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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #1
tetrode
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Default Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Looks like everyone is trying to get a piece of the softbox grid action. Calumet Photo now has Calumet-branded fabric grids available for their Nova and Illuma softboxes. Apparently, they've only been available for a few weeks. I saw the 24" x 32" in the New York store this afternoon. It looked pretty good for $79.99. The 36" x 48" Nova grid is $89.99 and the 54" x 72" is $129.99.

24" x 32": http://www.calumetphoto.com/item/RM3332/

36" x 48": http://www.calumetphoto.com/item/RM3348/

54" x 72": http://www.calumetphoto.com/item/RM3372/

Grids for the low-profile Illuma boxes are priced higher.

Dave F.
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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #2
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by tetrode View Post
Looks like everyone is trying to get a piece of the softbox grid action. Calumet Photo now has Calumet-branded fabric grids available for their Nova and Illuma softboxes. Apparently, they've only been available for a few weeks. I saw the 24" x 32" in the New York store this afternoon. It looked pretty good for $79.99. The 36" x 48" Nova grid is $89.99 and the 54" x 72" is $129.99.

24" x 32": http://www.calumetphoto.com/item/RM3332/

36" x 48": http://www.calumetphoto.com/item/RM3348/

54" x 72": http://www.calumetphoto.com/item/RM3372/

Grids for the low-profile Illuma boxes are priced higher.

Dave F.
I wonder how good they are. The Photoflex 36" x 48" is $10 more, selling for $99. Do you have any grids for your Photoflex modifiers that you can compare to the Calumet?
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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #3
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

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Originally Posted by TMR Design View Post
I wonder how good they are. The Photoflex 36" x 48" is $10 more, selling for $99. Do you have any grids for your Photoflex modifiers that you can compare to the Calumet?
I've only seen the Photoflex grids at B&H, Rob. If memory serves, I think they're a bit more substantial than the one I saw at Calumet today. However, the Calumet grid fit the box very well and was extremely light weight. There was very little sag across the face of the softbox. It also appeared that the Velcro holding the grid in place was the full depth of the grid material but here I could be mistaken.

A year or so back I was very tempted to get the medium Calumet Illuma which is 30" x 40" and only 14" deep. It comes with two graduated internal baffles which are supposed to compensate for the shallow depth and even out the light across the face of the box (at the cost of some lumens, no doubt). At the time, there were no grids available for any of the Calumet branded softboxes so I move didn't buy. Now with a grid available, I'm a bit interested again.

Dave F.
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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #4
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Terrific news! Dave, thanks for the heads up!! I just spoke with my "local" Calumet store (45 miles away) and they have them in stock. It just so happens I was already planning to drive right by there tomorrow. I'm going to stop in and check out the new soft box grids. I use Calumet Nova boxes so it seems like a no brainer.

Now I need to decide which boxes I want them for. I have the Nova 22 (16x22), Nova 32 (24x32), Nova 48 (36x48 ), and the Nova S56 (14x56). They're showing grids for all four. I use the Nova 22 and Nova 32 most often so that's where I should probably start.

Mark
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Last edited by Mark Booth : 8th of March 2010 (Mon) at 18:26.
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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #5
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

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Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post
Terrific news! Dave, thanks for the heads up!! I just spoke with my "local" Calumet store (45 miles away) and they have them in stock. It just so happens I was already planning to drive right by there tomorrow. I'm going to stop in and check out the new soft box grids. I use Calumet Nova boxes so it seems like a no brainer.

Now I need to decide which boxes I want them for. I have the Nova 22 (16x22), Nova 32 (24x32), Nova 48 (36x48 ), and the Nova S56 (14x56). They're showing grids for all four. I use the Nova 22 and Nova 32 most often so that's where I should probably start.

Mark
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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #6
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

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If you get one or two, Mark, don't forget, you owe us a review.

Dave F.
Will do. I've got a sitting on Saturday so I'll be setting up the studio in the garage that morning and I'll try to grab some photos of the grid(s), including some macro shots showing the stitching and quality of materials. As for "judging" the quality, I'm not the one for that. This will be my first personal experience with fabric grids. Never handled any others so I wouldn't make a very good judge.

