Whether you’re a professional wedding photographer making a full-time living, or a casual enthusiast who has been asked to take photos at your friend’s upcoming wedding, you’re going to need a decent lighting setup.
Luckily, taking snapshots during the big day doesn’t have to involve rocket science. This is particularly true for choosing the best lighting equipment.
Yes, there are a lot of options out there, and it can be tough to pick the right product! And we’re just talking about the best lighting for wedding photography here.
Just think of the sheer number of choices on the market for other kinds of photography.
But don’t worry, today you will learn the 14 best lights, kits, and flashes for taking perfect wedding photos.
Let’s dive in.
In This Article
- Best flash for wedding photography: Profoto A1X On/Off Camera Studio Flash
- Best budget: Godox V1<
- Best cheap flash: Neewer NW625 GN54 Speedlite Flash<
- Best CANON flash for weddings: Speedlite 600EX II-RT<
- Best NIKON flash for weddings: Nikon SB-700 AF Speedlite<
- Best wedding photography lighting kit: GODOX MS200 Kit<
- Best budget lighting kit: Neewer Strobe Flash and lighting kit<
- Best video light for wedding photography: Aputure AL-MX 128 LED Bi-Color On-Camera Video Light<
- Best speedlight for wedding photography: Godox V860II-C<
- Best softbox for wedding photography: Neewer 32 inches Octagon Softbox<
- Best ring light for wedding photography: Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax<
- Best off-camera flash for weddings: Yongnuo CE Compas YN-568EX Wireless TTL Flash<
- Best strobe for wedding photography: Godox AD600BM<
- Best portable lighting for wedding photography: Godox 3 Pack SK400II<
14 Epic Lights and Kits To Transform Your Wedding Photography
|Best flash for wedding photography||Profoto A1X On/Off Camera Studio Flash|
|Best budget||Godox V1|
|Best cheap flash||Neewer NW625 GN54 Speedlite Flash|
|Best CANON flash for weddings||Speedlite 600EX II-RT|
|Best NIKON flash for weddings||Nikon SB-700 AF Speedlite|
|Best wedding photography lighting kit||GODOX MS200 Kit|
|Best budget lighting kit||Neewer Strobe Flash and lighting kit|
|Best video light for wedding photography||Aputure AL-MX 128 LED Bi-Color On-Camera Video Light|
|Best speedlight for wedding photography||Godox V860II-C|
|Best softbox for wedding photography||Neewer 32 inches Octagon Softbox|
|Best ring light for wedding photography||Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax|
|Best off-camera flash for weddings||Yongnuo CE Compas YN-568EX Wireless TTL Flash|
|Best strobe for wedding photography||Godox AD600BM|
|Best portable lighting for wedding photography||Godox 3 Pack SK400II|
Best flash for wedding photography: Profoto A1X On/Off Camera Studio Flash
The Profoto A1X On/Off Camera Studio Flash is the best flash for wedding photography because it has a fast recycle time, a powerful, long-lasting battery, and is just as happy atop your camera as it is off of it!
A fast cycle time is super important when taking wedding photos, as you don’t want to miss that special moment, be it a look shared between the bride and groom or an almost caught bouquet.
If your flash is recycling during that all important moment, you could easily miss the shot altogether!
The big day is going to be, well, a big day of shooting, and you won’t want to be running for new batteries every five minutes. The Profoto A1X can pump out 450 full power flashes in a single charge; more if you’re running on a lower power mode!
The light is nice and compact and very portable, weighing only 1.17 pounds with an attached battery, making it perfect for carrying around while you attempt to get the best lighting for wedding photography.
A distinct feature of this studio flash is the output of the strobes. Most products on the market only produce 50 watts, unlike the Profoto A1X’s 76 watts of power.
That means it’s about 50% brighter than most other lights out there!
The Profoto A1X uses a rechargeable Li-Ion battery, and buying another one as a spare means you’re prepared to take more than 2,000 pictures, even before you need to use the battery charger.
There’s a two-year limited warranty when you buy the Profoto A1X On/Off Camera Studio Flash as well!
Key Features of the Profoto A1X On/Off Camera Studio Flash:
- 76w output
- Two-year warranty
- Rechargeable battery
- Can be used on or off camera
Best budget: Godox V1
Specs: Godox makes a whole bunch of epic photography gear for budget-conscious shooters, including this dope speedlight.
The actual price for a Godox V1 will depend on your chosen brand. You can choose to buy one for Canon, Fuji, Nikon, or Sony cameras.
