More Light and Sharper Shadows from Your Lamp

Review by Erik Vlietinck

Aputure’s Bowens Mount Fresnel 2x is a Fresnel lens for intensifying the light coming from an Aputure LS 120d and LS C300d. It also works with Aputure’s budget Amaran lamps. My testing was with the Amaran 100d and 100x.

When pointing the lamp at a white wall from a distance of 1.5m, my light meter measured an increase of light from 8,000 lx at the Fresnel’s largest angle of 60° to 14,000 lx at its smallest angle of 12°. The Fresnel 2x is that powerful because its design features dual optical elements with a large 6″ front Fresnel lens. The rear lens, which is also made of solid glass, focuses and magnifies the beam onto the Fresnel. 

The outer parts are made of strong plastics, while the internal components are metal. The whole feels solid and durable. The rotating barrel is easy and efficient to use and so smooth that I think the lens will last for a long time despite it being heavy and quite large. 

The focus throw is accurate and even the narrowest angle has a nice feathering effect. If you want to concentrate the beam even more, you can buy the Aputure Barn Doors. I found no light leakage from the cooling vents. The Fresnel 2x’s color accuracy is great with a deviation of less than 200 Kelvin across the angle range. 

With the 100x, the Fresnel 2x creates faint banding when you set the lamp anywhere between its 2700K lowest and its 6500K upper temperature limit. Banding disappears when the 100x is at either end of its extreme color temperature settings. 

If you want to create chiaroscuro portraits, I think you might want to add the barn doors if you position the light further away from the subject than the 1.5 meters with which I tested. ■