The Aputure MC has become a very popular little LED light since its launch in October last year. It’s tiny but pretty powerful, and it’s RGBWW, meaning you get good quality high CRI/TLCI whites as well as every possible colour combination you can think of for effects. They’re not inexpensive, though, currently hovering around $109 on Amazon.
Well, YouTuber Neon Airship decided he didn’t want to spend all that much on one, so he set himself a mission to see if he could build something himself that would do the job for around £10 (~$13). Did he manage? Well, you’ll have to watch the video to find out.
The short answer is sort-of. He built a pretty decent looking RGB light for lighting effects for a pretty low budget just using a 5v RGB LED strip, a couple of plastic food storage containers, a USB power bank and a whole mess of gaffer tape. Whether or not you can stay under the same low budget will depend how good you are at finding the best deals, and you might be able to find some of them cheaper locally – especially the food storage containers and the power bank.
He freely admits that this isn’t as good as the Aputure MC. For a start, it doesn’t have high CRI white LEDs for bouncing between tungsten and daylight, but for a lot of people who just want to add a splash of colour for effect, it should work extremely well and comes in at a very low cost.
And, as shown at the end of the video, it’s probably the only light you’ll own that’ll actually let you store your other small LED lights inside it. Or your lunch!