1st time buy, what color temp to choose?


I’ve been looking for a powerful led-flashlight to buy. Was looking online and found one I liked (Heider CFX).
But when I searched for a review of the flashlight I found a thread on this forum about it being a bit overpriced and there were better flashlights to choose from.

I want to use the flash for camping trips and other general use, but probably will use it most often for lighting my way when I do nighttime/astro photography.
Also lightpainting comes to mind.

So by now I think I will end up choosing the BLF x6 and x5 set, but I’m still not sure which color temp to choose. And what would suit best for my particular use.
Do you have any suggestions? Anyone that has these lights use them in photography?

Contact DB Custom. He is a photographer. We have a couple other here but I do not remember who.

You will be overwhelmed with suggestions shortly. But I have some ‘zoomie’ flashlights with a 5A? tint that work great for photography. The zoomie lens makes the light perfectly even, so it looks natural.

Something in the neighborhood of 5000K is considered “Daylight White”, aka “NW” which is short for “Neutral White” or “Nearly White” as I like to call it…

The default White Balance number on your camera would be the best choice, IMNERHO. That’s assuming you get the LED Tint Bin you order, of course!

I like astrophotography as well. If you are thinking about lighting up your subject, be sure to look for an emitter with high CRI (90+). For changing camera settings in the dark, you’ll want a flashlight with a sub 1 lumen (moonlight/firefly) mode, so you can change settings without ruining your own vision and possibly upsetting fellow photogs. You will probably also want a red LED flashlight for hiking to and from the spot to your car at night.

You may end up using multiple flashlights (up to 3). But they can be each other’s backup in a pinch. They don’t all have to be big and heavy. A flashlight providing firefly mode can be tiny.

EDIT: Also consider a flashlight with a reversible clip. That way, you can free up your hands to carry your tripod and other gear. You’d clip the light to a baseball cap and it’ll function like a headlamp.

If it’s not red you could get very lost! :smiley:

Well, red LED flashlights are rare and expensive and not critically important, so let’s call that optional. I happen to have one :slight_smile:

Since the others have given out what suggestions I had, I’m left to do this:

Welcome to BLF, mr. Camera Fiend! :partying_face:

It seems like neutral white (NW) would be a good place to start. Then experiment with other tints as the obsession takes hold :smiley:

Good suggestions, though for astrophotography with light-painting, I don’t think color accuracy (such as high CRI) is too important. You’re going to color-balance the image later in post. Star colors may change a bit in the image, depending on the color correction, but that likely isn’t too important since night photography is rather surreal anyway.

If you don’t need a high CRI light, then you’ll get a brighter light using a cool or neutral white Cree LED, like an XP-L or something like that.

I have a Sunwayman D40A neutral white (which is a 4xAA battery light), that has good output and throw for light painting. It’s not going to do much good on trees 1000’ away, but it’s great for more moderate distances. (It also has a moonlight mode, though I usually prefer a smaller 1xAA light for close-up seeing.)

Certainly a moonlight mode is important. And, a good deep red light is important too. Make sure to get a true deep red LED, not your standard reds which are somewhat orange in color. The deeper the red, the better it will protect your night vision. Of course, a standard orangey-red is better than nothing, if you can’t find a light with a deep red.

I agree with what you said, mostly. But on the topic of color accuracy, some photogs can be really picky about that (Myself, I don’t even light paint, so I don’t care much.) While it is true that many times, photos can be ‘photoshopped’ back to the rendition you like, the caveat is that if the light cast washes out the subject too much, it would take a lot of effort and possibly never bring that photo back to its true color. It’s almost like ‘colorizing’ an old, classic black and white film. There would be some guessing as to what color things originally was, because that information was never accurately recorded on the sensor/film.

I re-read the original post, it seems he mentioned color painting and the hike to and from the photography spot. But I also covered having a sub lumen mode in his flashlight, because, what got me onto BLF was my initial desire to find a good flashlight for night time photography as well. That’s why I feel there are three areas where different lights/modes are needed.

For anyone who thinks it is easy to just use the little light built into cameras or your cell phone light to light up the dials and buttons, let me just say it is very annoying to do so! First of all that internal camera light goes off in a few short seconds and you’ll have to keep punching it, and cell phone lights, you need to keep taking it out of your pocket and turning it on. Annoying!

Much better to hang something like an Astrolux A01 around your neck and have it in firefly mode at all times. It will outlast the entire photography trip and it is always available.

Welcome to BLF
Oh boy you are to receive so much input, please hide your credit card before proceeding :smiley:

Thanks for the welcome and all the useful info. I do shoot in RAW so the white balance is not that hard to correct afterwards, but getting it as close to neutral white as possible from the start makes it easier.

From personal experience, I would recommend a light with high CRI neutral white tint; ie with nichia 219B or 5k mtg2 led. I find these 2 leds great for taking photos.

Just my 2 cents and welcome aboard.