May 21, 2014

Let there be Light!

This week we took HUE out of the package and it’s every bit as addictive as I thought it would be.

I can not emphasize how happy I am to have the spectrum of white light available. I know most people who invest in HUE are going to want to create color, but having control over how warm/cool my “white” light is feels huge. I find I soft cream colors relaxing in the evening, and blue white energies me during the day.

I actually don’t think we’d explore the spectrum of light as much if not for Nicki. She is fascinated with Hue. I showed it to her yesterday before bed and it was the first thing she asked for in the morning, before breakfast. We’re taking it as an opportunity to learn colors (e.g. “What color is this?” “What color do you want next?”).

Hue Lightstrip on our mantel giving a nice blue back lighting. Alas, I’m going to need to find a new spot for the light, it’s about 18 inches longer than our mantel.

Hue works by varying the amount of light output from Red, Green and Blue LEDS. That means virtually any bright color is at your finger tips, but there are some colors you cannot generate: primarily black – which is created from the absence of light. You can make very bright very vibrant colors but you also can’t make low saturation dark colors (crimson, navy, royal purple, etc).

A close up the red, green and blue LEDs.

The lack of dark colors isn’t particularly limiting in my opinion, though I did see some reviews that complained about it. If, for example, I wanted to set the lights to Steelers colors for game day, I’d use a bright golden yellow as my primary color with red and blue accents. That is, if/when I have more than two light bulbs.

Another drawback I noticed is that if you create a very dim white light (at least with the strip) you get some slight color ghosting. That’s because the red, green and blue LEDs aren’t right on top of each other. When the light is dim, the individual color lights aren’t dispersing as far. That means on the side of the strip with the green LED you might see a faint amount of green light bordering the white light where the red and blue lights aren’t reaching.

My biggest complaint, however, is the app. It’s not ideally laid out, takes too long to load, and is a little on the slow side. When you want to turn the lights off, you need to open up the app again which feels like a surprisingly long time when compared to flipping a switch. One of the first things I do when I start playing with the SDK is to create a simple, light weight off button.

Lastly, there’s the hefty price tag that comes with HUE. Each light bulb can run $60 to $80! I do plan on getting more HUE lights, but probably not until we purchase our next home. I’m to afraid of leaving a HUE light in one of the fixtures here when we move out!

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  1. […] already infatuated with HUE. And probably more important, she’s experienced with HUE. She’s used to requesting […]

  2. […] 3255, or 16.6 million colors can be represented. This color model works well for computers (and hue!) because displaying a color is a simple matter of displaying red, green and blue light in the […]

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