Smart Bulbs, are they worth it?

(Tom) #1

Hello Fellow Monzonians!

Recently got into the IFTTT world with Google Home and playing about with automation which is good fun. I’ve been toying with the idea of smart bulbs for a few weeks, I know Philips Hue are the top rated ones out there and are expensive too but I wanted to go for an option that does not require a ‘bridge’ and LIFX seems like a good candidate for that.

I guess what I’m wondering is (as these bulbs can be 20-30 quid a pop), is it worth it or just a gimmick?

Look forward to hearing from y’all!



Can only comment on Philips Hue, but I’ve not had a single issue with a bulb for 7 years.

Couldn’t tell you if it works out cheaper than replacing light bulbs, but the difference in cost won’t be massive.

The hardest thing is getting used to NOT using the light switches. Especially if you have kids or other people who come over to your place.

As soon as you switch it off at the wall, it won’t work…

I’ve “boarded up” my light switches, and added the Hue remote to the wall… Much to my wife’s annoyance! :joy:

(Rob) #3

I can only speak for Hue too. Also never had a problem or had to replace a bulb in many years.

They are often on offer at Amazon or Argos.

(Lord Chimpington.. the 3rd) #4

Not had a bad experience with Hue… (although still to replace all my lights with them), got them on a “turn on at sunset” script and a turn off at 11pm (to tell us to get moving to bed :joy: )

Eventually all the lights in my house will be hue bulbs :smiley:

(Tom) #5

@nickh when you mention difference in cost are you referring to the price of the bulb or the electricity bill?


In terms of features/functionality, do you get a lot of use out of the colours? Or set up any conditions for example, ‘if it rains turn the lights cyan’ or ‘if the timer is up on google home, blink the light bulbs’?

If I were to go for Philips Hue, what does the Bridge require, a direct line into the router via ethernet? Or can it connect via WiFi and just needs a power source?

(Lord Chimpington.. the 3rd) #6

The colour bulbs are pricey, best way to get them…buy starter packs on offer.

You can get white bulbs/white bulbs with Ambience (if you want the option of warm/cool white), it’s like £40 for a 2 pack on Amazon.

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The initial cost of the bulb, vs having to change a typical bulb X amount of times over the lifespan of 1 Hue (or other smart bulb).

The only time the colours get used are at Halloween… But hooking it up with a sound system that syncs the colours with horror scenes is absolutely amazing.

Note - The neighbours will hate you and children will forever be afraid… It’s a win win all around.

Needs to be plugged into the router.

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(Lord Chimpington.. the 3rd) #8


Should really buy the outdoor variant for this…:joy:


I have had them for several years and what I have found works best for me is other than hallways to not use them as the main room light. Reason being is in these rooms you tend to use the wall switch more often, and when they are off from the wall then you can’t control them.

In the hallway I have them paired with motion sensors, essentially when they detect motion they turn the lights on when the room is dark (the motions sensors also have light sensors). I can also vary how bright they go depending on the time of day. For example after 11pm if i walk through the hall the light will only come on to a dimmed level.

I also have them in every light in the house or where we have spot lights for mood effects. Simplest use case being they start to come on as the sun sets to a nice dimmed level throughout the house.

Hope this helps

(Adam) #10

All the bulbs in my house are Hue apart from one which is Lifx.

Never had any issues with any of them and they all work nicely with HomeKit. I do prefer the colour temperatures of the Lifx bulb.


I’ve been looking at them, but they are pricey!

I’ve got Hue in all the rooms (the coloured versions), and watching the house light up in purples and reds, syncing and flashing in time with creepy music is amazing!

For Halloween… obvs :joy:

(Lord Chimpington.. the 3rd) #12

Halloween… Christmas… Valentines… Birthdays… Dog’s Birthdays…

Pretty sure you’ll be able to become the local disco soon :wink:

(Starling Guru) #13

I have Hue Bulbs and Strips and never had an issue.

I only wish that they could do some of the things like the LiFx lights can e.g. strope through all colours and draw your own colours on strips.


You think it’s romantic when you turn the lights red and put on some jazz music…

Until you realise that from the outside, your house resembles a brothel…

(Starling Guru) #15

My little one loves the colour Red and at night she shouts to Alexa to turn the lights Red.

Rather funny when every room goes red and you see a 4yr old girl running about screaming coz it’s so funny :joy_cat:

(Lord Chimpington.. the 3rd) #16



Next Halloween you need to hook it up with a sound system, download the app and watch the magic happen.

It’s genuinely quite scary (there are some slightly less scary ones for a 4/5 year old).

(Starling Guru) #18

I’ll have a look, I want one that flashes the lights when you play thunder noises

I have tried some and they are terrible (hence free)


Oh mate, I’ve used some brilliant ones - I don’t think I paid for them, but I might have dropped a couple of quid on it.

The witches cackling and the thunder cracking in time with the lights flashing is amazing!


You can get switches for them. They also retain their settings now, so if you do lose the power they’ll keep the settings they had before power loss.