In September 2010, Calumet introduced new Pro Series DSLR camera accessories plus Pro Series LED video lights for camcorders and DSLRs with video capabilities. “These state-of-the-art tools are designed to expand the capabilities of your camera and flash systems, both in the studio and on location,” says Chris Harlocker, Calumet’s Vice President of Group Business Development.
Pro Series products feature the latest engineering and electronic circuitry to ensure high performance with leading DSLR cameras and flash units, including Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Sony and more. A selection of these new products is described below.
Pro Series 4-Channel Wireless Trigger Kits
These 2.4 GHz wireless trigger kits synchronize your camera and flash and provide remote operation for over 328 feet (100 meters). You can reliably trigger hot shoe flashes and studio lights, as well as focus and fire your cameras using the triggers as wired or wireless shutter releases.
Harlocker points out, “With the TTL passthrough on the transmitter, you can use a flash in TTL mode on your camera and trigger remote manual strobes. You get the reliability of TTL flash and wireless manual slave triggering, a feature that isn’t seen on many flash triggers.”
The kits use AAA batteries and can trigger hot shoe flashes or studio lights via 3.5mm, 6.3mm or PC Sync connections. They are also exceptionally durable thanks to metal hot shoes, large locking rings and easy-to-operate switches. Other features include a test/shutter button and a status LED.
The kits are available in two types — one optimized for Canon systems and one optimized for Nikon systems — but they can also be used with Olympus and Sony cameras or studio strobes. Each kit includes one transmitter, one receiver, dedicated cables and batteries. List price is $99.99.
Pro Series Digital Shutter Timer Controller
This multi-functional unit features a self-timer, an interval timer, a long-exposure timer and exposure count settings. It triggers a camera’s shutter at precise and regular intervals — anywhere from 1 second to 99 hours, 59 minutes, and 59 seconds. The unit’s multiple timer functions can be combined to perform a series of actions at prescribed intervals.
“The Digital Shutter Timer Controller is great for low light and astrophotography,” says Harlocker. “It can be operated with one hand and is small enough to slip into your pocket. Also, with interchangeable cables, a single unit can be used on many different camera models.”
Images taken using the interval timer can be combined in software programs to create time-lapse videos. For HDR (High Dynamic Range) photography, the controller allows photographers to set long exposure shutter speeds precisely, making it easy to bracket HDR exposures.
The shutter release is a two-stage button: half-pressing it causes the camera to focus, while full-pressing triggers the shutter. The unit comes with a battery and lanyard that allows you to hang it safely from your camera or tripod. It requires a dedicated shutter release cable that is sold separately. List price for the timer controller is $99.99.
Pro Series Wireless Transceiver Units
These 4-channel transceivers can be used either as transmitters or as receivers in tandem with other units to fire portable flashes, studio strobes or cameras. When used with one unit attached to your camera as a transmitter, each unit used as a receiver can trigger two flashes at a time. Two units can provide wireless remote operation of your camera.
“There is no end to the creative possibilities with this multipurpose system,” says Harlocker. “These transceivers use digital circuitry and offer incredible reliability, with no misfires and a range of over 328 feet (100 meters). They are designed for professionals who never want to miss a shot.”
He notes, “WRS Mode gives you the ability to wirelessly trigger cameras and flashes in sync. Most triggering systems allow you to do one or the other, but not both simultaneously. This offers considerable power to event and sports photographers with remote cameras and strobes.”
A choice of four channels offers a range of synchronizing options with multiple flash and camera setups, and also prevents your flash from being triggered by other flash units around you. Each unit has a male hot shoe for mounting to your camera and a female hot shoe for mounting a portable flash. The system offers PC sync for studio strobes and is compatible with Sekonic RT-32 equipped flash meters. List price is $109.99.
Pro Series LED Video Lights
For camcorders and DSLRs with video capabilities, Pro Series LED Video Lights provide clean, flicker-free natural light — perfect for high-resolution, professionalquality video work. There are four lights in the series: the Single LED Video Light,the Multi LED Panel Light, the LED Panel Light and the Studio LED Panel Light.
“When used individually, in combination, or with multiples of the same unit, these four lights cover most studio and on-location needs,” says Harlocker. “Their lightweight, compact design, coupled with an extraordinary lumen output and light softening and warming diffusers (included), sets them apart from other LED lights on the market.”
The LED Panel Light is particularly noteworthy: its 96 super-bright LEDs produce an 800 Lux, 5600K light that is continuously variable from 100 percent to OFF with no color shift. The wide beam angle (65 degrees) covers lenses down to 18mm with no hot spots for broadcast quality output. An expandable link system allows you to attach up to nine units together to create a single huge light source.
Harlocker sums up, “These portable, versatile and dependable lights are designed for flexibility in providing solutions to the most difficult lighting problems.” List prices are: Single LED Video Light, $69; Multi LED Panel Light, $149; LED Panel Light, $199; LED Studio Panel Light, $599.
Calumet Photographic has been serving photographers since 1939. The company has 28 retail centers in the United States, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, plus an interactive website with more information about Calumet’s products and services, www.calumetphoto.com.