Product Review: Innovatronix Tronix Explorer 1200Ws

Have you ever ventured outdoors to photograph someone or something and thought to yourself… “I wish I could bring my strobes” Then you think… “I wonder how much those power supplies for my studio strobes would cost”. Then you realize that most of the portable power options cost between $700 and $2000!

After hoping and praying for a less expensive solution I finally found it in the low cost Tronix Explorer. A Philippine company called Innovatronix has created a $300 (thats no typo!) gem that will power a 300 watt second strobe at full power for up to 1,000 bursts!

When I first saw the unit, I couldn’t believe that I could have all of that on-location portability and excitement for just $300 shipped. There had to be a catch! 300 dollars and hundreds of shots later there is no catch!

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After plunging 300 pops out of my 440 watt second Britek HS-2000 strobe I find that it is quick to recycle in one second or less even at full power. In fact, over the past month alone the 967 shots taken with it have all proven to be completely liberating – from the wall socket that is! The unit also features Hi Med and Lo indicator lamps which are designed to help you monitor the charge level. In addition, the unit makes an audible chirp sound when the battery is nearing depletion. Once depleted, the manufacturer recommends a four hour recharge.

The Tronix Explorer is absolutely professional looking. Its 15 lbs and shaped like a car battery. The weight of the unit makes it a great counterbalance for your light stand on breezy shooting days. If the weight ever becomes a problem, it’s small size would allow me to put it on a skateboard.

The unit features 2 sockets which release true sine wave output power… the exact same type of power that comes out of your household electrical sockets! Both sockets are basic AC outlets just like in the typical US home that US made monolights connect to (non-US voltage models are available). That means that the having a Tronix Explorer is like taking your home sockets with you on location! The unit is compatible with any strobe that is not a digital strobe. It even works with some pack and head systems! The list of compatible strobe units is available on their website here: Innovatronix compatibility chart.

Overall, the Explorer 1200Ws is a very tough, sturdy and very powerful unit. The handle is the only part of the unit which felt less rigid. The battery is stated to last 5 to 10 years meaning that this piece of equipment should remain a part of my lighting kit for many future sessions. When the internal battery wears out, replacements can be found for under 30 dollars.

The Explorer is a tool that any photographer who uses strobes must own! Having the Tronix Explorer means that I can be more mobile and versatile under many more circumstances because I can now take my lights out anytime, anywhere. Think of it… you are in the middle of a shoot and the power goes out. You simply take out your Explorer, pop your strobes and collect your paycheck (now go pay the light bill). In addition, being able to shoot outdoors means that your portfolio can be full of interesting and unique backgrounds and settings which would not have been possible without power. In my opinion, the Innovatronix Tronix Explorer 1200Ws is the best investment you could ever make after getting serious about your photography!

Lastly, let me mention the company. Innovatronix is a small company in the Philippines which was able to magically build and ship this terrific unit out in less than 48 hours from my order time. They send you lots of email confirmation about the shipment and it arrives packaged quite well.

You can read more about the Tronix Explorer at the Innovatronix website: http://www.innovatronix.com

David Griffin

About David Griffin

The Prince of Cheap I am a "Jesus Freak" and a DIY photography junkie! I'm also the *second* cheapest man alive... but only 'cause my Dad is the first!

11 thoughts on “Product Review: Innovatronix Tronix Explorer 1200Ws

  1. Forrest MacCormack

    I have been using the Innovatronix Explorer 1200WS for about 14 months now. It is a great product. I use mine with a Dynalite 500ws pack. I’m able to shoot hundreds of frames with two blower heads. I keep the modeling off to save power. I tested the unit oce with three heads on the Dynalite 500ws. And added a Dynalite Uni400Jr monolight to the power pack. It fired everything at full power! It just took about 10 seconds to recycle everything.

