbs come in both linear and compact variations. While they are being phased out in favor of LED fixtures, there is still a large install base of TV and film studio fixtures using fluorescent tubes.
Mercury Short Arc
Mercury discharge reflector lamps are often found in moving head and other spectacular light fixtures, especially for stage lighting, including concerts. They are compact, ultra high performance lamps with a stable light output and high luminance.
Short arc mercury lamps are also the most commonly used light sources in consumer and professional projector lamp modules. Their small size, wide range of bulb sizes and wattages, high color quality, and affordable price make them ideal for projectors.
The reflector and base in these lamps are designed to allow for easy lamp replacements, as the light bulb is already positioned optimally inside of the reflector and plugged into the base. Their compact size also makes them usable in fixtures for any location on a stage or set.
Xenon Short Arc
Short arc xenon lamps are used in cinema projectors and large venue projectors, as well as stage searchlights and spotlights. They come in a range of wattages, from 500 to 7,000 or more.
When illuminated, these lamps emit light matching the spectral distribution of the sun with a 6000K approximate color temperature. Throughout the life of these lamps, they are able to maintain constant color properties, making them essential for film and stage projection.
Ultraviolet blacklight bulbs are used to create special effects. While blacklights have a wide range of applications, including printing, curing, and medical, filtered blacklight bulbs are very popular in special effects lighting.
Not all incandescent bulbs have been banned, even screw-in types. Incandescent lamps are available for specialty applications and they are still widely manufactured for photography lighting. While LEDs have replaced incandescent in many applications, LEDs do not have the near 100 CRI of incandescent lamps, and important consideration in professional photography.