Review: Blue Point ECFLED68, Westcott ICE Light Alternative?

UPDATE!!!! I HAVE BOUGHT AN ICE LIGHT (version 2)…ITS AMAZING!

Being a wedding photographer we are always looking for very portable lights to use. Depending on your style of shooting you may love to hunt for available light, others will go to the flash/artificial light first. There are also times we find situations where there is NO light at all. There was a product put out recently by Jerry Ghionis and Westcott, it is called the ICE Light. I first saw this and said to my self, PERFECT! I can toss my bulky video light and have perfect soft light thats super portable. Well when it was released I saw the price, damn. I wasn’t really into spending that amount of money for a specialty light, as I wouldn’t be using it all the time. Also the fact that there a lot of LED lights out there that are a 1/3 of the cost.

The hunt began. I was on a mission to find a light that was designed the same way, had soft neutral light, wireless and portable all at the same time. I had tried many sites and tried building my own, that didn’t work at all. I finally came upon a light made by Snap-On Tool company’s “sister company” called Blue Point. This whole review is based on the 68 LED Light by Blue Point Part# ECFLED68. I have never used the ICE Light before so therefore I cannot compare the two lights side by side. In the review I will show you what this Blue Point LED light can do.

First off lets start with some specs.

Blue Point LED Light:

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Westcott ICE Light:

Specifications:
ITEM DIAMETER: 1.75″ (4.4 cm)
ITEM LENGTH: 20.25″ (52.07 cm)
ITEM WEIGHT: 1.3 lbs. (0.58 kg)
LAMP WEIGHT: LED Array
EQUIVALENT WATTS: 150 (compared with quartz halogen)
LED HOURS: 50,000+
BATTERY LIFE: 60 minutes at full power
COLOR TEMPERATURE: 5200~5400K
LUMENS: 1160
POWER DRAW: 1.5w – 15w
DIMMABLE RANGE: 1.5w – 15w
BATTERY CHARGE TIME: 2.5 hours
BEAM ANGLE: 72.6 degrees
MOUNT: Handheld with 1/4-20″ thread (both ends)
FLICKER FREE: Yes
WARRANTY: One year against manufacturer defect

So lets sum this up.

  • The Blue Point 68 LED Bar is 3 inches shorter than the ICE Light.
  • The charge time on the Blue Point is 4 hours and the light will last up to 3 hours of continuous use. ICE Light charge time is 2.5hours, but will only last at full power for 60 minutes.
  • Blue Point light does NOT have a dimming option therefore distance will change the power, while the ICE Light can be controlled instead of moving the light closer or farther.
  • Ice Light has almost 4x the power. Blue Point Light is rated at 350 Lumens while the ICE Light is rated at 1160 Lumens.
  • Construction of Blue point light is a comfortable rubber on both ends with a waterproof charging port and hook at the top. The ICE light has mounting threads in the design at top and bottom.
  • Both lights have a white diffuser on the front and both provide 180 degrees of light.
  • Both lights provide the same temperature of light as well. ICE Light: 5200-5400K Blue Point: 5346k as shown in my light temp measuring iPhone app called LightSpectrum Pro.
  • PRICE! Ice Light: $499-599 Blue Point LED Light $85-99

 

Now the comparison has been made that the most critical difference between the two is the power output. In the review I have take pictures of my wife with indoor back lighting, dark lighting, and a room with window light as well. Heres some images to show you the differences. None of these upcoming pictures have been edited or processed in anyway.

First shot is with Sigma 85mm 1.4. Image is back lit with no LED Light. The ambient of the room was about 1/400 sec at F1.4 and ISO was 200.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Here is a shot at 1/500th with the light added.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Here is a series done in a tight dim lit area where the ambient was about 1/30th at F1.4 ISO 200. First lens used was a Nikon 35 f1.4G and was shot first without LED Light bar.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Now with the light added and shutter speed adjusted to 1/250th sec to avoid over exposure.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

This is the same area but with the Sigma 85mm f1.4.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

No with the LED Light. Both images shot at 1/200th f1.4 ISO 200

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Now here are some images with some window light coming from the left of the frame. Ambient was 1/13th sec. at f1.4 ISO 200. Both of the next images were shot with 35mm at 1/100th at f1.4 ISO 200 one with light one without.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Now with the LED Light, same settings.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Here shot same way with Sigma 85mm

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Now with the Light plus a funny face.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Here is a back lit shot with my Nikon 70-200 f2.8 VRii at 135mm at about 30ft away. Settings were at 1/125th sec at f2.8 ISO 200. The light was roughly 2.5ft. from her face. Oh yea, as you can see I’m about to be a daddy soon! So excited! K….back to the review haha.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Now being a wedding photographer we have to be great in multiple areas of photography. We need to know how to shoot landscape photography, portrait photography, action/sport photography , low light and harsh light photography, biggest of of all we need to know how to shoot product photography. So I needed to use this light to be able to shoot a ring in low light. So the next section I will display how this light works in almost no light whatsoever!