    One problem I have is interference with the Quatum radio slaves I have and the Innovatronix. I can’t use the Quantums because there is some sort of radio interference generated by the Innovatronix. I have to hard wire my sync. I have tested the Pocket Wizard MultiMAX Transceiver and those work just fine.

    For the money. I’d highly reccommend the Innovatronix.

    Happy shooting!

    Forrest MacCormack

    http://www.fsmphoto.com

  2. Josh G

    ok so this unit sounds great and the vagabond from alien is great too, but they still lack on thing. thier size. they are heavy and cumbersome. I just took a trip to mexico for shooting swimsuit editorial stock images. I had to have something light and small. I found it. And guess what it cost way less than what you would think. JTL lighting. they offer a 300watt mobilelight with battery pack stand and softbox for under $400, the batter pack also comes with a 110 outlet charger and a car battery carger. Not only that but these lights can be powered off of your 110 cord or off of the small batter packs. the best part is these batteries are very small and super lightweight. and they last for ever I do conserve the power and shoot at 1/$ power but the battery I think is rated at 300 flashes at full power, truth be told I have never had to turn them up over 1/2 when shooting outdoors. The battery pack it self is only about 9in*4in and a few lbs at most. the lights have a full range dial to set your stop anywhere you like and has a built in optical slave and a built in wireless sensor if you buy the optional remote. over all I found it at a cheaper retailer on ebay and only paid 375, came with the case, stand , head, reflector, battery, cords, cigeret lighter addapter and a 36*36 softbox. now you cant beat that. for Cheap that has my votwe any day. I would have paid more just because its so easy to take around. I saw another photog with the vagabond sytem and sure it has a higher output and will last longer but its like carring around your car battery. I didnt see him running around the beach or all over like i did. I tock that thing on hikes to the waterfalls and all over. It was great. I bought 2 of the kits and just had the extra battery with me on my outings with the one head for awsome lighting.

  3. Josh G

    you should check them out I love them, they also have a 600watt or a 800 watt head if you need more power and a big battery pack that will run 2 300 watt heads or one of the larger heads. so far JTL lights have been the cheapest and I have not had much if any problems with them. I had an issue with the sync cord and my canon rebel xti but it was fine with my 5d sync, and it works fine with a wireless trigger.

  4. alasdair campbell

    hi , do you think the explorer battery would work with my lastolight lumen8 400 watt strobes ? Could i use all three stobes off just one explorer pack , and which one would be more suited . I,m desperate for a portable power source ! cheers !

  5. David GriffinDavid Griffin Post author

    TO ALASDAIR CAMBELL:
    As long as its not a digital strobe… Sure you can!
    Secondly, I’ve run 4 strobes from the Explorer 1200 before! I just made sure that I was within the 1200 watt draw power rating!

  6. Amunga

    Hi David,
    First of all: YOU’RE THE MAN! :-)

    I would like to know if the Innovatronix Battery would work with the ‘small type’ AC Strobes kinda like this one:

    http://www.skaeser.com/servlet/the-642/MX200-400W-fdsh-S-2-LIGHT/Detail

    ANd also, what do you think about these strobes? I would like to get them to try outdoor strobistesque portraits. Would they be good enough to start off with? Just incase you’re wondering, am no good with offcamera flashes and I dont have a big budget right now to get ‘actual’ strobes.
    Britek’s cheap strobes only have full power/half setting and i would like to get some with abit more versatility yet same price range.

    Are these any good…or would you recommend any other brands plllleeaaasssee!

    Good day.

  7. David GriffinDavid Griffin Post author

    TO AMUNGA:
    Yes it ought to work just fine. As long as the flash is AC powered it should work out just fine. As for the strobe itself. Give it a try only if it comes with a 60 day warranty (why not 30? trust me, you’ll need about 45 to know if it works.)

  8. Adlai Grayson

    I have the Dyna-lite M1000Wi Pack & 4040 head. I was wandering if it would work with the Exployer XT.

    Thanks

    Adlai


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