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Robe T1

Nook Schoenfeld • June 2019Road Tests • June 15, 2019

Robe T1 Wash with Fresnel lense

Having already conquered the arena and stadium markets with their highly successful BMFL line of fixtures, Robe set their sights on designing a fixture that was equally valuable in the theater, television and touring markets. It was the combination of these three genre names that led to the title of this new LED sourced moving light called the T1. It undoubtedly caters to all designer needs with just one fixture.

I’ve been given a back-room demo by the pros working the Robe booth at the recent Prolight + Sound show in Frankfurt. The first thing I notice is the fixture is slick looking physically, with nice curves on the outside, but easy access screws to get at anything necessary. While I will explain all the features as we go, the surprising part is how compact and light this fixture is for a product that has everything a DP or live stage designer could ask for, weighing in at a mere 54 pounds. I will concentrate on the original profile, but they have also added a FS (follow spot) model with a camera for remote followspotting as well as a wash model in both Fresnel and PC lens versions.

The Follow Spot version

‡‡         The Light Source

Robe has come up with an MSL 550-watt RGBAL color engine that has a native CRI of 90+. They made a conscious decision to go with a multi-spectral light source for the purpose of getting brighter saturated colors. They admit that, in shootouts with a fixture that has an all-white LED engine, they will lose the intensity battle in no color, but when it comes to saturated colors, the T1 is considerably brighter, to the eye and meter — something most LDs consider more important. Robe claims the T1 has an output of 10,075 lumens.

Robe opted to make just one model that can give the different genres of lighting all the possibilities they need. The idea of separate warm and cool models is of no necessity with the T1 model. Instead they have added several options that will certainly persuade any DP that this fixture may just be the best tool in their inventory. Included in the fixture is a parameter that can turn on and off the CHROMATIC WHITE function. Basically, when this function is enabled, the programmer can mix CTO in conjunction with all of the other colors to set temperature levels desirable to the camera and designer. When the function is turned off, the CTO works as usual for white outputs but does not affect mixed colors, and ± green filters can be used for separate control of the green hue.

They have also included a ± CRI channel that can take the fixture between 80-90 CRI. With the higher CRI, one gets a lower light level, but better saturated colors. One can easily switch to the lower CRI for more level, but Robe does say that the increased level is less than 10 percent. If the designer for some reason can’t find the mix that makes them satisfied for their particular camera, there is a gel frame mount on the front of the fixture to correct the output to any desired temperature.

Robe also features a function they call Cpulse™. This special flicker-free management system adjusts the light output to different PWM settings that have an effect on HD and UHD cameras. A user could set the base level at 1200Hz, for instance, and fine tune that level ± 20 Hz. One can set this PWM at 300, 600, 1200 or 2400 Hz as well. Robe has also been working on a full flicker free system that will not require frequency adjustments, coming up in the future. The light source also features Tungsten light emulation, taking this feature a step past everyone else by allowing the light output to mimic a 750W, 1000W, 1200W, 2000W and 2500W light source. At the low res 750W setting, one will notice a longer thermal delay when fading intensity.

The dimming is smooth and utilizes a default 18-bit dimming system. The system is fine enough that programmers can lower the output a half a point (.5%), and the difference is noticeable to the HD camera. All typical strobes are done by the lamp, including sync, random and syncing the random mode. Users have the ability to use an S curve or stick with the linear system for dimming.

The T1’s brilliant animation wheel

‡‡         The Colors

The biggest tradeoff between having a white light engine using typical CYM flags versus the Multi Spectral RGBAL model is the amount of colors one can achieve with the Robe fixture without losing massive amounts of intensity. Want a solid red, here it is. Concerned about the ability to mix a great lavender with just LEDs? Worry no more. The T1 offers the ability to give me medium blues of great luminance. I can add some CTO in to get a darker hue of blue. Even the yellow color lives up to its name with no evidence of the dreaded green edge normally associated with LED outputs. Robe was so confident of the T1 color mixing system, they didn’t feel the need to include a color wheel.

I can set up the system to set colors in CYM or RGB mode. The fixture utilizes the RCC (Robe Color Correction) system. One can easily adjust the color temperature from 2300-8000°K. Factory calibrated colors are made up ahead of time that will automatically sync with your adjustments from the console. While programmers may wish to use their own mixed color palettes, the fixture offers something really cool called DataSwatch. In this mode, the user can snap between 237 preset hues and color combinations. One can also find mixed half colors in this mode. These turn out to be an awesome selling point with this fixture, especially when you mix the half colors in with a prism.

