A versatile specular beauty LED configuration in two sizes of octagonal softboxes.
Inspired by luminaries that bounce flash, tungsten or HMI into an umbrella reflection system, the Redback from Hudson Spider packs nearly 3,500 tightly placed tungsten- and daylight-temperature LEDs into a 36" diameter fixture. Producing the equivalent maximum output of 12,280 lumens, the company says the Redback is comparable to a 2,500W HMI when using said bounced umbrella.
With hardened 7075 aluminum hinges that collapse the internal Spider LED array to 7.5" x 13" cylinder for transport, the un-diffused parabolic array is available with two principle peripherals: Redback 3' Octagon Parabolic reflector, at $643, and the Redback 6' soft box at $1,989. A Stealth mode for the Redback 6' soft box will contract the panel in its flat formation an to create a 6' softbox at only 25cm (0.82021') of depth.
With flags, soft egg crates and diffusion already availble from Hudson, other manufacturers including Chimera are currently customizing accessories for the Spider Redback. DoPchoice offers a Snapgrid for the Spider Redback 3' Octa to channel light into 40-degree spread, and announced a new 3' Lantern as overhead, lightweight softener with quick setup this last September.
(DoPchoice celebrates their 10th anniversary this fall and have also promised the Lantern5 for Rabbit-Ears attachment systems. At 70cm (2.3') in overhang, despite the shallow depth, they say it will be the largest lantern- or pancake-style softener available to the cine market. New Snapboxes for Exalux and new Snapbags and a Snagprid were announced concurrently for Astera and VelvetLight’s imminent Velvet2 EVO, covered here.)
“The brand-new LED light by Hudson Spider, has all the features of a high quality bi-color LED unit. It has a ‘slick,’ very compact and foldable design, much lighter than most of the existing LED units. It is portable, easy to rig and the octagon umbrella-like structure provides a very soft and embracing light... I love it,” says Theo Van De Sande, ASC (whose credits include Blade and Cruel Intentions) in the press release.
“For 30 years,” continues Steven Fierberg, ASC (whose credits include Entourage, Love and other Drugs and The Affair), “I’ve been dreaming of the perfect light — something that had the quality of a 5K Bardwell-McAllistair cone, but weighs a lot less. The Hudson Spider version is better than I’d ever imagined.”
“It’s really exciting to have access to this light. The fact I don’t have to cut or diffuse it, to make it appropriate for 90% of situations is amazing. It means my single light needs one person to set it, rather than four,” says says Greig Fraser, ASC, ACS (whose credits include Zero Dark Thirty, Lion and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story).
With an octagonal, beauty-light spread, the flattering illumination produced does not need additional diffusion. The base unit weighs a little more than 7 lbs., and Hudson says a single crew member with a C-stand or megaboom can set the Spider Redback in under five minutes.
Local light controls via the ballast and dimmer are joined by onboard DMX—it’s compatible with AC400 DMX ballast units—and available kitted with the LiteGear $1,299 LiteDimmer Plus AC400 DMX and AC supply. When using the Litegear supply, the Redback tests to a cumulative CRI average of 95+. The bi-color LED lights (2,600-6,500K) have 0-100% dimming without color shift. For photometrics, at 24fps and ISO 800, the Redback measures f/22 at 3', f/11 at 6', and f/8.4 at 9'.
Australian inventor and cinematographer Tim Hudson, ACS designed and named the folding Redback after the titular Outback arachnid. Hudson and co-founder as well as wife Sarah Hudson have built their own dedicated manufacturing facility with design, assembly and electronics rooms in Valencia, California. Housing three CNC machines, they say they can manufacture Hudson Spider Redbacks and components around the clock.
“We follow each light from start to finish, from sourcing of materials, the machining, the anodizing, the assembly and the soldering,” quotes Sarah Hudson. “We micromanage everything in a step by step process, including using high-tensile-strength 7075 aluminum for maximum strength and durability. What started as a small ingenious idea in the Hudson’s kitchen, is now a fully-fledged factory shipping worldwide daily.”
A custom waterproof case is available at $495. Starting at $3,999 for the Redback head only, the $7,390 Redback Deluxe Kit includes most available accesories, including Redback Hex Grid, 180-degree Teaser, magic cloth, and grid diffusions.
LEDs: 3,456 BiColor
Color range: 2,600-6,500K
Output: 24v 400w
Diameter: 3' Octagon
Head Weight: 7lbs
Total LEDs: 3,456
Exposure: 24fps 1/48sec 800asa @ 100% 3' / 91cm - f22.2 | 6' / 182cm - f11.5 | 9' / 273cm - f8.4
Color range: 2600K to 6500K
Dimming range: 0 – 100%
Color rating: 95+ CRI
Head size open: Parabolic 37"/95.2cm ø octa x 5.5" /39.4cm Parabola
Head size open: Flat 50"/127cm ø octa x 1"/2.5cm
Configurations: Parabolic, flat and folded
Head size closed: 12"/30.5cm x 8" /20.3 CM ø octa
Head weight: 7lbs 4oz / 3.3kgs
Materials: 7071 + 6065 aluminum, steel and silicone plastics
Output voltage: 24 VDC Constant voltage
Input voltage: 90 – 305 V AC, 50/60hz (C14 connector) Universal
Power: 400 W
Power connectors: 7-PIN Bayonet locking system PWM (PL7 connector) IP 68
Ballast Protection: Over current/voltage/temperature or short circuit.
Ballast IP rating: IP20
Ballast size: 14"/35cm L x 5"/12.7cm H x 7"/17.8cm W
Ballast weight: 11lbs 11oz / 5.3kg
Head feeder length: 24' / 7.3m
IEC cord set: US
DMX connector: Input/output 5 pin XLR connector
Service connector: USB Type A – service center upgradeable
Data protocol: DMX 512
Mounting point: 3/8" thread front and back
Baby pin: 3/8" thread, 5/8" ø x 3.5"/8.9cm
Mounting method: Install the baby pin to the front or back of the light and attach to a 5/8" grip or any C-stand grip head
Diffusions: 36" / 91.4cm ø octagon x 3 varied fabric diffusions w/hook edging for easy install
Utility backing cover: Poly and nylon fabrics stitched, reinforced and laminated, ready to accept accessories