When you’re new to (manual) photography, you have a lot to juggle at the same time: starting with the positioning and settings of your camera, not to mention your one or two strobes!
Luckily, new underwater photography gadgets enter the market on a regular basis and the idea of using a ring light instead of a strobe or torch isn’t that new as such. However, the newly released Kraken Weefine Ring Light got us excited since it’s especially designed for macro photography. Let’s see what the results look like and how we rate the 1000 lumens strong, relatively inexpensive light.
I’ve used the Weefine Ring Light with our rental Olympus TG4 as well as my Panasonic GH4 with and without a +10 diopter. The Ring Light produces 1000 lumen which is perfect for the use of the Olympus TG4 – macro shots turned out great and the constant light made it easy for the camera to focus. However, this can obviously be an issue with critters which are sensitive to light but if you approach slowly enough you can even get close up with a Long Armed Octopus and Peacock Mantis Shrimps.
The Olympus TG4 is famous for its super microscope mode and thanks to the beveled center section of the Weefine Ringt Light, it’s possible to get right in front of your subject without hitting it. The Weefine Ring Light allows for even lighting, although I find the colors to be a little flat even when used on full power – you purely can’t expect the same quality of light as if you would shoot with a strobe. It also won’t allow for any creative lighting but you just can’t have it all!
The Ring Light used with the Panasonic GH4, I had to use slow shutter speeds in combination with high ISOs for proper exposure. Even more though when using a +10 diopter since it wouldn’t let in enough light. As a conclusion, the 1000 lumens are not strong enough to ensure sharp images when used with a Mirrorless Camera. But if you’re only shooting a compact camera, getting perfectly-lit shots with even lightning requires no effort.
A 1100mha battery is delivered with the Weefine Ring Light which last around 60 minutes on full power when turned off in between shooting photos. It has three different power settings (I used the highest one at all times) and remaining battery is showed but different colored lights. The Ring Light attaches to a 67mm standard thread so you will need a 52mm-67mm step up ring in order to attach it to your TG4 housing.
The Weefine Ring Light is light, easy to use, ideal for macro photography and compact cameras and situations where you just want to “point and shoot”. A big plus is that it comes at an affordable price and fits into every diver’s hand luggage!