Choosing LED Strips
Oct 23 2019
LED Strips are a hugely versatile lighting solution capable of meeting the difficulties presented by even the most complex lighting projects. For instance, strips of LEDs were recently used to create a bespoke snow suit as part of a short film entitled "LED Surfer."
While your own project might not be quite as ambitious it is always important to find strip lights that can create the effects you are looking for.Whether you are adding accent lighting to a stairwell or installing a shop front window display, your strip lights should be able to provide you with the right amount and type of illumination for your project.
LED Strips are a linear-based light source that can be cut to specific lengths. While you can cut the strips yourself, it is much easier to ask a professional electrician to do it for you. Alternatively, you can send your measurements to the retailer and they will be happy to cut your strips before they send them out.
Strips come in various different brightnesses. The brightness of a strip is generally dictated by the size and number of LEDs on the strip itself. As a rule of thumb, the more and larger LEDs you have, the brighter the strip. The following guidelines are designed to give you a rough guide of which LED Strips are suitable for which applications.
If you are looking to illuminate a small, enclosed area, such as the inside of a cabinet or underneath a shelf, we recommend using a low brightness strip. If you are adding accent lighting to the underside of a kitchen cabinet or behind some furniture, we recommend using an LED strip with a mid-range brightness. For commercial applications or applications where the strip needs to be noticeable in the presence of background ambience a high-brightness strip is advised.
As well as the brightness you will also need to choose the colour of your strips. LED Strips come in three main colours. Warm and Cool White are actually different hues of white light, also called colour temperatures.
Warm White is a standard "incandescent" coloured light which shines with a Kelvin Rating of about 3,000K. It is most suited to domestic applications and where you want to create a 'soft' light scheme. Cool White is a bright, daylight white colour and has a Kelvin Rating of roughly 6,000K or above. This light is far more defined and is suitable for accent lighting and indirect illumination.
LED Strips are also available in a colour changing "RGB" format. Each LED blends red, green and blue light in varying quantities to produce a wide spectrum of colours. These strips are controlled from a remote and can be set to static or dynamic modes. You should choose this light if you want a light scheme that can be changed at the touch of a button.
Once you have chosen your strips you will need to find the necessary peripherals to get started. This will be discussed in a separate blog which takes you through each unit you will need and how to get started.