The Lighting Nerds

The Lighting Nerds is a bi-monthly podcast that talks about the technology used in entertainment lighting, lighting industry news, hosts interviews with people in the field, and generally banter about lighting.
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Now displaying: 2016
Nov 13, 2016

I'm back from LDI, Gavin is back from Europe and we're both seriously tossing around the idea of emigrating straight back to the shores of Britain! #election2016. In this episode:

  • The PRG Ground Control Long Throw
  • The laser phosphor thingy from Osram
  • The Robe DLF7 wash
  • Indoor spark projectors!
    • They're kind of awesome
  • T-Time (Tech time!)
    • Fades, delays, paths, split timings
  • Lighting term of the day: CMY
  • Craig does okay with Gavin's tough quiz!
Oct 12, 2016

Dear interwebs, we promise never to be away this long again. If two or more of us aren't available, we'll do an episode anyway. Maybe a short one, maybe a long one, maybe with a guest. But we'll stick to that two week (about) schedule from now on. Probably. Maybe. Also, new cohost with Craig today: say 'ello to Josh. Gavin will be back in November-ish.

In this, our pre-LDI episode, we talk about a lot of new lights! Chew on this:

  • News items
    • The Robe Spikie, an update from episode 012
    • Robe Spiider
    • The Robe Halo
    • Philips Showline SL LEDSPOT 300
      • wat
    • Showline Hydrus 350
      • wat again
    • Blizzard BUDDHA
      • Not sure about this one, don't hate me, Frank
  • Tips for being a church lighting (or production!) person
  • Term of the day: LED, and some common myths debunked. Also Craig lets long-winded about how they work and skirts copyright law.
Aug 28, 2016

Hot off the presses, it's a new episode of Lighting Nerds. We did this one right in the middle of being way distracted by houses, touring, and honey-do lists, and it shows a bit in the show. So uh, bear with us.

Jul 25, 2016

It's tour season, and Gavin and I are on the road and subsequently exhausted. But we keep making this for you, because, well, that's what we do. Anyway. In this episode:


Jun 20, 2016

Thanks to the restorative powers of angry e-mails, we're back after a month hiatus! Whew! Let's get this show on the road!

  • Guest star: Rowboat, the man with the Golden Voice
  • Gavin and Craig have jobs, let us tell you about them
  • Live Design Product of the Year Awards
    • The GLP X4 Bar
    • SGM G-1 Beam
    • Ayrton Magic Dot R
    • PRG Ground Control followspot
  • Live Design awards. Spoiler: LeRoy Bennett wins a thing <3
  • We discuss the Beyonce video monolith design by Es Devlin
  • Craig tells you about the Helmholtz-Kohlraush effect, feel smart.
    • Everyone says it's a entoptic effect, but Craig disagrees.
  • GrandMA software release
  • Lighting term of the day: Fleenor, with an extended discussion of opto-splitters
  • Lighting quiz: Craig gets it wrong, wrong, wrong
Jun 16, 2016

Folks might be wonderin' about us.

May 19, 2016

We've got everything this week: Craig's crappy on-location audio, new lights, quizzes, we're like a week late, and more!


  • News items:
    • Elation releases
      • A moving head wash with lots of colors, the Platinum 7
      • An LED PAR that combines all the sources and zooms
      • The eMotion, a moving head projector
      • The Sniper Pro, a cool laser-like effect
    • Martin releases the Axiom, and I totally saw it in action
    • Philips tries to spin off 25% of their entertainment lighting business, since they couldn't find a buyer for the whole thing
    • Hamilton gets 16 Tony Award nominations
  • The science of the health effects of haze. tl;dr, we're all gonna be fine.
  • Lighting Design, Console, and Programming Theory: we walk through how WE would program the famous song "Back in Black" by AC/DC. As it turns out, we're the same person.
  • Lighting term of the day: cable bridge.
  • Lighting quiz: Gavin gets it right!


Links to the studies and whatnot cited about haze:

May 7, 2016

Boy howdy, I was late on that one. But your loss is our, uh, gain? Or something like that. Anyway. In this episode:


  • Ayrton makes cool stuff:
  • Lighting Design, Console, and Programming Theory:effects
  • Some e-mails: David Henry talks to us about termination, Amy Peryam asks about dealing with creative differences, and Amanda Tullis tells us about a solution to makes LEDs dim smoothly
  • Lighting term of the day: PAR can
  • Lighting quiz: Craig 1.5, Gavin 2.5
Apr 29, 2016

Hello lighting nerds! Sorry that this isn't the podcast, it's me telling you you're gonna have to wait until I can get this thing edited. Boo! Hiss! Deal wit it!



Apr 14, 2016

In this episode, Gavin admits some...personal shortcomings, namely, his obsession with tiny pieces of metal and glass that change the shape of a light beam. We're all here for you, Gavin.




