When you think about fly tying, you might get caught up in the details on the best fly tying vises, tools, and materials. But one thing a lot of us forget to think about is investing in a great fly tying light – until we need it, anyway!
Fly tying  is an intense process where you need to focus on tiny details, sometimes for long periods. That’s why it’s so essential to have a powerful fly tying lamp that lets you see exactly what you’re doing.
Having the right fly tying lamp could make all the difference between neat, tidy flies or messy flies (and unwanted eye strain, too). Whether you have 20/20 vision or you struggle with your eyesight, a lamp for fly tying is well worth investing in.
But not all lamps are suitable for fly tying. Not to worry, though! We’ve rounded up the best lamps and lights for fly tying, so you can spend your time creating some new flies, rather than shopping around. Let’s get started!
How To Choose the Best Lamp
Firstly, the lamp you choose needs to give off a bright light. LED lights are especially good for brightness and intensity. But that’s not all you need to think about.
You should also consider the type of light your lamp gives off. Does it create a sort of spotlight, where it will illuminate the exact spot where you’re working? Or is it more diffused and brighten a wider area? (And which sort do you prefer for a fly tying light?)
Also, can you angle the light on the spot where you are working? Adjustable lamps with flexible necks are handy, as you’re free to adapt your setup to your needs at any moment.
Another important question to think about is whether one lamp is enough. Or would it be better to illuminate your workspace with several lamps, for the best effect?
The last factor is how compact and lightweight the lamp is – especially if you don’t have a dedicated fly tying desk. If you need to work at the kitchen table, you’ll appreciate a portable desk lamp that you can pack away easily!
On the other hand, if you have that dream fly tying setup that all fly fishing enthusiasts dream of, you might prefer a fixed desk lamp that you can clamp to your table instead.
These factors are all essential things to think about when you’re looking around for the best light for fly tying. You should also factor in the price and your budget, of course.
See also our Fly Tying Magnifying Glass to complete your fly tying desk.
The Best Fly Tying Lamps: Our Reviews
Now you know what you’re looking for, let’s get onto our reviews. We’ve round up the top lamps for tying fly patterns so that you can find the best fly tying light around!
Carson Desk Brite
This handly little lamp is the perfect sort of light for tying flies for fly fishing, due to its brightness and magnifying capabilities. It’s not just a light – it also has a powerful magnifying glass with 3x zoom, so you can see all those tiny details without straining. And with three LED lights, it provides super bright, clear light to see what you’re working on.
The base is sturdy, so this lamp shouldn’t fall over. The extendable neck is also a great feature. It allows you to get the perfect angle to see from on top or from the side.
If you’re tight on space, you’ll be pleased to hear that this sort of lamp is fully collapsable. That means you can pack it away when you’re done tying new flies for your next fly fishing trip! You could even take it on the road with you in case you need to do a quick repair to your fly pattern when fly fishing.
It even comes with a lifetime warranty, making it excellent value for money! Overall, this is one of the best lamps for creating new fly patterns for fly fishing. It’s practical, lightweight, and very bright.
- Reasonable price
- Includes a strong magnifying glass too
- The 3 LED lights provide a bright light
- It comes with a lifetime warranty
- The small size means this lamp won’t illuminate large spaces
Ott Lite True Color
The Ott Lite True Color is another great light for tying flies. This model is popular as it’s bright and has a magnifying glass with powerful 2x magnification. But it’s also small, and the light folds down to make it even more portable.
You can set this lamp up in seconds and have a new fly tying vise ready for you to get to work. It even switches on and off automatically. Then, when you’re finished, it’s just as easy to pack away again.
Another benefit of the True Color light is that it’s easy to position it at any angle. Plus, the light it gives off is like soft daylight, rather than the harsh brightness you might expect from LED lights. This factor makes it gentler on the eyes so that it won’t provoke headaches or sore eyes.
- Lightweight and portable – folds up small
- Has a powerful magnifying glass for tiny details
- Bright, natural sort of light
- Very expensive
Brightech LightView PRO
While Brightech lights aren’t specifically made for fly tying, they certainly tick all the right boxes. The folks at Brightech take lighting seriously and aim to produce practical yet elegant lights. So not only does the LightView PRO get the job done, but it looks awesome too!
The LightView PRO boasts a 3x magnifying lens, allowing you to see your latest project in crystal clarity. It truly is a fantastic workbench lamp because you can adjust the angle in any direction. This feature means that you can work hands-free on your fishing flies, and it will provide just the right brightness and close-ups necessary for precision.
If you’re not a fan of super-bright white lights, you can adjust the color or dim the brightness slightly. So, you can adapt the light to suit different situations. Brightech is so sure of the quality of their lights that they offer a 3-year warranty, which gives extra peace of mind, knowing that you’ve invested in a reliable product.
- So easy to adjust the angle
- Powerful magnification
- Very simple to use
- Generous 3-year warranty
- Dimmable with light color options
- It’s quite heavy so not easily portable
- You need to clamp it to your table, so changing the placement is time-consuming
Pro Work Bench Lamp
The Pro Work Bench Lamp is another excellent choice for fly tiers. As it has two lights, you can angle them in different directions to illuminate your fly from all sides.
With each bulb providing 200 Lumens, it’s bright enough to work with ease. The flexible necks also give you maximum control over where the lamps shine so that you can avoid any annoying shadows.
The base is very sturdy, a factor that prevents the lamp from tipping over. It even has a small storage tray with a magnet that’s perfect for holding your tying materials as you work.
You can take your pick whether you use this as a portable table lamp, or if you want to clamp it in one place. This choice means that you can make this light work in whatever way suits you best!
- Two bulbs instead of one
- Emits a very bright light
- You can use it with the pedestal base or a clamp
- It has a handy storage tray for your hooks and materials
- It’s not possible to change the LED bulbs
Brightech LightView Pro 2 in 1 XL
If you’re looking for a new floor lamp that can double up as a fly tying lamp, then the Brightech Lightview Pro XL ticks all the right boxes. This versatile lamp can be used as a floor lamp or a table lamp, providing greater flexibility for you.
It also has that powerful lens that can magnify anything by up to 2.25x, making it perfect for anyone with less than 20/20 vision. Working on tiny flies can be almost impossible if you have poor eyesight, but the LightView Pro XL makes it possible (and even easy!)
You can angle this lamp in any direction, and once in place, it shouldn’t shift at all. So, you can work for as long as you like without needing to adjust your surroundings. That generous 3-year warranty can come in handy if anything happens to your model during that time, too.
- Versatile – you can use it as a floor lamp or table lamp
- Excellent for anyone with poor eyesight
- Magnifies your hook by 2.25x
- Sturdy yet easy to angle
- Not the lowest price around, it’s not a budget product
The Wrap Up
Don’t underestimate how important it is to have a great fly tying lamp. Once you’ve got the right set up that brightens your fly tying space, you’ll be able to get even more precise with your fly patterns. Plus, you shouldn’t suffer from eye fatigue and headaches anymore!
A simple thing like choosing the best desk lamp will make your fly tying hobby more productive – and more comfortable, too. Grab one of these excellent models, and you’ll be all set for your next fly tying session!
Drop us a comment to let us know which of these lamps you prefer. Or, if you think we missed a great fly tying lamp, let us know below. Then, head over to Fly Fisher Pro to check out our section all about the best fly patterns for fly fishing! We’ve got you covered with techniques, tips, and tutorials.