Posts Tagged ‘mola tips’

Llumm Studios & Innovafoto Mola test

Our fantastic friends at Llumm Studios, Valencia Spain, recently teamed up with the Spanish Mola distributor, Innovafoto, to create a comprehensive Mola test. There intention was to recreate the same conditions for each softlight, so they could appreciate the differences that exist among the different Mola range.

“I am just excited about the new Mola reflectors. My company, Llumm Studios, in collaboration with Innovafoto, has collected each Mola reflector model to arrange a comprehensive test of their differences and peculiarities. … I hope this analysis helps you in choosing your Mola. Although the tests are very exhaustively done, you know results can be changed simply by zooming in or out any on these light sources.”

“The test has two parts: First, focused on the model, Charles, and secondly we took general shots where we could see the light effect over a large area. We will check the differences in shadows and contrast and also the range and light fall-off of each Mola reflector.”

Read up on the testing here - http://www.llumm.com/test-mola/ (in spanish)

Below is a behind-the-scenes video of the testing process…

and see the results from their test here: http://www.llumm.com/test-reflectores-mola/ (including images like that shown below, click on the issuu ‘expand’ link)

click below for a bigger version… (courtesy Llumm Studios, translated by Mola)

www.llumm.com
www.innovafoto.com

 

Mola tip: diffuse your Mola

Another way of softening the output of your Mola beauty dish is to use a diffusion sock. Unknown to a lot of people is that Mola actually makes 4 different types of diffusion socks for their entire range of Mola’s; (22″ – 43.5″)

  • Standard nylon diffuser
  • Mesh diffuser
  • LW diffuser
  • LW vented diffuser

Standard nylon diffuser;
nylon diffuser on B&H

When you purchase a new Mola, it ships with the standard nylon diffusion sock as seen below (installed on a Mola 28″ silver Setti)

Mesh diffuser;
mesh diffuser on B&H
The mesh diffuser is how it sounds, an interwoven mesh of material. This results in a very subtle diffusion of the light, around 1/3 stop loss of light and is great for just a hint of softening.

mesh diffuser shown below…

standard nylon vs the mesh…

LW diffuser;
LW diffuser on B&H
Similar to the ‘standard nylon diffuser’, the light weight diffuser is a breathable polyester fabric which allows more air to pass through the fabric. It is not as dense and diffuses a little less than the ‘standard nylon’ diffuser. (about 1/3 stop difference) This will help reduce the ‘ballooning’ effect when the lights fan / heat will fill the soft light and balloon the diffuser outward with some flash heads.

LW-diffuser vented (HMI);
LW diffuser-vented on B&H
Like the light weight diffuser above, except this diffuser has an additional 3/4″ vent at the top. This vent makes it ideal for tungsten and HMI continuous lighting which generate heat.

Both of these LW diffusers will allow you to continue to shoot with lights that generate heat, or lights that are prone to overheat quickly and have thermal cutoffs.

TIP: some shooters will double-diffuse Mola’s by installing 2 diffusion socks for an even softer, subtle fill light. Recently featured Mola user; Fiona Quinn uses this from time to time.

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Maintaining your diffusers;

The standard nylon diffuser that ships with each reflector does over time become dirty given studio or location situations. Some strobe fans drive endless amounts of air through your reflector pushing airborne dirt and dust into the diffuser.
Over time the dirt from fans or just months or years of location can take their toll on how clean your diffuser is.
Simply hand wash your nylon diffuser in a mild detergent and air dry, for tougher stains a fabric stain remover or a detergent with bleach will work well.
For taking out the wrinkles once it’s dry, just a quick spray using a spray bottle with clean water or a studio steamer will make the diffuser flat and wrinkle free.

 

Mola tip: stacking your diffusers

We’ve mentioned a few times on this blog about Mola users using a stacked configuration for their Mola dishes. We’ve had a few people ask what this configuration looks like and how they can setup their dish also like this.

When we refer to ‘stacked diffusers’ we are referencing the installation of both the PAD and OPAL discs in a stacked, or collated configuration.

Here is an image of a stacked setup on a white Mola 22″ Demi…

 

When you buy a new Mola, all of the range (excluding the 33.5″ Beamm) ships with the PAD central diffuser – aka the Perforated Aluminium Disc. This disc looks like a swiss-cheesed metal disc.

Mola also makes an optional OPAL glass diffuser (frosted glass disc) which further softens output through the centre of the dish. This gives the user flexibility for the output they are looking to create.

If we stack the two diffusers, the PAD and OPAL you create an even softer centre-core of light which is favoured by shooters who either have no glass dome over their light head, or like to use the dish unsocked. Also when using HMI or continuous tungsten lighting, it further removes the brighter central hotspot.

click the link below to view the instructions for setting up this configuration…
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