My photography skills are not terribly good, but I appreciate the need for good lighting when it comes to taking product photos. I often find myself having to rely on natural light, or worse, the normal lights within our home. This often provides less-than-ideal results.
I have previously reviewed the OMBAR RGB Video Light, and I was incredibly impressed with it. I loved the small portable nature of it, and it is really useful for providing a bit of extra light in awkward spots. I still use it now, but the Zhiyun Fiveray M40 I have been using recently is on a different level.
Zhiyun Fiveray M40 Specification
- Extension: 1/4 Threaded Hole
- Battery Capacity: Built-in li-ion battery 6S/2600MAH
- Maximum Power Output: 40W
- Colour Temperature Range: 2700K~6200K
- Dimming Range: 0~100% –
- 4300K/100% Brightness Illuminance: 1050lux @ 1 meter
- 4300K/100% Brightness Illuminance: 4400lux @ 0.5 meters
- 4300K/100% Brightness Illuminance: 14000lux @ 0.3 meters
- TLCI: ≥97
- CRI(RA): ≥96
- LED Chip: 176 with 88 PCS(cool light chips)+88 PCS(warm light chips)
- Charging Time: 1H50min , 12V/1.12A 13W, supports a maximum of 15W fast charging
- Runtime: 29min (Max Power Non-stop Output)
- Operation Temperature -10°～40°
- Charging Temperature: 0°～ 45°
- Product Size: 136.5*77.8*29（W*D*H）
- Net Weight: 320g
There is not a great deal to discuss about the design of the M40, but you can tell it is a premium piece of kit compared to the RGB light I have previously reviewed.
This is quite a bit chunkier, and on the back side of it, there is a visible fan which will give you some indication that this is more powerful than many competing options. The 40W logo plastered on the rear is also a big advert that this is a powerful light.
I like the controls on this light; it is just two dials. It is a much more user-friendly way of controlling the light compared to the digital buttons on the OMBAR RGB.
These dials are covered by the mounting stand, which can then be rotated around and will expose the USB-C port when you move it.
This rotational stand has two 1/4″ screw holes that allow the M40 to be mounted on a tripod or light stand. I have also used it flat on a surface with the stand propping it up.
Zhiyun Fiveray M40 Performance
Even though I have made comparisons to the OMBAR RGB Video Light, which can do multiple colours, this light is strictly cool and warm white light covering 2700K~6200K. There are also no lighting effects either. It is just a simple light.
What it lacks in features, it makes up for in raw performance. This thing goes incredibly bright for something so small. So bright that I can look at the light directly at any sort of angle when it is dialled up.
During my time with it, I noticed no issues with flickering or strobing, and the light performed consistently well.
The combination of this ultra-bright light and the versatile mounting system means that this is an incredibly useful light for anyone wanting something small and convenient to improve their photography.
I love the simplicity of the dials, but you could argue that they don’t offer the same granular control that a proper menu has with percentages. And matching up the settings perfectly of two M40 lights would be a bit difficult.
Also, at full brightness, the fan will start to kick in after about a minute. This will speed up the longer you use it and is audible. It is not an issue for me, but if you are recording video, you may want to consider the location of the light and microphone.
This has a 2600MAH battery, and it is rated for 29 minutes when used at the maximum brightness.
However, it also supports 15W power delivery fast charging, and this can extend the runtime significantly. If using it portable, you can always use a portable power bank.
Price and Alternative Options
|ZHIYUN FIVERAY M40 Video Light 40W Portable Camera Light,...||£99.00||Buy on Amazon|
The Zhiyun Fiveray M40 costs £99 on Amazon. Alternatively, you can buy the Zhiyun Fiveray M40 from Vlogsfan for $105 (£86), and this includes a good quality handheld tripod.
Most of the competing products with a similar pocket-sized form factor are RGB lights.
The NEEWER RGB Video Light, which is almost identical to the RGB light I previously reviewed, is about £95. It has more features and can be controlled by your phone, but it is only a 12W light vs 40W of this M40.
There are white lights that are designed to mount on your camera, you can buy these for under £50, but they will typically hit 650 lux/m, whereas this is 1050lux/m. You’d normally have to go for a larger panel light to achieve this level of brightness.
This light is a good example of keeping things simple and effective. There are no fancy features that add to the costs, and there is no learning curve to it, it is just two dials.
It is a perfect solution for me, I can never be bothered with big panel lights just to take a photo of a single product. This can live on my desk, and I can use it as and when needed with almost no set up.
Even though £100 feels expensive for a small light, it is quite reasonable compared to most other products on Amazon. All the small, much less bright RGB lights cost around £80.
Overall, this is a superb portable camera light.
Zhiyun Fiveray M40 Video Light Review Rating
This light is a good example of keeping things simple and effective. There are no fancy features that add to the costs, and there is no learning curve to it, it is just two dials. It is incredibly bright and outperforms any other option I can find at this price or size.
Overall - 90%
- Ultra bright for such a small light
- Incredibly easy to use
- No RBG / effects
- Dial controls are not as precise as digital
I am James, a UK-based tech enthusiast and the creative mind behind Mighty Gadget, which I’ve proudly run since 2007. Passionate about all things technology, my expertise spans from computers and networking, to mobile, wearables, and smart home devices.
As a fitness fanatic who loves running and cycling, I also have a keen interest in fitness-related technology, and I take every opportunity to cover this niche on my blog. My diverse interests allow me to bring a unique perspective to tech blogging, merging lifestyle, fitness, and the latest tech trends.
In my academic pursuits, I earned a BSc in Information Systems Design from UCLAN, before advancing my learning with a Master’s Degree in Computing. This advanced study also included Cisco CCNA accreditation, further demonstrating my commitment to understanding and staying ahead of the technology curve.
I’m proud to share that Vuelio has consistently ranked Mighty Gadget as one of the top technology blogs in the UK. With my dedication to technology and drive to share my insights, I aim to continue providing my readers with engaging and informative content.
Last update on 2023-11-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API