Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light Review for Stills & Video
Real-world review by a professional wedding photographer of a powerful and portable continuous light that's great for hybrid photo and video coverage.
By Steve Vansak
I have been using the Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light from Light and Motion for close to a year now for stills and video work.
In the era of the hybrid shooter, a constant light is invaluable.
I have used this light at weddings, portrait and branding sessions as well as other events where it was important to be able to go from stills to video and back quickly.
If you are a videographer or stills shooter looking to add video, this flagship LED light from Light and Motion would be perfect for you.
Or, if you are a natural light photographer who is uncomfortable with setting up flashes or strobes, the Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light can be your window light wherever you are.
Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light Specs
- Beautiful and consistent light.
- Bright enough for some daytime use.
- Excellent weather sealing – IP54 Protected from limited dust ingress. Protected from water spray from any direction.
- Plenty of available accessories (CTO sets, fresnel lens, barn doors and more).
- Compatible with many modifier mounts – Profoto, Chimera, Elinchrom and more.
- Has a standard umbrella mount.
- Very long-lasting battery.
- A bit heavy and bulky to handhold.
- One color temperature unless swapping out the head or using CTO set.
- Proprietary power input.
- Lumens – 10,000
- Color Temperature – 5600K
- Color Accuracy Standard – CRI 93 / TLCI 94
- Dimming – Yes, Built-In Dimmer
- Beam Angle 120°
- Umbrella Mount – Yes
- Front Accessory Mount – Profoto and Elinchrom Quadra
- Wireless Remote Control Type – Wi-Fi
- Power Source – AC to DC Adapter (Included) / DC Input (Cable Not Included) / Battery (Built-In)
- Inputs/Outputs – 1 x Proprietary Power Input
- Battery Charging – AC to DC Adapter (Included)
- IP Rating – IP54
- Dimensions – 8 x 3.8 x 3.8″ / 20.3 x 9.7 x 9.7 cm (Fixture)
- Weight – 2.7 lb / 1.22 kg
The Stella Pro CLX10 is one tough continuous LED light as it is built solid and has an incredible IP54 rating.
This makes sense as the parent company Light and Motion has been making lighting for underwater divers for over 30 years.
The USA-based company has now expanded into lighting for photographers and cinematographers with the Stella Pro branding.
While these lights could certainly be used in a studio, I purchased them mainly because I felt they were solid enough to use on location.
They feel just as toughly built as my Profoto B10 strobe, but with the added bonus of weather sealing and more distance throw and brightness when used as a constant light.
The Stella Pro CLX10 has been drop tested to 1 meter on concrete.
- Read more: Profoto B10 strobe review
Size & Handling
The Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light is the size of most strobes and feels like a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens with tripod foot attached.
While it is certainly not unwieldy, I do find it’s too heavy to handhold.
Light and Motion also offer the more portable Stella Pro Reflex S (a continuous LED light and flash), but it lacks the continuous light brightness of the CLX-10 flagship.
This is important for those times when you are outside or need to throw the light at a distance or need a long running time.
- Read more: Stella wedding photographer kit review
I recently used the The Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light at a portrait session in a hotel with tungsten light.
I chose not to match the ambient light and stay with the 5600 Kelvin daylight balanced temperature of the CLX10.
If I had wanted to change temperature I could have attached the 3 CTO Set (Full, 1/2, 1/4) – Glass DM or removed the daylight head and replaced it with the CLX Tungsten Head.
It would be much more convenient to simple dial in temperature but that is not an option as of now. I suspect this would diminish the power of the unit and add to the cost.
The built-in reflector softens the light somewhat, but it is still harsh without any modifier. As a Profoto user, my softboxes are compatible right out of the box.
However, my favorite modifier is the CLx10 25° Fresnel Lens, 82mm.
I love the “Hollywood spotlight effect” this modifier produces although it is more of a hard light effect that is perfect inside and outside in run and gun situations which I’m often in.
- Read more: Best continuous on-camera lights
The press-on design makes this an easily attachable modifier that is rugged with durable aluminum construction.
The external power supply comes with the light and will charge the battery to full in 90 minutes and can also be plugged into AC power for unlimited run time.
Unfortunately, it is a proprietary plug and if you forget it as I did for a job I was traveling for, you will be out of luck.
The light is 10,000 lumens at full brightness and will run for 45 minutes continuously at full power.
However, it is doubtful you will be at such a bright setting unless the entire shoot is outdoors and you are using this light instead of flash (which is possible in open shade or cloudy situations).
Runtime improves dramatically when using the light at other power settings.
I have never run out of power at an all-day wedding using the light for portraits as well as video shooting.
The digital display shows lumens, runtime, charge time and programming options.
Accessories and Best Use Cases
The Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light comes with many accessories (even more in the Light & Motion CLx10 LED Photo Kit) except for modifiers such as umbrellas and soft boxes.
Included in the box are:
- Profoto Adaptor
- Press-On Modifier Interface (for fresnel lenses and more)
- Umbrella Holder YS Mount Base
- Light Stand Metal Mount
- High Leverage Handle
- External Power Supply 24V 110W US/JP
- Flat Port DM Protective Cover
For stills photography, I find the best use of the Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light to be for single to small group portraits, event moments such as speeches, slow dances (a great spotlight effect with the CLx10 25° Fresnel Lens modifier) or anywhere you need to throw light at a distance.
The Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light is flicker free and when I used it at a recent wedding, a videographer loved it so much that he ordered it for his company right that night from our dinner table!
It is useful for some outdoor cases but will not overpower the sun like a Profoto B1 strobe will.
The closest alternative to the Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light would be the Nanlite Forza 720 Daylight LED Monolight.
However,t it is a more expensive and much heavier option making it prohibitive for run and gun situations.
For a stills and video hybrid shooter at weddings and events, a great alternative I’d love to try is Light and Motion’s little brother to this light, the StellaPro Reflex S.
While not as bright, this continuous strobe hybrid light is smaller, lighter and cost less.
Value for Money
At around $1,200, the light may appear expensive on paper but simply add an inexpensive umbrella and you are ready to roll for portraits and/or video.
You may even have modifiers in your collection already that can easily mount to the Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light.
A fair number of accessories are already included in the box to make the light a great value.
The Light & Motion CLx10 LED Photo Kit is an even better value as it adds my favorite, the CLx10 25° Fresnel Lens, 82mm modifier along with barn doors, a carrying case and other modifiers.
Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light Review | Conclusion
If you are planning to add video to your stills photography business and are looking for a light where you can easily switch back and forth with ease, The Stella Pro CLX10 Continuous Light is the best option on the market today.
I added hybrid photo/video coverage in 2020 and will continue to use this light for those clients who seek this out.
For videographers, this flagship light from Light and Motion is the one to get.
Seeing as this unit will throw the light out at farther distances than most video light panels, it offers you the opportunity to be very unobtrusive at events.
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