Ridiculous Output, Quiet Operation, Human-Friendly Price
Rated 5 out of 5
I purchased the Godox UL 150 after having issues with high pitch noise emanating from my Aputure Nova P300C. Different kinds of lighting gear, but in terms of not making noise the Godox UL 150 is king.
Amazing light, so let's get the minor cons out the way first:
Like many ppl, I shoot indoors in small spaces, that aren't always acoustically treated, so having a silent light is essential to my typical workflow.
The light itself has a heatsink and no fan, so it runs silent, HOWEVER, I did in fact notice the light's control unit produces a fairly quiet high pitch noise (you have to put your ear right on top of the control unit to notice). It is, however, the most negligible of all the LEDs I've owned.
I work in tiny spaces, and I've done audio tests with an mkh416 less than 3 feet away, aimed directly at the control box, and the noise is not significant even when I tried to make it so, amplyifing it in post, etc.
Still disappointed it makes any noise at all, but, to be realistic, every single LED film light I've owned produces some noise from somewhere, and this light is the quietest.
And I'd definitely say the control box noise is never significant, even 3ft away from a shotgun mic, in a small, untreated room.
My other complaint is, unlike the Aputure C120dii, the power brick to a/c plug cable doesn't twist and lock into place, so it's a bit more vulnerable to disconnection/abuse. It basically is pushed into place like most laptop power brick-to-a/c plug cables.
My other complaint is, the plastic rosette yoke, when holding an oversized bowens mount modifier, like the forza fresnel, is a bit weak. you have to overtighten it a lot to prevent droop, which is a nonstarter with that, admittedly oversized, heavy modifier.
That being said, smaller bowens modifiers fit on the light well, and they lock into place on the bowens mount very well. And the added output makes using it with something like that Aputure Lantern, especially appealing. ( BH #APLANTERN )
Also, while the powerbrick and the control unit are integrated into one piece on the aputure c120dii, they are separated into two pieces on the Godox UL 150, so it takes maybe 30 seconds more to setup, but not a huge deal considering the UL 150 is effectively silent. If you get a cheap iKan power Grip v 2.0, you can rest the power brick on there and speed things up significantly. ( BH #IKPWRGP02 )
But now the good parts:
Great, normal-looking daylight color light. Good CRI.
Great included reflector, with sun-like output. I can literally light an entire 8x10x8ft room with a SINGLE ONE of these lights aimed at a 45degree angle, bouncing off the ceiling, where a ceiling light would be. On my sony A73 with 24-70mm f/2.8 Gmaster, I can have my camera settings at: 50ss, f/5.6, ISO 300-400. A single light bounced off the ceiling can ambiently light an entire room. None of my other lights, and certainly none at this price point can do this.
Insane output for the price. It feels twice as bright at my aputure c120dii, and for about 1/3rd the price I paid for that light, with no fan! (only downside is the c120dii has better a better yoke, locking power brick-to-a/c cable, and some goofy fx modes you probs won't use on a daylight-only light).
The old school remote works well and is intuitive, too, so I'd recommend picking up a dirt-cheap godox remote for the UL 150 (BH #GORCA5II).
Also annoying you have to purchase a bag separately, but a minor concern given it's 1/2 to 1/3rd the price of other lights w/ similar functionality, is significantly brighter, and this light doesn't produce fan noise.
I use this bag:
Godox CB-16 Carrying Bag for VL-Series Light ( BH #GOCB16 )
It's a bit of a tight fit, but def can fit everything for the light in there, and is reasonably padded if you arrange the dividers right.
After confirming it didn't have any negative impact on audio, even with an mkh416 aimed at it only 3 ft away, I sold my aputure c120dii and ordered 2 more of the Godox UL 150's.
3 of these is roughly the price of 1 of the competitor lights, and you get 2-3x more performance in terms of output. I use these for lighting a greenscreen (a key and 2 lights for the greenscreen), but you can use them for narrative filmmaking for daylight-color scenes. Extremely easy to use and setup. Reliable build overall. Versatile COB style lighting is easy to shape with bowens modifiers. Just a well-rounded light.
It excels at the 2 main things you need to worry about in filmmaking: good sound (quiet operation) and good light (high output, good color, versatile modifier options via bowens mount), and it's very affordable while not being a cheap do-nothing toy. Godox's light is The indie no-budget filmmaker's friend!
Overall, for the price, you can't beat it. I wish more filmmakers would drop the money to get 3 of these Godox UL 150's and 3 c stands, and just permanently improve their 3 point lighting on a pretty small budget. I certainly wish these were available at this price when I started out a decade ago.
Great product! Good job Godox!
Rated 5 out of 5
I've been trying to get by with not so quiet lights for my video projects, but at some point I figured I didn't need to be using BrusFri constantly as opposed to just not making the noise in the first place.
With no fans, this obviously makes no noise, and I found the light within 100 Kelvin from what is advertised.
It's big, but it's not particularly heavy, and it was just great combined with a V-mount battery.
I'm really pleased with it, and will be replacing my lights one by one with these.