Introduction: LED Ring Light/ Shoe Mount Light

Coming up with an idea for an instructables as a class project seemed daunting at first. But as i thought about it, I wanted to make something i could use on a regular basis. And seeing how i am into videography i wanted to build i supremely light weight and bright light. I Often see big bulky lighting rigs on cameras, all which seem intrusive to the one operating the camera.Inspiration for my project came from,, what drew me to this was the use of white LEDs. I happen to really enjoy the crispness and workability white LEDs have on video. What i wanted to add to set my project apart was a potentiometer to control how much light i was letting out. Despite the appearance of the light as is may be off putting. It is meant to be behind the camera and it works better than expected.

Step 1:

I started out with a simple camping light, as recommended by said instructable. The inside of the light display is fairly simple. It used a simple connection, with one resistor. The resistor i was able to replace with a potentiometer. so in step one i cleaned out the inside battery array and resistor.

Step 2:

Once you have stripped out the inside of the light array. you are going to want to determine how you want arrange your power supply, as for me and how i use a camera am deciding to have a wiring to a project box that holds the power supply and hold the potentiometer. depending on which light you purchase to modify. you can simply replace the resistor with a simple linear potentiometer. as seen in step 3.

Step 3:

When i first replaced the resistor for the potentiometer i used a one ohm potentiometer. This resulted in an a very close range of brightness. After discussing this with my professor he suggested using a five ohm potentiometer. the five ohm, was able to disperse, or resist, more over the span of the turn of the potentiometer.
Remember :as i worked with the potentiometer i learned that the ground will always be the middle touch point.

Step 4:

Apply your alternate power supply. I chose a project box i could hold or place in my pocket for weight issues primarily. the plastic housing and led's are virtually weightless. i went to radio shack and picked up an enclosed 4 AA battery holder. These also come with power switches.

Step 5:

Next choose how you want to run the wiring and place the potentiometer. I used a plastic, fairly thin. tubing to run my wires from light array to power source. Now to create holes and any other modifications, I strongly recommend using workshops if accessible. I, used an old solder gun to burn holes in the plastic.  
Now for a ring light. simply take a measurement of your lens you would choose to fit your light to. and create a hole in the array, although it may look janky. it fits snug and doesn't wobble around.

But as a user of a VX100, a 3ccd mini dv camera i wanted a shoe mount. to accomplish this i took an old slave from my wireless flash kit and used the housing and attached it to the back, Thus allowing me to use a shoe mount and then use it as a ring light for alternate cameras.

Step 6:

Overall, this is a very simple solution to my problem. I wanted a light i could use in multiple ways as well as control it at any brightness level i wanted. I am very pleased with the final result. Enjoy!