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What is a ring light?

Ring lights are more common than ever but there are still plenty of people who haven't brought into the hype, so here's everything you need to know.

What is a ring light

Looking to capture the perfect selfie or need the right lighting for a big corporate meeting online? You’ll find that a ring light can help you get what you need when it comes to all forms of photo and video capture.

But what is a ring light and why have they become so popular over the last few years? The answer is incredibly simple but it’s easy to overlook if you’re new to content creation or perhaps don’t care to have your camera on during work meetings. Ring lights are now far from an elite piece of kit only used by TikTokers, YouTubers, and professional photographers, so let us here at Gear Nuke bring you up to speed.

A ring light with a stand

What is a ring light?

A ring light, in simple terms, is a tool used to create a controlled light source. The name comes from the fact that they are made from a singular fluorescent bulb or, in some cases, LED lights, formed into a ring.

They are hugely advantageous should you find yourself with little to no natural light or if you just want to have a little more say over where light is coming from and how bright it is. Ring lights are often thought of as a professional lighting tool, and this is correct, but they’re incredibly common among amateur content creators, vloggers, and even those who simply want to look better during professional video conferences.

Benefits of a ring light

A ring light’s primary benefit is that due to its shape, you can place your camera or smartphone in the center of the ring and immediately have access to a greater light source. This allows for a greater details to be caught on camera all thanks to the simplest of designs.

You can also generate a wide variety of colors and brightnesses with a ring light. Most ring lights will either have a built-in control panel or remote control access that allows you complete creative control over the light that is produced to ensure you get the perfect shot.

Finally, ring lights naturally produce an attractive looking shadow due to their shape. This is far more beneficial to video production but also has its uses in photography. It’s quite common to also see a ring lights reflection also used when captured within a subjects eye to create a visually stunning effect.

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If you’re contemplating investing in a ring light but haven’t made the commitment yet? Check out our explainer on whether ring lights are worth it or not.