Stage Lighting

LED Lighting Tips

So you’re going to be using LED par cans, let me give you some helpful tips and notes. These are a few things that I’ve learned through trial and error.

  1. Don’t light primary faces. LED provides a rather unnatural light. The only time I use LED to light faces is during a worship set when I want to take notice away from the band…but even then I put a regular par can on the worship leader’s face so they can connect properly.
  2. Be aware that people with epilepsy will have a problem with these lights. One of our drummers had to start wearing sunglasses while he played to avoid getting headaches and we’ve had one or two problems with someone feeling dizzy during the worship set. This could be a result of the video backgrounds we use too…but just be aware it may cause some problems for you. The solution: either have a place that isn’t overwhelming with LED lights or just limit the LED lighting in the room…perhaps don’t have the lights off.
  3. LED par cans don’t work that well through fog. They are usually a little less bright than traditional par cans and they are less focussed–since their light comes from multiple bulbs.
  4. You’ll potentially have problems with your camera equipment and LED lighting because some sort of cycles happen. I’ve seen this when we record at 60i frames…when we get to 30p or 25p we don’t have the same issues. Check out an example of the problems we have here:
    It seems to be the use of red that causes the camera to do this…it doesn’t do it for green and blue as badly.
  5. Don’t point the lights toward the audience. Since the LED cans mix red, green, and blue, it won’t have the desired color appearance to the audience. They will just see a bunch of little lights pointed at them. Plus they can be pretty annoying to look at.
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