Germany-based photographic lighting company Priolite is bringing a new, high-end strobe to market by way of Kickstarter. At just eight inches long, the Priolite Ultra is the smallest monolight of its type in the world, but it packs serious power and functionality with professional photographers in mind.
The headline feature is the ability to sync with shutter speeds up to 1/8000 of a second (the fastest speed on high-end DSLRs and mirrorless cameras), thanks to Priolite’s HotSync technology. Unlike most other professional strobes that use High-Speed Sync, HotSync doesn’t sacrifice power output at fast sync speeds. Priolite also claims its system is more reliable than HyperSync technology (which also allows for any power setting at any shutter speed) thanks to two-way communication between the strobe and the camera, which improves timing.
With a power output of 500 watt-seconds, the Ultra sits squarely in the midrange of professional flashes when it comes to light output. This is sufficient power for most studio and location work, and should be enough to overpower the sun unless a large modifier is needed. Given its small size, 500ws is commendable.
The light is triggered wirelessly and even includes a built-in radio transmitter that operates at 2.4Ghz. With the HotSync Remote, photographers have full control over all aspects of the light right from their cameras. It’s compatible with most cameras from Canon, Sony, Nikon, and Pentax.
But what really makes the Priolite Ultra special is that it takes all of this functionality, power, and control and puts into a compact unit that is powered by a built-in battery that’s good for 220 full-power flashes.
Priolate has raised over $40,000 for the Ultra, well beyond its $28,000 goal, with eight days still left in the Kickstarter campaign. One thing to note is that those pledges come from just 22 backers, as even the least-expensive pledge that includes the product as a reward costs $800, and that’s a limited, early-bird special. Still, that’s well below the $1,400 expected retail price, and certainly not bad for a battery-powered, 500ws, portable monolight that can sync at full power at any shutter speed.
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