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Discussion in 'Lighting and Electrics' started by Les, Mar 30, 2004.
Is the Altman 4.5x6.5 actually smaller in diameter than the 6x9, 6x12, 6x16, and the 6x22's?
360Q fixture, about even the same barrel as a 6x9, just smaller dia. lenses installed into it.
The 3.5Q series is smaller in dia - basically look like a 360Q but smaller in dia by a few inches.
360Q I found with the prefocus lamp was - a 4.5x6.5!
ship - you'd be proud, mate. I went through our entire inventory and de-plugged any lights that weren't up to spec, bench focused them all, and marked the 3.5Qs with field widths... woo!
360Q and the Source 4? I don't think it has really been discussed much. Would love to hear peoples opinions.
HPL and source four reflector is in my opinion a far better combo than any 360Q lamp and reflector at equivalent wattage. The barrel moves more easily - teflon guides in the S4. Plus you have interchanging barrels and barrel rotation in the S4.
360Q and the Source Four family really aren't comparable.
360's are great for warm lighting, and general illumination. If you need
a bunch of sturdy lights for as cheap as possible, 360Q's are a good choice. They are not good for gobo projections because of the hot, hot beams, plus the optics really aren't designed for precision focus. The shutters do warp because of the aluminum reflector, which reflects more heat than the glass ones, and the gels do fade quicker.
The Source Fours are in a class of their own. They pick up the pieces the 360Q leaves behind. Great for specials.
In my opinion, both represent a revolution in the stage lighting industry. Before the axial ellipses, you had to deal with prefocus, huge stepped lenses, etc... What I am surprised by is that the 360Q has seen little refinements in the last 10-20 years, other than the switch to axial, better lenses, and new sockets due to increasing lamp technology; which is also the reason for the new reflector design. That, and a plethora of finishes... Grey at some point, Olive drab, darker olive drab, light brown, kinda light brown, and finally, black. It says alot about an instrument when it can remain almost the same year after year and still be an industry standard... Which is true for both ETC and Altman.
You're not going wrong buying either one. Both are a good investment; it just depends on your application.
pre-focus lamp on any Altman fixture designates it at as a 360 not a 360Q. Does not matter what the lens train is because for the most part they are the exact same. In other words, that crazy 360Q you found with the pre-focus (P-28s) lamp base does not have to be a 4.5x6.5 lens train any more than it has to be a 6x16. Different pineapples but other than that, it’s the same fixture.
As for 3.5Q’s same story with the differences between a 3.5Q5 and 3.5Q6. Same basic fixture, different lenses or positioning of them. In this case unless you match one fixture up with another, it’s really hard to tell the difference. They look the same from the outside. 10 years later and I find out for sure finally that the one fixture marked as a Q5 which had seemed to have a slightly narrower beam actually always was a Q6. Be careful with generalizations.
But a field width marked on a lens train is a really really good idea in general no matter what the brand and model.
On the difference between a 360Q and S-4, for me it’s a question of second generation (halogen) and third generation (dichroics) Lekos. Taken in that light of course the S-4 is going to have improvements and more efficiency. Man, how did they ever do sometimes great theater in the “golden age of theater” without a S-4 fixture???
I’m reading Christopher Innes’ “Edward Gordon Craig - A Vision of Theatre” right now and they are talking about incandescent moon light effects as opposed to gas lighting foot light effects to create atmosphere of reality verses atmospheric of impressionalism. In other words, if you have 2,800K for a color temperature on stage, it’s going to be intense and bright. Put a 3,200K plus lamp next to it and it will become dim. Without that 3,200K lamp it’s back to being bright. In other words, take that lamp efficiency (no Altman dark spot at the center of the beam) and it’s lesser color temperature with using second generation EHD type lamps out of the equation, and design is the same and fixtures are fixtures both doing a good job above 1st generation lighting fixtrues (the Altman 360 for instance as a late comer but still part of that era of lighting.)
To make it more clear, use what you have. If you have 20 fixtures of 360Q use them. If you have that plus five S-4 fixtures, you would want to use the S-4 for the special purpose lighting such as situating an actor with it’s more intense beam or projecting a pattern with it’s more refined beam of light. After that, light the stage as best you can and classify such fixtures as to their best usage or most needed usage. Better use? If I had $1,000.00 to purchase some Lekos with I would buy perhaps one used S-4, than after that 8 of the used 360Q if not all of the 360Q. That’s as opposed to getting stuck with only 4 of the S-4, having them really bright and clean but not having enough fixtures to light a simple show. In buying new, no I probably would put extra money into not buying a 360Q given it’s an older style of fixture, but if I had to watch money, that possible $100.00 per fixture for a new 360Q verses a S-4 might become a major factor. I can always add to my inventory later, that is once I have an inventory.
This is all considering a 360Q fixture with a FLK/HX-600 grade lamp. If you are still using the EHD/EHG lamps, you are in the stone ages because there is only a slight difference in color temperature at best between the HPL and FLK between fixtures. Output will be different, the FLK is a brighter lamps but without the more efficient both filament and reflector/lens train.
On efficiency however as I have said a few times, the HPR lamp in a 360Q might just be a brighter and more efficient lamp than the HPL even when in a 360Q verses a S-4 fixture. Don’t think anyone has done a shoot out yet. I did do a shoot out between a Color Command 750w lamp inside a 360Q type fixture and a 750w lamp in a S-4. The 360Q grade fixture kicked the S-4 fixture’s butt in color temperature though it had more of a dark spot in the center, and intensities will have been about the same given that 360Q had a less efficient reflector/lens train. In other words, if you soup up your 360Q, especially with the HPR, there is a good chance it will best a S-4 fixture. This is all given second generation Altman fixtures to third Generation ETC fixtures. There are other second generation and third generation fixtures on the market that have long standing debates on being better fixtures overall. Altman is the standard because they produced a decent and reliable product at a decent price. ETC came to market first with their 3rd generation light and it’s a good fixture, Altman and stand were sleeping at the trigger than did improve but the new fixtures (see other discussion) have their own problems making them not quite good enough to surpass the S-4 yet. On the other hand, the HPL lamps are just about as good as they are going to get with the Ceramic heat sink now. The FLK lamp with it’s internal reflector is constantly getting better. So given Strand is not rated for 750w, Altman 10 years from now unless ETC further improves the fixture, the Shakespeare fixture if improved might be what everyone wants eventually. After all 15 years ago, who ever heard of ETC? Plus there is lots of other brands on the market.
On shutters warping, A tidbit from my old mentor is that Altman had as a sales add at one point that the shutters would not rust or warp - something like that. They quickly had to do away with that little advertisement. A shutter for a Altman 360Q costs about $1.75 each. If you know a welder/metal fabricator, you can have them make stainless steel ones out of a thicker gauge of metal and they should last longer yet. Upgrade the reflector and lamp in the 360Q and it will also run a bit cooler in theory. Still as long as your lights are not work lights left on all day, reflectors burning is not much of a problem normally. Teflon glides on a S-4 are nice, but try some spray graphite on the lens train of a 360Q. Slides just as well as long as it’s clean from paint and corrosion. The 360Q is second generation and don’t get me wrong the S-4 is better but the 360Q with some care can work very well still thirty years after it came to market.
It has the narrow lens opening. But wow... a #360. And it still works!
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