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Topic: Lightning - from Magicsmith
Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Jun 10, 2008 01:45PM)
Check out the new offering called Lightning from MagicSmith. Looks like a perfect tie-in with their Big Bang effect. It appears you can make any light bulb flicker and you don't even have to be touching it.

Retail is listed as $60 and it starts shipping on June 21. Looks like another winner from Chris Smith!


** Bill **
Message: Posted by: music (Jun 11, 2008 06:48PM)
Wow, this looks very en-lightning. Actually it looks very good, but so do most demo videos, I'll have to wait on some reviews, but I hope they are favorable.
Message: Posted by: echomagic (Jun 11, 2008 07:36PM)
I am very interested in this. Hopefully the effect can be seen at a distance.

One thing that I noticed throughout the demo was the fact that the performances were done at night. I realize that you would want to enhance the effect rather than take away from it. It makes sense to put out the most impressive demo possible. A dark background would aid in this.

My question is, will the lit bulb play well in a lighted palour or stage application? Is the effect bright enough? Or is closeup the best working environment?
Message: Posted by: MagicSmith (Jun 11, 2008 09:51PM)
Hi Echomagic,
Thanks for your interest. Yes, Lightning is effective for a lit parlour environment (like the Magic Castle's). In the demo, though filmed at night, there were some pretty big video lights on Christian and the lightbulb, yet it still showed up well.

The first units are shipping 6-18, so perhaps someone will post a review up here at the Café shortly.

Message: Posted by: echomagic (Jun 13, 2008 11:00AM)

Thanks for your response.
Message: Posted by: Silvio Solaris (Jun 13, 2008 12:48PM)
Very cool!
Message: Posted by: M.Allen (Jun 13, 2008 03:40PM)
Lightning Curious,

No need to wait for a third party review of MagicSmith's Lightning, here are the inside details of this tiny gem.

If you're wondering why I already have the skinny on this, the reason is . . . MagicSmith hired me to injection mold the first batch of enclosures for this professionally produced microprocessor.

First, the enclosure for the unit contours around the batteries and then encloses what little remains of the IC Board. I could give you the exact dimensions of the tiny thing but all I will say is that you could put it in a TT (not that you would want to do that).

The units power voltage is such that it really makes the thing illuminate. Eventually the batteries will die but the housing design makes them very easy to replace (no tools needed).

The Lightning unit has two built-in programs and handles all of the timing for you. It does that by the built-in prompter (it's crazy). Think about it . . . You know exactly when the visual effect will start and exactly when it will stop. Perfect timing . . . Every time! All you need to do is good acting.

Another fine detail is how the unit is activated. All you really need to know is that it is sure fire and ULTRA EASY!

My last little note: I did the first molding run of the Lightning enclosure with equipment that is mainly intended for prototype work. The molding-run I did for this project was just to rough on my expensive equipment to do it again. Chris only has a limited number of housing units before he must go through a timely process of getting more enclosures made. Trust me, when I say . . . Mold tooling often takes four to six months. When I shared this thing with my closest magic bud, he was one of the first on the reserve list. Lightning is the real deal! Do yourself a favor and browse over to the MagicSmith website and check out the Lightning video.

Yours truly,

Mark Allen

If you need this . . . http://www.magicsmith.com
Message: Posted by: magicmike30 (Jun 14, 2008 12:00AM)
This looks really cool, count me in for one;)
Nice very nice indeed.
Message: Posted by: Papasmurf (Jun 14, 2008 09:00AM)
Since I have bought BigBang I had to put an order in for Lightning.
Can't waite till they arrive and will post a review in a few weeks on how they work together.