Still, the Godox V1 is the best budget lighting for wedding photography because of a rechargeable battery, a wide range of color temperatures (5600±200K), and TTL support for various systems.
The flash also delivers perfect shots with its round head, which can be rotated up to 330 degrees and tilted up to 120 degrees for indirectly illuminating the subject. With an attached transmitter, it can also work on- and off-camera.
So yeah, it’s pretty versatile!
What’s more, it comes with a long-lasting battery, so no need for AA batteries. Just make sure that you charge it for at least three hours.
But there are a couple of drawbacks to using the V1 flash to get the best lighting for wedding photography.
You can’t just use any old types of USB-C cable for the charger.
Plus, you need to pay for a wireless transmitter, which is sold separately. It also has a slightly slower recycling time than most lights, at approximately 1.5 seconds.
The build quality is pretty decent as well, it might not be quite as robust as more expensive units, but it will definitely go the distance!
Despite a few cons, Godox V1 remains the best choice for budget-conscious photographers who want something in the mid-range price bracket.
Key Features of the Godox V1:
- Fairly robust
- Incredibly affordable
- Plenty of rotation and flexibility
- Different options for different camera brands
Best cheap flash: Neewer NW625 GN54 Speedlite Flash
You may think that flash photography is only required indoors, at night, or when there is a lack of natural light.
While this is quite true, there are other situations to use flash.
For instance, flash can eliminate shadows cast on the subject. If there’s plenty of natural light, then you can be sure that shadows will work against you when trying to have the best lighting for wedding photography.
The Neewer NW625 GN54 Speedlite Flash is the best cheap flash not just because it only costs around $50, but because it’s compatible with all major camera brands, and it allows you to manually adjust the zoom settings.
Whether you’re a Canon, Panasonic, or Olympus user (are basically any other major brand), the NW625 GN54 is instantly compatible thanks to the light’s hot shoe adapter.
You can get the perfect shot from afar with a massive 18-180mm of manual zoom, meaning you don’t have to get up in everyone’s faces as a wedding photographer.
The Neewer Speedlite Flash’s shutter speed supports up to 1/320s. Any higher, and you can expect to see a black layer on each shot.
Also, the flash has a long recycling time of roughly 3.5 seconds. While it’s not super fast, remember that this light is incredibly affordable, so it’s something we can live with!
You can still take great pictures from different angles with a vertical rotation angle of up to 90 degrees, and its horizontal rotation can be turned up to 180 degrees.
The Neewer NW625 GN54 Speedlite Flash is compatible with Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, and Olympus DSLR cameras. You can also use it for Panasonic and Pentax DSLRs as well as Sony cameras to create the best lighting for wedding photography.
Key Features of the Neewer NW625 GN54 Speedlite Flash:
- Manual zoom features
- 180-degree horizontal rotation
- Fast shutter speed – up to 1/320s
- Compatible with pretty much all major camera brands
Best CANON flash for weddings: Speedlite 600EX II-RT
The Speedlite 600EX II-RT is the best CANON flash for wedding photos because it supports continuous flash firing at incredible speeds.
That makes the light perfect for burst shooting, as the 600EX II-RT offers up to 1.5x faster firing on AA batteries.
Add the Compact Battery Pack CP-E4N in your purchase, and you can increase the fast-firing rate to 2.0x!
This incredibly fast flash speed, even when you’re using it without a battery pack, is attributed to a more durable build quality. Heat-resistant materials and an overhauled interior design make this Canon speedlight a cut above the rest.
It’s no secret that an overheated flash unit not only affects the product’s durability, but it also compromises the user’s safety.
When you lower flash speed for safety reasons, it also results in a less desirable performance, and you certainly don’t want that if you’re trying to have the best lighting for wedding photography.
Luckily for us, Canon built the Speedlite 600EX II-RT that provides users with a high-end speedlight that doesn’t compromise both performance and safety.
Key Features of the Speedlite 600EX II-RT:
- Can run on AA batteries
- Support for wireless use
- 2x faster than its predecessor
Best NIKON flash for weddings: Nikon SB-700 AF Speedlite
If you’re a fan of Nikon, then you’ll be happy to know that the manufacturer offers a mid-size flash for newer Nikon cameras.
The Nikon SB-700 AF Speedlite is the best Nikon flash for weddings because it incorporates Nikon’s epic “i-TTL (Intelligent Through-The-Lens) flash control”, which supports flash exposures that are super precise, even in less than desirable lighting situations.
And let’s face it, weddings aren’t necessarily set up to deliver ideal lighting photography, so you’ll want to make sure you can adjust for this.