  • Pro Light and Sound happened
    • The Axiom happened
    • Some other Martin fixtures happened, and Craig might be reviewing one
    • Some Robe fixtures, including the PicklePatt and the Spikie
  • Lighting Design, Console, and Programming Theory: gobos
  • A discussion / introduction to what color temperature is
  • Term of the day: Molefay. Don't call them flashers, please. Nathan.
  • Lighting quiz question: Gavin gets half a point.
Mar 30, 2016

An on-time episode! It's like Christmas in March! In this episode:


  • Gavin and Craig talk about their current projects. Craig does lights for Alan Jackson, Gavin is building a kick-ass previz rig.
  • Industry news:
    • Martin releases a teaser video for the MAC Axiom hybrid, which we still can't talk about
    • Robert Juliat releases the DALIS LED cyc light, and they’re demoing at PLS in Frankfurt
    • Color rendering index TM-30-15, a brief chat
  • What to do when you have a bad day
  • Lighting term of the day: socapex. Cover your virgin ears during this bit, Christian kids.
  • Lighting quiz: Craig 0.5, Gavin 1.
Mar 28, 2016

Geeze, enough with the late episodes, Craig! I was prepping a new rig and programming video and lighting alike and had two shows this weekend. Audio quality and editing skill in this episode: 6/10. Sorry. I'm on the road.

Anyway, Episode 010 is hot off the proverbial presses and it's low-key but high in content. And fiber.

  • Chauvet teases us with the new Maverick Series
  • Martin teases us with the MAC Axiom Hybrid. What does it do? We can't tell you, but it will be awesome.
  • Things we carry in our gig back, and we mention a new tool: The KRE Can Wrench:
  • Emails! So many e-mails
  • Lighting Term of the Day: ACLs
  • The Lighting Quiz: what year were Vari-Lites introduced?
Mar 3, 2016

We're back, 24 hours late this time because one of us - not saying who but his name rhymes with KAVIN - is cavorting about Europe, surrounded by history and country music fans.

In this episode:

  • Gavin is in Europe, and he caught a cold.
    • Advance your show, especially in Europe.
  • The Robe BFML
  • A tragic and preventable accident in an Italian theatre
  • Lighting Design, Console, and Programming Theory: color!
  • Controlling via MIDI and other goodies. A link to a guy who built a console thing!
  • Term of the day: fly rail
Feb 17, 2016

Oh man, incandescent is back, and it's more efficient efficacious than ever, thanks to some MIT braniacs and the power of TEENY TINY THINGS.

In this episode:


  • MIT creates a ~40% efficacious light bulb with NANOSTUFF. Linky here:
  • Lighting Design, Console, and Programming theory: palettes, positions
  • A short-winded review of Superbowl 50
  • An interview with Todd Erickson, of Smashing Pumpkins LD fame
  • Term(s) of the day: key light, fill light, kickers, sidelight, all that jazz
Feb 3, 2016

Hi guys! I'm trying some new things with the audio levels, trying to keep stuff around where most other podcasts are. So maybe you'll notice some changes from previous episodes in terms of audio levels. Shouldn't be too big an inconvenience. I hope.


In this episode!


  • We talk about Drafty, a new CAD tool for the entertainment industry
  • The Chauvet S-Par 1, which uses a micro-Fresnel array. Oooh, shiny.
  • A long-winded talk about the Color Quality Scale, spiritual successor to CRI. Here's a link to Davis and Ohno's paper, "Development of Color Quality Scale".
  • New recurring segment! Lighting Design, Console, and Programming theory: groups and cuelists
  • We review the 2015 Mega Super Bowl design just in time to review the next one!
  • Term of the day: fire curtain, and why water-based ones are a bad idea if you're doing a concert.
Jan 22, 2016

Holy cow, two days late this time? Shame on us. We had some audio issues, okay? OKAY?!?

Episode VI


  • ETC's Source 4WRD, an LED retrofit
  • The Elation 360i and the High End Uno - it's the year of the LED ACL beam, mark my words
  • A review of the Martin MAC Quantum Profile - tl;dr, we like it
  • Story time about followspots
  • Lighting term of the day: stage directions!
Jan 7, 2016

Between having a nasty upper respiratory infection (just what you want when you're a podcaster) gigging over New Years, and moving to different houses, it's a wonder we're only fourteen hours late on this one. Anyway, fresh off the presses, it's Lighting Nerds, Episode 005 folks. In this edition:

The Robe Square. It's certainly, uh, square.

The Lumu Power light meter.


Dressing for success on corporate gigs. Protip: a ratty tshirt and cargo shorts won't do. Tsk tsk.

Craig and Gavin get super-nerdy about CRI. We mention the Munsell color system, here's the WP page on it.


Lighting term of the day: proscenium.