The INON LF800-N is a torch that interested me since it first was released. The LF800-N is a special interest torch and has a very narrow 5° beam that creates a spotlight like effect. This can be ideal as a search or night dive light – or used in photography or videography. Now i finally got around to buy one and i also already took it for some dives. I bought the torch together with the optional condenser lens which narrows the light beam even further. Here are my thoughts after 4 dives.
INON LF800-N as a dive light
If using the LF800-N as a normal torch (without a camera) i am finding the tight beam extremely useful. I always preferred more pointed light beams for night diving and i think this torch will be my new standard tool for night dives. But also during the day the spotlight effect is extremely suited to point out animals to other divers. The torch has two power settings: The lower one is more suited for night dives the higher one is ideal to point out things in the daytime.
INON LF800-N for UW photography
Just like a Snoot in Flash Photography, the INON LF800-N illuminates a small selected area and therefor opens various possibilities for creative lighting. The narrow beam can either be used like a classic spotlight on a stage or to isolate subjects from the background without making the spot visible. In both cases the light crates an interesting contrast in between lit and unlit areas. Depending on the depth and the camera settings this can be either a contrast to black, dark blue or light blue. I personally prefer to have the blue in the background by using the ambient light. For all photography purposes i find the stronger power setting more useful. The condenser lens not only narrows down the diameter of the beam, but also increases the amount of light – this turned out to be very useful at times. I did the first two dives with the torch mounted on a strobe arm attached to the housing. I struggled with this at times. So i did the second two dives with the torch in my left hand and the housing in my right hand. I then try to illuminate the subject with my left hand while looking through the viewfinder. While this requires better buoyancy it still seemed to deliver results faster for me.