Mu 76 - TriTube vs. LED Tube Lamp

by Massive Voodoo

Welcome jungle people,

welcome to another Material Unpacked here on Massvive Voodoo.
This time it is about light, in fact about a specific painting LED painting lamp.

First of all if you look at the MV Studio table and the connected lamps there it - indeed - seems a little crazy. Our upper light bars deliver big area light, while the lamps below deliver more focused workspace light. Crazy, yes, but professional.

You all know the TriTube Painting Lamp, which is very common nowadays. Please know that the TriTube is still a great lamp, we do not want to make it bad it in this review. We talked about the Tritube a while ago in this article. 

We are pretty sure that many of you who own a TriTube are happy with it, nothing wrong with this.
Roman had his issues with this lamp. And only Roman. Roman got affected by it's light frequence and after a little while painting under it he recieved horrible headaches. And only Roman, we do not know of any other painter so far. Well, it's not that Roman needs a good lamp for painting. He really got sad when he sold his TriTube, but found another solution without headaches.

Always great light, always room for stickers, always room for fun with pattafix and stupid ideas.
The TriTube delivers light from ... now guess what ... three light tubes and in fact makes your  workspace bright and works wonderful. The lamp does not turn hot and the tubes are also energy-saving ones. The TriTube has one black button for switch on/off.

The TriTube comes with plenty of fixation options and is a great lamp for every miniature painter.

Plus of the TriTube:
- Sturdy, high end quality lamp
- great light
- many fixation options
- initially cheaper than the LED Version
- Offers a lot of room for Massive Voodoo Stickers

Downsides of the TriTube:
- Roman gets headaches
- The Tubes die after some years, you have to buy new ones (ask Raffa)
- heavy Lamp for carrying around
- cabel is fixed to the lamp
- heavy, big lamp

LED Version
Well, Battlefield-Berlin and other suppliers offer a newer version of this lamp recently. It looks kind of the same, but it ain't. It's packed with 84 white LED lamps. Roman does not get headaches from it.
It's a little tricky to make proper photos of 84 LED lamps, well here is a collage:

The design of this LED lamp is a little slimer compared to the TriTube. Not a huge difference, but a difference in weight in the end. It also offers the same amount of fixation options than the TriTube.

Difference in the cable connection here: While the TriTube gets connected via cable which is fixed to the lamp the LED version has a plug-in to it's frame. Feels ultimately like future in a second.

Also the LED version offers not only a futuristical cable plug-in, it also offers a futuristic console, where you switch it on/off, where you can dim the lights or push them stronger or where you can use only one bank of LEDs, means 42 (well, this number seems to be the answer to everything :D). Maybe.

Both compared to eachother. You can see the design of the LED is more slim. We are not talking about the material here, as both lamps come in high-end manufacturing quality.

Plus of the LED Version:
- Sturdy, high end quality lamp
- great light
- many fixation options
- cable is easier to fix
- not so heavy, easier transportations
- LEDs will not die in the next years, so you do not have to rebuy tubes
- Console for maximum light control
- Roman gets no headaches

Downsides of the LED Version:
- a little more expensive, initially, but you do not have to buy new tubes

- the console and dimmable light can be confusing at first until you get used to it
- less space for Massive Voodoo stickers


Overall Impressions:
- If you are an owner of the TriTube and if you are happy with it and do not get any sort of headaches there is no urgent need to get the LED version of this lamp.

- If your tubes of the TriTube died already several times and you might want to avoid to buy new ones once in a while you could think of investing in the LED version.

- If you do not own any of these two we highly recommend the LED version for your miniature painting future. It's a good investment and even the higher price is reasonable for you do not have to buy new tubes.

- If you have headaches while painting, think that the reason could be the TriTube lamp, not your painting skills. Get the LED version.

- Of course there are other lamps on the market, we can not give you tips or ideas on those as we can only tell you about what we use.

Where to buy?
You can buy these lamps at several different shops, check your local store or buy directly at Battlefield-Berlin as they have tons of miniature candy on offer too:

TriTube at Battlefield-Berlin

LED Version at Battlefield-Berlin

Do not forget stickers ...

... and stupid stuff on your lamps or your friend's lamp:

Keep on happy painting!
Best Wishes
Your MV-Team


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