Archive | November, 2018

Review: Brightech Magnifying Lamp

Brightech Lamp Review by Angela Bowman

Do you ever struggle to see small things clearly while doing detailed work? Do you need to brighten up your workspace a bit? I have found a solution for you! Plus, I’ll show you a hack for shooting overhead video.

When the folks at Brightech asked if they could send me a lamp of my choice if I write about my experience, I just wasn’t sure. I’d never heard of them before. I assumed the lamps would be too spendy, and I wouldn’t want to recommend overpriced items that I wouldn’t buy myself. I went to their website and was pleasantly surprised with their reasonable prices. Then I wondered about quality, but quickly found awesome reviews on Amazon. And not just a few good reviews here and there, but thousands of excellent reviews.

I went back to brightechshop.com and clicked on a couple of their lamp categories. I considered the modern-looking Sparq Arc floor lamp that would make a nice upgrade to my living room, but I opted for the Lightview XL Rolling Base Magnifying Lamp because… sewing.

My experience
The lamp arrived in just a few days, was packed very well, and was really simple and quick to assemble. I moved the head of the lamp towards me, noticing how smoothly the arm extends to whatever position I prefer, and it holds that position nicely. I twisted the knob to adjust the angle of the lamp head, and was impressed with the range of possible angles. The lamp has a high-quality feel, which is a welcome change from the cheap and plastic-y lamps I’ve bought from large craft retail stores in the past.

The first thing I put under the magnifier? My hands. And I quickly noticed how I could use a manicure! I turned on the light switch and clicked the arrows to decrease and increase the brightness. Very nice. The LED lights give a very crisp, bright, white light – which I love. While designing and sewing, I need to see fabric and thread in their true-to-life color, and this lamp is perfect for that.

I love that it’s on wheels, allowing me to use it where I want, whether it’s at a table or in my comfy living room chair. The base of lamp is heavy, too, which gives great support and weight balance.

Brightech Lamp Review by Angela Bowman

Brightech Lamp Review by Angela Bowman

What’s also cool is that I can choose to use just the magnifier, the magnifier plus the lamp light, or the lamp light only. I like having options. So far I’ve used it as an overhead light at my sewing machine, lighting & magnifying the tiny invisible stitches I like to make while hand-sewing quilt binding, and magnifying needle-threading, a manicure, and removing a sliver from my finger (those dang rosebushes).

And… I’ve used it for shooting overhead video. Yes, video! Here’s the hack: use the lamp head as a base for your smartphone! Open up the lens cover, place a folded paper towel on the lens to protect it, then place your phone with the camera side down so that it extends off the side to give a shot of whatever you want to capture. That’s what I did for every clip of this fun video I made with my iPhone 7 Plus.

Brightech Lamp Review by Angela Bowman

Who it’s for
This lamp is for people who need to illuminate what they’re working on and to see things close-up. It’s for people who make, build, inspect, or fix things. It’s great for people who don’t enjoy hobbies like they used to, since they can’t see as well as they used to. One of the reasons I don’t cross-stitch much anymore is because it involves a lot of tiny things that are hard for me to see: threading the needle, looking at the design chart, and seeing all those tiny holes in the Aida cloth. With this magnifying lamp, I’m looking forward to cross-stitching again. Time to find a nice pattern to nestle in with for some cozy winter sewing!

Pricing and purchase
The current price of the LightView XL Rolling Base Magnifying Glass Lamp is $94.99 at brightechshop.com, and shipping to the U.S. is free since it’s over $50.

Pros and Cons
The pros? The best thing about the lamp is the adjustable arm and lamp head, making it so handy for many different scenarios with just a tiny bit of effort. But I also really love the beautiful bright white light, magnifying capability, sturdy wheeled-base, and that it helps me record video. The cons? Maybe that the lamp is a bit awkward to wheel around. I hold onto the pole base to move it, requiring me to hunch over a little and walk with scooting steps alongside the lamp. But really, it’s not enough of a pain for me to not want to have this lamp.

Alternative options
Of course there are other lamps in the market that can illuminate and magnify. But most of them take up too much space on the work surface, can’t be moved around, don’t have the same adjustments for brightness or lamp direction, don’t have as large or powerful magnifying lens, or don’t have a flat lamp head that I can place my phone on.

My final opinion
The lamp’s quality, mobility, and multi-purpose use make it worth buying, in my opinion. And honestly, the price is fair.

If you’d like to get one for yourself or as a gift (I may give one to my Mom for her crocheting and reading at her recliner!), find it here: Brightech LightView XL Rolling Base Magnifying Glass Lamp. Note: when you buy something using the links in this review post, I’ll earn a small affiliate commission. But please know, affiliate sales is NOT what I’m all about – quilt-making is. And this tool is great for helping me make and share my love of sewing.