The Philips Hue range of lighting products has a new set designed especially for monitors. Whether you are on PC or Mac, playing Fortnite or Tetris, they look amazing.
The Philips Hue Play Gradient light strips for monitors have been teased for some time and after a recent partnership with Corsair, they have gone all in to create a new set of lights for gamers. They come in three variations that include a single monitor version with two sizes to choose from including the 24″-27″ version. Then there are the larger 32″-34″ for bigger screens. The triple-monitor setup includes three 24″-27″ light strips. There is no double monitor version as gamers either use one or three monitors to avoid a blind spot in the middle.
When I first started unboxing, I was worried that my computer and its meager graphics card wouldn’t be able to handle them, then I worried about sticking them on wrong and making a mess of it on camera, then I was worried about the different software needed to run them. Thankfully, that worry was completely unnecessary.
What’s In The Box?
You can instantly feel the quality of the product when you get it out. You get a 905mm light strip, five stick-on connectors, a power brick, and a Hue bridge. The 45-degree lights and flat backs ensure the light is directed up and out instead of straight on the back wall. The fixings are easy to secure to most monitors including my 27″ curved Samsung. The overall design is elegant and feels both flexible and durable.
How to Setup The Light Strips?
Positioning the lights is simple. By using the marked small triangle in the centre of the tubing as a guide, you can add the corner brackets first before sticking the three straight brackets. Once the two sides are level, the 3M tape sticks them in place quickly and easily. If you make a mistake, there is still plenty of stick left on to move them around. Once you are happy with the position, you add the power brick to the back and plug it in.
The Hue Bridge is a digital hub that connects the Philips range of products. Each smart light connects to the Hue Bridge and the bridge connects to your router. As each light sees the bridge, a simple tap of the button on top confirms control and you are ready to connect.
What is the Light Like?
The normal light is impressive from the outset, giving between 700-800 lumens of light in a single colour. However, the 16 individual LEDs can be used to mirror what is shown on screen as long as you have the Sync app installed. Without the Sync App, you can only have a single light.
Why So Many Apps?
The recently updated Philips Hue app for your mobile phones connects seamlessly with the Philips Bridge and gives you control of individual lights, groups of lights, and entire rooms. Here you can create automation around certain times or based on commands from your smart assistant.
For the complete gaming experience, you will need the Hue Sync App for PC & Mac. Installation is fast and simple and looks very similar to the phone app. Once connected the lights work amazingly. From the burnt orange of Firewatch to the cool blues of Fez, the colours look amazing and added to the overall gaming experience. Watching the colours move in sync with Hello Neighbor was mesmerizing and really completed my gaming setup.
During my initial setup, I couldn’t get it working with Netflix, but this was soon fixed by disabling the hardware acceleration on Chrome.
In summary, the Philips Hue Play Gradient Light strips for Monitors enhanced my gaming experience while making my gaming setup look amazing. The high-quality finish and easy installation (both physically and digitally) are fantastic. The lights can be used as standalone backlights or used for video games, movies, and even music. Whether you are using a 24″, or three 27” inch or playing on a 60” beast, the Philips Hue light strip range has something for everyone. The need for the Hue Bridge and two different apps to run them are a little disappointing but they are easy enough to set up. I had seen gaming setups that used these lights in the past and were skeptical about the impact they would have on the gaming experience but I was pleasantly surprised and how immersive they were and now always play games with them on.