A stroboscope flashes, a blinder dazzles and a wash light throws a broad light. But what do you call a spotlight that can do all of this? Thunder Wash 600 RGB is what Cameo calls it. We tested how well it actually performs each of these tasks.
Visually, the Cameo Thunder Wash 600 is clearly based on classic or LED-operated stroboscopes. A wide light front sits in housing that narrows down towards the back. The front of the Cameo spotlight is occupied with so-called SMD LEDs, which sit very close together. This means that they create a uniform light, even with very short viewing distances. The housing is made of robust sheet metal, and the workmanship makes a good impression. Also very positive is the mounting bracket, as it is not only robust, but also doubled, which means that the spotlight can be easily operated while standing on the ground.
The connections and controls are on the back. The DMX jacks are three-pin, and power connection is via a cold device socket. However, I find it a pity that there is no option here to loop the power to other devices via an output jack , which would be the easiest way to make a cascading device system possible. Because, precisely with this device type, it would often be good to have multiple devices hanging or standing next to each other, and connecting them would avoid the need for multiple sockets.
Settings are controlled via four buttons and a simple display. The instructions help you become familiar with the letter abbreviations and numbers. Manual control of the spotlight, where the colour mixing can be managed, is also possible. A wide variety of strobe, blinder or coloured wash light programmes can also be set directly via the display.
Modes en masse
I am particularly impressed by the huge number of DMX modes available. In the smallest operating mode, which only works with one channel, the device can be used as a pure stroboscope. This channel allows you to set the flash frequency of the device. If you control the Thunder Wash with two DMX channels, then you have two different modes available. The first controls the overall brightness via one channel, and the other channel controls the colours: Various colours, bouncing colour changes and smooth transitions can be defined. The alternative, also a two-channel mode, is intended for use of the spotlight as a stroboscope, but also has a “flash” channel for control of the overall brightness.
When operating with three channels, there are also multiple modes available, namely three. Four-channel operation is also possible, but anyone who truly wants to use all the functions of the Cameo spotlight should use the clearly manageable six DMX channels. This is the only operating mode that gives you one controller for the overall brightness, one for the various stroboscope effects, and three channels for colour mixing. The sixth channel can also be defined for music-controlled operation. Incidentally, the microphone sensitivity can also be set here.
The individual functions
Does this single housing really contain all three devices? First, we look at the use of Thunder Wash as a wash light. As the name implies, this device is completely convincing when it comes to this function. The colour mixing is excellent, and the extremely wide dispersion also makes the spotlight an excellent floodlight. The brightness is impressive, and the relatively small housing creates a true photon surge at the press of a button.
But how do you now make the device into a blinder? It should be noted here that any spotlight that can be aimed relatively flat and directly at the audience also works as a blinder. What’s important here is an appropriately wide dispersion angle, so that the audience experiences the beam as a blinder from their various positions, in other words, that they look directly into the dazzling light. This criterion is met well by the Thunder Wash 600, and the colour mixing also means that the audience can be dazzled in almost any desired colour. Incidentally, this effect also works very well if multiple Cameo Thunder Wash devices are arranged symmetrically on the back truss of the stage.
The third function promised is the stroboscope. Here the spotlight also performs impressively, and in all colours. Strictly speaking, it achieves even more than a classic stroboscope, as the excellent colour mixing can also be used here, so that the cold, bright white of a classic stroboscope can be replaced with the colour mix of your choice. The only thing that I find a bit of a pity is that the largest DMX mode doesn’t let you set the flash duration. You can easily determine how many times it should flash, but not how long the individual flashes last – this setting is only possible in the three-channel strobe mode.
To be fair, I should mention that most classic stroboscopes don’t allow definition of the exact duration of the individual flashes either. This spotlight is truly multi-functional. Whether it is used as a floodlight for lighting up the backdrop in a theatre, as a blinder at a rock concert or as a stroboscope at your next party: The Cameo Thunderwash 600 RGB convincingly performs all these tasks. Anyone looking for an all-round spotlight for various requirements will truly “light up” with this device. And if the spotlight is well positioned, it can even perform multiple tasks effectively at the same time.
Cameo Thunder Wash 600
– Robust workmanship
– Many different DMX modes
– Can be used as blinder, strobe or wash light
– Very wide dispersion
– Very good colour mixing
– Power cannot be looped
Light source: 648 SMD LED
Colour mixing: RGB
Dispersion angle: 80°
Power needs: 30 W
Weight: 1.8 kg
Dimensions: 335 x 93 x 182 mm
Price (RRP): €350
Source: pma magazine, March 2016, Germany: http://www.pma-magazin.de/
Author: Erik Schröder
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