Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Professional SoftBox Lighting

Hello all :)

Today I wanted to share with you one of my recent splurge items that I found to be pretty amazing! I got this set of softbox lighting from Amazon after several days of online research and debating. At first I was hesitant due to the price but so far I've enjoyed the quality and brightness of these lights. Another thing that had me a little weary was not being able to find review videos on YouTube regarding which brand names were worth it and how much wattage to buy.

*This post will be full of necessary information and pictures of this softbox lighting kit. I hope that once you read and see pictures, you'll be able to make a better informed choice if you're in the market for new lights.

So before I go into details, I wanted to share with you some background information as to why I wanted/needed new lighting. I have a very active YouTube channel where I upload beauty related videos and of course I have this blog that's also beauty related. For the types of videos and blog posts I make, lighting is very essential for quality. I recently upgraded my filming camera to a Canon T3i and felt that I also needed to upgrade my lights. I think it's time for me to bring my videos/blog to another level....Full HD and bright!

**On Amazon this kit sells for $159.99

I know that sounds like a lot especially all those light bulbs but these types of bulbs are crucial for great quality videos. If you are wondering what 5500k means.....this is the color temperature of the lights. In this case (5500k) bulbs are cool white with a slight bluish tint that is more daylight type of lighting. Now for anything less than 5000k, you'll be getting a warmer soft white color from the bulbs. If this is confusing than think of it as 5500k bulbs would be brighter and whiter than your normal everyday bulbs used around your house which typically are a yellowish tone. I would recommend 5500k for professional looking videos and photography.

So let's break it down (FYI: photos were taken with my iPhone)....

Carrying Case
Everything included in kit: (L to R)
Light sockets, light stands, softboxes & light bulbs
This kit does lacks good assembling instructions so it took me about 30 minutes to figure out one softbox. Once I got a method down, it was very easy to assemble. So I'll explain everything here:

Inside look of softbox
Light socket
You will insert the light socket into the opening
of the softbox. These softboxes are held open with
metal rods (shown below)

**You'll need to tug this end a bit to get the rods to fit. It will seem hard but this will ensure that the softboxes remain open at all times. 


The best way to assemble these without getting frustrated is to leave the velcro undone around the base of the light socket as shown above. There are four corners to these lights so what you see above is the lower right hand corner of softbox which I completed last. 

Above I showed you the metal rods used to keep softboxes open. The rim of the light socket has cutouts for one end of the rod. Again, as you can see in this photo, I didn't close the velcro because it would make inserting the final rods a lot harder.  Once 3 of the 4 rods are in place, you'll need to add some force to get the final one in. 

Once your softbox is assembled, you'll be ready to attach it to the 7' light stand (shown below)

A look of the backside of light socket
*Another great reason to buy: This kit has the option to turn on specific lights. You can add 5 light bulbs into the light socket and you can choose which ones to turn on according to how much/little lighting you want. I think this is amazing! Plus there's a handle grip which is a bonus! 
Inside look without bulbs and white cover
I've chosen to add only 4 bulbs because these
are mega bright!

Side profile view
These softboxes are huge!
This kit includes another lining on the inside.
Not sure what it's called but this white fabric
is attached via velcro & helps disperse
the lighting evenly.
Front look with softbox white cover

15 Light bulbs included
45 watt each for 3000 watt lighting

Final view of an assembled softbox

You might be wondering whether having 3 softboxes are essential? I believe so, because having one softbox will only light what is directly in front of it. Two softboxes will only light what's in front and one side (either left or right). Which ever side isn't lit, you'll have some dark shadowy patches. So three softboxes are ideal for a 3 point lighting system (left, right & center).

I do feel this kit is worth the money. I know $159.99 may seem like a lot but for affordable professional lighting, you can't get any cheaper. I think for making YouTube videos this kit will be perfect.

I hope that I have covered everything you were curious about and I also hope that I have answered any of your questions throughout this post. Please feel free to leave your questions and comments below and I'll do my best to response promptly. 

Be sure to follow me on Twitter for Daily Updates on my blog and channel. Check out my YouTube channel  to see beauty related videos and soon you'll see these bad boys in action. A video on these lights will eventually be uploading sometimes within the next two weeks so please look out for that.

Thank you for stopping by and showing support :) :)

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