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Bolt VM-160 LED Macro Ring Light

BH #BOVM160 • MFR #VM-160
Bolt
Bolt VM-160 LED Macro Ring Light
Key Features
  • Guide Number: 21' / 6.4m at ISO 100
  • Eighteen High-Output LEDs
  • Six Levels of Brightness Adjustment
  • Continuous Light & Flash Modes
Capture extreme close-ups or portraits with the VM-160 LED Macro Ring Light from Bolt, which features eighteen high-output LEDs with a guide number of 21' / 6.4m at ISO 100. The light features six levels of brightness adjustment from -1.5 EV to +1.5 EV and the continuous light source helps you easily see the effects of the lighting as well as enable use during video. Four clip-on diffusers are included to further adjust the quality of light from the ring light: clear, frosted, amber, and blue. Users can set the light to illuminate from only the left or right side for added dimensionality when shooting. Additionally, to help conserve battery power, the light can be set to work in flash mode, which will turn on the light for approximately a half second each time the shutter is released.
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Bolt VM-160 Overview

Capture extreme close-ups or portraits with the VM-160 LED Macro Ring Light from Bolt, which features eighteen high-output LEDs with a guide number of 21' / 6.4m at ISO 100. The light features six levels of brightness adjustment from -1.5 EV to +1.5 EV and the continuous light source helps you easily see the effects of the lighting as well as enable use during video. Four clip-on diffusers are included to further adjust the quality of light from the ring light: clear, frosted, amber, and blue. Users can set the light to illuminate from only the left or right side for added dimensionality when shooting. Additionally, to help conserve battery power, the light can be set to work in flash mode, which will turn on the light for approximately a half second each time the shutter is released.

The power unit features a 1.6" backlit LCD monitor for displaying battery power and ring light settings. It attaches to your camera via an accessory shoe and requires four AA batteries. A stand is also included to hold the power unit on its own, or on a light stand or tripod via the integrated 1/4"-20 thread. For mounting the ring light to your lens, eight different adapter rings are included to fit a range of lens diameters: 49, 52, 55, 58, 62, 67, 72, and 77mm. Controller unit uses a universal type hot shoe, and is not compatible with cameras that use the older Sony/Minolta shoe.

Not compatible with Fuji X-T2 and X-Pro 2.

LED ring light is universal in design and independent of any specific TTL system. It is compatible with most DSLR lenses and ideal for macro and close-up shooting applications.
18 high-output LED array provides a guide number of 21' / 6.4m at ISO 100.
Four light modes available:
Light Mode will keep the light on continuously.
Flash Mode will activate the light for approximately one half second at a time when the shutter is depressed; this will help conserve battery power.
Left and Right Flash Modes will set only the left or right half of the light to turn on in order to give more dimensionality to your subject matter.
An automatic power-saving function will turn off the ring light after 30 minutes of inactivity to conserve battery power.
1.6" backlit LCD provides visual display of battery life and light settings.
Four clip-on diffusers are included: clear, frosted, amber, and blue.
49, 52, 55, 58, 62, 67, 72, and 77mm adapter rings are included.
Coiled power cord connects the ring light to power unit and measures 10" relaxed and 30" stretched.
Stand/tripod mount features a 1/4"-20 thread on base.
UPC: 847628585645

Bolt VM-160 Specs

Flash
Guide Number21' / 6.4 m at ISO 100 (50 mm Position)
Color Temperature3000 to 15,000K
Flash Duration0.5 Second at Full Power
Exposure ControlManual
Wireless OperationNone
LED
Number of LEDs18
Color Temperature3000 to 15,000K (via Included Diffusers)
DimmingYes
Power
Internal Power4 x AA
External Power Pack CompatibleNo
AC PowerNone
General
MountShoe Mount
DisplayLCD
Off-Camera TerminalNone
Dimensions (W x H x D)4.5 x 2.8 x 1.4" / 114.0 x 70.0 x 35.0 mm (Controller)
4.8 x 4.3 x 0.6" / 120.7 x 108.0 x 15.2 mm (Ring)
Weight7.05 oz / 200 g
Packaging Info
Package Weight1.15 lb
Box Dimensions (LxWxH)11.8 x 5.8 x 3.5"

