October 25, 2015 at 2:50AM


What is up with LED flicker on my footage?!

For a short film I recently made for a university assignment, i taped some pink clear plastic onto small LED lights to get this certain 'fantasy' effect. But looking at the footage, I have all this horrible banding from the lights!

But the thing is it was only ONE of the two lights that gave banding, and furthermore considering we were also in a local business, I had the shutter speed at 1/50 to avoid banding from the fluorescent lights so the hertz is matched up.

1. Why can this happen with LEDs
2. How do I fix it in post?!!!


Some of the low cost LED lights will flicker when dimmed, but the better low cost brands of LED lights ( like Aputure Amaran ) are usually ok.

To avoid this in the future:

- Test the LED lights you own, especially when dimmed ( also check color balance )

- Rent brand name LED lights that are made for video work

- If you are unsure about an LED light, shoot with it on FULL output and use diffusion or ND filters to dim the light.

...I don't think there is anything you can do to fix your footage in post. It sounds like you will have to reshoot or live with the footage you already shot.

October 25, 2015 at 12:20PM

Guy McLoughlin
Video Producer

The one that was the issue I had rented and hadn't used before, so I suppose that was my mistake. What was confusing was that there was no visible flicker from the LED itself, it only appeared on camera. Which is mostly why I'm losing my mind over the damn thing.

However I will use that method if it does turn out to be a sneaky dimming issue - thanks anyway!

October 29, 2015 at 5:25AM


Like Guy said, there's not much to do about it in post. Live and learn. At least it was a Uni assignment and not a paid gig

October 25, 2015 at 1:13PM, Edited October 25, 1:13PM

Tobias N

October 27, 2015 at 7:56AM

Viktor Ragnemar

Unfortunately that's only a fix for slow motion footage. It wasn't an issue with the hertz of the lights ):

October 29, 2015 at 5:26AM


LED lights having a single LED - like a Cree flash light - will always cause the banding or rippling effect. It would seem that these LEDs are pulsed at some odd frequency that doesn't help filmmakers. Use a LED light source having more than one LED, or use multiple LED lights to fix this problem in future.

March 9, 2016 at 2:24PM

Ian Nicholson
Head Tutor at Sydney Short Film School

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