Message: Posted by: Joshua Barrett (Jun 19, 2008 11:33AM)
I placed a order for this, along with big bang. I don;t do much of this kind of effect except for in october, which is when ill likly use this. in either case it looks like a fun magicians toy lol.
Message: Posted by: rowdymagi5 (Jun 24, 2008 12:18PM)
I just ordered it as well, looksl ike it is not in stock right now, but should be soon.
Message: Posted by: RooMan (Jun 24, 2008 02:00PM)
This looks great. I am, however, a bit skeptical of the "don't have to touch the bulb" bit. Perhaps not but I'm not sure how practical that would be in actual performance.
Message: Posted by: Joshua Barrett (Jun 24, 2008 03:38PM)
I still have not received mine but from reading the rest if the ad copy id say that means, once activated you do not have to touch it =D
Message: Posted by: Mystification (Jun 25, 2008 07:40AM)
Im sure the "gimmick" needs to be touching the bulb. Im hoping the gimmick will be relativly small and camoflaged.
Message: Posted by: Decomposed (Jun 26, 2008 06:57AM)
Anyone received it yet?
Message: Posted by: Joshua Barrett (Jun 26, 2008 07:34AM)
Its in the mail, should be any day now
Message: Posted by: Papasmurf (Jun 26, 2008 08:17PM)
I too have confirmation that it is on it's way.
You will probably get yours first Joshua since mine is coming in on a dog sled.
Message: Posted by: lukasz (Jun 27, 2008 06:47AM)
Hay, can you do it with any bulb? And if it's not a secret, can you do it instantly with a bulb from a lamp? I'm just not sure if gimmnic is separate form the bulb. Ok, I hope I didn't make to many mistakes:)
Message: Posted by: web (Jun 27, 2008 12:19PM)
I received mine yesterday. Quite well made, and yes, can be used with any bulb. I've had success unscrewing them and using it without setup. Gotta be a bit careful with the angles though.
Message: Posted by: Eddie Garland (Jun 27, 2008 04:25PM)
Received mine today. Does indeed have angle issues but nothing I can't handle.

It is really about the delayed timing in the program that sells the various effects.

The light itself seems to struggle to come on and that is very dramatic.

The gimmick is what I somewhat expected and while we could certainly accomplish the same effects with various other devices... THIS little thing has a nifty programmed delay and creates a nice pulsing fluttering ghostly light. I like that.

The delay gives you distance from the light effect and that is key and quite enjoyable.

I don't perform Big Bang myself... but if you do...you will want this.

Think outside the light bulb for various uses...that is where I am going.
Message: Posted by: Joshua Barrett (Jun 27, 2008 10:20PM)
Indeed eddie and yeah I think it adds a lot of dramatic build up for big bang
Message: Posted by: Daniel Nicholls (Jun 28, 2008 06:27PM)
I'll have to look into this I think.
Message: Posted by: Tennispro (Jun 28, 2008 07:29PM)
How does this compare with cesaral magic bulb? It's definitly cheaper.
Message: Posted by: sbays (Jun 29, 2008 12:03AM)
Hmmm .. ok so this requires a set up for the hands off option, but does it require a set up for an impromptu use? Meaning, can I walk in and grab any lightbuld and do it?
Message: Posted by: Eddie Garland (Jun 29, 2008 09:27AM)
On 2008-06-29 01:03, sbays wrote:
can I walk in and grab any lightbuld and do it?

Message: Posted by: Edison Chua (Jul 1, 2008 07:07AM)
Hi,let me add a bit to this discussion on "Lightening", or rather the effect as such.
All that is said by our colleagues show, how good this prop is.
I am sure, those, who have ordered and not yet received, will be glad to have
this effect included in their sequence.
Allow we though, to speak of a different possible use of a bulb effect.
I do not have "Lightening" (yet), but am using the Cesaral bulbs, and when I say
bulbS, I mean the TWO types the SP inventor can supply.
I am proud to be one of the very few colleagues using the Cesaral Bulbs.
Cesar (Alonso) "customizes" bulbs for you to your special requirement(s).
When I say "requirement(s)" let me explain this, or rather MY use of his bulbs.
I am afraid the general effect of a bulb lightening up "can get lost" in a sequence of a programme, parlor or stage, but using a bulb as a "side effect"
read "Mental Byplay" causes (caused to my audiences) a reputation making effect, they still talked about after the (my) shows.
The flexibility of using Cesaral Bulbs lies in the additional (side-effect) use being followed by one of your "mentals".
For example, you will not just ask for 1 or 2 or 3 and 4 (or any more) volunteers to come on stage or (up to you at a parlor venue), but hand the bulb or both bulb types OUT to them to let it go round, and let the bulb show you a or several required assistance.
The bulb will (absolutely customized development by Cesaral) gradually light up, and/or flickers (good effect : "THIS is a suitable person", and be passed on through the audience.
One version can be shown lightening IN a lamp with power, unscrewed and then does the required one or 2 lightenings OFF the lamp,
another version can be handed out likewise, and additionally be remote controlled.
Again "Lightening" seems to be great and solid. Flexible, specific customized uses,for me and mentalist "Cesaral" can be highly recommended.
Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Jul 8, 2008 03:03PM)
I just picked up lightning and also the Big Bang effect from MagicSmith and I must say the two items complement each other nicely!

