Italian manufacturer Maxima LED introduced this morning a new powerful focusing single part COB light with a number of very interesting features.
Please note that the video above doesn’t show the Maxima 3, which we shall be reviewing here in the very near future, but the larger (700W COB) Maxima 7 which should be available at a later date.
Italian design, manufacturing, and philosophy
Before we talk about the light itself we want to explain a few things based on our extensive conversations with representatives from Maxima LED over the past year or so.
Unlike many other manufacturers including some Western companies which might design their lights in-house but build them in the far east or maybe only assemble them in-house with components that were made there, Maxima LED decided on a very ambitious goal – design and manufacture everything in house with almost 100% Italian made components.
The Maxima 3 from the front
Doing this sounds impossible when you consider how many components go into a modern LED like the Maxima 3 but using local suppliers Maxima told us that they were able to achieve near full use of local components (aside from a single part made in Germany). In today’s complex manufacturing climate this is an achievement all on its own.
The uniqueness of Maxima LED doesn’t end here. The company has a very clear philosophy about their light design which can only be described as Spartan. The light includes the bare minimum and nothing more. This might be hard to accept at first considering how much stuff we typically get with most lights we buy these days, but there is a reason for it.
Maxima thinks that most of the accessories that we get with lights these days are unnecessary and either never get used (and just accumulate as more junk) or we have too many of them from other lights already. Therefore the Maxima 3 comes in the box (and we shall get to the box later on) with just a power cable and a manual and that is it (unless you also buy the 8″ Fresnel lens).
Love it or hate it, they stand by this approach very firmly (mostly for environmental reasons) and are very proud of it.
The Maxima 3 light
The Maxima 3 is very different than a lot of the COB LEDs that we have used so far. First of all, this is a single unit light, there is no ballast or any other component that is outside the light when it is plugged into the wall (we will talk about other power options later).
The Maxima 3 with the 200mm Borosilicate Glass Fresnel lens
A single-part COB that is plugged into the wall is nothing new, but a 300W COB like that is far less common. The unit is not light at 5.1kg/11.2lbs, but if you consider the output and the fact that most similar 300W LEDs use a fairly large ballast this is actually a pretty significant technical achievement.
Talking about power, the Maxima 3 is bright – very bright. You can see in the diagram below the official numbers, and yes you are reading this right, with the 8″ fresnel the Maxima 3 can reach almost 280,000lux at 1m in boost mode (just to clarify – the sun at noon is typically in the range of 100,000-120,000 lux so this light has one hack of a punch).
Maxima 3 photometric chart
Like a lot of other lights these days the Maxima 3 is app-controlled (Android and iOS), with a remote planned for a future date. However, unlike any other COB lights that we tested in the last few years, it has no screen. That might seem like a strange decision (we certainly think so) but this is another aspect of the company’s minimalistic philosophy. You have only what you need – nothing more (in this case on/off button a mode switch and power dial).
The company also states that “[aside from] physical controls for dimming and for switching on and off, all the other operations, including FXes and status monitoring are done via the remote control app (iOS and Android). The idea behind this is that Maxima 3 body will last for many years to come while its COB LED may be replaced for better units that will eventually come out over time, so we went for the bare minimum controls on the lamp body and move every other control to the software app which yields far better versatility and is certainly more future-proof“.
Talking about modes, the Maxima 3 has 3 modes silent (19dB) with 10-180W range, regular (26dB) with 20-250W, and finally, Boost with 220-350W with high-speed fan (for maximum brightness when audio is not critical.
One last thing. Each Maxima 3 comes in a super heavy-duty pelican-style box. For those who have been following our YouTube channel, you might have seen our recent teaser showing the top part of the box (this is all that we were allowed to show at that time). As we noted a full review will be coming soon.
Here are some of the specs for the Maxima 3:
- 300W+ daylight or Tungsten COB.
- CRI 96+
- TLCI 97
- Full copper heatsink
- Optional 200mm Borosilicate Glass Fresnel.
- S-type Bowens mount (with special locking mechanism)
- 15-60 degree beam angle
- Bluetooth 4.2
- 5 meters Neoprene ultra-flexible Neutrik cable.
- flicker-free up to 100,000fps.
Pricing and availability
The Maxima 3 is already available through the Maxima LED store and you can get a unit for €1900 (currently $2270) or a unit + a Fresnel lens for €2500 (or just under $3000).
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