Nikon is so confident about this model that it described the SB-700 AF as the “next great speedlight.”
How great, you ask?
The answer lies in its comprehensive set of automatic controls and wireless functions.
It can automatically set the aperture and focal length when you use it with the Creative Lighting System (CLS) camera and lens. CLS also allows you to set ISO sensitivity that’s based on a certain background. It’s also a good enough option as a compact speedlight, measuring 2.8 x 5 x 4.1 inches.
Still, there are a few things that you need to know about this product.
Nikon introduced the SB-700 AF with an upgraded guide number: 92’ at 100 ISO. While this means you’ll have more versatility with flash to create the best lighting for wedding photography, it won’t yield your desired flash in every situation.
The speedlight also has a longer recycling time (approximately 2.5 to 3.5 seconds), but it remains a good choice if you want more control for field depth than using a built-in flash.
Importantly, the Nikon SB-700 AF Speedlite comes with a one-year limited warranty.
Key Features of the SB-700 AF Speedlite:
- Compact and lightweight
- Precision i-TTL Flash Control
- Hot shoe or wireless operation
Best wedding photography lighting kit: GODOX MS200 Kit
The GODOX MS200 Kit is the best wedding photography lighting kit as it’s incredibly compact, it comes with two different types of diffuser, and it can be controlled remotely.
Wireless remote control capabilities are super important when shooting photos at weddings, as your lighting may well be set up in a different location to your camera. And, given the MS200 Kit is a three-piece lighting kit, you’re probably going to have them set up in different locations anyway!
The kit comes with three monolights that offer up to 200 watts at maximum power, which is roughly equivalent to three average speedlights.
Three light stands, a pair of 60x90cm SoftBox, and a 40-inch black umbrella reflector are also included in the kit!
You can store the items in a carry bag along with an XT-16 Transmitter and a seven-inch reflector, making getting in between shoots easy.
Recharging in between flashes is also impressive. Its recycling time only takes between 0.1 to 1.8 seconds. Be aware, though, about the equipment’s lack of flash-tube protection for the dome.
Otherwise, the kit remains a good choice for those who want user-friendly button controls.
Overall, the build quality of the GODOX MS200 Kit is pretty decent. The mount reflector, for instance, is made of highly scratch-resistant aluminum.
Key Features of the GODOX MS200 Kit:
- 2 softboxes
- 3 professional lighting stands
- Wireless transmitter included
- Carrying bag for portable photography shoots
Best budget lighting kit: Neewer Strobe Flash and lighting kit
The Neewer Strobe Flash and lighting kit is the best budget lighting kit because despite it’s affordability, the output from these 400W strobe flash units is incredibly professional.
That’s due in part to the included softboxes, which are ideal for diffusing the bright light output of the flashes and making sure there aren’t any ugly shadows or reflections occurring.
A pair of 400W strobe flash in this sub-$300 kit offers plenty of choices for layout lighting. Use them as a background light, hair light, or the main source to create the best lighting for wedding photography.
You can mount the strobe flashes on two light stands that come with the kit, or you can simply hold them in your hand for better accuracy when creating the best lighting for wedding photography.
Another distinct feature of this Neewer kit is the consistency of light levels during a shoot. It’s possible to shoot approximately 400 photos in two hours without noticing overheated equipment.
Setup is a breeze even though the softboxes don’t seem to be collapsible. You may have to pull out the rods each time you need to store them away. Still, this small inconvenience pales in comparison when you use the wireless trigger even for mirrorless cameras.
The strobe flashes also have a decent recycling time between 0.3 and 1.5 seconds. An LED indicator and sound will remind you whenever you need to recharge the equipment.
With proper care and maintenance, the Neewer Strobe Flash and lighting kit can last a lifetime! They say you get what you pay for, but this kit might be one of the rare exceptions.
Key Features of the Neewer Strobe Flash and lighting kit:
- 400-watt strobe flash
- Wireless trigger and receiver
- Two softboxes and lighting stands
- Convenient carrying bag included to pack it all into
Best video light for wedding photography: Aputure AL-MX 128 LED Bi-Color On-Camera Video Light
The Aputure AL-MX 128 LED Bi-Color On-Camera Video Light is the best video light for wedding photography because it’s ridiculously small, meaning it’s unlikely to get caught in the shot!
This guy weighs less than 300 grams and is about the size of a credit card, so you can easily carry it in your pocket, and easily mount it atop your favorite camera,
The 3200 Lux output is pretty bright as is, but with the Boost mode selected, you can get an extra 30% brighter!
