The Best Smart Lights When Style Matters.
Lighting is much more than just convenience. The type of lighting speaks to your sense of style. In the same way that a chandelier tells a different story than a fluorescent ceiling light, some types of smart fixtures set themselves apart from the competition.
In our article on the best smart lights on a budget, we’ve focused on utility and cost. This guide will be the exact opposite, and will instead focus entirely on the best smart fixtures with no-cost style.
Whether you’re decorating a game room, human cave, or home theater and want the coolest light, this guide is for you. This list is dominated by two companies: LIF and Nanoleaf
Nanoleaf was one of the first companies to introduce high quality and high performance smart lighting with the Nanoleaf Aurora. Triangular tiles could be positioned in any shape and pattern as long as one side was in contact with the other, and users took advantage of this to create intricate wall patterns – from Space Invaders to DNA spirals.
Nanoleaf Rhythm extends that same modularity by offering over 16 million color combinations. The rhythm is synchronized with the music in real time and changes the colors of individual tiles in time.
With additional features like the new Screen Mirror function, Nanoleaf Rhythm can reflect ambient colors on your TV or computer monitor, creating the perfect home theater or gaming experience.
The downside is cost: a 15-piece starter kit (called the Smart Kit) will cost you $ 299.99 on Amazon
Best for General Lighting: Philips Hue Color (Amazon</a
Philips Hue White is a great budget option, but not the color version. A single Philips Hue Color A19 lamp costs about $ 47.49 on Amazon, while a starter kit with 3 bulbs and the required Philips Hue Hub will cost $ 159.
Decorating an entire home will cost a lot, but Philips Hue Color bulbs are well worth it – they are some of the best smart fixtures on the market. Users have access to over 16 million color variations, voice control and a variety of pre-made scenes to choose from.
Philips Hue Lab is constantly inventing new lamp applications that can be downloaded from within the app, such as the ability to make lights flash like candles. You can also expand the functionality of your Philips Hue lamps by linking them to other smart home devices or Hue branded products such as the Hue Dimmer or Hue motion sensor.
The LIFX Beam is unique in that it is in no way intended to illuminate an entire room, but rather as an accent in the room. Each panel is 1.4 “wide and 11.8” long, but can be butted to cover long distances, such as around a door frame.
LIFX sets its smart lights apart from the patented polychrome technology. Each panel has dozens of individual LEDs that can transmit any color available, allowing users to create a rainbow of light throughout the installation.
LIFX smart lights are also unique in that they do not require a central hub. Each panel connects to Wi-Fi on its own, making installation as simple as connecting beams and connecting the system to your network.
The LIFX Beam can be voice-controlled with all major smart assistants, and the starter kit will set you back $ 149.99 for a six-piece setup with one angle connector.
LIFX Tile is very similar in sound: it is a nearly 8 “x 8” tile that boasts the same polychrome technology as the LIFX Beam. You can connect these tiles together in any order (or do as many people have done and imitate Tetris on your walls).
One of the main advantages of LIFX is its application; most users prefer it to competitors because of its intuitive interface and simple controls. Like other smart LIFX luminaires, Tile does not require a central hub. Each panel has a built-in Wi-Fi adapter that allows you to connect to your home network without intermediaries.
A single LIFX tile will cost you $ 79.99, while a pack of three offers the best return on investment at $ 149.99. These fixtures are great for adding accents to walls or just for conversation, but creating an expansive display case will cost you.
Best Intelligent Gaming Lighting: Nanoleaf Canvas (Nanoleaf</a
Nanoleaf Canvas is very similar in appearance to LIFX Tile, albeit smaller. Each Canvas tile is about 6 inches, not 8. But where LIFX tiles serve as a work of art, Nanoleaf canvas has a lot of functionality.
Canvas tiles can sync to music just like Nanoleaf Rhythm, but you can also use Canvas tiles as touch controls for other smart home devices. Want to turn on the coffee pot from the bedroom? Customize your Canvas tile to control and tap your smart coffee pot when you wake up. You can also use Canvas tiles to play touch screen games.
With the previously mentioned Nanoleaf Mirror, you can customize your canvas to reflect specific parts of your screen. You can make them flash red when your HP drops, or flash a different color when a particular boost appears.
Like other Nanoleaf products, Canvas smart lights work with most major smart assistants. The Smarter four-piece kit will retail for $ 119.99, while the larger Canvas 9-piece kit will cost $ 229.99.