Ring Light vs. Two-Piece vs. Three-Point – Rolling Stone

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Lighting is essential in giving your content high production value and visual appeal, whether that be a podcast, webinar, or vlog. A recent report shows podcasting alone will be a $94.88 billion industry by 2028, so investing in a solid lighting system now can help you stand out from the competition, potentially attracting more listeners and a piece of the growing industry.

Like we’ve talked about at RS Recs, lighting plays a crucial role in creating high-quality video podcasts. With the best lighting setups, your audience will be able to clearly see emotions and body language, like say, during a big interview. Plus, professional-looking video is always great for hooking new watchers and listeners. If you’re looking to upgrade your lighting set-up, there’s only one company (and its two brands) we trust in our Rolling Stone production studios — Aputure and amaran. 

Aputure’s lights lean more toward a professional film production user base, but here are our best recommendations at different price points, including lights from Aputure’s creator line, amaran, that we use in our studios daily.

In This Article

What Is the Best Lighting Gear for Content Creators?

How Do You Set Up Lighting for a Podcast?

Buying Guide: How We Chose Our Picks

What Is the Best Lighting Gear for Content Creators?

Whether you’re recording an online tutorial, doing a solo podcast or filming an interview, these are the best podcast and vlog lighting kits to consider.

BEST OVERALL: Amaran P60c Three-Light Kit

BEST CONTROLS: Amaran 200x S



Amaran P60c Three-Light Kit

Amaran P60c Three Light Kit


If you are looking for an all-in-one lighting kit that can handle any creative challenge, we recommend the amaran P60c three light kit. Consisting of three RGBWW LED panels, the P60c can produce a wide range of colors and effects with high accuracy and consistency across three lighting modes: CCT, HSI, and FX.

In CCT mode, you can adjust the color temperature from 2500K to 7500K with a high CRI of 95+ and TLCI of 96+, as well as fine-tune the green/magenta balance. In HSI mode, you can select any hue, saturation, and intensity from the color wheel, and access 46 preset color gels. In FX mode, you can choose from 10 built-in lighting effects, such as lightning, fireworks, TV, and party light.

The amaran P60c also supports dual control methods via Bluetooth or on-board knobs, allowing you to adjust the settings remotely or manually. The kit also includes three softboxes and grids to soften and shape the light output. Plus, the panels can be powered by AC adapters or NP-F batteries, giving you flexibility in powering your lights both on-the-road and in studio conditions.

Buy Amaran P60c Three-Light Kit $990

Amaran 200x S

Amaran 200x S


The Amaran 200x S is a high-powered 200W bi-color LED light with an upgraded LED chipset for high color quality and spectral reproduction. Paired with a Bowens mount softbox or umbrella accessory, the Amaran 200x S will beautifully cast your entire space in soft, even white light between 2700 to 6500K. For reference, 5600K is the daylight (the sun) and 2700K is a warm white light.

Buy Amaran 200x S $349

Amaran PT4C

amaran PT4c


The Amaran PT4C is a 4-foot battery-powered pixel tube light with 16 pixels and RGBWW color quality. You can control the tube with the Sidus Link app or DMX adapter to cast multiple colors of the rainbow or as a soft white key light. It has a magnetic mount and eyebolts for easy attaching and a high output and color accuracy to easily fill your space.

Buy Amaran PT4C $429

Amaran PT2C

Amaran PT2C


If you’re looking to light your setup on a budget, then this PT2C full-color stick light will do the trick. These are the same thing as the PT4C, but 2 feet long instead of four. We use the magnetic mounts to attach the light to our metal, on-set shelving in the studio to give a nice glow on camera to our magazines.

Buy Amaran PT4C $299

How Do You Set Up Lighting for a Podcast?

We’ve narrowed down the best podcast lighting setups to three basic options: two-piece lighting, three-point lighting, and ring lighting. Below is an explanation and rough guide for each setup.

Two-Piece: If you already have decent lights in your podcasting studio and just need some extra light on faces, check out a two-piece setup. It’s just two LED lights that you can move around as needed to illuminate your face, your co-host’s mug, or maybe an interviewee.

Three-Point: Three-point lighting is the industry standard with a key light, a back light and a fill light. The key light sits adjacent to the camera, operates on a bright setting and acts as the main lighting for the subject. The backlight goes behind the subject, casting a soft glow for depth. Lastly, the fill light sits opposite the key light (so, on the other side of the camera) lighting the subject’s other side.

Ring Light: Right lights have become very popular with solo vloggers, YouTubers and TikTokers. They’re pretty straightforward: just a large, circular light with a camera in the middle. Ring lights are great because they cast an even glow over your face and require very little know-how or setup. Of course, they’re only meant for one person, and won’t work for filming multi-person podcasts or interviews.

A three-point kit can also be used to light two subjects in one room using what’s called the cross key technique. Check out a tutorial here.


Buying Guide: How We Chose Our Picks

If you’ve been podcasting for a while – or you’re finally getting started – recording with good podcast equipment is a must, but filming your podcast sessions with good lighting can be a massive help too.

While Aputure lights all have extremely high build qualities, it’s Aputure’s Sidus Link app that is the killer offering from the company. Offering free and paid subscriptions, the app allows us to fine-tune the control of all of our studios’ production lights seamlessly from an iOS or Android device over Bluetooth. This allows us to create and switch between unique lighting setups across shows at a click of a button. No more having to invest in and run wires to an expensive lighting console.

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