Daylight control is one aspect of lighting that deserves more attention. When daylight control is done well in a news studio, as it is on popular morning programs such as the “Today Show” and “Good Morning America,” it’s easy to take for granted. But it is worth taking a closer look at just what makes modern daylight control so effective – and easy on the eyes.
Because daylight control solutions help to balance the sun outside the studio with the lighting inside the studio, helping talent look great, an understandable assumption is that light is being polarized. That approach works with sunglasses, after all, so why not daylight control? Well, the requirements of today’s studios are more complex. Even more important, they are evolving, depending on the time of day and angle of the sun.
Daylight control systems actually use filters to reduce incoming sunlight by degrees. Using various gels — transparent filters that can be moved much like a blind — to reduce the amount of light in just the right way, it is possible to get just the right lighting while preserving the view through the window. (This is particularly important when a monument or landmark is framed by the window.)
Today’s daylight control systems are integrated into automated lighting control systems, often controlled with DMX. This means that rather than make manual adjustments throughout the day, the person working at the lighting control desk can simply adjust the daylight control system along with other lighting systems within the studio.
Really, the sun is just another spotlight – albeit the world’s largest. With a sophisticated daylight control system, a studio can take full advantage of beautiful natural light along with other sources, ensuring that the show’s talent and set always look their best.
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