Flashlights for photography?

Anyone here use or recommend any flashlights for photography? As the led lights get more powerful and cheaper I was curious……

Im not a pro but when taking pictures of my cute sleeping baby, ill use a bright xml2 light on a ceiling bounce and it sure beats the flash for when my baby is sleeping. I think flashlights can definately have its place in photography. It would just take some experimenting to get the right light where you need it for the photo.
edit: I use a Supfire f3-l2 and it has a nice wide floody beam perfect for lighting up a room. I think theres a sale The Supfire going on.

I sometimes use the with ceiling bounce and sometimes off of a reflector when there are odd colors in play on the ceiling. The color of the ceiling has a huge effect on the color temperature of the reflected light. I find white balance to be a little temperamental when using LED’s.

I have not dragged out good equipment for any of my photos here, I am kind of ashamed of that fact. I will vow to change that in the future!

Oh yeah, zoomies can work well for photography, ceiling bounce can work well, moonlight can allow the camera to focus and so on

What do you plan on lighting up with it? Yongnuos are so cheap, those might be a better route.

+1. Use the right tool for the right job.

A variety of things. Some macro/up close work (think food photography) and some subject/animal photography.

Yeah I was thinking that my Niwalker MM15 and a ceiling bounce would be plenty for medium sized rooms without a flash. But I don’t know what would be appropriate for temperature/kelvin etc. Or for larger rooms where a high lumen light like that wouldn’t be enough by a lower lumen mule directly focused on the subject would work better than a ceiling bounce……? I figured someone here has probably tried multiple things or has good ideas.

I use them for stationary macro, often a set of proper flashguns are just to much for me to set up for 1 or 2 shots. But, when using a light box the flashlights can be perfectly aimed and can be very useful. I could not imagine a situation where I would every try to use flashlights for portraits or human subject photos… Maybe and just maybe when working in the dark and using a ML mode to do very minor high light work assisting a candle for less harsh shadows.


A ring light or even make your own ‘ice light’ would work for ’macro’ish stuff. But as long as you have one color of light, lightroom or a similar program will take care of the color balance, etc…

For close up shots (1 to 3 ft distance) and such I use my HCRI lights. Using a light that has a somewhat diffuse beam and it really brings out the colors. For example, photos of foods come out vibrant with the Nichia HCRI LEDs. Even better if you have two lights so can light your subject from two positions. Very little post editing is needed.
I’ve tried with cool white LEDs and it’s definitely not the same for me. Usually using my smartphone camera which is pretty decent but have also tried with a digital camera.

So a noctigon meteor 80+ would be a good idea? Or two of them maybe?

Oh yeah! Two Nichia 219b or 219c Noctigons would be incredible lights for photography.

That’s a lot of light! What would you be photographing?
The noctigon meteor would be perfect for it with its smooth floody beam and two would be even better. Using only one light can give you shadows but two positioned just right would do pretty good.

PM "DB Custom" . Photography is what he does ;)

There’s potential on the macro side of things. I just took these quick shots with a flashlight and bounce as the only light sources:

One thing we did in our mini-BLF-meetup in Oakland on Sunday was compare high-CRI flashlights with other cool-white and neutral-white lights. I am an experienced amateur photographer with plenty of coursework under my belt. I was joined by BLF member jfong, who is a professional photographer.

We compared the L3 Illumination L11C Nichia 219B (4500K, 92 CRI) and the BLF-348 (5000K, 90 CRI) against a variety of other lights, including a neutral white ZebraLight SC62w (4400K, 75 CRI). Our host had some colorful, embroidered place mats on his dining room table that made perfect test targets. At 140 and 50 lumens, respectively, the two Nichias we used were under-powered, but that was okay. We were only checking tint and color rendering ability.

The results were clear. Only the Nichias accurately captured the reds, browns, tans, and magentas that were present in our test target. The same lights also were best for illuminating the wood of the table itself. The cool-white XM-L2 lights we used were dismal. Even the SC62w left colors looking comparatively flat.

Unfortunately, we did not think to repeat our tests when Ronin42 showed up later with some triple Nichia 219C flashlights that he built. With CRI in the mid-to-low 80s, the 219C would have beat the ZebraLight, but probably lagged behind the 219B.

You can easily correct the white balance of a 4500K emitter in post processing. It is much harder to correct the low CRI of an emitter. For pictures where color matters, high CRI is a must. It saves a lot of hassle later, when you get on the computer.

As a result of our testing, I decided that I need a multi-emitter flashlight loaded with high-CRI Nichias.

Nice experiments you guys did on your meeting! Thanks for posting this! It answers a question I had. I know that high CRI leds gives a much more natural illumination but I did not know so much that it also matters for taking pictures. In my own experience a lot of the superior colour rendering of high CRI leds is lost when taking a picture, but apparently there is enough leftover to make it worth while to use high CRI lighting. (for BLF-pictures I use a Nichia 219A 92CRI triple and/or a desk-lamp with this high CRI bulb (4000K version), so that is indeed a good idea )

I don’t claim any special credit, but I’ve been “shootin’ pixtures” since light meters had little needles.

Still shoot a picture or two every single day. Mostly documentary. One in a bazillion will maybe be worth sharing.

The S5 clone I EDC makes a wonderful fill light!

The optic blends the ugly Cree colors into a continuous White of ~5000k. If I wanted high CRI I’d switch back to incan.

If you have a stable platform (as opposed to my shaky hands!!), HDR is pretty amazing. But that’s still too “gimmicky” for me.

But I’m just…


So if I bought a M43 from mountain electronics would the 219B or 219C be better for color rendering?