Our Review of the 4 Best Budget-friendly LED Lighting Kits for Video Production in 2022
Best Budget LED Light - Editor’s Choice - GVM Dimmable Bi-color
The GVM Dimmable Bi-color, video lighting kit, is unique for its control features. This is one video lighting kit in which you can control the direction of the lights with the barn doors. You also get to remote control this video lighting kit with an app. Moreover, it gets better; you can change the color temperature from 2300K to 6800K and control the brightness from ten percent to a hundred percent with 10 percent increments or decrements.
This lighting kit has a CRI of 97+for both has a uniform distribution of li, making it suitable for photography and videography. As with all the video lighting kit reviews made here, this lighting kit also has the battery option along with the power adapter option.
This video lighting kit comes with two lighting stands and suitable tripod bases that are also adjustable for the best video production. This lighting kit ticks the box for the best budget lighting kit for video and even the best LED lighting kit for video production, and that’s why we love it.
Runner up - Aputure 2 H672W + 1 H672S
Anyone familiar with video lighting kits should have heard of the Aputure brand because of their notoriety for making high-quality video lighting kits, and this particular product is no exception. So why is this video kit part of this list for cheap LED lighting for videos? Let’s find out.
The Aputure 2 H672W + 1 H672S is a budget lighting kit with 672 LEDs with high color accuracy of +95 color rendering index, commonly known as CRI. It also has three 5500K daylight-balanced LED panels. The three panels consist of two H672W and one H627S panel, with which their difference forms the beam angle.
This best-LED lighting kit for video production emits 4636 lumens which indicate how bright it is. The catch with this LED video lighting kit is that it can run on both batteries and power adapters. In addition to running on batteries and power adapters, this cheap LED lighting for videos can be remote controlled with a 2.4GHz wireless remote control. The only drawback I can find with this lighting kit is that it does not come with a light stand which we can forgive because of the immense features it boasts.
Best Interview lighting kit - Raleno Video LED Lighting Kit
This product here is the best for individuals who deal more with interviews during their video productions. The Raleno video lighting kit has a CRI of 95+ and a color temperature ranging from 3200K to 6500K with adjustable brightness ranging from zero percent to a hundred percent for the perfect interview setting.
Apart from using power adapters, the Raleno video lightning kit comes with an in-built 8000mAh capacity battery that is powerful enough to power this device for close to two hours. Furthermore, one outstanding feature about this product is the flexibility of the LED panels to achieve the best lighting position for the host or the individual granting the interview.
This is a kit that is quite budget-friendly but can also be used in professional settings. The only disadvantage I can think of is the absence of RGB options or filters, which is understandable because it was made to augment interview setups.
Best Portable Video Lighting Kit - Sutefoto Handheld Light Wand
As you have probably guessed from the name of this video lighting kit, the sutefoto lighting kit is a lightning wand and the best portable video lighting kit around. Although it is pretty portable, this lighting kit still exudes quality.
The Sutefoto lighting kit has a color temperature range from 2500K to 8500K that can be adjusted to give 1530 colors. In addition to this, this lighting kit produces an impressive amount of lighting flux – 3253 Lumens – for a portable lighting kit. The lighting kit is two-sided, with one side has the CCT (correlated color temperature) LED and the other has the RGB LED panel.
It is correct to assume this portable lighting kit works on batteries as it is a handheld device. The batteries are powerful enough to supply power to this device for up to 4 hours, even when used in the highest color temperature mode. Also, the CRI of this lighting kit stands at 95+.
That this best video lighting kit is portable does not mean it cannot be used in other capabilities. Because of the broad light emitting angle and the ¼ screw hole at the bottom of this lightning wand, you can simply attach it to a tripod and continue with various video productions.
Video lighting kits can sometimes be used for photography, but they usually require different settings as there is a big difference in pictures and motion pictures.
How To Choose The Best Lighting Kit For Video Production
The importance of lighting to video setup and production continues to grow with each day. Even with the best cameras and outstanding video editors, video producers have not replicated the effects of the proper lightning while on set. Lightning in video production has set the mood of a piece of footage even before the action occurs.
