I love the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini. It does a superb job of taking your lighting needs during video calls or while recording yourself on camera to a new level. It’s easy to set up and use and delivers exactly what it promises.
- Great ring light
- Includes adjustable iPhone holder
- Offers numerous mounting options
- Easily portable
- Delivers great, consistent, adjustable lighting
- No included remote
- It should ship with a storage/carry bag
When the pandemic forced us to close our building, I needed to get my synagogue up and running, remotely and online, as quickly as possible. Lume Cube’s products were a big part of helping us pivot from in-person services and meetings to being all online while still looking somewhat professional. Their latest product is the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini; let’s take a look.
The new Lume Cube Ring Light Mini is intended to “[deliver] superior up-close personal lighting in a compact, mobile package.” I would say it delivers on that … with one minor caveat. I’ll get to that later.
When we shut our doors and moved to Zoom, my staff and I used the original Lume Cube to help with lighting during calls, services, and meetings. They were small, and we had to provide our own tripods, but they got the job done.
As the pandemic continued and, as a community, we racked up well over a million minutes together online, I “upped” my game by picking up two of their Panel Mini lights. These were a bit bigger and did an even better job.
As good as those solutions were, and they were good, the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini is a huge leap forward. It is an all-in-one system that is ready to go no matter where you might be.
According to Riley Stricklin, CEO of Lume Cube:
Ring Lights are one of the most popular choices among creators and those in a home office setting. After trying over 50 of them from Amazon, I was continually let down by the quality of each product. We’ve been working on product design for Ring Light Mini for over a year, and I couldn’t be more excited to finally bring the most premium designed Ring Light to market at a $179 price point. Our Product Development team knocked this one out of the park.“
Inside the box, you get the Ring Light Mini, an edge-mounted light stand with a removable C-Clamp, metal tripod legs, a USB-C power cable, a wall power adapter, and two cable management clips.
Let’s start with a look at the mounting/stand options. The brand wanted to make sure the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini was as versatile as possible and, to that end, included multiple mounting options.
Lume Cube always wants you to be ready to create right after unboxing, which is why there is more than just the Ring Light Mini included in your purchase. Out of the box and in addition to the main product, you’ll find an edge mounted light stand with a removable C-Clamp, metal tripod legs, a USB-C power cable, wall power adapter, and two cable management clips.
The removable C-Clamp allows you to mount the light to the edge of your desk. This saves space and gives you a more “permanent” solution.
Even then, however, removing the light so you can use it elsewhere takes mere seconds.
The edge-mounted light stand is also ideal if you don’t have a lot of floor space or are looking for a somewhat “cleaner” look.
The metal tripod legs let you put the Ring Light Mini anywhere. The tripod stand is nicely constructed from metal and has enough heft to offer a stable base while still being light enough to pack up and carry easily. The vertical adjustment allows you to raise or lower the light in the best position possible.
You can also remove the tripod from the vertical stand and attach it directly to the light to create a desktop solution.
Having all three options available and the ability to quickly and easily switch between them delivers an added level of flexibility that I appreciate.
The Ring Light Mini comes with an iPhone holder that securely holds your iPhone while on a video chat or recording yourself. It holds the phone securely, has two pivot points to aid in properly framing the shot, and even includes two cold shoes so you can add a microphone. The same iPhone holder is the one that ships with the Pro system; it is a simple affair, but it gets the job done.
When designing the Ring Light Mini, Lume Cube sought to create something that ticked all the right boxes for mobile lighting, which stayed at an accessible price. As they put it, “This best-in-class ring light boasts a compact, sleek, and lightweight design with premium light output at a competitive price point.”
The Lume Cube Ring Light Mini has a compact size of just 12″ in diameter. But don’t let the small size fool you into thinking you’ll need to compromise if you opt for this lighting system. The Mini has 120 inward-facing LEDs producing 960 lux at .5 meters. Combined with a built-in diffuser to help provide uniform illumination, the light creates balanced lighting while helping to reduce shadows and eliminate bright spots.
Plus, with a CRI Rating of 96+, the Ring Light Mini delivers true-to-life skin tones regardless of the setting.
A CRI of 100 shows the true colors of the object. Incandescent and halogen light sources have a CRI of 100. Typically, light sources with a CRI of 80 to 90 are regarded as good, and those with a CRI of 90+ are excellent! The general rule is the higher the CRI, the better the color rendering capacity.
I’m also working on a review of the larger, more expensive Lume Cube Cordless Ring Light Pro, which has a larger area in the middle of the ring light. With it, I could replace the phone holder with one for an iPad; this is not an option with the smaller Lume Cube Ring Light Mini, so keep that in mind if you prefer to use an iPad for recording.
The Lume Cube Ring Light Mini’s light controls are on the back. There you’ll find the input for the included USB-C power cable, dials to control the brightness and warmth of the light, and a small display showing both settings so you can dial into the precise settings you want and maintain consistent lighting from session to session.
I love the ability to fine-tune the light the Ring Mini is putting out, but I wish it, like the Pro model we will review shortly, had a remote that allowed you to remain in position while you adjust the lighting.
As Lume Cube notes,
The Ring Light Mini redefines mobility of in-front-of-light content creation by harnessing edge-lit technology in a compact and mobile package. With interchangeable legs and the ability to effortlessly clamp to desks, the Ring Light Mini offers versatile placement options depending on style and angle of shooting. In addition, Ring Light Mini’s compact size–just 12-inches in diameter–makes the newest addition to Lume Cube’s product line a perfect travel companion for on-the-go content creation.
The Lume Cube Ring Light Mini sits between the company’s Cordless Ring Light Pro and smaller lights and systems like Mobile Creator Lighting. The ability to quickly and easily control the brightness and warmth makes it appropriate for any setting, and the built-in diffuser guarantees it provides uniform lighting.
The flexibility of mounting means you can use the light in countless settings. If you consistently use it at your desk, you can mount it to the desktop with the c-clamp. If you work in multiple locations, you can remove the vertical stem and place it on any flat surface, although you will lose the ability to adjust the height.
Or you can use the tripod base and the vertical post and set the light on the floor. This is ideal if you are standing up while on camera. That kind of flexibility is fantastic as it allows a single device to serve multiple situations.
I wish I had had something like the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini during the pandemic shutdown, but since I/we still spend a significant amount of time on video calls, I’m thrilled to have access to it now.
I only have two minor complaints after using the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini for the last week.
As previously noted, I wish it had come with a remote, even if that lightly raised the price. The ability to adjust the light without having to touch the light, particularly once you get everything lined up properly, is an excellent convenience. That noted, I understand the decision to keep the price below $180 by not including one.
The second issue is how I feel that since this product is advertised as a mobile/portable lighting system, they should have included a simple carrying case. Such a case is included with the Pro system, and the decision to save a few dollars by not including one here seems a mistake.
Besides those two minor “complaints,” I love the Lume Cube Ring Light Mini. It does a superb job of taking your lighting needs during video calls or while recording yourself on camera to a new level. It’s easy to set up and use and delivers exactly what it promises.
Here’s a video look.
The Lume Cube Ring Light Mini sells for $179.99; it is available directly from the manufacturer.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample
What I Like: Great ring light; Includes adjustable iPhone holder; Offers numerous mounting options; Easily portable; Delivers great, consistent, adjustable lighting
What Needs Improvement: No included remote; It should ship with a storage/carry bag