After I already took a look at the new big Philips Hue Gradient Signe for you yesterday, today we continue with the next new release. I reviewed the new Philips Hue Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip for you. It is the first real light strip from Philips Hue that can display multiple colours at the same time – if we forget about the Play Gradient Lightstrip for the TV.
With a price of 149.95 euros for the basic set consisting of a power supply unit, ZigBee controller and two metres of light strip, the Ambiance Gradient Light Strip is anything but cheap and almost twice as expensive as the Philips Hue Light Strip Plus. The extension is also expensive at 59.95 euros. For comparison: A few days ago, three metres of the old light strip were on sale for 56.99 euros in Germany.
The price is definitely a house number, we don’t need to discuss that. But after unpacking and installing the Ambiance Gradient Light Strip, I can assure you that it is far superior to the well-known Lightstrip Plus. And we’re not just talking about the number of colours that can be displayed simultaneously.
This is in the box
But first, let’s take a look inside the box. In the plastic-free packaging, you will find a small manual and the obligatory safety instructions, as well as the light strip itself. In addition, there is a power supply with two plugs for EU and UK, the ZigBee controller and a long cable to connect these two parts. At the end of the light strip there is a small plastic cap that provides a nicer end. The Ambiance Gradient Light Strip can also be extended up to ten metres, whereby the connection is not made via six pins as before, but only via their four.
What I find a bit unfortunate is that the light strip apparently cannot be shortened in as many places as previously thought. Seven small arrows indicate where the scissors can be used. The individual sections are accordingly 25 centimetres long. At least this is somewhat better than the Lightstrip Plus, which can be shortened every 33 centimetres.
The Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip in the App
Of course, the Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip is connected and controlled normally with the Philips Hue App. The special feature: In the colour selection, the light strip appears as a group, the three segments can then be placed freely and thus create fancy colour gradients. Philips Hue promised five segments that can be freely adjusted – presumably this will be increased via a software update.
Due to the automatically generated colour gradients, the Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip can display more than three colours at the same time. 16 individual segments can be controlled by the controller. I personally find the solution chosen by Philips Hue very good, by the way, because the handling in the app is very simple and the colour gradients can be created easily. In addition, the Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip also lights up in multiple colours in predefined scenes and the new dynamic scenes.
The technical improvements are impressive
One of the biggest weaknesses of the previous Lightstrip Plus is the spacing of the individual LEDs, which are about six centimetres apart. If it is placed too close to a wall, the individual light points are very clearly visible there. In the following picture you can see the old Philips Hue Lightstrip Plus in my kitchen, where I had to mount it directly on the wall due to the construction.
The new Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip from Philips Hue has many more individual LEDs. I counted almost 100 coloured LEDs, and there are probably a similar number of warm white and cool white ones. The distance between the LEDs is only two centimetres. Just take a look at what a difference this makes in the illumination.
In addition, the Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip has a milky silicone cover, so it doesn’t look quite as naked as its predecessor. Nevertheless, it is even a little bit brighter with 1,800 lumens at 4,000 Kelvin.
My conclusion on the Philips Hue Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip
Philips Hue has not simply given the Lightstrip Plus a gradient function, but has delivered a completely new light strip that is superior to its little brother in absolutely all respects. The result is impressive.
If only it weren’t for the price. 149.95 euros for the basic set is really a lot of money and even with good offers it might be difficult to break the 100 euro mark. Nevertheless, the Ambiance Gradient Lightstrip that I have installed in my kitchen will not be my last.