Elation Platinum Spot LED II and the SIXPAR 100
By Marty Pachila
My colleague, Jason, has already shared the pertinent information about our church, Cross of Christ, in his review for the ETC Element 40-500 board (also in this issue). As the house lighting designer at our church, I wanted to take the opportunity to review two of the new fixtures we also added to our lighting rig when we purchased the new board: Elation’s Platinum Spot LED II and the Elation SIXPAR 100.
Prior to the purchase, our rig consisted of mostly conventional fixtures – Lekos, Pars, color scrollers, and a few scanners. While the rig would suffice for our blended Sunday service, we found it a bit limiting when we put on special events such as our annual Christmas concert. Our solution for many years had been to rent additional moving lights from local staging companies to augment the rig for our special events. The motivation to purchase the new fixtures stemmed from the desire to move away from the high costs renting gear year after year, combined with a general dissatisfaction with the quality of gear we were offered from the various staging companies. We also had interest in moving some of our conventional fixtures over to LED to take advantage of the lower power consumption as well as better light output. After researching numerous brands from basic entry level to professional touring grade, we decided that the Elation line represented a sweet spot in terms of cost and value.
Platinum Spot LED II
The Platinum Spot LED II features a 135W Cool White LED engine, 17° beam, eight dichroic colors plus white, seven rotating and interchangeable glass gobos and seven static metal gobos. It also offers a frost filter hybrid wash effect, 3-facet rotating prism with 16 prism macros, a motorized iris with focus, dimming, high speed mechanical shutter and strobe, and hibernation mode. The Platinum Spot comes with both 3 and 5pin DMX in/ out connections, RDM (Remote Device Management), a full color 180° reversible menu display with a six-button touch control panel.
We purchased the Elation Platinum Spot LED II’s to give us more creative power when designing for special events at our church. We were looking for a moving head intelligent spot fixture that was affordable, but still offered a bright LED light source – comparable to discharge lamps. We also needed a fixture with a good selection of features such as prism, iris and replaceable gobos. The fixture also had to be efficient, as the intention was to make use of existing general-purpose circuits rather than incurring costs to run dedicated power out the lighting positions.
The SIXPAR 100 features seven 12W 6-in-1 RGBAW+UV LEDs with a 15-degree beam and 25-degree field angles, and electronic strobe and dimming from 0-100%. It offers five variable dimming curve modes, a dual yoke/floor stand, with multiple unit power linking and remote device management (RDM).
We purchased three Elation SIXPAR 100’s to replace aging conventional PAR / scrolled combos in our rig. We were looking mainly for a compact and efficient fixture that could produce great looking saturated colors and have UV. In the past, we tried some earlier LED fixtures with the individual red/green/blue LEDS, but were never pleased with the color mixing and shadows they produced. For our purchase we were specifically looking to upgrade to a fixture with multicolor LEDS to achieve a smoother color blend on stage. While we were not intending to use these PAR’s as front light, we still wanted the ability to create a respectable warm light when necessary to set the look for “indoor” drama scenes. Finally, since these lights are visible to the congregation and audience, we needed the PARs to have relatively smooth dimming performance as well.
We have the SIXPAR 100’s installed as backlighting for our stage and altar area. Coming from a conventional world of scrollers and dimmer packs, I absolutely love how I can connect all the lights with 2 cables now if desired! The power and data can be daisy chained from fixture to fixture making for a for a clean and easy install. The impact the SIXPAR’S have made on our power situation has also been tremendous. Our backlight position only had a single non-dimmed circuit available, which was never adequate for the multiple 575W conventional PARS we had previously installed. Since the power draw is so low on the SIXPAR’S, I have no more worries about tripped breakers when running at full intensity. I’m also especially pleased with the output of these fixtures. The LED’s are bright and produce great looking colors that can be blended to subtly fit the look of a quieter scene, or cranked up and saturated to provide pop when the situation calls for it. I also enjoy and make regular use of the built-in chase and macro functions when needed to add extra energy to the look.
The Elation Platinum Spot LED II’s have been installed and secured to custom built shelves in the balcony position. In the past, we have also used these lights on the floor for up lighting. I use these lights for most of the movement specials, as well as “painting” over walls, set pieces, organ pipes etc. Using color and texture created by combining gobos with various recipes of rotation, focus and prism I can come up some unique backdrops to fit the mood of the scene or song I am designing for. I really enjoy all the creative possibilities these lights have opened to me, and have received many nice comments from congregants about some of the looks I created using them. While I find the fixtures do produce great looking static colors via its color wheel, it is important to note that these fixtures only have a white LED source and do not offer color mixing. Finally, from a practical standpoint, one of my favourite things about the Platinum Spot LED’s does not have to worry about the lamp! No need to keep track of hours, when the bulb was last changed. Both the Platinum Spot LED 2 and the SIXPAR’S 100 fixtures seem very well much built, and we are hoping to get many trouble-free years of use out of them.
MARTY PACHLA HAS BEEN A VOLUNTEER AT CROSS OF CHRIST LUTHERAN CHURCH FOR THE PAST 13 YEARS. MARTY SERVES AS HOUSE LIGHTING DESIGNER & PROGRAMMER, WORSHIP TEAM ASSISTANT, GUITARIST, AND CREATIVE CONSULTANT.