Knowing the importance of adequate lighting in video production will explain why one should opt for the best video lighting kit in video production. Some features are present in every lightning kit used in video production. These features determine the quality of the lightning kit being used. Some of the features are:
CRI is a short form for color rendition index, and it refers to how much a light source helps discern colors(1). The CRI of a light source will help you differentiate between colors, and it is handy when an individual is trying to distinguish between colors that are close in hues. An example is trying to discern the color black from darkish blue color.
The importance of light CRI to video production is quite clear. A light source with a poor CRI score will pick the different shades or hues in the photo challenge. Thanks to technology, most lightning kits now have high CRI scores (90+).
There is a way lightning kits are tested for CRI scores, but you don’t have to bother yourself about that. A high CRI score must be the only accepted score for lightning kits for video production.
Color temperatures(2) refer to the appearance of light. It is measured in Kelvin (K). Maybe you were browsing for a video-lightning source, and you come across one of the features described with four digits with a letter K at the back, then it refers to the color’s temperature (appearance of light).
The color temperature ranges from 1000K to 10000K, where 1000k depicts a warmer (reddish) tone which reduces towards 5000K, while the 10000K has a blue tone that also reduces towards the mean score. The general lighting in our homes ranges from 2000K to 6500K.
When choosing a lighting kit, you should consider the color temperature range. A source of light not having a color temperature range does not make it wrong too. As an individual looking to make videos, you should consider the color temperature in which you intend to shoot the video.
If you are going for a single color temperature, the color temperature range does not matter then. Still, if you intend to manipulate the color temperature to suit different moods, you can either.
- Opt for a light with a single color temperature but has filters and diffusers to alter the color temperature.
- Opt for a lightning kit with an extensive range of color temperature operations that can suit your needs.
Brightness is the third part of the trinity of what makes a good lighting kit. Brightness is measured in lumens. It is the more, the merrier or brighter with lumen count. Many people often mistake the brightness of a bulb to measure the watts, whereas it is a measure of the lumens. Therefore, it is usually advised to look at the lumens and not the wattage.
As a video producer, the lumen on a lightning kit helps you pick the amount of brightness you want from the lighting kit. Unfortunately, while the hue, color temperature of your lightning kit can be altered, not much can be done about the brightness of your light bulb except by moving it away or towards the desired subject.
Other Things to Look Out For in a Video Lighting Kit
Other features to watch out for in a lightning kit when choosing the best budget lighting kit for video includes:
Light stands are mostly a part of the lighting kits. I said mostly because not all lightning kits come with a light stand. An example is the Sutefoto light wand discussed earlier. In addition, some lights have no stands, others are desk mounted, and others have stands with differing heights for different uses.
What is most important is to make sure the light itself has a light stand if it does not come with one. This way, you can be flexible with how the light is used.
Most portable or budget lightning kits now come with in-built batteries or a provision for batteries. Because of the ability of manufacturers to achieve better brightness with less wattage, batteries are now used more and more in lightning kits.
As with the video lighting kit reviews made here, you should check for battery options in any lightning kit you want – it usually comes in handy. The durability of the batteries should also be taken into consideration. It is always better if the battery is a part of the lightning kit and is in-built.
As with every product, warranties convey a message of trust that employers have in their products. Warranties are also a way for customers to check how long they can enjoy their lightning kits. More extended warranties are usually better, but customers should also check well to know what the warranty covers.
Yes. Videos are motion pictures, and video lighting kits can be used for photography, but they mostly require different approaches.
Yes. A lighting kit with a CRI of 90+ is good because a CRI score over 90 is the recommended CRI for video production. Getting a lighting kit with a higher CRI score is also acceptable. The more, the better.
Lights are crucial to making amazing videos. Making the right choice of lighting and the correct settings can make the difference between a successful video and a flop. Choosing the fitting lighting kit is quite essential. Hence, it’s vital to know how to choose the right one.
The GMV stands out from this list of the best budget video lighting kits for me. It has an outstanding CRI score, can be app-controlled, durable, and has a good range for color temperature.
Is your favorite lighting kit listed here? What do you consider first when choosing a lighting kit for video production? Feel free to add in the comments.
- Kevin A. (2020 August). Understanding Illuminance, luminance and brightness. Retrieved from https://www.xrite.com/blog/luminance-and-brightness-what-is-the-difference
- Asim K, (2014 Jan). Characteristics of light sources. Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/engineering/color-temperature