There is no doubt that the Philips Hue range was the pioneer in intelligent ambient lighting and remains the benchmark for quality . However, it has not been the only option for a long time and, therefore, we show you the best alternatives to Philips Hue if you want to make your home a different and spectacular corner.
No one can deny that the Hue range is at the top of preferences when we want to give that magical touch of light to a room, or to the whole house, creating environments according to the time of day, the room or the activity we are with.
But over time, cheaper smart environment lighting alternatives have emerged. With similar quality and even more original approaches to creating spaces and moments with light, there is plenty to choose from.
So these are our favorite bets.
- 1. Lytmi Neo, the alternative for synchronized display backlighting
- 2. Govee Immersion, the economical choice for synchronized lighting
- 3. Nanoleaf Shapes and Canvas, the most original option for providing ambient light
- 4. LED light bars, when you don’t want to complicate
- 5. Smart ceiling lamps, the choice of the most classic to give atmosphere
1. Lytmi Neo, the alternative for synchronized display backlighting
Synchronized backlighting of screens is quite a phrase, but when you see what it is capable of, you want to have one at home for your television or computer monitors.
The phrase already reveals what the thing is about and that is that it is a system that, located behind a screen, illuminates the wall behind it in a coordinated way to what is happening on the television or the monitor.
That is to say, if you are playing games, listening to music or watching a movie, the light that emanates from behind the device provides the room with an atmosphere according to what is happening. That enhances the immersion in the experience.
Without a doubt, Lytmi Neo is such an ambilight system that competes with the Philips Play HDMI Sync Box, with a better price .
Of course, it is compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant , so no hassle to set it up by voice.
Your sync box kit plus lighting can be for just over 100 euros if your screen is 65 inches or less, about half that of a Philips Hue HDMI Sync Box.
2. Govee Immersion, the economical choice for synchronized lighting
If you don’t want to give up on that immersive experience, but don’t want to spend that much, the Govee Immersion device is probably the best bet.
Its operation to synchronize the LED strips behind the screen with what happens in it is very ingenious, it uses a camera . It captures what is happening and synchronizes the color patterns with its own lights.
With 16 million colors and music and scene modes , you can also control it by voice (Alexa and Google Assistant ), so you will not have to miss the options offered by the Philips Hue range of synchronized lighting.
3. Nanoleaf Shapes and Canvas, the most original option for providing ambient light
If you want to go beyond LED strips and add a touch of ambient light that is not usually seen out there, Nanoleaf is what you should look at.
This lighting company offers lights in the shape of triangles, hexagons and squares within its Shape and Canvas ranges.
These flat lighting systems can be attached to the wall and build an original look. For example, with hexagons you can decorate a room with a beehive-shaped structure, while with squares, it can appear that there are bright canvases on the wall, instead of the usual paintings. Finally, the triangles give a lot of play to create original shapes.
Typically these series start with panel kits in whatever shape you choose , starting with 4, 5, 9 and up to 15 pieces. The pack of 9 seems the ideal to start with and is around 200 euros in price.
In the same way, Nanoleaf is innovating and you can find, for example, hexagonal lights with an additional wood effect.
It is true that there are other manufacturers that are joining the bandwagon, especially with somewhat cheaper hexagonal panels, but Nanoleaf gives more and better options.
As a curiosity, the panels react to the touch , so it is possible that fiddling and designing new shapes, with the parts of the kits (which can also be combined with each other), become your new favorite hobby.
4. LED light bars, when you don’t want to complicate
If what you want is ambient light, to your liking and without complicated installation hassles, you have LED light bars.
Simple, but very effective , the truth is that they can be placed vertically on the floor, the computer table or a piece of furniture. They are placed against the wall and thus reflect the light on the wall, flooding the room.
In addition to that, you can also leave them lying horizontally or glued in the same way to the ceiling or a shelf, depending on what best suits the corner you want to set. These lamps also offer features to coordinate the light with what you are doing, although basic.
The options that we liked are some Zuukoo Smart LEDs that are ideal to start with, since they come 2 for less than 60 euros and they bring a microphone , what for? To listen to your music, for example, and adapt the light to it if you wish.
Govee also offers a very interesting option in this regard with its Govee Flow Pro model. This also includes a camera, as in the Immersion model we have seen, to take a look at your screen and coordinate the color scheme of the LED bars.
5. Smart ceiling lamps, the choice of the most classic to give atmosphere
If you are one of those who does not want too much originality or that a room looks like the command bridge of the Enterprise , you do not have to give up the ambient light either.
There are options of ceiling lamps that can also emit the light in the color you want and this is where personal taste in terms of design comes in.
For those who do not want to complicate, the recommendation is the typical lamp with the shape of a circular or rectangular ceiling. From 15W to 36W you have everything, depending on the power you need in the room and the number of lamps you want to put.
The vast majority are compatible with Alexa and Google Home and have prices ranging from 30 euros to more than 80 if you want them to include a bluetooth speaker and also build sound environments.
If you are more of a designer, look for the Linby brand and its Alwine and Edica models. Of course, fashion is paid and we are talking about options that are between 160 and 200 euros to start.
Finally, there are also table lamps , which to work in a relaxed environment, and according to the moment, can be ideal and economical. Xiaomi is always a reliable brand at a great price and its LED Desk Lamp , for around 40 euros, is hard to beat.
As you can see, options for all tastes are not lacking, so if you want to go beyond Philips Hue, and give that special touch to your room or your whole house, these are our recommendations.