You were so close with method number two. You should have tried some lighting diffusion like lee or rosco full white or half white (216 and 251 if I remember correctly). Oh... and make sure your light source is properly positioned in the xyz adjustable coordinates. If you're not sure, try making a print of just the light source in the same way ic-racer did with his aristo. Once you get the bulb positioning spot on then you place the diffusion under the condenser set. Most plexi has inconsistencies in the grain of the plastic. High-end diffusion like the Lee or Rosco product does not. Hint - make sure the diffusion lays flat and in a parallel plane with the condensers (I tape mine to the bottom condenser). BTW, I've never seen an Aristo or any "cold light" capable of producing an even, diffused source. Boggles my mind that people are willing to pay top dollar for them.
Originally Posted by resummerfield