For anyone who has been around photography for a while, this light may sound familiar. It’s an upgrade to Aputure’s AL-M9 and offers better lighting capabilities from a smaller body.
The durability is as good as ever, though, as is the battery life: 1-2 hours at full power, and up to 4 hours at minimum power!
The Aputure AL-MX 128 LED Bi-Color On-Camera Video Light, with its 1/4”-20 threaded mounting hole, is compatible with all cameras and light stands, allowing you to easily move it between cameras.
Key Features of the Aputure AL-MX 128 LED Bi-Color On-Camera Video Light:
- Weighs less than 300 grams
- About the size of a credit card
- Epic light output despite its size
Best speedlight for wedding photography: Godox V860II-C
The Godox V860IIC is the best speedlight for wedding photography because it comes with its own softbox and color filters.
Softboxes are one of the most important parts of capturing a high-quality photo, as they allow for a more natural and diffuse light which reduces harsh shadows and makes for awesome pics of the big day.
It’s got a wide range of available types to suit pretty much all major camera brands, it’s fast, it’s powerful and it offers integrated radio transmission, which makes it completely compatible with systems such as E-TTL & E-TTL II!
Not only this, but it has a number of features for super creative photo sessions. One of which is flash exposure lock, which maintains the correct flash exposure for your shot.
Being a Godox, it includes the company’s reliable 2.4G wireless X radio system, giving you TTL master and slave functionality and a long range connection.
When you’re taking photos at weddings, sometimes you can’t get as close as you want to. There’s always chairs, tables, and dancefloors in the way!
WIth this awesome speedlight, you’ve got a huge zoom range (20-200mm), which can be expanded to 14mm using the pull-out panel for extra tight shots, meaning you can literally capture everything!
In addition, the flash runs off a rechargeable lithium battery pack, which recharges faster than most, ensuring little downtime.
The Godox V860IIC TTL is the perfect option for those who are looking for a high-powered, versatile flash – just make sure you choose the unit that’s compatible with your camera brand!
Key Features of the Godox V860IIC TTL:
- High speed sync
- Max 1.5s recycle time
- Approx 650 flashes per charge
- Color Temperature: 5600±200k
Best softbox for wedding photography: Neewer 32 inches Octagon Softbox
It’s no surprise that the Neewer 32” Octagon Softbox is one of the most popular softboxes around.
With a rugged design, it’s suitable for all kinds of environments and can be used comfortably inside a studio or on an outdoor shoot.
Its silver reflective surface has incredible light diffusion capability that keeps light from leaking out, and the kit comes with a dual zip system that allows for easy storage when traveling.
It can be collapsed like an umbrella, making it easy to set the stage and break it down, ready for the next location!
The Neewer 32 inches Octagon Softbox kit is the best softbox for wedding photography because it’s lightweight and portable enough to carry around with you as you’re trying to get shots of all the wedding guests!
That means it can even be attached to the top of your camera if you want to get really portable.
There are two mounts that come with the Neewer 32 inches Octagon Softbox kit: a mount for studio lighting stands, and a universal speedlight mount.
Talk about versatile!
Key Features of the Neewer 32 inches Octagon Softbox kit:
- Light yet solid frame
- Easy to set up and pack down
- Can mount on studio flash lights that have umbrella hole
Best ring light for wedding photography: Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light for Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax
The Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light is designed to be used with all major camera brands – Canon, Nikon, Sony, Pentax, and more – making it a great option that should be in every camera bag.
The 240 LEDs offer a color temperature range of 5500k-6500k, and switching in the orange filter allows for a nice warm 3200K.
Ring lights are great for wedding photos as they are super portable, and the Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light is the best ring light for wedding photography because it can be powered entirely off of AA batteries, making it incredibly portable!
The included MV-AD1 Power Pack uses F750A Li-ion batteries, but 12 AA batteries can also be used, instead. This helps keep the ring light fairly lightweight, so you can easily attach it to the front of your camera and not be concerned about carrying around the extra weight all day.
The Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light can be used in two modes: flash or continuous. The power under flash mode, which requires the flash to be connected to the camera via the flash sync cable, is four times brighter than the continuous mode!
Key Features of the Fomito Portable LED Macro Ring Flash Light:
- Wide temperature
- Dual modes of operation
- Lightweight and portable
- Can even run on AA batteries
Best off-camera flash for weddings: Yongnuo CE Compass YN-568EX Wireless TTL Flash
The Yongnuo CE Compass YN-568EX Wireless TTL Flash is the best off-camera flash for weddings because it features ultra-long-range wireless connectivity.