‡‡         Manipulating the Beam

The T1 has an impressive 7:1 zoom ratio that goes between 7° and 49°, which is the preferred beam angle for most designers. There’s an iris that can reduce the beam to a pin spot and includes various pulse effects.

A full framing system is available with four blades that are bi-directionally manipulated, while the module itself can rotate 60° either direction. The blades are extremely fast, and using them as an effect is a great way to manipulate the beam. The only drawback is, the frames cannot do full curtain type wipes from one direction with just a single blade.

Note: The T1 wash fixture has internal motorized barn doors that offer a single channel for each side and a rotating module as well. The wash fixture also offers the user a choice of lens between the Fresnel and the PC models.

For breaking up the beam Robe gave us several options. The gobo wheel contains slots for seven rotating glass gobos. Robe’s Slot&Lock system makes changing gobos a snap. The specified gobos, with the exception of one good aerial pattern, are designed for texturing scenery and much more suited to the realms of TV and Theater than rock ‘n’ roll. They can be used in conjunction with a metal animation wheel. This wheel is perhaps the best animation breakup I have ever seen, with lines that go in all sorts of directions. One can easily morph between the gobo and animation wheels or combine them for surreal effects.

The fixture includes a 6-facet 8° circular prism that’s variable speed and bi-directional. This looks great when combined with other gobos as well as split colors. Reminds me of the Robe Spikie flower effect — on steroids.

Thank the heavens, a manufacturer finally got the variable frost settings on a moving light correct. One can easily dial in a frost that just smooths out the edges of the projected pattern with a 0.5° filter, or it can be heavy enough (20.0°) to conceal/reveal the projected texture. Upon special requests, the favorite frost 119 can also be optionally supplied, among several other options. The wash fixture includes an option to “insert a scrim” function into the light. Think about a light beam slashing a scrim with a beam of light. The amount of light spread on the beam is always brighter in the proximity to the light source. This function is designed to shape the beam and its intensity in a way that the scrim will look evenly lit with intensity.

‡‡         Odds and Ends

The T1 comes with Doughty trigger clamps, a fantastic addition to any moving light. It can operate at any angle without losing its pan and tilt orientation. It can accept input voltage from 100-240V with a PowerCON TRUE1 input connector. It draws 650 watts at 230V. A RoboSpot camera can be attached for use as a follow spot version. The fixture can be controlled via DMX, RDM, Art-Net, sACN and MA-Net via 5-pin and 3-pin XLR, or with a wireless option that can run CRMX from LumenRadio. Three modes of operation are available, with the extended version taking up the maximum 53 channels. The touchscreen ROBE Navigation Display offers super easy access to all settings while it also provides remote network connection from any web browser, making tweaks to the settings or status checking a breeze.

 

At a Glance

Theater, TV or Touring

The T1 offers most users everything they could want in a medium brightness fixture. Whether used for Theater, TV or Touring, it offers endless possibilities. The extra perks associated with this fixture make it an ideal light to be used with cameras, making the life of the DP and gaffer so much easier.

PROS: Lightweight and easy to handle. Rich bright saturated colors. True white colors in a wide range of temperatures as well as an adjustable CRI. CTO and ± green values added easily. The DataSwatch filter is great and a state-of-the-art Display system for setup that is rivaled by none. 

CONS: The framing system cannot provide a full curtain style wipe with a single blade.

FEATURES

  • Available in Profile, Wash and Follow Spot versions
  • Multi-spectral 10,075-lumen light source and color system
  • Animation wheel, prism, iris and framing shutters
  • Adjustable CRI/brightness and tungsten emulation
  • Cpulse flicker-free management
  • Linear or S curve 18-bit dimming system
  • Variable frost

STATS

  • Models: Profile, Wash and Follow Spot
  • Light Source: 550W Multi Spectral LED (RGBAL)
  • Wattage: 650W at 230V with all LEDs at full
  • Zoom range: 7-49°
  • Gobos: Seven replaceable glass slots
  • Frost: Variable from light to full
  • Size: 28.6 x 15.7 x 10.2”
  • Weight: 54 lbs.
  • MSRP: Contact dealer

Manufacturer: Robe

More info: www.robe.cz

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