Source Four Multipar Pricing


I've been checking pricing on source four multi pars and something seems out of line. Everywhere I look at, say, the 3 cell multipar the price is mroe than double (>$800) what three individual source four pars (apx $400) would be. I can't imagine that there is so much more material, production, and R&D cost that goes into these to justify that type of price differential. Anybody using Source Four Multipars? Did you find reasonable pricing and if so, where? I'm doing stage color washes and although the multipar gives me a little more convenience than three individual fixtures, it doesn't make up for the enormous price difference.
Actually - I can get the EA's for $133 US and I've found the Multipar-3 as low as $845 US. but, the problem still exists - Either way the multipar-3 is over 2 times more expensive than three individual fixtures even though, in essence, I'm getting the same lights. That just doesn't make sense to me. I know I have the convenience of single focusing and a more compact fixture than getting three separate source four pars, but, really, is that worth twice the price?
I dont know, usually the only time I use fixtures like that is on a back wash. I like having the individual fixtures but it really all depends on what you plan on doing.

Thats what it really comes down to... will it just be a cool effect or make your life easier or is a truly needed fixture to pull of a show.
I agree with Brian overall in the case of a wash strip light. In studying what would replace the ready for scrap or a total re-wiring our own fixtures, we quickly wrote off the Multi-Par fixture.

That said, the advantage of the multi-par is that even wash of light in one fixture by way of the S-4 based line of fixture as not as easy to do with in other individual PAR cans as easily. Can you do this, yes, will once you purchase the extra fixtures, will they be available for the single purpose - probably not.

Given the unified high color temperature lamp, it's dimmer duplexing ability and in general a unified design it has advantages in these conditions over something from Strand, Altman, L&E, Times Square, Colortran and other makers of a stip light.

But given the cost, unless by policy you need the ETC fixture that ensures it as a strip light will stay a pre-focused stip light and not be stolen for other purposed perposes, I as above did not go with investing in this fixture. Granted I get to buy more than one lamp type at dealer not end user cost.

As digitaltec says also, the more your price out and the larger the order directly bidded upon beyond list price.... In any case, if the ETC fixture has value to you in similar "improved" lamps and dedicated focused wash, than go with it becase a cyc light is more than just fixtures available, it's a wash of light on specifically orientated reflectors to each other.

Otherwise let's go brass tacks. Do you have dimmer duplexing, or do you only have a certain amount of power that would benefit from more output but lower wattage given you did not go with some of the GE line of HIR lamps at a lower wattage but more output?

If you have 3Kw dimmers devoted to the cyc lighting or pleanty of room for the power eating cycs in the power scheme hoever, new is not always better.
Yep, that's about the principal. Re-read the specs in pulling fire from a flame or at least one might note how other fixtures pull their signal out of a line voltage signal short of a seperate signal wire.

All I can say is don't use it if your dimmers are fed on the same system as other things fed by it. Especially where other fixtures much less computers are supplied, than given these lamps, I think at one point I did find a more standard 6" Fresnel lamp that will work with dimmer duplexing in a otherwise hous ETC system in limiting the magic you can have available to you.

ETC ain't dumb in going all the way back to gel frame size. One might note that other brands of lamp won't work under this system of control. Much less the GLA series of Philips universal fixture lamp in general with it's removable heat sink that was not adopted by ETC.
Aha. I found a PDF that I didn't read on ETCs site. Works as I suspected with regard to the twofer connecting the two cycles of the AC independently.

