How many times have you found yourself fumbling about with lighting while trying to get a clear up-close shot of an object? Although smartphones come with pretty nice cameras these days, properly lighting an object and taking impressive macro shots isn’t exactly their strong suit. This is where [MisterHW]’s LEDCard is a very welcome companion. Not only does it provide a credit card sized ring light, it also allows for a molded acrylic lens to be inserted for high-quality macro shots.
The project in its current iteration consists out of a single PCB with rechargeable Li-ion coin cells (LIR2430) and a USB-powered charge controller. After charging the LEDCard (or inserting freshly charged Li-ion coin cells), a single button press will light up the SMD LEDs via the LM3410 LED driver IC. Press the ON button again and the brightness goes from medium to full intensity. Finally, pressing the TEST button with the LEDs lit performs a battery level test that turns the LEDs off if the battery is ok. If they stay lit, it’s time to recharge the LEDCard.
As [MisterHW] points out, the LEDCard being compact enough to carry around with you wherever you go makes it suitable as an emergency flashlight as well. It’s also not the final iteration of the design. Future (incremental) improvements include a diffuser for the ring light and more. Even so, in its current state LEDCard is already a proven design.