Welcome to our ultimate Neewer 300w strobe review that is a part of our studio light review series. We have been working our way through a list of lighting units from various brands in the series and today is the turn of the Neewer 300w. The cheap price tag of the light makes it an ideal entry-level strobe light for model and portrait photography but we have also seen a number of people using it in other niches too.
The excellent performance for its price tag, decent build quality, great functionality, and ease of use has made the Neewer 300w a very popular budget-friendly light within the community. Due to this, over the years since its release, it has managed to earn itself one of the best reputations within the community for its price bracket.
Although the sub $100 price bracket in the strobe light market has a fair few products these days, many of the lighting units are a total waste of time and money in our opinion. Thankfully, this is not the case for the Neewer 300w and in our opinion, and judging by the reputation the Neewer 300w has amongst the community it stands above the competing lighting units at its price point in the market.
User Interface And Control System
The image above shows the primary control system for the Neewer 300w lighting system and as you can see, it is very straight forward and easy to use. It is based around an LCD panel to display the various readings for any settings you are tweaking as well as a rotary dial and a handfull of buttons. The fuse housing for the light is also at the base of the control system too allowing you to quickly and easily replace it when required.
As this is more of an entry-level lighting unit, we would imagine it will be a popular choice for any of our readers who are looking to pick up their very first strobe light unit. If this is the case for you then the simple control system definatley plays into your favor as it is really easy to learn without having to put much time into reading the manual.
We would like to point out that the buzzing unit on the Neewer 300w that is used to indicate that the recycle has completed and the light is ready to activate again can NOT be turned off via the control settings. Although we have not seen many people comment on the buzzer but we have seen a few people say it gets a little annoying. Although we would not recommend it, there are a few guides online on how you are able to manually remove the buzzer but keep in mind that doing so will void your warranty.
The Neewer 300w also allows you to mount a softbox on it to customize the performance of the unit as you see fit. Although you can use a large number of softboxes with the light, the Neewer 20×28″ rectangular softbox (Click here to check for product prices and availability) is a popular choice as it is budget-friendly and performs well.
The Neewer 300w uses a standard Bowens mount system allowing you to quickly and easily mount the unit to any lighting stand you have in your studio. The threads on the mount are metal to help reduce the chances of you accidentally cross threading it on your stand and there are a fair few third party convertors the Bowens mount system to allow you to mount it on pretty much anything you need to.
All in all, we feel that Neewer has done a solid job with the Neewer 300w, especially for its price tag. It is very easy to set up while also easy to debuild after use. The control system is extremely easy to use and allows you to quickly get the lighting unit working right out of the box without wasting time.
Performance And Functionality
As far as we are concerned, the performance of the Neewer 300w is the main reason that it has earned the reputation is has while also standing apart from the competing lights in the sub $100 price range. Although the light has been primarily designed for use in traditional studios with ideal conditions, it is actually pretty versatile and we have seen a number of people using it as an on-location light outside of a studio for a number of photography niches without issue.
If you are just starting out on your photography journey then this is a great feature on the light that you can use to your favor as it allows you to use it for a whole bunch of situations that you may find yourself in. On top of this, we have seen people use adaptors for the Bowens mount system that the Neewer 300w uses mount lights on trees or whatever else they have available when on location to provide optimal lighting for their subjects too. You can also use the Neewer 300w as a handheld light if needs be too ensuring you can always provide some solid light when working in low light conditions.
The below bullet point list shows the key features of the light that we feel most people who are considering adding it to their camera accessories will care about:-
- Guide Number GN48.
- 75W Modeling Bulb (adjustable to 3 separate power levels).
- Variable Flash Energy Adjustment 1.0 To 6.0 (0.1 increments with 60 total steps).
- Variable Flash Recycle Time 0.3 Seconds To 1.8 Seconds.
- Fixed Flash Duration Of 1/2000S.
- Sync Distance Of 10 Meters.
- Color Temperature Of 5600k.
As you can see, it is a solid little light, one thing that we do want to specify with the light is that overheating may become an issue when using the unit for extended periods of time with a 0.3 second recycle time. Although this should not be a problem with regular use, if you are constantly activating the lighting unit plan breaks into the session to allow it to cool back down again.
Depending on what you are planning to use your Neewer 300w for, it may also be worth picking the Neewer RT16 wireless studio flash trigger (Click here to check for product prices and availability) up too. Not only does it allow you to remotely trigger the unit with ease but it also allows you to remotely tweak some of its features too.
Build Quality And Design
Although we have seen a number of people comment on how they feel that the Neewer 300w is not primarily designed for field use, we just want to say that in our opinion, for the sub $100 price range it is probably going to be the best strobe light for the job. Rather than being made out of plastics that can easily break, the Neewer 300w is predominantly made from a high-quality aluminum alloy to ensure that it is robust as possible.
This gives it a direct advantage over many of the completing strobe lights at this price point allowing it to withstand any bumps or knocks coming its way without taking damage. Additionally, the Neewer 300w has a solid overall build quality too and feels very professional considering it is just an entry-level strobe light.
In our opinion, any changes to the already superior build quality of the light would just result in an increase in its price tag and push it into the $100-$200 price bracket where it would face some serious competition from higher price point lighting units. Due to this, we would not change a thing when it comes to the build quality on the strobe light and feels that it will be able to meet the needs of our readers without issue.
Question – Does the Neewer 300w work from batteries?
Answer – Not directly no, it is predominantly a studio light and needs to be plugged into an external power outlet. If you are planning on using it as a field light then you will have to pick up an external battery pack to provide the battery life you require.
Question – Can the Neewer 300w be triggered via a flash unit?
Answer – As the light uses an optical trigger, there are a number of flash units that you are able to use to trigger it.
Question – Can you use the Neewer 300w for continuous activations?
Answer – Yes, just keep in mind that overheating issues may occur when doing so for extended periods of time.
That brings our article covering our Neewer 300w strobe review to an end and as you have probably guessed by now, we feel that this is definatley the dominant strobe light in the sub $100 price bracket at the time of writing. Its excellent performance and solid build quality have rightfully earned it a great reputation within the community and we feel it can help improve the image quality of your flash photography sessions and will make a good addition to your camera accessories.