Aputure's New Lantern is Super Affordable and Sets Up in Seconds

Aputure is now shipping their Lantern Softbox, a rugged unit for getting soft light where you need it.

One of the most popular low-budget lighting tricks is the simple soft ball light, often called "china balls," available at many hardware stores. 

The large ball creates a nice soft light, but the drawback has traditionally been mounting and durability. You needed ceramic sockets to put in a powerful bulb, but the paper units frequently tore in the truck, and they were hard to point in the direction you wanted to go. 

We started to see "fixed" soft ball lights around 15 years ago, that provided a silk instead of paper, a fixed metal frame, and could mount on the front of your light to offer the benefits of a ball light without the drawbacks.

Now Aputure has released their own ball unit, the Lantern Softbox, which, at $89, makes a perfect complement to their 300D and 120D units or any Bowens mount unit.

Built around a sturdy metal frame, the Lantern will let users point the soft light where they want it. Best of all, however, is that it comes with a 4-section skirt that allows you to section off parts of the light from going where you don't want it to go. The best way to think about this is if you are shooting a tabletop scene, you could easily rig a unit up above the table and let the soft light illuminate both of your actors while using the skirt to keep the light off the back wall, quickly and controllably. 

The unit is 26" around, which should make it useful in small spaces and offers a 270-degree beam angle. Like pretty much everything from Aputure, it comes with a carrying case to protect it from the elements and banging around in your trunk, which should make it much more durable than the paper lanterns we all started out with.

Tech Specs

  •  26" spherical design
  • 270° Beam Angle
  • 4-section skirt
  • Bowens Mount

Aputure's new lantern is available now for pre-order, retailing at $89    

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Your Comment


I’ve never use Aputure lights before, but this lantern looks pretty convenient. I might have to check this out. If their lights are clean enough this would be a great supplement in a B kit.

July 22, 2019 at 7:50PM

Senior Producer / Graphic Design Artist

We need to find more reviews, but it looks good.

July 22, 2019 at 8:07PM

Liam Black

wow, this is so good, i want one too.
How to get? or place an order for it?

July 23, 2019 at 1:49AM


where can i get it?
how much price?

July 26, 2019 at 2:15AM

film director

where can i get it?
how much price?

November 10, 2019 at 5:02AM