REVIEW: WEEFINE RING LIGHT 1000
Weefine is a reasonably young company in the underwater photography field and so far, not that well known in Europe. It’s been founded by two ex-employees of Olympus and it hails from Hong Kong and Shenzhen. The company mostly makes good quality, but still affordable, video lights. On their arsenal are also few more exotic products like the Weefine Smart Housing for Android and iPhones and a unique LED ring light, which is the product under scrutiny in this review.
Weefine Ring Light 1000 Features
The Weefine Ring Light is an super-sturdy and surprisingly simple unit made of aluminium. The light has a maximum output of 1000 lumens as the name promises and unlike a normal video light the diodes sit on a circular array around a hole that just happens to be big enough for a M67 thread. The unit is depth rated to 60m and comes with a burn time of 65 minutes on maximum power. The colour temperature is nicely balanced at 5500 kelvins.
What are the benefits of using a ring light? - some might ask. A ring light’s ability to create an even and shadow-less image has been used by photographers from all the fields; from fashion to scientific. Especially popular these lights are among macro photographers, who want to capture the tiniest detail of their subjects with daylight clarity. As the light unit sits around the camera lens the emitted light surrounds the optical axis of the lens. The closer you get (read macro photography) the more omnidirectional the lighting effect becomes.
The Weefine Ring Light uses a standard 18650 Li-ion battery as a power source and 4 different power levels can be chosen by pushing the units only button. The light has a 67mm thread that will fit to most underwater housing ports. I used Nauticam Macro port 45 for this review. Of course, you could also add a close-up dioptre lens. As most wet-interchangeable macro lenses have a M67 thread on the front, you can just sandwich the lens between the port and the ring light. However, this might not work with some the most powerful of the lenses out there as their closest focusing point would sit too near and most of the light would miss the target.
Another thing to consider is of course apertures and shutter speeds. As the Weefine Ring Light 1000 is a constant light source some restrictions will apply. First of all, you need to up your ISO a bit. Luckily with today’s cameras this is not an issue anymore. I took the test shots for this review with ISO 500. When really close to the target, I got shutter speeds of 1/100s with aperture of around f/6.3 to f/8. When moving slightly further away the shutter speeds take a tumble so you might need to dial the ISO up a bit more. So, as you can see flash it isn’t. You can forget photographing fast moving targets.
Using Weefine ring light makes close-up photography a doddle underwater. The lights always sit in the right place and you will never need to adjust its position. It punches enough power to lit all normal close-up photo situations sufficiently. All this simplicity of course comes with a downside; If you want to experiment with dynamic and more “artistic” lighting effects the ring light will not do as it will always deliver the exactly same kind of result. It is an interesting and affordable new kind of tool for underwater close-up photography.
What is it for?
- For easy underwater close-up and macro work
- Fish portraits
- Species recognition
What isn’t it for?
- Artistic shots with creative lighting effects
- Chasing fast moving targets.
Get your Weefine Ring Light 1000 from HERE
Thank you Mario Vitalini from Fish In Focus for additional photography