Here’s a few images of my wife’s ring with the LED Light on then off. ALL images were shot with 35mm f1.4 and settings were 1/100th at f2.8 ISO 200. This first image is almost completely black.

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

So here is my conclusion. Based on the LITTLE bit of testing I’ve done here due to lack of free time I found that this light performs pretty damn well. It has just 1 major flaw in my eyes and that would be the power output. On the flip side this light was worth every penny. I paid $85 for this light as opposed to $599 for the ICE Light. It performed very well in low light, and worked great for the ring shot. The ICE Light DOES come with a case/bag and light stand thread on either side of the light. I have a few solutions for that. A bag would be the same nylon bag used for a medium retractable umbrella and the mounting issue is easily solved with an assortment of available clamps to clamp the rubber handle of the light, or just have your assistant hold it!

This product is new as of 2 weeks ago and I was only able to purchase it through my local Snap-on Tool Dealer. Leave me some feedback and let me know what you think! Follow me on Facebook as well! To order the light mention Joe Dantone referred you and contact Ben Tormina (snap on tool dealer) cell number is 609-209-7013 he has already had numerous photographers order from him.

Here’s some outtakes of my amazing wife!

Photo by Joe Dantone Photography visit www.joedantone.com

 

8 notes + Add comment
  • jhay

    on June 18, 2013  6:13 am

    thanks for the review... where can i buy one of these? it seems snapon.com doesn't sell em anymore.. :(

  • Peter

    on December 19, 2013  7:04 am

    Hi Joe:

    Got here via your post on photo.net. Very interesting alternative to Ice Light. Thanks for taking the time you probably didn't have to make the example photographs. Your work is awesome! I looked at your portfolio and then your pricing; I was surprised at how affordable you are! Raise your prices, you deserve it. If you don't mind sharing (I'm in AZ and don't do weddings ;-) ), how are you lighting your reception images? I love the look. We shoot almost exclusively in very dark, club-like party rooms, and I would love to get away from the very flash-y look we have, almost by necessity. But yours are beautiful. Room light? Any on- or off-camera flash at all? Or are you rocking the 1.4s and 1.8 primes? Thanks in advance for any info you feel like passing along.

    Happy Holidays,
    Peter

  • Joe Dantone

    on December 19, 2013  7:20 am

    Hi Peter, thank you for the kind words. My receptions I usually shoot high ISO for ambient light and bring in a little bit of fill flash on camera. I didn't use any off camera flash at all this season in my receptions. Also I am using F1.4 lenses but using them at about F1.8-2.8

  • Peter

    on December 19, 2013  7:22 am

    You got mad skills, for sure. Continued success and thanks very much for your quick response. No sleep til Brooklyn, huh?

  • Carla

    on February 13, 2014  5:29 pm

    Just wanted to say thank you for your review. I was really looking for an alternative that didn't cost me an arm and a leg. Your link to the product is no longer working but I found it listed on snap on tools. Here's the link http://store.snapon.com/Rechargeable-Utility-Lights-Shop-Light-LED-Rechargeable-Cordless-P743601.aspx
    Hope this helps.

  • Julie Watts

    on April 21, 2014  10:31 pm

    Can't believe I found this post. I'm a wedding photographer and my husband restores cars. He has this exact Blue Point light and, after seeing the Ice Light at ImagingUSA, I went home to his garage and used his Blue Point light on a commercial shoot. I loved it, the client loved it. I am not a "techie" I just love experimenting and my eye loves the results. I will be borrowing his light more often!

  • Alan York

    on April 24, 2014  5:26 pm

    Hi, thanks for this fantastic info, would any one know where this could be purchased from the uk ?
    regards :)

  • Ken

    on May 22, 2014  2:32 am

    Thanks for the comparison and alternative to the Ice Light. It would be nice to see side by side comparisons of each picture using each light to see any differences there might be between the two lights.