Lighting Is tungsten lighting dead?

tungsten lighting

In this modern world of low cost, fancy LED lighting do we really need old fashioned tungsten? People seem to be falling over themselves lately to use LED panels to light everything. However, I feel tungsten is as valid today as it has ever been. Lighting is of course very subjective. However, it is as much looking to the past for our teachings as it is embracing the new world and technology. Many things can be improved on sure but we still have a lot that has already been perfected, so why try to re-invent the wheel eh?

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Lighting is one such arena where we have witnessed an enormous change of late. LED’s have changed the face of lighting forever, prior to this we had florescent tubes surge and dominate soft lighting in drama and commercials etc. But what of the old guard, the humble incandescent lightbulb?

Over the coming weeks, I want to explore the question of if we still need tungsten and where it fits into lighting setups. One area I particularly like using Tungsten over LED and even HMI is night time exteriors. You simply can’t beat old tungsten for creating moonlight for example. This is something I will further unpack over the coming blog posts and share my thoughts. The image here is a recent Christmas shoot for B&Q where I used a mixture of practicals and Tungsten. 

Phil m Powell cinematographer
Another area I love tungsten still is on small scale stop-motion sets such as this FEEFO tabletop set.
Another area I love tungsten still is on small scale stop-motion sets such as this FEEFO tabletop set.