Bolt VM-160 Reviews

Update to Useful if you can work around it's quirks

By Anthony
Rated 3 out of 5
Date: 2022-08-15

So it's been about a month and a half since I wrote my review. In that time, the company contacted me and offered to let me send it in for repair. To their credit, they did send me an adapter ring that fits my Tampon zoom lens well. However, nothing has improved with the flash firing on my Sony a6100. I now notice that I turn on the camera and it works the first time, but not after than unless I turn the camera off and back on again. Haven't noticed this problem with other third party flash accessories. I'd be happy to make a video for them if they want me to prove it. I'd also like to know how they tested it and if they did anything at all, as there was no explanation given that I can see. In my original review I mentioned that the light can shine into lenses with a large front element. That's probably the case with all lens mounted ring lights so an unfair knock against it. This is my first lens mounted ring light, so I hadn't considered that. You just want to make sure to pair this light with the right lens and the best way to do that is probably just trial and error I think. So, it's a bit of a bummer but once again, I wasn't expecting much for the price. Still useful for lots of things.

Bright, and it works

By Thomas J
Rated 4 out of 5
Date: 2022-07-05

I like this item. Haven't used it much, except to verify that it works in flash mode on my camera, a Sigma fp L. Phenomenal performance for the price! The securing ring tightens the flash controller to the hot shoe of the camera. When removing the flash controller, be sure to UNSCREW IT ALL THE WAY so it lifts its hotshoe locking pin. Before I figured this out, I thought something was drastically wrong and I thought I could never get it off. But, no problem! Flash mode blinks the light for maybe 1/3 second when you click the shutter, saving battery power A LOT. Just this feature alone makes it worth the very low price. It also runs continuously if you want. There are a few colored diffusers for the front, a clear lens, and a white diffuser. These go on and off easily. It also comes with a set of threaded adapter rings to fit your lens, about 8 of them. They are all plastic, but the flash head is very light so no problem! The head clips to the front of any adapter ring, so it is very easy to take it off and put it back on as needed. I guess it would be hard to make adapter rings clippable, since the threads are needed on those adapters, to match the filter thread of your lens.

Useful if you can work around it's quirks

By Anthony
Rated 3 out of 5
Date: 2022-06-29

So I knew this wouldn't be perfect based on it's price, but I just got it in the mail today and have some thoughts on it. First, the lens thread adapters could be better. I've got some Tamron lenses they don't want to screw into. Next, whether or not the light appears in your pictures depends on the lens you use it with. I wish they would make a larger version of this with the inside of it being somehow mounted around the end of the lens instead of in front of it. Seems like it depends on the size of the front element. If you have some lenses with a small front element, it should work well. However, because it sits in front of the lens, when you use a diffuser, light shines into the lens creating flare and reduced contrast. You can work around this by running a thin strip of gaffer's tape around the inside. My final complaint is that my Sony camera only triggers it in flash mode about 10% of the time. Luckily you can switch it to continuous light mode, but this is not great for pictures of people, as they will not like the bright light shining in their face. A work around is to press the pilot button with your left hand at the same time you press the shutter on your camera. The duration of the LED light is long enough to sync with any normal shutter speed. So yeah, it's a pain and I would pay twice as much for a version that addresses the issued I've mentioned, so maybe a company will read this and make a better one. It's useful and I'm going to keep it.

Excellent Ring Light

By R. Wolfgang
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-06-16

This is a great macro light kit, many adaptive lens rings and defusers. Easy AA batteries on this LED flash. Although I knew when I ordered it that there is no protective case for all the various pieces, it sure would be nice to come with or offered as an option. Recommended

Good product

By Sidney
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-04-29

Looks good has all the extras parts so I don't have to search around for adaptors. Reasonably priced. Time will tell.

