IP-Rated Fixtures From PR Lighting/Mega Systems Inc.

by Richard Olson • in
  • Current Issue
  • February 2018
  • Product Spotlight
• Created: February 16, 2018

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IP-Rated Fixtures From PR Lighting/Mega Systems Inc.

With the call for IP-rated weatherproof fixtures becoming a serious concern in all aspects of the lighting business, there are two questions I hear from people when contemplating whether to purchase these types of fixtures. How much extra money will the initial cost be, and how much of a pain is it for the techs to work on a fixture and then put it back together so it’s still waterproof?

Well, if you were to check out all your options and look at the waterproof series from Mega Systems Inc., you may be pleasantly surprised to see that the lights are extremely cost efficient, despite all their bells and whistles. As far as maintaining a waterproof seal of the fixtures, it’s almost too easy.

Mega Systems Inc., through their relationship with PR Lighting, released the first three models of the series within the past year. They include the Hydra 440, the top-of-the-line Beam model with an Osram 440-watt discharge bulb; a Spot fixture that utilizes a 600-watt LED light engine for its light source; and a smaller Beam light that utilizes a 350-watt discharge lamp. A hybrid model is in the prototype phase and planned for release in 2018. This article will concentrate on the already-released fixtures.

‡‡         The Hydra 440 Beam

This fixture has an IP44 rating. The difference between that and an IP 65 rating is that the lower-rated fixture will allow some water to enter it, but it will do no damage. The electronics are all kept dry, and you can place this fixture in a water fountain, though they suggest you do not submerge it. There are easy handles to grab on the side of the fixture.

An Osram Sirius HRI 440W bulb emits an extremely bright beam and, while there is a hot spot, it is slight in comparison to most beam fixtures. The native color temperature is 7000K ± 300K, dependent on bulb age. The life expectancy of this bulb is 1,500 hours. All the fixtures discussed here can operate between 100-240V at 50/60 Hz. This fixture draws 600 watts at 220V.

The permanent 3.1° beam is perfectly collimated and exits through a large aperture front lens, making the beam predominantly wider than all the small beam models on the market. Despite its size, this fixture moves quickly, going from 0-540° pan in 1.5 seconds. That is probably due to its light (70 pounds) weight, kept to a minimum with a sturdy, high-temperature engineered plastic cover.

Rare is the beam fixture that contains CYM color mixing, but this is one of them. It’s a great attribute and snaps well in this fixture. My only concern was that the magenta flag is not saturated enough, so I found it difficult to mix a true blood-red color. The fixture makes up for that by having a color wheel that includes 11 dichroic filters plus a CTO. The CTO, when added to the color mixing, helps achieve a better red hue. Half-color effects on the wheel look sweet. There are color macros on board too.

The fixture includes a rotating gobo wheel with seven interchangeable gobos, which function as expected. The fixed (stamped) gobo wheel includes 18 typical gobos. This beam fixture gives the user a bonus by offering two prism filters — 8-way and 16-way round models.

In extended mode, the fixture can operate on 28 channels. The AC tail is permanently wired in and the 3- or 5-pin DMX XLR connectors are watertight. Wireless DMX is built into all the models.

‡‡         The Aqua LED 600 Spot

This is a large, 100-pound fixture, but could easily ride in a pre-rigged truss. Upon close inspection, I see that it has black rubber looking seals that connect the two halves of the head. They also wrap around the underside of the yoke assembly to ensure that no moisture can get through the moving parts. The techs can simply remove a few screws that hold the outer shell over the head to reveal the inner workings of the fixture. Just like the motor on your car, when you unseal a part that is held watertight by a gasket, you should replace the old one with a new gasket. They are not expensive, and it guarantees the IP65 rating.

Upon closer inspection, I see a little door on one side of the fixture. This door was inserted as an access point to make it easy for the user to swap out individual gobos on the wheel, without having to break the main seal and open the whole head. We do open one up to peek, and the inside is totally modular, making it easy for a tech to swap out a certain part (i.e., the color system), for a spare while the old one is repaired.

The thumbnail display on the side is simple to navigate, and I see that there are three modes of operation. The extended mode utilizes 38 DMX channels. The light source is an Atria HL 600watt LED engine. I notice how white the light output is. I do not know the CRI, but it has to be in the mid 90’s, as the native color temp is 7000K. The dimmer and strobe are both linear and perform in a nice straight curve, and with our typical functions. The fixture draws 750 watts at 220V.

It can zoom from 8-56° within 0.75 seconds and has an iris that can shrink the beam down to 5% of its size. The fixture comes with an animation wheel as well as two rotating gobo wheels. All of these are replaceable. The rotatable four-facet prism adds a nice touch as I rotate the gobos in one direction and the prism in the other. There’s also a variable frost filter to soften the edges.

There is one color wheel with red, yellow, magenta, green, cyan and blue colors. It can split each into half-colors and rotate at different speeds but there is no separate color mixing.

‡‡         The Aqua 350 Beam

The newest addition to the family is also the smallest, at 60 pounds. This IP65 fixture is more what users are used to seeing in a small Beam fixture, except it’s protected from the elements. The 350-watt discharge bulb is good for 1,500 hours of use. The fixture draws 550 watts at 220 volts.

The 2° beam emitted is sharp and crisp at a 6800° color temperature. This fixture has double shutter blades that are used to dim as well as strobe the beam at speeds up to 20 FPS. The various strobe macros are included. A static gobo wheel with 16 slots (plus open) and a rotating/indexable wheel with 12 (plus open) slots are on board. All gobos are replaceable.

The effects wheel offers up three prisms with bi-directional rotation speeds. These include an 8 facet, 16 facet and a linear prism. The wheel also contains a CTO and Frost slot for changing the beam.

Color-wise it offers the same six-color assortment the LED 600 Spot does with half colors and a rainbow scrolling effect. As always, the fixture comes with wireless DMX.


At a Glance

Three IP-Rated Fixtures, with More to Come

Hydra 440 Beam: The sheer amount of effects one can get out of a waterproof beam fixture that also has color mixing abilities is staggering. The price point is certainly engaging.

Aqua LED 600 Spot: The Aqua LED 600 spot offers a wide variety of effects and is a great aerial light. It can tighten from a beam to a wide tree trunk of a beam. The lamp source will outlive the fixture and cold, heat, rain and snow is no issue.

Aqua 350 Beam: The Aqua 350 is a bright pencil beam fixture similar to those in use today with the addition of an IP65 rating, protecting it from the elements.



Hydra 440 Beam

IP Rating: IP44

Light source: Osram Sirius HRI 440W

Power: 600W at 220V

Dimensions: 16 x 15.3 x 24”

Weight: 70 lbs.

MSRP: $5,199

For a video, go to www.plsn.me/Hydra440


Aqua LED 600 Spot

IP Rating: IP65

Light source: Atria HL 600W LED Engine

Power: 750W at 220V.

Dimensions: 21 x 15 x 33.3”

Weight: 100 lbs.

MSRP: $6,499

For a video, go to www.plsn.me/Aqua600


Aqua 350 Beam

IP Rating: IP65

Light source: 350W discharge

Power: 550W at 220V.

Dimensions: 15.3 x 15.3 x 20”

Weight: 60 lbs.

MSRP: $4,199

For a video, go to www.plsn.me/Aqua350


Manufacturer: PR Lighting

Distributor: Mega Systems Inc.

More Info: www.megasystemsinc.com

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