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HEXOLUX Illuminator

Operating Manual


Executive Summary:

The knob is a button, press it to toggle f-stop dimming.

You can be burned within 2 inches of the yellow emitter.

Flick the knob to the left to turn the light off, and to the right to turn it back on.



You can be burned within two inches of the LED emitter. Never touch the actual yellow emitter when it is on, it will certainly burn you.

When the emitter is close to the Fresnel lens, with the Illuminator zoomed fully wide/flood, the proximity of the hot emitter may melt deep-color gels.  If you keep the Illuminator at least an inch or so away from touching the lens, gel filters will last a very long time, far longer than with halogen lights.

Viewing the LED emitter directly when it is on can damage your eyes.  It is very bright — as bright as a standard halogen source — and is designed to be used with the included light modifiers: lenses, umbrellas, soft boxes, etc.


You can pull either the AC or the DC plug at any time without damaging the Illuminator or the power supply.

When you restore power, the Illuminator will return to its previous dim level.

The illuminator accepts 12-24V DC. Any battery in that range will work. We have D-Tap cables for use with most camera batteries.

The power supply accepts AC power worldwide; it just needs the right prongs on the AC cable.

The 7” Zoom Lens accepts 7 3/4” barn doors and accessories, a popular size from many makers.


Turning the Illuminator on and off: 


Spin the knob quickly counter-clockwise, with a quick ‘flick’, and it will turn the light off and display “OFF”.  In this state, the dimmer knob will not respond to anything other than a clockwise ‘flick’. 


Spin the knob quickly clockwise, with a quick ‘flick’, and the light will turn ON and return to the last brightness setting.

If you leave the Illuminator set at a particular dimming level for 3 seconds or longer, it remembers that setting. If the light is subsequently turned off or powered down, when turned back on, it will ramp back up to that same brightness level and give a little flash to let you know when it is there.

The light dims up gradually to avoid surprising people when it is powered up.


Operating Modes:

The dimming knob is also a button. There are several modes you can shift into by using the button.


Percent Dimming (Calibrated Linear Dimming) – Default setting:

In this mode, the display indicates relative brightness from maximum (100%) to minimum (0%). The scale is linear from 0 to 100. Over this range, the actual brightness has a resolution of 255 steps (the same as DMX).

Press the button to toggle between Percent Dimming and  f-stop Dimming.

F-stop Dimming (Calibrated Log Dimming):

To enter this mode from the default Linear Dimming mode, press the button once. Pressing the button again will toggle back to Linear (Percent) dimming.

In f-stop Dimming mode, you can reduce the output of the light in f-stops, just like the adjustment on a camera. The display indicates FUL at full brightness and OFF at minimum brightness. Between FUL and OFF, the scale is graduated in 0.1 stop increments from -0.1 to -6.5.


Dimmer-Limit Mode:

Some batteries cannot supply enough current to power the light when it is set to full output (10.7 Amps of current at 15V). These weaker batteries will trip off at some point as you increase the light’s brightness.  To avoid having that happen repeatedly while you are working, the dimmer-limit mode is provided. Once you have determined the brightest setting that a particular battery can sustain just before tripping its protection mechanism and shutting off, you can set the dimmer’s range to stay below that level.

To set the dimmer limit:

Put the light into either f-stop dimming mode or percent-dimming mode.

Press and hold the button.

You will see the decimal point on the far right of the display begin to blink. This indicates you are now in “DIMMER-LIMIT SET” mode.

Dial in the maximum brightness that your battery can supply without tripping.

Pressing the button will set that brightness level as the maximum and will return the display back to dimmer-readout mode.

If you set the dimmer limit to a value less than 100, the left-most decimal point in the display will illuminate, indicating that a dimmer limit is in effect.  While the limit is set below 100, when you dial the dimmer past the limit, the display will show “bA-“ which is the symbol for “bAttery limit”.  This is true in f-stop mode as well, except that FUL is displayed just before the “bA-” indication is given.

Note that the brightness scale has now been re-calibrated with the newly-set dimmer limit as the new FUL level.  As you dim down from the limit, the display will show f-stops relative to the limit.

Besides its battery-saving function, the dimmer-limit function can be used to measure f-stops from any arbitrary brightness level.

REMEMBER! – steady display of the left-most decimal point means that the dimmer limit is active.

To remove the dimmer limit: 

Put the light into either f-stop Dimming mode or Percent Dimming mode.

Press and hold the button.

You will see the decimal on the far right of the display begin to blink. This indicates you are now in “DIMMER-LIMIT SET” mode.

Dial the display up to 100.

Pressing the button will now cancel dimmer-limit mode and will return the display back to dimmer-readout mode.


DMX mode:

Double-press the button to toggle between dimming mode and DMX mode.

In DMX mode, the display shows the current DMX address of this particular illuminator. The display shows three decimals steady, to distinguish it from the dimming display.

To SET DMX address:

Assure you are in DMX mode (three decimals):

Press the button.

The three decimals will start blinking, indicating you are in DMX ADDRESS SET mode.

Dial in the desired DMX address from 0 to 512.

Press the button to set the new address. The decimals will stop blinking. You are now in DMX DISPLAY mode.



You can dial through the addresses and the light will respond immediately to the brightness set on each DMX channel. So if only one channel is up on the DMX board, you can quickly locate which address it is by dialing through on the light until it comes on.



Temperature adjustment.

You can adjust the temperature at which the Illuminator operates. We recommend leaving the temperature between 60C and 65C.  The default factory setting is 65C.

The temperature setting is a compromise between keeping the light cool and keeping it quiet.

It is subtle, but the Illuminator has better color quality and higher brightness the cooler it is.

If the Illuminator fan becomes audible in a certain situation, you can reduce the fan noise by setting a higher operating temperature.

If the Illuminator is warmer to the touch than you prefer, you can decrease the operating temperature, which will increase the fan noise.


To display the Illuminator’s current operating temperature:

Put the light into DMX DISPLAY mode.

Press and hold the button.

You will see two digits, dynamically reading out the temperature in Centigrade.

Press the button to return to DMX mode.


To adjust the Illuminator temperature:

Put the light into DMX ADDRESS SET mode:

Press and hold the button.

You will see something like 65C. This is the current setting.

Dial in the desired operating temperature in Centigrade (between 50C and 85C )

Press the button to set the new operating temperature and return to DMX ADDRESS SET mode (blinking decimals).

When set to operate at 50C, the fan runs faster and louder than at higher operating temperatures. But if you want the light to be run cool, this is the setting.

When set to operate at 85C, the Illuminator will be hot; you may want to handle it with gloves. But it will be quiet, even on hot sets.

The recommended normal setting ( 60C – 65C) keeps the fan quiet in most situations, and keeps the case of the Illuminator cool in most situations too.




Trademarks: f-stop dimming, Hexolux, Illuminator.  ©Hexolux