First look: Amaran Light Dome Mini SE and Spotlight SE modifiers

Apr 28, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

First look: Amaran Light Dome Mini SE and Spotlight SE modifiers

Apr 28, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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Amaran, the entry-level brand of products from Aputure, has introduced two new light modifiers. Launched at NAB 2023, we see the Amaran Light Dome Mini SE (buy here) and the Amaran Spotlight SE (buy here). Both modifiers attach to your lights using a Bowens mount and are the first Bowens mount modifiers released under the Amaran brand.

Released alongside the Amaran 150C and 300C LED lights, these modifiers are similar to other modifiers sold under the main Aputure brand. They do have some differences, though. We caught up with Aputure’s Senior Product Marketing Manager, Brandon Le, at the show to find out more about them.

Amaran Light Dome Mini SE

The Amaran Light Dome Mini SE is an 8-sided octabox with a Bowens mount designed for rapid deployment and teardown. Its efficient design means it can be set up or broken down in just a few seconds, as demonstrated by Brandon in the video at the top of this page. It folds up to a compact size and is very lightweight for easy portability when travelling and working on location. It includes an inner diffusion cloth and inner baffle to eliminate hot spots and ensure the light coming out of the front of it is soft and even, without a big obvious hot spot.

One thing that might be slightly disappointing to some users is that, unlike the Aputure softboxes, the Amaran Light Dome Mini SE does not come with a grid. This is to help keep the costs down for the customer. This might be a deal breaker for some, and Aputure doesn’t mention a grid being available to purchase separately. So, if you want one, you might have to go the 3rd party route for a grid and just hope it measures up.

The Amaran Light Dome Mini SE is available to pre-order now for $69 and is expected to ship in the coming weeks.

Amaran Spotlight SE

The Amaran Spotlight SE is essentially a lower-budget version of the Aputure Spotlight Mini Zoom (buy here). It offers similar features and capabilities and is designed for LED lights up to about 300 Watts in output. Like the Amaran Light Dome Mini SE above, it uses a Bowens mount, allowing you to attach it to a wide variety of lights. It comes in two different lens options of 36° or a tighter 19°, both available as kits or individually.

Four shutters are built into the light, and there’s a drop-in iris, allowing you to control the size and shape of the aperture through which light shines. You’re also able to drop in gobos to project images onto your scene, and you can use all three of these options simultaneously for maximum versatility. Fifteen gobos come with the Amaran Spotlight SE – the same 15 gobos that come with the aforementioned Aputure Spotlight Mini Zoom.

The Amaran Spotlight SE is available to pre-order now in two kits, with either the 19° lens or the 36° lens for $335. The 36° lens on its own is available to pre-order now for $149, and the 19° lens is available to pre-order now for $159.

DIYP’s coverage of NAB 2023 is sponsored by Sennheiser, Zhiyun, B&H, and SmallRig

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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