One of the most common phrases I heard as an actor on outdoor film sets was “we’re losing light” but, even if you could move production indoors, that was no guarantee of a picture-perfect result. Good lighting usually has to be created — often in the form of a three-point lighting setup that requires heavy equipment and time-intensive assembly. But, since anyone with a smartphone can shoot their own short film or viral video these days, the best ring lights for video can provide foolproof lighting that doesn’t require a pro’s know-how.
If you’re using a ring light for video — whether it’s for vlogging or YouTube tutorials — you want something that has the technical chops to withstand whatever your creativity can throw at it. To find the right one for you, consider the following.
Look for a ring light that gives you control over the video color temperature and brightness. This ensures consistent true-to-color results that are so important for things like YouTube tutorials. Color temperature is measured in Kelvins (K), and you’ll usually see a range between 3200-6000 K indicated on your ring light. Low numbers indicate warm hues, while higher numbers signify cooler casts.
Accessories & Attachments
Certain features will make your ring light easier to use for video than others. Ring lights with adapters that let you mount your camera directly onto the light make it fast and easy to get that perfect setup —and most of them come with smartphone brackets, too. Several models below even include a Bluetooth shutter remote that makes it easy to literally roll solo, so you don’t have to rely on someone else or run back and forth between takes. And I was thrilled to find a few models that let you control the ring light settings itself with a remote.
If you’re constantly on-the-go or rely on your phone for all of your creative work, you might actually prefer a smaller ring light, on a flexible stand, for turning wherever you are into a studio. But, if you plan on using different-sized cameras with your ring light, a larger model will offer that versatility. Lastly: if you plan to use your ring light outdoors on location, it’s worth spending a little more on an option that supports rechargeable batteries so you always have a backup.
Below you'll find the ring lights for video I recommend whether you’re just starting out or ready for an upgrade.
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