Hello there, and welcome to Streamer’s Haven, your hub of information about all things streaming! I am Mr. Goodhand, and it is a pleasure to meet you. In this article, I will go over five of the best lights you can buy for streaming these days, and explain some of their advantages and disadvantages so that you can understand these lights.
I’m going to let you know now, I am partial to the “Panel light” format, so a great many of these lights will feature this design. There are a few reasons that I have this opinion, but I can understand why others may like a different format themselves. If you prefer something like a Ring light, then that is all well and good. If you don’t understand what I’m talking about, I recommend that you give this article about “the key light” I wrote a while back that does a good job of explaining the differences. Don’t worry, that link will open a new tab, so you won’t lose your place here!
Also included is why you should probably avoid an RGB-style LED as your primary light. With that being said, Let’s get into it!
Table of Contents
Best Overall – Aputure Light Storm LS C120D Mark 2
This is one of the better options on the market for seriously invested streamers looking to bring their webcam/DSLR quality to the next level. Of course, it has a price to match.
This is a studio light designed for the express purpose of producing quality light that can closely match the wavelength of the sun. It is not meant for entry-level streamers unless you have money to burn. With that said, there are even more expensive options out there, and this one is reasonably priced by comparison.
- Fantastic Color Reproduction, CRI 96+, TLCl 97+
- Some pre-programmed lighting effects
- 30,000 lux at 0.5 meters
- Heavy, you need a good light stand or tripod.
With that being said, something like this is most certainly not required in order to produce a nice looking webcam, so if the price of this thing is something you balk at, hold on just a minute…
Best Lighting Kit – RALENO LED Video Lighting Kit
This light kit comes with Two LED panels, two light stands that can extend up to 75 inches up, two charging plugs, a carrying case, and a reasonable price. That being said, the quality of these lights can’t compare to the Aputure in brightness or color accuracy, but they come reasonably close to the color reproduction and are a solid offering for streamers.
- Relatively cheap for what you get
- Comes with almost all accessories
- Built in Li-ion Batteries to use the lights where power isn’t available
- Panel design is simplistic
- The included light stands tend to be a little bit flimsy feeling when extended to full height
- Far dimmer than the Aputure offering, coming in at only 2600 lux/0.5 meters
- No Remote
Out of all of the options, I feel that this kit offers you the best bang for your buck. While it is quite dim, they perform well, and are very reasonably priced for what you get out of it.
Best low-cost Panel light – Neewer Ultra-Thin 192 LED Panel
If you’re on a tighter budget still, and just want to get your foot in the door to getting your webcam looking decent, you could opt for this panel. This is barebones stuff; A single panel, with no light stand or mount. You’ll need to buy a mount alongside this, or use one that you may have laying around. This light uses a 1/4″ – 20 thread mounting joint, which is the standard used for tripods, cameras, etc.
A suspension scissor mount is actually a decent choice here, as it gives you some adjustability if you have the room for it.
- Super Cheap option
- Quality 95+CRI (just know you can’t 100% trust this)
- Decent brightness for the price
- Half the battery life of the Raleno Offering: 4000mah
- No included light mounting system
- No Remote
Best RGB Set Light – Yescom 10 pack Smart LED kit
While the other three lights were focused on filling the needs of your key light, this kit aims to spice up your set; The stuff visible in the background. A well-done set can make your perceived production value skyrocket, creating focal points that naturally attract our eyes across the screen space.
There are, of course, alternatives to this one, such as the NanoLeaf, but I personally like the hexagon style more. I am a big fan of DND, and Hex Grids are oh so familiar to me.
Out of stock on Amazon? This light kit is also available on Walmart.com. So that’s handy.
- It is an expandable, modular system
- Supports full RGB in a fancy hex grid
- Can handle up to 10 modules.
- Cool Hexagon Shape. As a DND player, I approve.
- Compatible with Alexa Google Home
- Not as expansive as Nanoleaf’s system: Those support up to 30 modules connected at once per controller
- Colors aren’t amazing
- Not compatible with Lumia Stream
Best budget light – 12” Selfie Ring Light
This last one satisfies those on a super tight budget or those who simply prefer a ring light format. Just be aware that the bigger the diameter of the ring light, the more light it will be able to produce. If you can find one, an 18-inch diameter ring light will usually have better results.
This particular ring light has a cell phone mount that can be utilized to display Twitch chat on your phone. The included Selfie Bluetooth controller is kind of useless though. Though that depends on what you use it for, I guess.
Anyways, some people prefer the eye reflection you get with ring lights, so here is the breakdown of this light.
- 160 LED Ring light, Respectable for the price.
- Comes with a light stand and phone clasp on a gooseneck mount.
- Zero mention of CRI, don’t expect miracles
- The Included bluetooth controller is useless for streamers
- The bubble leveler head on the tripod is more or less useless for streamers.
- Low power light: USB powered, so 5v max.
- 50 inch max height. Limits how high you can get the light.
And that’s all we have for now! At some point, I will likely revisit this article to include other things and expand it beyond five options. Still, this is a good start, and in reality, you only really need one light to get the job done. Just please, don’t let that light be your monitor, okay? Please?!