The only Lighting Setup Guide You Need

May 1, 2024

So you want to become a youtube content creator or perhaps a twitch streamer and you already invested in a webcam or a 4k camera yet your image quality still seems to be lacking something or perhaps your camera video is noisy… chances are that is because you do not have a proper light setup.

This short guide is all you need to find budget solutions for making your environment and yourself look better for your youtube and twitch.

This guide is here to explain the most common and simple three point lighting or an alternative way to use three lights for your setup.

5 most common light setups used for streams:

  1. Keylights

Keylight as the name might hint at is the light that is the main light source aimed towards the actor/content creator and should be the brightest light in the room. This is the light to draw the eyes of the viewer towards the main subject in the camera feed. Keylight should be aimed at you from a 30-45 degree angle and not aimed at you completely from the front as that can produce an uncanny lighting.

  1. Softbox

It is worth noting that professional keylight uses softbox to soften the hard edges of shadows the keylight would be casting. This is how you can easily tell if someone is using “professional” light setup or not however these days there are plenty of DIY methods to soften a light.

  1. Fill Light

Keylight is usually aimed at you from one side which in turn will cast shadow on your face and shadows can become distracting if they are rough or too dark. Fill Light is used to control the shadows of the subject, in this case the content creator.

  1. Back Light / Edge Light

Back light is usually aimed at the actor from over their shoulder to create a nice contrast, separating the subject from the background.

  1. Background Lights (Optional)

These lights are used for the background, these could be RGB lights for the room, perhaps you have a trophy or a shelf with lot of props you want to make visible, people usually use separate lights for these so that they are nicely visible in the background.

Budget Lighting Options for your Setup

If you are on a budget, I personally recommend using a combination of Keylight, Back Light and Background RGB light.

Most people may not notice if you are using a fill light, however it is almost certainly guaranteed that viewers will notice if you are using a back light as they are much more easily noticeable.

The best keylight I can recommend on a budget. For 30$ not only do you get one light, you actually get a pair so you can either use the second one as a fill light or as a back light.

It is a USB powered light so you might need to consider buying a USB splitter or an extender if you want to use one of them as a backlight.

You want a quick, simple and cheap way to light up the background for your camera footage in your youtube and twitch videos? Look no further, a basic RGB floodlight is what u need, they can be placed on ground, placed on objects to aim towards wall, props, etc.

Note: If your background is flickering on your webcam, you need to adjust the refresh rate of your webcam in its properties from 60hz to 50hz or vice versa.

Of course an even cheaper way to nicely lit up background is to use RGB bulbs however they are not as bright as the floodlight so in dark room, if you are not properly lit up with keylight, the background can become quite noisy. Also obviously this is for people who have lamps to use it with, just make sure to get the proper type of bulb that fits into your lamp.

If you are making on-the-go type of content or you travel frequently as a content creator but want a certain type of look to your room’s lighting, it is worth getting an RGB LED light that is portable. They are small, compact, can be surprising bright and they are battery powered so if you are recording content for a smaller duration, you can use the light on the go with no worries.

If you have a bit more space in the room and want a professional budget keylight with solid softbox, this is your best option. It only comes with one light but it is bright enough that a fill light may not be necessary.


You can not go wrong with any of the above mentioned lights but if in my opinion if you have the space, you should go for a Mountdog Softbox Lighting combined with the RGB floodlights for a solid looking content creator setup. These are the strongest light sources from the above mentioned list, so if you are using a camera/webcam that does not perform well in low light, you are still going to be able to light up a dark room properly for a webcam footage to look good on youtube or on your twitch stream.

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