The whole point of buying an off-camera flash is that you can set up the flash to fire from angles that aren’t the same as where you’re taking the photo on, so you want to be able to shoot from afar!
It’s a great option for photographers of any skill level, and supports a variety of settings that, once learned, allow you to completely customize the device to handle virtually any shooting scenario imaginable!
The flash time is 1/200s~1/20000s, so it’s super fast, and the color temperature is steady across this range at 5600k.
Motor zooming and extensive shutter speed synchronization support (up to 1/8000) give this flash even more bang for the buck, so you can customize the settings to your heart’s content!
Since the flash is a wireless device, it offers a great deal more flexibility and allows you to set up the perfect shot anywhere.
The Yongnuo CE Compass YN-568EX Wireless TTL Flash can be triggered to use in hot-shoe mode, flash command slave mode, optical S1, and S2, to name a few, and it can even be linked to non-Yongnuo radio triggers if you want to use it as a TTL slave flash.
Key Features of the Yongnuo CE Compass YN-568EX Wireless TTL Flash:
- Incredibly affordable
- 5600K color temperature
- Wide range of zoom support
- Lightweight, compact, and portable
Best strobe for wedding photography: Godox AD600BM
If you want to add an extra layer of creativity to a shoot, the Godox AD600BM Strobe Light is definitely something that needs to be added to the wedding photography tool bag.
Offering a TTL function and a huge 600W output with nine power output levels, it’s one powerful and versatile strobe light.
The powerful battery pack gives you up to 500 flashes on full power, and manages to maintain a steady 5600K color temperature right across the power range.
The AD600BM can even be run as a monolight using the optional AC power adaptor, making it even more versatile!
The Godox AD600BM is the best strobe for wedding photography because you get so much kit, including five different colored screens, a softbox, a flash diffuser, and a reflector.
All of these handy accessories give you the ability to get a little creative with your wedding photos, and allows you to account for the fact that the natural lighting in the room may be less than ideal.
Plus, you get a nice little bag to carry it all in!
There’s a high-speed sync mode, which works with shutter speeds up to 1/8000 of a second, helping to control background light intensity. And with flash time durations between 1/220-1/10,000 second, you can create the perfect flash-lit image!
As with many of Godox’s photography components, the Godox AD600BM Strobe Light comes with the company’s proprietary wireless system, incorporating onboard 2.4 GHz X System to offer wireless triggering at distances of up to 262 feet (an additional transmitter may be required).
The flash head uses a Bowens-style mount so it can be easily used with Godox accessories, as well as with light shapers from many manufacturers that have adapted the Bowens mount.
Key Features of the Godox AD600BM Strobe Light:
- Stable color temperature
- Includes reflector, diffuser, and softbox
- This kit comes with a rechargeable battery and charging station
Best portable lighting for wedding photography: Godox 3 Pack SK400II
The Godox SK400II 3-Light Studio Flash Kit was put together to give photographers who need studio-quality lighting on the road.
It comes with three flash heads (Godox’s SK400II units), each of which comes with its own pro-grade light stand. In addition, you get two lighting umbrellas, two diffusion softboxes, a standard lighting reflector, and an XT16 Wireless Trigger.
That trigger has a massive range (328 ft), so you don’t need to get too close to get it working!
The Godox 3 Pack SK400II is the best portable lighting for wedding photography because it comes with a hard case on wheels. That’s pretty rare, as most affordable lighting solutions just give you a standard carrying bag, which is not only less protective, but a whole lot less portable!
Instead, Godox make life easy by allowing you to roll your lights behind you like a suitcase.
The head of the included strobe has an anti-pre-flash function that makes it a pleasure to use with point-and-shoot and other cameras that do employ pre-flash.
The kit amazingly weighs in at just under five pounds, which means you can easily assemble two or more heads without having to take a heavy case everywhere you go!
The Godox 3-Pack SK400II Portable Lighting Kit also comes with a Bowens front accessory mount, making it compatible with other Godox equipment and that of many other manufacturers that use the Bowens system.
Key Features of the Godox 3-Pack SK400II Portable Lighting Kit:
- 150-watt lights
- Kit includes 3 softboxes and 3 reflectors
- 1 barn door kit includes with 4 different colored filters
There is no way to deny it:
It’s important to invest in high-quality equipment to achieve the best lighting for wedding photography.
That doesn’t have to mean spending an insane amount on tools, though. Any of the lighting kits here will do an epic job. It ultimately comes down to your specific requirements, and of course, your budget!