Do you know the reasoning beyond 77V being the magic number for the lamps? Given what I know about calculus, I would assume that the area under the curve of the sine wave for the half cycle is 77V, but, why it adds up this way, I don't know.
as far as the multi pars, i've seen them used on traveling shows, most recently with alvin ailey dance, they were amazing, and a huge timesaver, we pulled them off the rack, and hung them, they were the 12 par units, didn't need to spend anytime focusing, or running all that extra cable. they were amazing strip lights, very powerful, but i wouldn't reccomend them for normal theater use, unless they were being used as perminant strip lights, in that use, i think it would be worth the extra cost by making things so much simpler.
One very possible reason behind a higher price on MuliPAR is the NEC has a seperate set of guidelines for striplights. Regulations such as:

Circuit conductors SOLDERED to lampholder

Sheet metal thickness and treatment regulations in metal trough construction

Conduit or metal sheathed cable required between lampholders in non-metal trough construction


Plus it is still fairly new, isn't it?
Here are 3 "as new" 12 light ETC Multipar's on Ebay for $1225 each. These have been on ebay for a while (originally at $1300). I think the Canadian location is offputting to a lot of American bidders, but it really doesn't make that much of a difference in shipping etc

Located in Montreal, Canada.

ps. I've got no connection to these lights, and I would buy them myself, except that my grid is only 12' high and I'm better off with smaller fixture striplights.
I'm pricing out four of these today. I have a call in to Texas Scenic to ask them a few questions about specs and pricing. From what I've read so far, these fixtures look amazing. The idea here is to get a permanent cyc wash that will last for a long long time. Our poor MR-16 zip strips aren't holding up too well after 18 years (obviously).

Has anyone had more recent experience with these than what is already posted in this thread? I'd like to hear a bit more about them so that I can better prepare myself for justifying a $10,000 purchase order to my boss. :)
I have demoed but haven't used the Multipar so I can't give you a personal opinion. I do know that in the 4 years since this thread started not much has changed. They still cost more than multiple individual pars and they have not been embraced as the strip light of the future... although they clearly can be used very well that way.

My guess is the price difference is because of a combination of things: volume of production, more metal, different electrical code issues, and heat management. Hey ETC gang are we guessing close here?

As far as why they haven't been embraced...
The main advantage here is having an all HPL lamped theater (as soon as ST can start crank out those Fresnels we'll be set;)). The biggest problem for the multipar is that strips work. There really isn't a need for a new super product. Furthermore, many strip lights seem to last forever. It's also not the most sexy way to spend your money... do you want to upgrade to Multipars vs traditional strips or would you rather have a few more S4's in the inventory? Don't get me wrong, the Multipar is a great product. But, do you need them vs traditional options? That is a tough question for many to justify. In most cases we go for the cheapest strips we can find.

But if you've got the need and the money I would go for it. I decided to not buy strips for my Black Box... had to prioritize somewhere. I still would like to if I get some cash. If I did buy strips I would definitely get Multipars if possible. ETC Good.
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Thanks for the response, Gafftaper.

At this point, my options are as follows.

1. Get more MR-16 units, which I loathe for obvious reasons.
2. Get the MultiPAR strips.
3. Get LED strips for twice as much as the MultiPARs. Looking at something along the lines of the ColorBlaze72s that I'm already very familiar with.

I can't use traditional cyc wash lights because the cyc electric is only three feet downstage of the cyc, leaving very little room to work with. The ETC units are looking good right now because I don't have to run DMX to the stage (for LED units), and they have amazing punch due to the optional 750 watt lamps.

More thoughts, anyone?

FYI: I just got a quote from <deleted> for four ETC Source Four MultiPAR-12 fixtures, with stage pins (but not daisy chained), color frames, lenses (four per lamp), hanging hardware, 48 575w lamps, and shipping for $9,668 (education rate). Still doing my homework on the LEDs. :cool:
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(as soon as ST can start crank out those Fresnels we'll be set)

Ummm Proably shouldn't say this, but there are Fresnels already made that use the HPL lamp.... They are out there and made by some pretty reputable manufacturer's as well

Still doing my homework on the LEDs.

As for the LED's, look at the Pixelline 110's by Pixelrange. Very nice and RGBA as opposed to the RGB of the Colorblazes....
Ummm Proably shouldn't say this, but there are Fresnels already made that use the HPL lamp.... They are out there and made by some pretty reputable manufacturer's as well
Oh Really Now? I'm sure ST would be very interested to find this out....

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