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Hensel lights
Old 03-01-2005, 12:28 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Anyone use any of the Hensel monolights?
I'm thinking about buying one but I'd like to know if others have used them and what they have to say about them.
Any problems?
Likes?
Dislikes?

Thanks

Howard

 
 
Re: Hensel lights
Old 03-01-2005, 02:05 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Nothing to dislike about them. Top of the line, period.

J T
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Re: Hensel lights
Old 03-01-2005, 11:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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To me lighting is a long-term investment. These things last almost forever and you could end up using them 20 yrs or more. One negative about Hensel is the very limited number of acccessories available. i.e.

Hensel reflectors

Photogenic reflectors

Reflectors and other accessories are really what makes the difference. Also, you mentioned "one". You can buy one at a time but it's nice when any accessory fits any light you own. I have five Photogenics.

Paul
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Re: Hensel lights
Old 03-01-2005, 11:43 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Ok, I'll quickly clarify and say that I use not the monolights, but the PORTY series. I have a strong need for battery powered strobe, with all the location shooting I do, and I dislike monolights even in studio for several reasons.

However:

I can tell you a lot about Hensel products as a whole. Very high quality German design and manufacture, equivalent to Profoto or Broncolor, easier to use than Broncolor generally, the reflector/speedring mount is a piece of work, no mount is easier and yet secure. A big plus for me. Very good accessories. A little pricey, but so are Profoto and Broncolor. I've put my Porty stuff through heavy professional use on location for 2 years now without adverse incident. We're not talking about those cheapie Alien Bees here...

The one general word of caution you need to know about Hensel as a whole is that it's a very high quality, reputable German company, but it's a SMALL company, and they're almost too good for their own good. Demand for their products outstrips supply, they just can't make 'em fast enough, MOST especially for the Porty series, which is a class of strobe gear in which they clearly lead the industry. This means that availability is low, usually only found in the major markets (of course you can order from B&H or Adorama, but they sell out quick) and backorders are common. Whatever you buy, Porty, Vectra, Vela or Tria, you might wanna make sure you've got some basic spare stuff like flashtubes on hand, because if for some reason you're unlucky to break or blow one, the dealer just might have the stuff you need on backorder.

Hope this helped.
 
 
Re: Hensel lights
Old 03-01-2005, 11:52 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Yes it does.
I'm getting one (for now).
I Was going to go to B&H today, but it just started snowing up here again! [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/frown.gif[/img]

So, I guess I'll order via internet.

Thanks Marko and everyone else for your input and help.

Howard

 
 
Accessories
Old 03-01-2005, 11:53 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The selection is rather limited compared to say Broncolor, which has a HUGE range, or even Profoto. However, what they do have is excellent. Great beauty dish for example. Typical of Hensel. As well such stuff as satellite reflector, very good dedicated softboxes, and you're run-of-the-mill type stuff as grids, barn doors, and snoots, etc. You don't have 5 choices for every type, but you've got pretty much every type. In addition, if you opt for one of the pack systems, there is a range of pretty much every type of head you're likely to need. Normal heads, ring flashes, bi-tube heads, and fresnel spot heads. If you need 15 different reflectors, maybe this isn't the best brand to go with. I get by honestly with 2 (umbrella reflector and beauty dish, not counting speed rings). You can do a WHOLE lot with a few, select, appropriate reflectors and pieces of equipment. You need not have a reflector for every season. Almost anything can be done with flags and silks and gobos and bounceboard, etc.

Again, the problem isn't with what they manufacture. The problem is with what's available at the dealer TODAY if you need it TODAY, a problem you wouldn't experience if you went with say Profoto, which is pretty much the rental standard all over the "civilized" photographic world. That's this brand's only real weakness.
 
 
Re: Hensel lights
Old 03-02-2005, 01:57 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I have 4 500 watt integras 2x 2 light kits octagon lightbox, rectangle lightbox, reflector umbrellas and 7 inch grid reflector and grid set.

This is the first set of strobes that I've owned but the setting are consistent on all four lights. I like the glass protective domes and the convenient case for transport to location shoots.

I have had good results with the lighting and color temp appears to be reasonably consistent across various power levels but I have not measured with meter and am not able to compare with other lighting products.

No failures so far but only 2 months experience. Availability of light modifiers at BH and Adorama good but not complete. All photos on my GG site taken using 2,3 or 4 Integra 500's in a small studio.

I am happy with my purchases.

Jeff
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