Mark
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Old 8th of March 2010 (Mon)   #7
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Photoflex sometimes have their grids on sale. I remember medium 24x32 for $50.
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #8
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

I did, in fact, pick up two of the Calumet 40 fabric grids today. One each for my Nova 22 and Nova 32 boxes. The grids seem nicely constructed to me but, again, I have no prior experience with fabric grids. The grids come with a nice little storage bag and a set of instructions on how to install them and how to properly fold them up to store back in the bag.

I'll take some photos on Saturday and share them sometime during the weekend.

Mark
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #9
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

I won't have photos of the grids installed on my soft boxes until Saturday, but I did take a few moments to take some closeup photos of the grid construction this morning. As evidenced by the photos below, the outer part of the rectangle is a 2" wide material that is somewhat stiff, made even more stiff by the attachment of an 1-3/4" wide strip of velcro. But only about half of the width of the velcro is exposed. There is also a 1" strip of fabric sewn that sandwiches the velcro. So, for half the width of the outside rectangle, you have three thicknesses of material. I assume only half the velcro is left exposed to make the fabric grid easier to install and remove from the soft box. The corners are angled out, to match the outward angle of the soft box in those spots. A nice touch to help assure a proper fit.

The grid fabric is a nylon material that seems very durable and is not sewn along the edges. It does not appear that it would fray. The construction is such that the grid fabric strips in the long direction are solid pieces. In the short direction, there are individual strips sewn between each each long strip. When I stretch out the grid, it is clear that all of the short strips are perfectly aligned so each individual grid box is the same size and perfectly square. It is obvious that a LOT of sewing is needed to construct each one of these grids and, all of a sudden, the retail price seems like a bargain!

Anyway, here are a few photos to tide everyone over until I get some shots of them on the soft boxes on Saturday.









And the storage bag included:



Mark
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #10
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post
I won't have photos of the grids installed on my soft boxes until Saturday, but I did take a few moments to take some closeup photos of the grid construction this morning. As evidenced by the photos below, the outer part of the rectangle is a 2" wide material that is somewhat stiff, made even more stiff by the attachment of an 1-3/4" wide strip of velcro. But only about half of the width of the velcro is exposed. There is also a 1" strip of fabric sewn that sandwiches the velcro. So, for half the width of the outside rectangle, you have three thicknesses of material. I assume only half the velcro is left exposed to make the fabric grid easier to install and remove from the soft box. The corners are angled out, to match the outward angle of the soft box in those spots. A nice touch to help assure a proper fit.

The grid fabric is a nylon material that seems very durable and is not sewn along the edges. It does not appear that it would fray. The construction is such that the grid fabric strips in the long direction are solid pieces. In the short direction, there are individual strips sewn between each each long strip. When I stretch out the grid, it is clear that all of the short strips are perfectly aligned so each individual grid box is the same size and perfectly square. It is obvious that a LOT of sewing is needed to construct each one of these grids and, all of a sudden, the retail price seems like a bargain!

Anyway, here are a few photos to tide everyone over until I get some shots of them on the soft boxes on Saturday.









And the storage bag included:



Mark
Thanks for taking the time to post these photos and your first impressions, Mark. My assessment based on a brief look in the NY store was very much the same as yours. The almost perfect "squareness" of the individual cells was impressive as was the snug fit of the grid within the edges of the softbox. Too bad there wasn't an Illuma grid on display as I'd really like to get one of those Gary Regester-designed (or so I've read), low profile (and low priced) Illuma boxes.

Dave F.
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #11
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Thank you for those pics. My wife is currently making me a grid. Are the short pieces sewn in the same direction, or is one side sewn up and the other down? I can't tell from the pic. Hope I'm clear.

Thanks again.

mark
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #12
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

Thanks for posting the images Mark. The grid looks similar to the Cheetah grid but the Cheetah grids really hold that square cell shape and use what appears to be a slightly thicker material.
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #13
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

but isn't the shape on the box the important shape, not one laying on the floor?
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #14
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

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but isn't the shape on the box the important shape, not one laying on the floor?
Yes. I was just using that as an example of the better or thinker materials used.
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Old 10th of March 2010 (Wed)   #15
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Default Re: Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

right. my cheapie softbox with cheap grids did the same thing, I think, when off the box. On the box, I think they hold shapre pretty well.
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