The Big Cover-Up

Publish Date
Thu, 2 Jun 2022, 1:23pm

The Big Cover-Up

Publish Date
Thu, 2 Jun 2022, 1:23pm

Lately I've become a bit obsessed with smart lighting.

It's not so much a question of why you need Wi-Fi connected lights but more about asking, why not?

Why not add a little colour?

Why not accentuate your screens and spaces?

Why not create your own electric wall art?

Practical? Essential? Perhaps not. Does it make your life better?

Well, that's a tricky one.

We all like looking at pretty lights, right?

But what if the lights themselves aren't that pretty?

Now you can mod them.

If you've been put off using Nanoleaf's latest smart lighting solution, simply called Lines, just because they're a bit too white - you now have the option of turning them pink or black with a box of Skins.

As a brief reminder, Lines are 28cm long lighting bars, similar to those some people use to create accent lighting behind TV's and computer monitors.

The main difference is you can mount them directly onto the wall (or ceiling) using Nanoleaf's unique, hexagonal Mounting Connectors, in whatever creative formation you desire.

Unlike Nanoleaf's other Shapes - geometric tiles that fit together in a similar way and light up in the colours and patterns you choose - Lines stay white while they project coloured light onto the wall beneath them instead.

This makes them a perfect solution to provide a bit of extra atmos behind your computer monitor. Using the Nanoleaf desktop app, lines can mirror the the colours displayed on-screen, taking gaming to a much more interactive level. It gives the impression your game has spilled out of your computer onto the wall in front of you.

The trouble is, bunging a bunch of white plastic strips on the wall might not be the most aesthetically rewarding idea - just to get a few pretty lights happening behind your screen.

That's where Skins comes in. For just NZ$43.59 (perhaps the weirdest price ever) you get a box of nine Skins and nine Mounting Caps, in either Matte Black or Matte Pink. The Skins are literally just thin covers that simply clip on over the top of your Lines. Meanwhile, the Mounting Caps replace your existing white ones, holding your Lines in place at each junction point.

They're dead easy to attach - and I mean idiot-proof. It's even possible to apply them to an existing Lines installation without having to take it down off the wall. That'll be a relief if you've already been using lines for something like a retail display or maybe as programmable party lighting running along the underside of a bar or kitchen benchtop. Certainly adding the black skins in particular will help keep the source of these magic lights seem even more invisible.

Obviously Skins don't alter the appearance of the Mounting Connectors behind the lines but you don't really notice them, especially if your wall is white anyway.

What is more noticeable is the Controller - this is the primary Mounting Connector that not only supplies power to all the Lines via its generously long cable but also features quite the selection of buttons if you prefer to operate your Lines manually rather than remotely via the app or a linked voice assistant.

The issue here is that Controller hexagon is white and you don't get a coloured replacement in your box of Skins. I'm not sure how Nanoleaf could have got around this, short of selling complete sets of different coloured Lines. For me, it's not really a biggie as I'm currently using my lines as accent lights for my fish tank and I can hide the Controller out of sight.

It certainly shouldn't be a deal-breaker for most people anyway.

Previously, it wouldn't have occurred to me to frame my aquarium in Lines but because it has a black lid and base, the Skins help them blend in and become part of the overall effect.

Personally, I don't have a lot of pink stuff I'd like to show off with a bit of programmable smart lighting but I'm sure plenty of you out there do.

In fact, it doesn't take much imagination to come up with all kinds of scenarios where different coloured Lines could really enhance things. The computer monitor I'm staring at right now has black bezels and sits on a black stand, so if I were to utilise Nanoleaf Screen Mirroring, it'd make sense to use black skins.

Behind the TV, under shelves, accenting kitchen cabinets - basic black might be a lot more inconspicuous. Conversely, if you want that store-front display or bedroom wall collage to really stand out, nothing's more shocking than pink.

You see? The more use cases I put forward, the more you realise Nanoleaf Lines might be actually enhance your life - not just pretty lights after all. And now with the addition of Skins, that argument carries even more weight.




Click here for more information and pricing on Nanoleaf Lines Skins.