First Impressions: Lowel GL-1 Power LED

It’s no surprise there has been a surge in portable lighting options well. The new Lowel GL-1 is a portable light that can be used for many different scenarios. We were able to take a quick look at oddly designed light at Photo Plus 2012.


Tech Specs

(All Specs are Pre-Production and not Final)

– Dimmer Range 5-100%

– 3000k Tungsten Color Output

– High Power Focusing LED

– 5:1 Focus Range, Flood to Spot

– Rechargeable Battery/AC Power


This light is about the size of a bigger cordless power drill. In fact just by the looks of it, reminds me of one. From the top you have a an adjustable head that can be slid forward or back to change from full flood or spot. It’s not the kind that locks into stages, you can change the spread freely. The plastics on this unit were flimsy and rather ghastly. However, were willing to blame that on the fact that this is just a pre-production unit; we believe that no one goes out of their way to purposely design a terrible product.

Towards the back of the head is a vent for the cooling of the light; no special fans or anything which also means no external noise.

Heading over to the business end of the light: you can change the color temp of the lamp from tungsten to daylight with an optional 82B conversion filter. This will give you a color temp of 5300k. The filter size on the unit is 82mm.

Below on the pistol grip is the trigger for the unit. You can hold the trigger to get the desired intensity of your light if you need to take a quick shot. If you want to set the light intensity on a more constant way, you hold in the trigger button until it locks into place. Then you can use the dial on the back to adjust the light output to your liking.

Picture of the dial to adjust the light intensity on the GL-1

On the bottom back of the unit you will find a power switch with LED indicator telling you the light is on. You will have 2 mounting holes for the unit either 1/4-20 or 3/8s. This is good if you want to mount the light to a tripod and perhaps don’t have an assistant to help you on your shoot.

This is the battery pack for the unit. Tiffen says this is custom made. On a full charge and using it as a constant light you are looking at about 1-hour of use.

First Impressions

In my short time with this light I can see its uses in real world scenarios. Perhaps you do wedding or event photos and just need to add a little light to accent the bride on the floor, or if you are doing portraits in a dimly lit place and want to add quick, focused light. Lowel claims you can light from up to 5 feet away with this thing for full body shots as well. That could be nice if you are shooting a wider shot on a subject and want to get all of the surroundings. Another thing you can also try is light painting. Lowel has an accessory–rather a shade that controls the spill.

This is an item that can give you great flexibility and save you time in lighting. Look for the Lowel GL-1 to come out around summer 2013 for around $800.

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