If you’ve ever sold something on eBay or Kijiji, you’ll know how surprisingly difficult it can be to get a clean, well-lit shot of even the simplest of objects – you don’t want a distracting background, insufficient light, or overly asymmetrical lighting. Or, perhaps you’re required to get a large number of on-location shots for something such as a catalog, but you don’t want to drag along a lot of gear. In either case, the Simp-Q is what you need. Putting it simply, it’s a self-contained photo studio. We had a chance to check it out at this year’s China International Consumer Electronics Show (SINOCES), and were pretty impressed with the shots it allowed us to take.

Originally just available in one size, the Simp-Q now comes in mini, large, super and XL. All can be transported folded down, inside a waterproof canvas briefcase/portfolio-style carrier. The smaller two can easily be carried over the shoulder on public transport, while the larger two might require an assistant and a car. Each kit contains a two-bulb fluorescent 5500K light source, a washable white background and base, plus side and front reflective panels.

To use the Simp-Q, you open it up, clip on the reflectors, turn on its lights, then position your subject. If you want a background or base other than white, you throw it in. When it’s time to take your photos, you can just use the basic front reflector and leave the rest of the front open, or add on the larger front reflector, and shoot through its built-in camera hole.

Information on most of the range shown at SinoCES is now available at the company’s English-language website, where the mini goes for $US220, the large for US$350, the super for US$1200 and the XL for US$1400.

Simpq has web sites in America, Australia, Spain, South Africa, Germany and China. B

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