There's also a really nice coin through bag or even signed coin through bag effect that can be done with Big Bang. This penetration can be done in super slow motion and is guaranteed to wow your spectators.

Lightning is really a utility device that can be used for a number of other effects. I won't say too much about this so as not to give away its secret workings, but the included Video CD provides you with three other routines and many other ideas are possible using this utility device. As mentioned earlier in a previous post there are some angle issues with lightning, so you will want to ensure your audience has a head-on view when you perform this effect.

Highly Recommended!

** Bill **
Message: Posted by: MagiAndrew (Jul 8, 2008 10:35PM)
Regarding the use of Mesika's Exploding Bulb in conjunction with Lightning:

A previous post mentioned a small angle issue with Lightning. There are also minor angle issues with Mesika's Exploding Bulb. If someone owns both could you please weigh in on the practicality of combining these effects?


Message: Posted by: Tom Lauten (Jul 9, 2008 06:21AM)
- Is the bulb examinable at any point?
- Is it glass?
- Is the cap at the bottom metal?
Message: Posted by: Joshua Barrett (Jul 9, 2008 08:06AM)
On 2008-07-09 07:21, Tom Lauten wrote:
- Is the bulb examinable at any point?
- Is it glass?
- Is the cap at the bottom metal?

its a ordinary un-gaffed light bulb, so yes unless your buying some strange bulbs
Message: Posted by: Tom Lauten (Jul 10, 2008 06:54AM)
Ahhhhhhhh...with you, ok that's a cool idea.

Oh be still my aching bank account.
Message: Posted by: Gabor (Jul 12, 2008 03:50PM)
I've just found this one. Maybe some of you are interested.

Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Jul 14, 2008 02:39PM)
I definitely prefer the flickering effect that is programmed into the MagicSmith Lightning gimmick, it seems more realistic than the Enlightened effect.

** Bill **
Message: Posted by: kadz (Jan 4, 2009 12:10AM)
Hey guys, posted this at another thread but was wondering if you guys can help me out with a few questions here

Does this work on ANY light bulb?
what about energy saving lightbulbs? like these ones


the light bulbs shown in the demo are the traditional rounded type...wondering if it can work with different shapes and types.

Another Q is must the lightbulb be detached? Can this trick work if the bulb is still fixed inside a table lamp?
Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Jan 5, 2009 04:02PM)
I doubt it would work on those energy saving bulbs you posted the link to. The more flimsy the bulb the better the gaff works. A really tough glass would not work well.

The bulb needs to be inside the bag for the gaff to work properly so having the bulb still fixed inside a table lamp would not work.

Hope that helps!

** Bill **
Message: Posted by: John Gerard (Jan 5, 2009 08:16PM)
I'm unsure of the toxicity level, but another thing to be cautious of is that many of those energy-saving bulbs contain mercury. Best not to try.
Message: Posted by: Dr. Eamon (Jan 6, 2009 05:32PM)
Received this last week, first of all batteries where empty (but HP send me two new ones immediately!)

Thumbs up:
Light flickers
Easy timing function

Thumbs down:
The color of the light is very unnatural (bleu) the cold color
You need to use extra large bulbs to hide the gimmick...
It can´t be used surrounded…
The sticky stuff is not handy to work whit

I would not recommend this…

Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Jan 6, 2009 06:00PM)
I've always used normal everyday light bulbs. Never had to go with oversized bulbs.

