One of the major downfalls of all action cameras such as GoPros is their inability to make great videos in low light situations. This is due to the tiny sensor size, so it is a hardware problem that is not easily remedied. However, it can be fixed somewhat by buying a proper light for your GoPro.
We have listed our four favorite lights on the market, and why we think they would make great companions to your action camera.
- If you are looking for a diving light for your GoPro, check out the Suptig Diving Light. It is a powerful LED light that can help you get fantastic video on your next dive.
- If you plan on using your light with a DSLR or mirrorless camera or even your cell phone in addition to your GoPro, you should like the Vidpro LED-M52. It has mounts to allow it to be attached to all sort of different cameras.
- If you want a more small, compact light that doesn’t take up much space, then you want the Neewer Ultra Bright Mini LED Light. Don’t let the small size fool you, it still has a strong and bright light output.
- If you want the biggest, brightest light for your GoPro, check out the Viltrox L116T. This thing trumps all other lights on the list in size and light output.
Who Should Buy This?
If you have a GoPro and are tired of it not taking great videos in low light situations, these lights are perfect for you. They will allow you to illuminate everything directly in front of the camera, giving the camera more light to work with thus raising the quality.
These lights are also great for other cameras, not just GoPros. While they work great for action cameras, they would be just as good for your DSLR or mirrorless camera. More light will give you better quality, no matter how good the sensor is.
Best GoPro Light: What to Consider
Obviously, the main thing you want to make sure is that you have a light that gets bright enough to be effective. Brightness is measured in lumens, so make sure the light you choose has enough lumens to illuminate your surroundings.
The worst thing that can happen on a night shoot is having your light run out of battery. You then can’t get any more shots with your camera, effectively ending your day of shooting. Making sure you have a fully charged battery at all times before you go on a shoot is extremely important.
The last thing you want to make sure is that the light can handle the beating that is normal with a GoPro. GoPro action cameras are made to take a beating, so finding a robust feeling light module can be the difference between getting a shot and missing it.
Best GoPro Light: Our Picks
If you mainly use your GoPro for diving adventures, picking up the waterproof Suptig Diving Light is a great investment. This high powered LED light features 36 individual LEDs, and is dimmable to get the perfect lighting while exploring underwater.
This light outputs 500 lumens which is more than enough for your normal underwater excursions. With battery life up to four hours on low, you can go on multiple dives on a single charge. That is good news for those who may forget the light in their case with the battery still installed.
- Lumens: 500
If you are a person who does a lot of filming with different cameras, the Vidpro LED-M52 may be a great choice for you. It comes with brackets to connect it not only to a GoPro action camera, but to a cell phone and a DSLR or mirrorless camera as well.
While the Vidpro does not have the brightest light, it does give off a nice even shine that will illuminate your subjects more evenly. The build quality is sadly not the best, feeling really plasticy and somewhat low quality. It is on the affordable end, so that is a trade off you may be willing to make.
- Lumens: 340
Neewer is known for making quality, affordable video and camera equipment. This Mini LED Light is a great value, and is quite compact compared to some other options out there. You can adjust the brightness via the knob on the housing, giving you ultimate control over how much light is emitted.
You get an adequate 360 lumens rating, which is enough for almost any application. While there are others out there with higher lumen ratings, you won’t need more than the Neewer can produce for normal applications. Overall, this is a nice, quality light for a good price.
- Lumens: 360
If you don’t mind a large light, this Viltrox offering puts out an enormous amount of light. If you plan on filming in extreme darkness, such as caves or deep forests, this light is a must have. It has a whopping 987 lumens, which triples the output of some of the other lights on this list.
Possibly the most impressive part of this light is the fact that it is so thin and light. To have such great performance, this light comes in at only 25mm thick and weighing a mere 260 grams. That is extremely impressive given the size and brightness of this light.
- Lumens: 987
Useful Tips and Resources
If you plan on mounting these lights directly on the GoPro, you will need a case with a cold shoe. This will allow you to stick the light right onto your camera and then move it around to get it lighting the right areas.
The other thing that you will need with this setup is a good hand grip for your GoPro. This will allow you to carry it around and record video in a professional manner. They can make the footage much more stable, and give you a better grip instead of trying to hold the small camera only.
Lighting your videos when it is night is the only way to get decent footage with a GoPro. The four lights we have listed above all do a great job of illuminating the scene around you and your camera, so pick the one that works best for you and get to work!
How do you think the GoPro does in low light? Let us know in the comments below!
Andreas is an Apple and Microsoft fanboy who works with his Mac and lives with a PC at home. While he is not reading technology journals, you’ll probably find him playing online games with friends or hiking in the wild.