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Nanoleaf Essentials Matter Smart Multicolour HD Lightstrip - Nanoleaf's Most Versatile Product Yet

Glenn Hart,
Publish Date
Wed, 10 Jul 2024, 12:29pm

Nanoleaf Essentials Matter Smart Multicolour HD Lightstrip - Nanoleaf's Most Versatile Product Yet

Glenn Hart,
Publish Date
Wed, 10 Jul 2024, 12:29pm

I've tested out many Nanoleaf products over the years and when it comes to smart lighting solutions, there aren't many manufacturers who have as big a range or who consistently think outside the box.

Apart from basic light bulbs, we've seen various shapes, lines and recently, even ceiling panels.

Over time, Nanoleaf has continued to refine and evolve its underlying technology, improving reliability and connectivity with 3rd-party smart home ecosystems.

And while we have seen lightstrips from Nanoleaf before, we've never seen one with this level of functionality...


The Nanoleaf Essentials Matter Smart Multicolour HD Lightstrip is obviously one of the worst names for a product ever. I'm not sure who thought it was a good idea to simply list off all the things this lightstrip can do and call it that. Like I say, this isn't the first Nanoleaf lightstrip I've reviewed, so they're not making things any less confusing by calling it something so hard to remember.

However, I can't deny that it is very colourful, Matter-enabled and is easily one of the smarter lights I've ever used.

The main thing setting this version apart from the original Matter Lightstrip is it gives you the ability to control each LED separately. In fact, that sets it apart from most other lightstrips, full-stop. Those other lightstrips can only change colour section by section whereas Nanoleaf's new HD strip has 60 LEDs per metre, each of which is its own, programmable zone.

That doesn't mean you have to tell all 300 LEDs over the 5 metre length what to do individually but it does mean motion effects look far more convincing, as your favourite colour races from one end of the lightstrip and back again, for example.

As usual, the Nanoleaf app (Android or iOS) has an impressive selection of pre-programmed animations to choose from - exactly like when you're setting up a room with multiple bulbs in the ceiling - except on a single lightstrip it seems so much more spectacular. You can use one of these as a starting point for your own creation, altering the colours, speed and type of animation. Recently, Nanoleaf even added an AI generator function that creates unique scenes based on text prompts - why not try "Crazy Pineapple Fireworks?" 

The Multicolour HD Lightstrip can also react to sound, through its controller and of course, the colours don't have to move or flash at all; in many cases you might just want to settle on one static colour and leave it at that. After all, there are over 16 million to choose from, not to mention being able to change the temperature of plain old white.

Installation is a breeze - while you get a 5 metre length in the box, it's easily trimmable and there's a self-adhesive backing running along the entire lightstrip. Because it connects to the controller via a single USB-C cable, you only need the smallest of holes to feed this through if you're intending to install your lightstrip in cabinetry or under benchtops.

Of course, many consumers choose a device like this to backlight their TVs or PC monitors and while this is an easy strip to install that way, it wouldn't be my first choice for TV backlighting as there's no way to sync it with the images on screen - Nanoleaf has another device for this; the 4D Screen Mirror camera. For Mac or PC it's a different story; there's a desktop Nanoleaf app which will mirror your on-screen action as long as you're on the same Wi-Fi network.

At just NZ$139.99 (if not on special), this probably makes the Multicolour HD Lightstrip the most cost-effective way to add this kind of immersive lighting to your Mac or PC.

And because it's Matter-enabled, the Multicolour HD Lightstrip can be controlled via pretty much every smart assistant going, including Apple Home, Google Home, Alexa and SmartThings.

In fact, during my testing I've got myself into a bit of a mess a few times because there are just so many ways to control this device - for example, if you're controlling it through Matter via an Apple HomePod, it seems to get a bit confused if you suddenly try to access it from the desktop Nanoleaf app over Wi-Fi. And who could blame it for getting a bit confused? I'm thinking this will really only be an issue for nerds like me who are trying to test it out in every possible situation - not for a more "typical" owner who probably only has one specific use in mind.

This is easily the most versatile and customisable way to achieve an ambient lighting solution in your home or workplace, at a very reasonable price. Its ultra-compatibility means it can fit in with other smart routines and schedules, responding to different cues like time of day, who's home and what movement, sounds or temperatures other smart devices are detecting.

And best of all, because every single LED is it's own programmable zone, there's an infinite list of patterns, rhythms and colour combinations for you to choose from. Frankly, it's my favourite Nanoleaf product yet.



Click here for more information and pricing on the Nanoleaf Essentials Matter Smart Multicolour HD Lightstrip.


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