Illuminate Your Mobile Photos with the Profoto C1 and C1 Plus

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To help mobile shooters improve and add some unique qualities to their shots, Profoto has released the brand-new C1 and C1 Plus, a couple of compact, portable lights that will help take mobile images to new dimensions. As the popularity of digital photography continues to rise, advances in smartphone cameras and the growing number of social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter have turned mobile photography into the new normal. People can now shoot and post their images almost instantly in a very streamlined process.

Profoto C1 Plus
Profoto C1 Plus

Profoto’s C1 and C1 Plus are studio lights that fit in the palm of your hand, with their real trick being outstanding integration with your smartphone. Compatible with iPhone 7 and later via Bluetooth and the Profoto app, you can add impressive flash and continuous-lighting effects to your mobile photography tool set. Users can point and shoot with automatic exposure and flash power based on your surrounding conditions, or engage manual mode for more control and freedom over power, exposure, and color temperature. This can all be done while snapping photos with your phone, making it incredibly easy to take awesome photos and then share them on social media.

Profoto C1 and C1 Plus
Profoto C1 and C1 Plus

The standard C1 uses four warm and three cool LEDs to mimic color temperatures from 3000 to 6500K. It also outputs a maximum of 1600 lumens for up to 2,000 shots when used as a flash, or 280 lumens for up to 30 minutes when used as a continuous light. Its 1500mAh lithium-ion polymer battery can be recharged in 2 hours.

The C1 Plus uses ten warm and ten cool LEDs to reproduce the same color temperature range, and also outputs a maximum of 4300 lumens for 2,000 shots when used as a flash, or 280 lumens for up to 40 minutes of continuous light. It retains the 1500mAh battery, but gains a ¼"-20 thread for stand mounting. Another upgrade in the Plus is the addition of an AirTTL-compatible receiver. This means it can be integrated easily into an existing Profoto lighting kit or used as an incredible compact light for a camera equipped with an Air Remote.

Part of painting your photos with light is the ability to shape that light. Both the C1 and C1 Plus have a magnetic mount for adding compatible color gels, grids, and domes. Profoto’s Clic Dome diffuses light for a soft, crisp look with a smooth and natural falloff, while their Clic Grid 10° and Clic Grid 20° both help to reduce light spread, control stray light, and add contrast and drama to images.

Clic Grid 10° and Clic Grid 20°
Clic Grid 10° and Clic Grid 20°

Add color to your photos with Profoto’s Clic Gel lineup, which is available as a quarter CTB, full CTO, half CTO, quarter CTO, half plus green, scarlet, jade, yellow, light lavender, blue, rose pink, and peacock blue. In addition to adding color, CTO, CTB, and Half Plus Green gels can also be used to better match ambient light.

Top Clic Gels; Full CTO, Half CTO, Quarter CTO | Bottom Clic Gels; Scarlett, Jade, Light Lavender
Top Clic Gels; Full CTO, Half CTO, Quarter CTO | Bottom Clic Gels; Scarlett, Jade, Light Lavender

Profoto also bundles some of its items for greater convenience. Its Clic Creative Gel Kit combines the rose pink, peacock blue, and yellow gels, and the Clic Grid & Gel Kit is made up of the Clic Grid 20°, a full CTO gel, and a half CTO gel.

Clic Creative Gel Kit
Clic Creative Gel Kit
Clic Grid Gel Kit
Clic Grid Gel Kit

Profoto’s domes, grids, and gels are all stackable, so they can be combined to create unique effects and additional colors. All in all, it is now easier for mobile photo enthusiasts and professionals to create a studio lighting setup on a much smaller scale, which also makes working with lighting in the field a much less daunting task.

What do you think about Profoto’s lineup for the mobile platform? Is this what you’ve been waiting for? Feel free to share your thoughts below.

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9 Comments

If you're considering this $500 item you should just upgrade to a professional camera instead.

You too can be a Wedding Photographer rockstar!

Does it work with the native camera app that apple provides? Guessing that the sync is via bluetooth. That is how the unit can trigger the phone to take a picture, right?

Yes the C1 & C1 Plus work off of Bluetooth with an iOS device and the Profoto app. 

Specs and description does not seem to indicate that ability to have more than one of these at once for multiple lights setup. But that may defeat its original design intent. Seems pricey for what it is, but normal for Profoto...

Jerry L. wrote:

Specs and description does not seem to indicate that ability to have more than one of these at once for multiple lights setup. But that may defeat its original design intent. Seems pricey for what it is, but normal for Profoto...

You can do multiple no prob.

Why would you want a light that doesn't attach to your phone?

Same reason your flash shouldn't be attached to your camera. Straight on is not as flattering. If you can have it off to the side or above, you get better shadows/definition. 

To get directional light with drama.

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