If you’re getting serious about recording videos for YouTube, TikTok, or professional-looking pictures for Instagram, you’ll need to invest in decent lighting. Next to your camera, lighting can have the biggest impact on how your video looks. Low light can lead to grainy, unusable images, which means you need to waste time reshooting.
Ring lights (occasionally called halo lights), are circular, and have a cutout in the middle. This shape has two big benefits over a regular lighting rig. First, it diffuses light over a wider area rather than sending a beam directly at you your face, which reduces glare.
Second, a camera can be positioned in the middle of the ring so it can absorb as much light as possible. Because you don’t have to worry about glare, you can get a well-lit image from almost any angle. All of the ring lights we’re recommending sit on top of a tripod, which keeps them stable, and require limited adjustments once they’re set up.
Keep in mind ring lights only provide enough light for one person, or a small area. If you’ve got a big, elaborate set or backdrop, it’s probably best to get several LED light strips, and position them at different points in your room. Still, if you want to add some dramatic flair to your face in dim lighting conditions, or add a little extra glow during a day shoot, our guide can help you out.
The structure of the product will directly impact where it can be stored and used. Models range from 6” to 18”, without considering the lift stick.
Though most items have a carrying case, the usability of the ring light will be directly proportionate to its accessibility.
Considering the amount of space available, and setting clear intentions for the light’s purpose, will help to determine what size is the most suitable.
The light’s range will, of course, be influenced by size and height. If the light is going to be used for professional purposes, a more extended lift and more abundant light are desired.
However, if the ring will be dedicated to the art of selfies and personal, small scale vlogs, a large size is seldom required.
Most options are lightweight and easy to transport, something that is ideal for those on the go.
Many freelance photographers take their entire setups with them, and a less bulky product makes for easy maneuvering.
Naturally, the heaviness of a product can reflect its durability. For those whose photographic concerns are subject to wear and tear, such as nature enthusiasts or children’s photographers, a more substantial product can impact the shelf life of the ring light.
Mobility is always required, but the photographer should acknowledge the potential risk and weigh the options of a lightweight yet sturdy item.
The best solution is proper storage of the item, and an easy to use, compact design can promote shelf life, only by keeping the light out of harm’s way.
Luminescence is the set goal of the ring light, but the intensity of light is directly proportionate to the amount of power required, and therefore, the cost of use.
For the cheapest options, an option that fully dims is ideal, so that the downtime power costs can be mitigated.
Heat, of course, is another concern that causes subjects to be uncomfortable and grow impatient.
Savvy photographers know that the heat generated by lights can cause perspiration that impedes on image quality, especially when dealing with makeup and beauty tutorials.
For this, a light dampening, low heat output is ideal. The range of 5500K is acceptable for both the pocketbook and the subject’s comfort.
As with most products, especially technologically oriented ones, shelf life is a concern.
Lower demand lights with a full range dimming option promote long term use of the ring light product.
The less maintenance required, the more benefit is gained from the product.
In terms of lightbulb lifespan, a reasonable timeline is 50,000 hours or usage, with some models being close to double that amount.
Depending on the purpose, the wear and tear on the item will vary.
Years of personal use can be extracted from any model of a ring light, though the demand placed on professional items will, of course, drain the lifespan of the lights themselves at a quicker pace.
The lower the heat generated, the longer the user will get from the product. As with any item, the more care given to its safety and maintenance, the longer it can be expected to stay in good condition.
The power and impact of light on perception has been studied extensively for centuries.
It is no mystery that to imitate the organic benefits of natural sunlight, the shape and technique need to be replicated.
For this, the circle is a clear front runner, with its infinitely angled viewpoints that soften images and prevent shadows.
Newer users will reap the most benefit from the smaller options that will allow the gain of experience in the technique.
With the prevalence and popularity of digital photography and videoing, ring lights can set apart from the crowd the artistic project, thrusting an amateur into the status of a professional.
Those with extensive camera experience or education, the ring light technique is clear. The benefit is seen mostly from the longer sticks, maneuverable tripods, and larger models.
Bringing a level of professional credential to the independent photographer, the proper, higher-end ring light can be the best solution to scaling up a business.
Encouraging full hours, the light is an excellent economic partner as it extends working hour potential to long past prime daylight hours.
The study of light and the study of sight are inherently intertwined. Through the proper use of the ring, light, perception, and even mood can be impacted.
The influence of visual arts is profound in its provision of an expressive outlet where words are insufficient.
Whether the purpose of the ring light is for business growth and financial gain, or simple self-esteem through looking like one’s best self, the ring light has its benefits rooted in well-established science.
Even if you don’t know anything about Ring Lights, you can still make a smart buying decision with the right information in hand. At Swipereviews, we perform extensive research in every product category. To avoid bias, we always decline offers from manufacturers for “free” samples. We want to be your go-to source for honest, thorough product reviews you can trust.