20th November 2013
When faced with the overwhelming choice of lighting fixtures on the market, how can a lighting design and rental company be sure it is making the right decision for its business and its clients when investing in new products?
Reading based event lighting specialist, Blinding Light has been in business since 1999 and over the last fourteen years has undoubtedly made its mark in what is a fiercely competitive sector. With a diverse client base that demands a range of solutions from corporate and architectural lighting through to full stage artistic rigs at high profile events such as BBC Proms in the Park, Blinding Light has to be sure that its warehouse inventory matches exactly what the client is looking for.
Renowned as one of the industry’s stalwarts, lighting designer Anthony (Turbo) Hall has been part of the Blinding Light team since 2011 and played a key role in the company’s recent acquisition of Clay Paky fixtures from Ambersphere Solutions. Hall opted for an order comprising Alpha Spot QWO 800s and A.leda Wash K10s.
Why these models in particular? “Ambersphere kindly allowed us to try the QWO 800s out at The Roundhouse where we were doing a mixed corporate and theatre event that would allow us test the QWO's full ‘box of tricks’,” comments Hall. “The list of features is pretty comprehensive: CMY mixing, the great zoom range and the excellent optics, particularly where custom gobos are concerned. Add to this the compact size of the unit and the extremely quiet operation, both important considerations when working in intimate venues, meant I left The Roundhouse knowing we should invest in them.”
“The A.leda K10 fixtures presented a harder decision for us,” continues Hall. “There is a plethora of LED wash lights on the market, so choosing the K10 over any other manufacturer involved a broader range of factors. The K10 offers a wider zoom than its competitors which gives a designer that edge when faced with restrictions in height etc… However, our decision was also based on the quality of build from Clay Paky and back up that’s always available from Ambersphere, which gave us complete peace of mind.”
For a lighting design and rental company, there are a variety of criteria to be considered when making investment decisions. “Return on investment is perhaps the overriding consideration from a business perspective, but the reality is that we have to invest in equipment that our clients want to hire,” says Hall. “With products that are ground breaking such as the Sharpy or Sharpy wash, the industry tends to decide fairly quickly and we can move to secure products before clients put them on their wanted list. However, with a fixture such as the QWO 800, which occupies an area where competition is fierce, it was Ambersphere’s offer of a demo that enabled us to evaluate the fixture first hand and gain assurance that we could sell the luminaire to our clients based on its merits.”
As an investor in fixtures from a key manufacturer,” reflects Hall, “Blinding Light also benefits from a whole bunch of intangible rewards including the ability to offer a ‘range’ from a quality brand such as Clay Paky to clients, common menu structures and a strong relationship with a single distributor such as Ambersphere. Clay Paky fits very well within our brand view and we intend to continue purchasing from Ambersphere. We have already invested in the Sharpy Wash 330, which is an excellent fixture and complements our existing inventory very well. Again, its flexibility makes it invaluable at smaller events with lower trim heights and lower mains facilities. The brand new A.leda B-EYE is slightly more of a specialist product, but if the market demands it, we would consider purchasing them in the future.”
Hall concludes, “Clients are becoming increasingly tech savvy and we need to remain at the forefront of any new technology that comes onto the market. It’s safe to say that new fixtures are part of the toolkit we use to secure both new clients and impress existing ones.”2012-12-02 00:00:00