Review: ADJ WiFly Par QA5 Wash Fixture
Adding the amber LED allows it to mix a nice variety of reds and ambers, as well as punching up the yellows and creating nice warm whites.
ADJ’s WiFly series of products is a new line of fixtures from the company that are battery powered and have wireless control. Part of this line is the WiFly Par QA5 and the WiFly Transceiver Wireless DMX Transmitter/Receiver.The WiFly Par QA5 is an LED color-mixing fixture with five quad color (red, green, blue, and amber) five-watt LEDs. It has a dual power system with an IEC wall power input and an IEC pass-through for daisy chaining up to 10 fixtures, as well as an internal replaceable Lithium Ion battery. Control is via DMX, either through the three-pin XLR DMX in and pass-through ports, wirelessly using a WiFly Transceiver to transmit DMX to the fixture.The WiFly Par QA5 has eight DMX channel modes and uses from one to eight channels of DMX depending on which mode you choose. The fixture also has six different operational modes that allow you to use the fixture in different ways. You can set it in a static color manually, mix your own static color, have it fade through colors, run a preset program, react to sound, or take DMX commands. It has strobe and color macros, and flicker-free dimming. Personal observationsThe WiFly Par QA5 was easy to set up requiring me to select what operational mode I wanted, as well as a DMX address. All of this is set from the four buttons via the four-digit LED display on the side of the unit. I did need to reference the manual for this because knowing where to find the menus for the various functions was initially difficult, but all of the settings are well documented in the manual. Then once I had all of the correct settings, the unit instantly began receiving DMX from the WiFly transceiver connected to my lighting console. Color mixing was very good. I like that the fixture uses a quad color LED so that the face has a unified color instead of multiple discrete LEDs. I also like the fact that it has amber as the fourth color instead of white. Adding amber allows it to mix a nice variety of reds and ambers, as well as punching up the yellow and warm white.Dimming in its raw form is a bit jittery on long fades, but ADJ adds three dimming curves that smooth the dimming over long fades. Each of the three dimming curves has a slightly different fade-up and fade-down profile, allowing you to pick the curve that works best for your application—this is great if you are doing theater. If you are trying to do chases you will want to make sure you use no curve at all, or find the dimmer curve that gives you the best balance between chases and long fades since the curves do affect your chase timing.The beam of the WiFly Par QA5 is pretty narrow at 25 degrees, making it almost more of a spot fixture then a wash, but this lets the fixture work well for up-lighting truss and highlighting scenery. Also, with the fixture being 10.5- by 9.5- and only 6.5-inches tall, it fits easily into a 12 by 12-inch piece of truss to be used as a truss warmer. In addition, all of the connections are on the sides of the unit instead of the bottom, allowing the unit to sit flat on the floor or flat inside a piece of truss. Yet it still has the double yoke that can be used as a floor stand or to hang the fixture. This makes the unit great for scenic work where you are up-lighting the piece from the floor.