There is a tip on the DVD to use a mixture of half normal putty with half of the super sticky putty which should give you just the right amount of adhesive quality without being too sticky.


** Bill **
Message: Posted by: kadz (Jan 7, 2009 09:05AM)
Putty? hang on...does this trick come with everything needed or do I still need to go out and buy some stuff and construct the gimmick?
Message: Posted by: rowdymagi5 (Jan 7, 2009 09:06AM)
It comes with everything you need.
Message: Posted by: Havens (Nov 16, 2009 10:01AM)
I've just received this and was told by the vendor it would work with any bulb but now, having seen the gimmick I'm not convinced. Pearl bulbs are now banned in the UK, has anyone had any success using this with clear bulbs?
Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Nov 16, 2009 11:42AM)
So all soft white bulbs have been banned in the UK? And why would they ban them??

** Bill **
Message: Posted by: Havens (Nov 17, 2009 04:35AM)
Yep, that's right. All frosted bulbs have been banned and all incandescent bulbs will be phased out in the next 4 years for environmental reasons. Which means unless energy efficient bulbs become cheap and similar in style to incandescent bulbs, both Lightning and Big Bang will become obsolete in Europe.

I did some experiments last night and while you can get Lightning to work in a manner with clear bulbs, there are a lot of limitations and isn't really recommended for a convincing effect.
Message: Posted by: Bill Lhotta (Nov 17, 2009 12:42PM)
That's too bad. Clear bulbs definitely have their limitations with this effect.

** Bill **
Message: Posted by: Havens (Nov 18, 2009 04:04AM)
Luckily I went into a cheap store yesterday and found a load of old 40w pearl bulbs. I'll now be stocking up every time I see more.

If anyone's got any tips for using Lightning with clear bulbs that would be much appreciated.
Message: Posted by: Maloney (Nov 18, 2009 05:49AM)
Some good reviews mixed with a bit of skepticism. I might have to give this one a shot.
Message: Posted by: Havens (Dec 1, 2009 04:12AM)
I've been using this for a few weeks now and it's become a staple part of my set. As with all magic it's all about how you use it and that's what I love about Magic Smith. They come up with great products, show you how to use them but don't feed you with patter, leaving each magician to come up with their own twists. I perform at a lot of stand up comedy clubs and believe me this is massively important if you want the respect from the other acts and promoters.

Magic is looked down upon by stand ups who, quite rightly, feel they've spent a lot of time writing material, only to see a magician receive huge applause for a few tricks he bought from a joke shop. I'm over simplifying but this is how they feel and I have to ensure my performances don't garner this reaction. Lightning was also used, unbeknown to me, on a recent TV special and people have commented that they've seen the effect on TV but the way I did it was completely different. For an effect in the public domain that is a massive compliment.
Message: Posted by: Fire Starter (Nov 18, 2012 09:57AM)
I know this is an old thread I picked this up Saturday and it is brilliant and I have a routine for this one all ready with another type bulb,so I will be playing one off agianst the other.
Message: Posted by: Dr SH (Dec 20, 2015 06:41AM)
It works very well with the Big Band , .
Love the flickering ,very good timing , good material unfortunately the light color is not really realistic , bluish cold color ...
Message: Posted by: HM Whipps (Nov 5, 2017 06:44PM)
[quote]On Nov 17, 2009, Havens wrote:
Yep, that's right. All frosted bulbs have been banned and all incandescent bulbs will be phased out in the next 4 years for environmental reasons. Which means unless energy efficient bulbs become cheap and similar in style to incandescent bulbs, both Lightning and Big Bang will become obsolete in Europe. [/quote]

Trying the same in the US. It’s not for environmental reasons. They want you to use CF bulbs to use less electricity. Not in my house. They contain Mercury. It’s illegal to use fluorescent lights outside because of the environmental impact. The new LED lights are better, but their life needs to improve. My first LED bulb lasted half as long as my incandescent bulbs. Time to stock up on cheap bulbs.

Now, back to MAGIC!