LED continuous lighting is a type of lighting that stays on. The LED technology makes it energy-efficient and allows it to produce little heat during long-time use. It performs well in photo taking, video shooting, live streaming, etc. In this article, we will tell you:
- What is LED continuous lighting?
- How to choose the best one?
- What are its uses?
What is LED continuous lighting?
It is a type of continuous lighting that illuminates the subject continuously. This means it remains bright until it is turned off. LED here stands for Light-Emitting Diode, which is a small device that creates lighting when an electric current passes through it.
A group of them (often tens, sometimes hundreds) are assembled in a panel to provide a much bigger overall light source. LEDs are more durable than traditional lighting, emit less heat, and feature color temperature and adjustment options to enable wider flexibility in your lighting and photographs/videos, with many allowing you to change the color temperature range between 2700K and 6500K.
What are its differences from strobe lighting?
The biggest difference between LED continuous lighting and strobe is whether they can remain on or not. Besides that, they are also different in power output, heat emission, and size.
It is less powerful
Both LED fixtures and strobe can have high output. But generally, the strobe is cheaper than the continuous fixture at the same output. It is also capable of freezing actions.
LEDs produce less heat
Heat output from LED continuous lighting is much less of a concern. However, it still produce heat and must disperse it. Some LED designs may passively disperse this heat without the use of a fan. Others, especially as their output increases, require some form of active cooling. This includes a heatsink and a fan. This is less of a concern for photography than it is for filmmaking, but it can still grate on your nerves.
Flashes are not immune to heat concerns. If you fire the flash too frequently and at too high a power, you may have a thermal shutdown. The strobe will slow you down and allow the system time to cool down to preserve it. This might be upsetting if it occurs at a critical juncture.
Its power is more likely to be limited by size
Very tiny continuous lights can only illuminate the closest scenes. Consider selfie vlogs, small studio sets, and other subjects in the vicinity. Furthermore, they will not be able to overcome ambient light, but will just provide some fill.
Small strobes, on the other hand, may produce enough light to illuminate a whole scene. When positioned off-camera, they can be bounced, diluted, or simply hidden to highlight specific subjects. A compact strobe is the way to go if you require a small form factor, whether for mobility or any other reason.
How to choose the best LED constant light: 4 factors to consider
You need to consider the beam angle, power output, CRI, and color temperature and also take other features that are important for your lighting uses.
How much room do you expect to illuminate with the LED continuous light? Do you want to illuminate the entire landscape or create a more concentrated effect? These are some critical factors to consider when choosing a beam angle. Broader beam angles provide a more diffused stream of light, whilst narrower beam angles produce a more focused lighting stream.
This depends on where you are going to use the light. High power output is required for large scenes and outdoor applications. If you use it to illuminate the subject and the scene in a home studio or a small space, it will be advised to choose a continuous light that balances power out and size.
Color Rendering Index (CRI)
CRI indicates how similar it can reproduce the colors of the subjects as they appear under natural light. It ranges from 1 to 100. The higher the index, the more naturally it reproduces colors. Generally speaking, a CRI of 90 or above is good.
If you want to use continuous LED lighting for video, consider what moods you want to create in the videos. This helps you to decide which color temperature to choose. Lower color temperature lights provide a warm, orange hue, whilst higher color temperature lights produce a brighter, blue hue. The color temperature of your lights determines their color and is typically between 1000K and 10 000K.
Besides the aforementioned factors, you can also take the uses into account. For example, video recording, especially in a small studio, requires lighting with lower cooling noises so there won’t be any disturbing noises in the background. And vloggers may highly value the portability.
When to use: Two common uses of LED continuous light
LED continuous lighting is simple to set up. The “what you see is what you get” effect makes it popular among novice content creators. And it plays a big role in videography and photography.
Video shooting: Adjustable functions and flicker-free fixtures ensure high-quality videos
Many factors add to or detract from a great video, and lighting is one that may make or break it. Because cameras do not collect light in the same way that the human eye does, learning how to set up continuous LED lighting for video is critical. To alter the brightness while shooting, continuous lighting must be employed more frequently than not. They do not flicker or reduce the intensity of the light at any moment, ensuring consistency in every frame. In addition, they do not create much heat after continuous running. This offers a comfortable recording environment, especially in a small studio. The variable color temperatures enable video creators to create various moods in the video so as to convey more messages to the audience.
Photography: “What you can is what you get” effect allows real-time adjustments
Using LED constant light for photography is also a good choice. It allows you to see what the lighting looks like and adjust it accordingly. When you use it for portrait photography, it brings the following benefits.
It can make the subject’s eyes look brighter and more colorful. The relationship between the pupil and iris plays a role in drawing attention to the subject’s eyes. It is good to make the iris large and the pupil small, which can be created by illuminating the subject with soft LED continuous lighting.
It also allows photographers to capture the natural expressions of the subject. When using strobes that flash on regularly, the subject can make a prediction and pay much attention to it. This makes them aware that they are being photographed and cannot behave naturally. LED continuous lighting, on the contrary, stays on and creates a comfortable atmosphere for shooting.