Smith-Victor, celebrities choice for home-studios

Was that a Smith-Victor light I just saw on TV?

Yes, it might have been a Smith-Victor.   Major celebrities, and recently, a major television network chose Smith-Victor lights to send home to their cast in order to finish producing their 2020 season in compliance with the covid-19 stay-at-home order.

Many of America’s most popular celebrity television personalities are now recording live from their living rooms, bedrooms, garages, anywhere you can get the lighting and audio gear hooked up and in place.  And that’s one of the reason a large-format shoot-through LED ring lights and professional panel lights were such a natural solution.  Their narrow, low profile takes up almost no space, and yet it still puts out an amazing studio light-quality (at least 95CRI).  Learn more about the importance of  light quality and CRI.

Robin Roberts of ABC’s Good Morning America started to record shows from her home.

Trevor Noah calls The Daily Show ‘The Daily Social Distancing Show’.  He hosts it from his small Manhattan apartment.

American Idol recorded the second half of their 2020 season singing competition from their contestants homes!

NBC’s The Voice began shooting from home Monday, May 4 2020. Contestants, judges, superstar coaches and host Carson Daly will all be working from their make-shift home studios lighted by Smith-Victor.  Guess what else?  These lights are made from scratch, right here in USA just outside Chicago in our Bartlett manufacturing facility.

Large-format Ring Light helps Kelly Clarkson work from home and look great. See the reflection in her eyes?

American Idol reported that they sent identical Audio-Visual (A.V.) kits, microphones and lights to each of the 20 contestants.  It was not a small task to achieve the quality demands of prime-time network television and the limitations of a home-studio.  The A.V. kits had to be simple to operate, and transport.  No union gaffers would be allowed on set in the homes of the contestants.  The power draw had to be low enough for normal home use.  And they had to be low-profile, lightweight, and  small enough to fit into the bedroom of an average middle class teenager.  High quality, affordable LED light panel lights were the only choice, like these consumer and pro versions by Smith-Victor:  LED Lights.

Kelly Clarkson was seen last week (3rd week of April 2020) performing “Focus”, an amazing cover of the H.E.R.S. super-hit with lighting from a single large-format LED ring light.  Similar (if not the same) seen on American Idol top 20. See full performance here:  Kelly Clarkson “Focus”.  One of the keys here is that with a large-format ring-light you can mount your iPhone or even your camera right in the middle of the light,; Canon, Nikon, Sony A7…, providing smooth, round, even light over your entire face.  Here’s one of our favorites (again notice the studio-quality CRI of 95), and they’re not that expensive at all:

Savannah Guthrie and Al Roker of NBC’s Today Show record live from home in their own make-shift home-studios.  Sometimes its as simple as adding a basic 2 or 3 light kit, but for some its a bit more sophisticated.  Part of Guthrie’s basement has been converted into a functional broadcast-quality A.V. studio: see 3-point lighting.  Al Roker was seen broadcasting in his backyard because the lighting kit he chose had a simple, rechargeable battery pack that would last a couple hours at full power.  And believe it or not, we’re no strangers to pro broadcast-quality lighting.  Our Cool-Lux model has been used in syndicated broadcast studios all over the country.  We were the first video light in outer space chosen by NASA.  We even won an Oscar award in Hollywood!  You can buy a set if you like, they’re not that expensive, easy to use and run off normal power.  Wait until the lighting director finds out you found a Cool-Lux kit for your home studio!

Our best pro-light for DSLR video (Nikon, Canon, Sony A7…).  We highly recommend the Orbit Pro-Series LED ring light.  Features near-perfect 95cri studio light-quality.  It comes with an all metal rig/rail system to mount your camera and slide into the perfect position no matter what lens you’re using.  For mobility sake we got the overall size down to a handleable 10″ though it has more power than almost all of our other lights–1700 lux which is about equal to 320 watts incandescent!  Color temp control, fully dimmable, DMX, and runs on batteries when you’re on the go.  It even has a USB port to power your phone, camera, whatever you need!

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