Tech Tip: Light Restricting ‘Snoot’ for the SFA

In photography, a snoot is a tube or similar object that fits over a studio light or portable flash and allows the photographer to control the direction and radius of the light beam. We have created a snoot for the excitation light sources for our Model SFA Stereo Microscope Fluorescence Adapter. While the beam from the light heads is fairly tight, there is still some excess light spill and a few customers asked for a way to control this to minimize incidental exposure to the bright light source. The answer is the snoot. It does not focus the beam, but it limits the beam spread without affecting the useful bright spot.

The snoot will be pre-installed on all of the ultraviolet (UV) light heads and will be shipped along with all other light heads for users to install or not as they choose. Installation is simple – just remove two diagonally opposed screws from the front of the light head, put them through the holes in the snoot base, and re-install. No need to fully disassemble the light head.

On the UV light head the snoot does double duty. We humans cannot see ultraviolet light, so if the light is not directed at a fluorescing subject it can be difficult to know whether the UV light head is on or off. The snoot includes two fluorescent plastic inserts that glow blue when the light is on!

The pictures below show a UV light head directed at a piece of paper without (left) and with the snoot installed. You can see the reduced light spill on the paper, and the glow of the UV ON indicator.