amaran F21c, F21x, & F22c, F22x LED Flexible Panel Lights First Look – Newsshooter
Flexible LED panels have some solid advantages as well as drawbacks. Since they are flat and have no bulk, they can be mounted directly to a surface like a wall or ceiling. In tight spaces, they can be very handy. The downside is they need to be put together to be used as a basic fixture. I always say use the right tool for the job, and flexible lights offer some advantages if you need them.
The F22c and F21c are RGBWW and the F22x and F21x are bi-color.
I have to admit I was a bit surprised amaran decided to introduce a new line of flexible LED panels. They were extremely popular five years ago, but I don’t see them as often now, Not to say they aren’t helpful. LiteGear is the market leader when it comes to panel lights, and they are used on a lot of sets today.
Each kit includes the following in the F21c, F21x or F22c, F22x LED Flexible Panel fixture kits.
- Head Cable (3m)
- Head Extension Cable (3m)
- AC Power Supply
- AC Power Cable
- X Type Support Frame
- Softbox set includes a softbox with two soft diffusion cloths and a grille
- amaran Carrying Case
As I mentioned earlier, setting up flexible LED panels is a little more work than traditional lights. They come in a few pieces, and to be used as a conventional light, you use the included frame with light stand receiver. I like the design of the frame as it’s sturdy and doesn’t use hook and loop fabric to attach to the frame.
The X-Type Frame ends inserts into reinforced corners of the panel and pulls it out a little. It holds sturdy and won’t slip off easily, making it a good option for overhead use. Some of the Velcro-style frames tend to sag a little and are much more prone to falling off the frame over time.
The light stand receiver is not my favorite. It’s on the light side and doesn’t lock down tight easily. You have to crank it down. I would upgrade this with a more robust light stand adapter or go with a grip head. The angled pin is also a bit odd as the end of the pin is a 3/8 16″ adapter.
I like the included straight baby pin. It fits in a sturdy grip head so much better than the included adapter. I do understand the amaran line is for the budget-minded user.
The cable is attached to the panel with a reinforced hard plastic bracket on both sides. This build is good and shouldn’t break easily; however, the F22c preproduction model started having some issues, and a row of LEDs changed colors when the connection was wiggled a bit. The other models didn’t have problems, so I’ll chalk it up to being a pre-production model. I will say the cable is thick and well-designed with locking connectors.
Controller and Powering
The controller is equipped with either a V-Mount or Gold Mount plate and has the Aputure QR plate on the side. However, the clamp to mount …….