Photo: Louise Stickland. Photo shows Zoltan Blazer with Astera Titan Tubes.
SUNSTUDIOS in Sydney, Australia, is a diverse creative hub for the photographic and motion picture / imaging industries and creatives. Owned by Canon Australia, the Sydney facility offers 5 studio spaces plus camera and lighting rentals, CPS service, a gallery space as well as fine art printing and other specialist services.
With the video elements of the business expanding, explained sales manager Zoltan Blazer, they sought more flexible and practical options for lighting, and were hearing good reports about Astera’s wireless battery-operated LED product range from several sources.
So, he and motion specialist Neale Head thought they should take a further look for themselves.
Astera’s Australian distributor ULA group arrange a demo and the Titan range of LED tubes “really impressed us” stated Zoltan, “and after seeing this we knew we wanted this product so discussed the opportunities and additional exposure that SUNSTUDIOS could bring to the equation as a re-seller.”
Zoltan explains that they saw many parallels between SUNSTUDIOS and ULA Group including expertise, strong technical sales, thorough and efficient support with an established infrastructure for rapid troubleshooting/repairs if needed, etc.
This came into effect last year and SUNSTUDIOS has been selling Astera, especially the Titan Tubes regularly since then. “There is a long list of extremely well-thought-out features in these products,” he says.
They believe that colour quality and consistency is an essential feature and that this has been a major factor in the brand’s success so far in Australia, together with build quality, the highly functional and intuitive AsteraApp, programmable battery life and the casing options. “There’s nothing lacking at all really!”
Titan Tubes have also proved popular in rental, and in the pre Covid-19 period had been out on many projects involving both stills photography and video shoots, from automotive adverts to music videos. People regularly comment on their reliable and innate usefulness.
They have also sold Titan sets to several freelance gaffers, to a director shooting corporate training videos as well as to some e-commerce businesses dealing with fashion/clothing … for their ongoing photoshoots.
SUNSTUDIOS works closely with universities and educational establishments including AFTRS – the Australian File & TV Radio School – Australia’s national screen arts and broadcast academy, known for its rigorous selection of ‘featured’ products made available for students’ project use. They have recently purchased both Titan and Helios (the half metre version) kits.
Before committing to purchasing Astera, AFTRS did an in-depth evaluation including colour tests, output tests, usability, etc., alongside all the competitor brands over a few months … and selected Astera as the best product option.
SUNSTUDIOS has recently added Astera Hyperion (the 2-metre version) Tubes to rental stock.
While the Coronavirus pandemic has had a profound and disruptive effect on the industry as a whole, Zoltan explains that SUNSTUDIOS has been very lucky and kept operating throughout the period, with strict Covid protocols in place to prioritises the health and safety of staff and clientele. Since June, they have been offering the same levels of superlative customer service and support for which they are known industry-wide.