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Calumet now selling (relatively) inexpensive fabric grids ...

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Thread started 08 Mar 2010 (Monday) 17:14   
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tetrode
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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.calumetphot​o.com/item/RM3332/external link

36" x 48": http://www.calumetphot​o.com/item/RM3348/external link

54" x 72": http://www.calumetphot​o.com/item/RM3372/external link

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

Dave F.

Post #1, Mar 08, 2010 17:14:23




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TMR ­ Design
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tetrode wrote in post #9754966external link
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.calumetphot​o.com/item/RM3332/external link

36" x 48": http://www.calumetphot​o.com/item/RM3348/external link

54" x 72": http://www.calumetphot​o.com/item/RM3372/external link

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?

Post #2, Mar 08, 2010 17:46:18


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tetrode
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TMR Design wrote in post #9755165external link
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.

Post #3, Mar 08, 2010 18:09:30




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Mark ­ Booth
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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

Post #4, Mar 08, 2010 18:23:18


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tetrode
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Mark Booth wrote in post #9755380external link
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

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

Dave F.

Post #5, Mar 08, 2010 18:41:34




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tetrode wrote in post #9755474external link
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

Post #6, Mar 08, 2010 19:15:07


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bobbyz
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Photoflex sometimes have their grids on sale. I remember medium 24x32 for $50.

Post #7, Mar 08, 2010 20:26:39


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Mark ­ Booth
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I did, in fact, pick up two of the Calumet 40ยบ 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

Post #8, Mar 10, 2010 01:23:20


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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.

IMAGE: http://www.thephotobooth.net/photos/807083487_io8rL-O.jpg

IMAGE: http://www.thephotobooth.net/photos/807083492_Mpr5k-O.jpg

IMAGE: http://www.thephotobooth.net/photos/807083505_DZbjw-O.jpg

IMAGE: http://www.thephotobooth.net/photos/807083509_BuS6i-O.jpg

And the storage bag included:

IMAGE: http://www.thephotobooth.net/photos/807083512_uS8zf-O.jpg

Mark

Post #9, Mar 10, 2010 12:30:45


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tetrode
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Mark Booth wrote in post #9768042external link
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.

QUOTED IMAGE

QUOTED IMAGE

QUOTED IMAGE

QUOTED IMAGE

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.

Post #10, Mar 10, 2010 12:53:54




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MDJAK
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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

Post #11, Mar 10, 2010 13:08:37




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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.

Post #12, Mar 10, 2010 13:26:53 as a reply to MDJAK's post 18 minutes earlier.


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hawk911
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but isn't the shape on the box the important shape, not one laying on the floor? ;)

Post #13, Mar 10, 2010 13:55:11


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hawk911 wrote in post #9768621external link
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.

Post #14, Mar 10, 2010 14:00:34


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hawk911
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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.

Post #15, Mar 10, 2010 14:05:51


HAWK Photography Galleryexternal link FB Fan pageexternal link|_My gear: 5d3, 70D & 40D (all gripped), 580exII, 550ex, Canon 24-70 L & 85 f1.8, 50mm f1.4; Tamron 70-200 SP Di VC, Canon 18-55, Sigma 1.4xtc; Elinchrom Whore, Skyport triggers, Speedotron BD and Kacey Grid, Vagabond minis

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