Ring lights have become an important part of online marketing, vlogs, videos, conference calls, and social media in general. There are a wide variety of ring lights available online but we spent today testing the Kodak Ring Light. Kodak is famous for decades worth of camera and film materials.
But now they have moved on with the rest of the world to provide digital accessories. Ring lights have become a vital accessory for budding photographers and at-home setups. If you are looking to take your content to the next level, a ring light should be on your list of accessories.
Let’s dive into this review of the Kodak Ring Light 10”.
The first thing I noticed when opening the box is the size of the Kodak Ring Light. I really appreciated that it was 10 inches in diameter but also felt super compact and lightweight. This is important because I often set up my ring light on the go and take it with me for video shoots.
It packs a powerful punch with an 1800 Lumen output. I felt the light was bright enough to illuminate my face but not draw attention to fine lines or create harsh shadows under my eyes. See the before and after below.
Immediately I noticed that my photos seemed more vibrant and dark shadows were lessened giving me a young and fresh feel. I also noticed that the light smoothed my skin and illuminated my eyes. This is key to grab a viewer’s attention online.
How to Use the Kodak Ring Light
Simply set up the adjustable tripod and then mount your smartphone or small camera inside the light. The attachment was super simple to hook my phone to. The tripod screws up and down to set the height and placement.
Next plugin the USB cord into a battery pack as an energy source. Lastly, I turned my camera on and then used the remote attached to move the brightness levels up and down until it looked good on my smartphone.
You can use the remote to start the video or take a photo as well, making it easy to not have to touch your phone or camera while it is mounted! All you have to do next is start filming your next major influencer or business moment to share with the world! Lastly, once turning off the light, make sure you let it cool for a full ten minutes before placing it back in its sturdy travel case.
I appreciated the sturdy carrying case. The case fits an adjustable tripod, USB plug, as well as the ring light itself. The tripod was adjustable from 38CM – 73CM, which was enough height for close up photography and video needs. The package also included a universal smartphone clamp and a DSLR & Action cam attachment adaptor with a 1/4 inch thread so you have the option to use many different types of cameras.
I have an iPhone 11 Pro, but I noticed that the light is also compatible with ALL smartphones, making it a great choice for everyone. Lately, I have been hosting a lot of Instagram Lives online with video and this ring light made my content go from amateur to appearing like I was working in a professional studio. The user manual was very helpful in the initial setup, but in general, the setup is easy and straightforward.
There is no built-in battery pack to the light ring. So you will need to use a computer, battery pack, or another energy source that connects to a USB chord such as your phone charger. The instructions clearly state that the USB remote control battery should last around a year.
You will notice in the photos below I was able to adjust the color and brightness balance of the light. This is integral when shooting in different environmental situations. You may be sitting under a fluorescent light, bright sun, or the softened sun coming in from a window while indoors. Having access to change the brightness of the light made it easy and fast for me to get the looks I wanted.
Even more, I appreciated how I was able to change the color of the light to match my skin tone. I am very fair-skinned with a lot of redness in my skin. Using the Kodak Ring Light I was able to tone down the color of my skin and provide a smooth flawless look. This was very easy to control with a simple click of the USB remote which has a Bluetooth connection to my camera.
Additional Light Sources
This 10-inch ring light packed enough power that I did not feel I needed an additional light source. Especially since it was so easily adjustable with the Bluetooth remote that controlled its brightness. However, I noticed if the ring light was placed too far away from my face, it lost its power. If you need to set up the ring light further than 3 feet from yourself, I recommend using some additional light sources. The ring light itself has 120 individual LED lights to illuminate any situation.
Is it a problem if you wear glasses?
I wear glasses occasionally when online and wanted to test if this ring light would reflect back onto my eyewear. I noticed that if I raised the tripod to its highest point and set the light at an angle off to the side of my face, there was no glare on my glasses and I could easily wear glasses without reflecting the light onto them.
I tested the Kodak Ring Light in several different scenarios see each below. I was amazed at how well the ring light worked in every situation.
I placed the ring-light about half a foot from my face and carefully played with the Bluetooth remote light settings to see how the light changes from before and after each shot. You can see in the examples below that the light was accurate at removing harsh unwanted shadows and making my skin more smooth. If you are someone who takes a lot of selfies this is very useful.
As mention above I often shoot videos for my social media and wanted to put the Ring Light to the test for this scenario as well. I noticed right away that it illuminated my face correctly even when I had a strong backlight behind me. Often before when I was on Zoom for online meetings, my face would become dark or unrecognizable because of the harsh backlight while on video.
As someone who occasionally shoots product photography, I wanted to see if the Kodak Ring light could work well in this situation as well. I set up some products on a white table and lowered the tripod while tilting my camera downwards. As long as the product was not more than 3 feet from the ring light, it added sufficient light. However, for truly professional product photography I would recommend a softbox set up more.
As mentioned above you can lower the tripod and use the Ring Light to shoot items including food, however, you are limited to how far you can place the food or drinks and how much light that will hit them in the right position. Reflective materials can be especially difficult with a ring light.
I loved how easy it was to adjust the color balance while shooting. I didn’t even have to touch my phone, all I needed was a simple click of the remote to change the color temperature to a different tone that complimented my skin and external lighting conditions. See the examples below. The adjustable color balance varied between 3500K – 5500K (White, Blue, Warm).
Indoor or Outdoor Use
The product clearly states it’s mainly made to be used indoors. But I took it outside just to see if it would still work correctly and I was very satisfied with the results. It is important that you have an external power source to do so, I recommend a battery pack so you don’t have your laptop sitting around outdoors. But, do be aware that the ring light is not made for rainy or windy weather conditions.
I can honestly say that I really enjoyed using the Kodak Ring Light! It was easy to set up, lightweight, felt durable, and the USB remote control made it super simple to adjust my light quickly and on the go. The only issue I could see with the Kodak Ring Light is it wouldn’t be great for outdoor settings and it can only hold DSLR cameras with a maximum total weight of 2kg or 4lb.
So if you had planned to use a heavier bigger camera. This is not the ring light for you. However, if you only need a reliable light source for your smartphone or a small point-and-shoot camera, the Kodak 10 inch Ring Light will make a great addition to your camera accessories!