The StellaPro Reflex Light: Felix Kunze’s First Impressions

June 2, 2022

By Brienne Walsh

Courtesy of Felix Kunze

Photographer and lighting guru Felix Kunze knew as soon as he opened the box containing the StellaPro Reflex light [from Light & Motion] and began experimenting with it that it was going to completely change the way he’d be taking photographs from now on. “StellaPro has really done everything possible with LED technology and found the absolute sweet spot between size and power with this light,” he says of the highly portable unit that is sized at 9 x 3.9 x 3.9 inches, and weighs 1.8 pounds with the battery.

The StellaPro Reflex: “It’s incredible that so much power comest of such a tiny unit,” says Kunze.

The StellaPro Reflex light is designed to be used in both continuous and Digital Burst™ mode and is small and portable. Using the provided battery handle, it can emit up to 6,000 lumens of continuous light and can increase its power by up to 50% when connected to a 100W USB-c power source. “It’s wonderful to get that extra bump in power when you need it,” Kunze notes. When shooting in Digital Burst, the light will flash 10,000 times before the battery needs to be recharged. “It’s pretty incredible that so much power comes out of such a tiny unit,” he adds. “It’s absolutely revolutionary.”  

A portrait of Kunze and his siblings taken using two StellaPro Reflex units.
Here, a shot of Kunze (center) with his sister and brother, taken by Kunze using two StellaPro Reflex lights. © Felix Kunze

The StellaPro Reflex Light: Felix Kunze’s Likes

Kunze, who regularly shoots events along with editorial projects, says he would have never shot with a constant light outside of the studio in the past. “They’re just so heavy. I don’t want to send my assistant to the chiropractor.” The StellaPro Reflex, however, is portable enough that he can travel with it, whether he’s going to a black-tie event or hiking in Iceland. “If I have a job that’s a combination of portraits and event, I can bring the StellaPro Reflex and throw it up as a constant light behind my subjects,” he says. “It is definitely going to make my images a little more interesting.”

[Read: Light & Motion’s StellaPro Reflex and Reflex S Lights are a Hybrid Shooter’s Dream]

When plugged into the USB-c power source, this light is light enough that Kunze can mount it on top of his camera and stick the battery, via the included USB cable, in his pocket. He loves that the unit is modular, splits the heavier parts (the battery) from the lighter parts (the light) and can support Chimera, Profoto and Bowens softboxes, as well as other modifiers. “I think photographers will be surprised by how useful the light is,” he says.

What Kunze Didn’t Like About the StellaPro Reflex Light

One of the things that was difficult, says Kunze, was the navigation of the interface—it took him some time to get used to, but adds that a recent firmware update really improved this. 

In terms of using the StellaPro Reflex as a main source of light in a studio setting, he says he wouldn’t hesitate. “But outside the studio, in very bright conditions, it’s not going to overpower the sun, it is not designed for that,” he notes. 

How it Rates in Innovation

When Profoto launched the D-Lite 4 in 2012, which was the first LED light for professional photographers to hit the market, no one thought that LED lights could offer the same power as tungsten lights. The Stella Pro Reflex comes close, however, notes Kunze.

Another thing that sets the StellaPro Reflex apart from other LED lights is its ability to be used in Digital Burst mode, which could replace heavier strobes. “There is a lot of potential for this technology to become even more powerful over time,” he says.

Kunze would love to see, in the future, a similar unit with twice the power—he just hopes that it doesn’t grow to twice the size, because he really likes how portable the StellaPro Reflex already is.   

Felix Kunze holds the StellaPro Reflex light during a shoot.
Felix Kunze helps illuminate the moment while his photographer friend Jacob Lund works on set. Courtesy of Felix Kunze.

How It Compares to Other Products on the Market

The Stella ProReflex light, Kunze notes is so light and powerful, it could eliminates the need to travel with a speed light. In some situations it could even replace a small strobe unit on certain assignments. (Kunze also shoots with the Elinchrom ELB 500 TTL, which offers 400 full power bursts in a single charge, as opposed to the StellaPro Reflex’s 10,000).  “[The StellaPro Reflex], when used as a strobe, refreshes so fast that the buffer on your camera will fill up before the light needs to breathe,” he says. With the StellaPro Reflex, he can capture up to 20 images a second, which is enough to photograph dancers or athletes. “You can’t do that with any other LED light,” he concludes.”

Price: $849

Lighting expert Felix Kunze has more insight to share on incorporating artificial light into your studio. The Lighting Series with Felix Kunze and Sue Bryce is available to purchase on The Portrait Masters site, along with a free review of the course by Bryce herself. There are over 14 other courses and bonus videos by Kunze in his Lighting Series—on everything from Sync and Shutter Speed and Felix Signature Light to Kick-Ass One Light, Back and Side Light and much, much more!

Check out more of our reviews on various lighting products HERE.