Mola tip: diffuse your Mola

Another way of softening the output of your Mola beauty dish is to use a diffusion sock. Unknown to a lot of people is that Mola actually makes 4 different types of diffusion socks for their entire range of Mola’s; (22″ – 43.5″)

  • Standard nylon diffuser
  • Mesh diffuser
  • LW diffuser
  • LW vented diffuser

Standard nylon diffuser;
nylon diffuser on B&H

When you purchase a new Mola, it ships with the standard nylon diffusion sock as seen below (installed on a Mola 28″ silver Setti)

Mesh diffuser;
mesh diffuser on B&H
The mesh diffuser is how it sounds, an interwoven mesh of material. This results in a very subtle diffusion of the light, around 1/3 stop loss of light and is great for just a hint of softening.

mesh diffuser shown below…

standard nylon vs the mesh…

LW diffuser;
LW diffuser on B&H
Similar to the ‘standard nylon diffuser’, the light weight diffuser is a breathable polyester fabric which allows more air to pass through the fabric. It is not as dense and diffuses a little less than the ‘standard nylon’ diffuser. (about 1/3 stop difference) This will help reduce the ‘ballooning’ effect when the lights fan / heat will fill the soft light and balloon the diffuser outward with some flash heads.

LW-diffuser vented (HMI);
LW diffuser-vented on B&H
Like the light weight diffuser above, except this diffuser has an additional 3/4″ vent at the top. This vent makes it ideal for tungsten and HMI continuous lighting which generate heat.

Both of these LW diffusers will allow you to continue to shoot with lights that generate heat, or lights that are prone to overheat quickly and have thermal cutoffs.

TIP: some shooters will double-diffuse Mola’s by installing 2 diffusion socks for an even softer, subtle fill light. Recently featured Mola user; Fiona Quinn uses this from time to time.

Maintaining your diffusers;

The standard nylon diffuser that ships with each reflector does over time become dirty given studio or location??situations. Some strobe fans drive endless amounts of air through your reflector pushing airborne dirt and dust??into the diffuser.
Over time the dirt from fans or just months or years of location can take their toll on how clean your diffuser is.
Simply hand wash your nylon diffuser in a mild detergent and air dry, for tougher stains a fabric stain remover or a detergent with bleach will work well.
For taking out the wrinkles once it’s dry, just a quick spray using a spray bottle with clean water or a studio steamer will make the diffuser flat and wrinkle free.


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Next Mola user: Fiona Quinn - beauty shoots


  1. This post was great. I was just looking for something similar to this the other day. I shoot with the Profoto D1 Air system, and the nylon diffusers causes the “ballooning” effect described hear and the thermal sensors within the units powers down the light after several minutes due to the collection of heat. After this post I will most likely invest in the mesh diffuser option. Also wanting to stack the PAD diffuser with the OPAL glass but unfortunat B&H has been out of stock for some time now.
    Question: What’s the name of the bracket that is being used in the photos to mount the Mola dish to the boom arm?

  2. Hi Brandon, Thanks for your question. Here I used an ‘Avenger F830 baby swivel pin‘ to ‘drop down’ the setti off the boom arm. If you want to do similar, I suggest you also grab a ‘safety cable’ (such as this one) as the D1 heads are heavy (as are some of the larger Molas) and I’d hate to hear it came down on someone.
    Many thanks

  3. What boom arm do you recommend for the Setti? I ordered one but can’t find any information about the weight. I will be using an Einstein with the Setti. I am thinking maybe an Avenger D600 will be sufficient? But I haven’t settled on a good tripod to put under it the boom for outdoor location shooting.

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