I finally got around to checking out the Koogeek smart light strip that everyone has been talking about lately. As some of you know, I love anything to do with LED lights and I was keen to check out this tiny USB powered Wifi enabled striplight.
The first thing I noticed while unpacking the striplight unit was how well protected it was in its box. Most lights that I buy come posted in a plastic bag or box with hardly any protection, not this one. Its neatly wrapped up in a little bundle and protected by soft dense foam all around. It reminds me of how Apple pack their products.
I was very keen to see how this little beauty performed and I’m glad to say that its very well built and performs well. It doesn’t overheat the controller like some other cheap generic brands I have come across and I like the large on-off button on the Wifi controller. So let’s go into it in finer detail and set it all up to work as some USB LED Light Strip for TV
Koogeek Smart Light Strip vs Philips Hue
I have a couple of Philips Hue Gen1 and Gen2 light strips that I thought I would compare the difference in light color and brightness. Both are compatible with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Echo and Google Home as long as you set them up correctly using Koogeeks apps.
We are in the Android Echo system at home so I was unable to test out the Apple Homekit side of things. But for a cheap little Wifi light strip, the Koogeek is going to give the big boys a run for their money.
The Koogeek light strip uses the famous 5050 striplights at a density of 30 LEDs per meter. Each LED is able to change up to 16 million colors via the app on your phone or tablet so for a 2m length you will get 60 bright color changing LEDs. If you have the home automation setup via either Amazon, Apple or Google you can even do voice control for the Koogeek smart light strip.
I found the Koogeek was brighter than the Philips Hue Generation 1 but not as bright as the Generation 2 Plus. This is because the Philips Hue Plus has its own power supply and is enabled to be lengthened just by plugging in extra segments. It is also twice the price so it’s in a different use case.
I also like that you don’t need a bridge or hub to get this smart light strip to communicate over Wifi like the Philips Hue does.
Koogeek Wifi Light Strip Specifications
How to Setup Your Koogeek striplight
After you have unpacked your light strip plug it into a USB power source. This can be either a TV or computer monitor, a phone charger, a portable USB power bank or even a car jump starter with USB outlets. You can then go ahead and download the KooGeek home light strip software.
There are a few other kooGeek android apps so be sure to download the Home version. Not the Life or Health apps.
- Connect your phone or tablet to your local home Wifi network and open up the Koogeek home software. Register with an email address.
- Press the + button and connect to your wifi network. You will need to enter your WiFi password and then the magic happens behind the scenes.
- If your phone can’t find your device automatically you may have to press the KooGeek-LS1-xxxxx and pair. Follow the on-screen prompts to add in the light strips.
- Once the light strip has been added into the app you can now turn it on and off with your phone. By long pressing the icon on your screen you will have access to extra features like brightness and color changes. You can also turn off the light strip with the button near the USB cable.
KooGeek Smart Lightstrip Review
After a few weeks of using this cool light-strip, I can honestly say its well built and easy to use. As long as you download the correct app it will be simple to set up.
We used it as behind TV lighting. We had been using another backlighting light strip but that one was white only. Now we have color changing backlighting.
We had it powered up from the USB port on the LG TV so once the television was turned on the light strip came on with it to give a nice ambiance glow to the background. I like a nice dark blue ambiance whereas the kids like bright red. I guess its fun for when they play on the Xbox to see the TV glowing.
I like that there is also an on/off button near the USB controller. This provides a local quick button to turn off the light strip rather than looking for your phone. This applies if you have a constant USB power say provided by a phone charger or power pack.
Being very robust and weatherproof I think I will take it out on my next camping trip and power it up with a power bank for some nice bright tent lighting. You will just be stuck with the standard white light as you will need a router/internet to change the color.
It would have been nice for the strip light to remember the last color even when powered off but that’s not the case. As far as I know, all color changing light globes and light strips default to their standard white light when power is removed.
Can I cut the light strip?
You sure can. Every three LEDs there is a cut mard in the light strip. If you cut on the mark you can make the length shorter. Just make sure if you are mounting them onto any metal cable trays, or channel that you insulate the cut end with a bit of electrical tape or hot glue.
How to mount your light strip?
Start by cleaning the area you will be sticking on yo with a damp cloth and fully dry the area. If you have methylated spirits this will remove any oil and will provide a great clean base.
Do a dry test run of placing the light strip and making sure it fits well. You can now remove the protective tape backing and gently pressing the light strip into position. Start from the USB cable end so this way you can cut off any excess when you finish.
Smart USB LED Light Strip for TV
Well apart from backlighting the TV which this is perfect for you can also use it for the following applications.
- Stair lighting underneath the handrail.
- Fish tank lighting inside the lid.
- Garden Shed lighting as it has a local on-off switch.
- Underbed ambiance lighting.
- Bathroom behind a mirror backlighting.
- Kitchen under cupboard spotlights.
- In car decorative lights.
- Computer workspace lights.
- Glass cabinet showcase.
- Camping tent or tarp portable lighting.
- USB LED Light Strip for TV backlighting
The options are endless just use your imagination. All you need access to is a powerpoint and a phone charger plug that can deliver 2A or more.
I used it in our car just to see how it would go for some under seat lighting or even glove box lighting by using a cigarette 12v USB adapter from Ravpower. While it’s a bright white light you won’t be able to change the color due to the smart striplight needing to connect to a WiFi router. You could bypass this by setting up a hotspot on your phone or using a portable sim 12v router.
You can also connect these light strips up to your Google home and Apple Home kits for full vice home automation. Just go into your Google Home settings application and add in the manufacturer and the light strip details.
Give it a unique name so you can say”Hey Google turn on the TV light strip” For a full list of Google voice commands check out our ongoing voice list.
I’m really impressed with the quality and ease of use of this Koogeek USB powered light strip. Being compatible with the Apple home kit and the Google home echo system makes it even better value for money.
If you want to show off your new TV or even some special backlighting for your fish tank then the Koogeek light strip is well worth checking out. If you want some more information you can check out this light strip here.
Changing my whole house over to LED globes and light strips has saved me a ton of money on the electricity bill. Now that we can integrate them into home automation makes it even more fun.