Works But Very Low Output

By Craig
Rated 3 out of 5
Date: 2022-04-17

I was surprised at the low level of exposures I get on some initial testing. Maybe I've missed something when setting it up but I'm getting extremely low lighting levels on my initial trials.

Love it

By Teresa
Rated 4 out of 5
Date: 2022-07-22

Really enoy this flash especially for macro photography. I appreciate the options I need for the best flash setting. I do feel like the lens adapters don't hold the ring well and I have to constantly double check the flash is secure.

Great value for the low price!

By Albert
Rated 5 out of 5
Date: 2022-07-16

It's been about 30 years since I have been into macro photography. Recently, I dug out my old Nikon PB-4 Bellows and realized that I needed a Macro Ring Light. I went to my trusty B&H website and ordered this Bolt ring light. I absolutely love it! I mainly use it as a continuous light source. With the option of using left or right LED's only, it adds dimensional capabilities to my photos.

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question

How would this compare to Canon MT-24EX Macro Twin Lite Flash?
Asked by: Anonymous
The Bolt VM-160 is an led macro light and the Canon MT-24EX Macro Twin Lite Flash USA, <a href= http://bhpho.to/1wyhjeK, target= _blank >http://bhpho.to/1wyhjeK,</a> is a flash macro light. The canon works in TTL or manual on Canon cameras and it freezes motion much better and is much brighter. The Bolt LED bulbs do flash but LED lights do not flash like a strobe lights. But you can use that one as a flash or continuous.
Answered by: Robert K.
Date published: 2022-09-03

Does it work on a Sony a9?

Does it work on a Sony a9?
Asked by: Donna
The Bolt VM-160 LED Macro Ring Light, B&H # BOVM160, may be used on the Sony Alpha a9 Mirrorless Digital Camera. Do note that the Bolt VM-160 LED Macro Ring Light is a manual LED light, so you would set the light output manually.
Answered by: Manzell
Date published: 2019-05-01

Will this fit on a NikonD750?

Will this fit on a NikonD750?
Asked by: Julia
The flash is compatible with the D750 and the unit comes with adapter rings for different size filter threads of lenses. Check to see that your lenses' filter thread matches the adapter ring sizes that are included.
Answered by: Rob
Date published: 2020-10-24

Will autofocus work with the light attached?

Will autofocus work with the light attached?
Asked by: Dave
Yes, autofocus will work. I’ve used it on 2 Canon DSLRs with several lenses without issue. The only potential problem I can think of is if you were to use it on a variable focal length lens where the front of the lens rotates when zooming in or out. You can easily check that. Overall it’s a nice unit that comes with useful accessories.
Answered by: Anonymous
Date published: 2019-11-22

My Q is for users of this unit - is it normal for ...

My Q is for users of this unit - is it normal for the buttons to be intermittent in their operation i.e. you have to play around with them in order to get them to respond - all my buttons work just not on the 1st touch - is this normal?
Asked by: richard
This does happen quite frequently with these units unfortunately. The buttons wear out rather quickly.
Answered by: Zachariah
Date published: 2021-06-09

Does it come with storage case ? Does it work off ...

Does it come with storage case ? Does it work off camera with a transmitter ?
Asked by: Ricardo
This flash does not come with a case and will fire off camera with a compatible flash trigger for Canon.
Answered by: Rob
Date published: 2021-06-09

Is there a 1/4-20 thread under the light so that ...

Is there a 1/4-20 thread under the light so that I can mount it on rail to the left or right of the camera a bit?
Asked by: Tom
Yes
Answered by: Anonymous
Date published: 2021-06-09

I feel silly asking this, but no where does it ...

I feel silly asking this, but no where does it explain what "TRIGGERS" it to flash?
Asked by: Todd
Press the MODE button repeatedly until the dot indicator on the LCD switches to Flash mode. The flash mode will only work if the control unit is mounted in the camera's hot shoe.
Answered by: Boyd
Date published: 2022-06-02
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