Nanoleaf Lines Review: Add personality to any room with these interactive lights | CNN

Nanoleaf made a name for itself with vibrant and interactive lighting products. Basic large lighted panels that completely cover your wall, no matter where they are mounted. Nanoleaf’s latest – Lines – takes a new, subdued approach … at least with the design.

We’ve had Nanoleaf Lines mounted on our wall for a few weeks now, and used them as a means of adding some fun to the room or as a convenient way to provide lighting for Zoom calls. Out of all the Nanoleaf products we’ve tested so far (that is, all of them), Lines is by far our favorite. Let’s explain.

Personal and customizable lighting

If you are in the market for interactive lighting, Nanoleaf Lines is a worthy option. They add a little personality and ambiance to a room.

Who, what and how

Who is this for: Nanoleaf Lines is for those who want to add personality and lighting to a room. Lines are not like traditional bulbs, but rather mountable moldings that can be placed anywhere and expanded. It is for someone who wants to make a centerpiece in the space.

What you need to know: Deciding where and what design to use when installing Lines is the place where you will spend most of your time during setup. For $ 199.99 you get 9 individual lines in one set, along with a power supply and everything you need to assemble and connect the lines to each other. Nine Lines cover a lot of ground and should be enough for most, but if you want more, you can buy three extra Lines for $ 69.99.

How it compares: Nanoleaf Lines competes with the company’s own line of products – including canvas, molds and light panels – all of which work across multiple smart home platforms and automation solutions. Whichever look you choose, you pay at least $ 199 and they are really in a category of their own. Philips Hue does not offer any kind of light panels, but instead has light strips that can be mounted on your wall, under a desk or even beyond a TV and range in price from $ 99.99 to $ 279.99. LIFX used to offer panels, but no longer sells them directly. Instead, you’ll find RGB bulbs, strips, and even these really cool $ 149 Beam bars that could mimic Line’s looks.

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Nanoleaf lines

Nanoleaf sent us a Lines starter kit and a Lines expansion pack. Included with the starter kit are nine lines, all connection and mounting equipment, along with a power supply. The expansion pack includes three extra lines, bringing the total number of lines we had to install to 12. This entire setup would cost just under $ 270.

Each box contains a small book that shows you different layouts and ideas for mounting your Lines. We tried to get some inspiration from the book, but after installing a few lines, we ended up freestyle it.

Our favorite part about the design of Lines is that even when they are not turned on, they still look interesting and are not a piece of white plastic on your wall. They are minimal and distracting. The light from each line comes from the bottom of each section, with the left half and right half able to show its own color. And because the lines are mounted about an inch above your wall, the light is actually reflected from your wall. It’s pretty slippery.

The assembly process is similar to previous Nanoleaf products. Each mounting bracket has an adhesive strip on the back of it. After cleaning your wall, peel off the protective layer of the strip and press the hexagonal bracket against the wall. In the past, we have experienced ripped sheetrock when we tried to remove panels because of the command strips that hold Nanoleaf products in place. We have not experienced this with Lines, but it is something you need to keep in mind if you plan to move around your lighting setup.

Jason Cipriani / CNN

Nanoleaf lines

There is a small adapter that connects the Lines strip itself to the bracket, while also providing power to the lights. The hexagonal shape is more than just decorative – you can angle each light away from the bracket, giving you six options in total for each mounting point.

In total, it took us about 30 minutes to assemble all of our Lines. It would have taken less time if we were not indecisive about the overall design – but we are happy with how it turned out. You can always change the design along the way, but you will need new adhesive strips and be really careful when removing the current ones so you do not tear your wall to pieces.

Jason Cipriani / CNN

Nanoleaf lines

Before you can fully manage Lines, you need to install the mobile app and add the device to your favorite smarthome platform – Amazon’s Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple HomeKit.

What makes Lines fun to use is the wide range of options. The Nanoleaf app itself has hundreds and hundreds of lighting themes that you can instantly watch on Lines, and if you like what it looks like, you can download it and save it on your device.

For example, you can search the Nanoleaf app for your favorite sports team, and odds are you will find a color combination that someone else has already created and uploaded to the app. Our favorite hockey team, the Colorado Avalanche, has such a scene.

Nanoleaf Lines can also respond to the sound in your room – using the built-in Music Sync feature, these lights will change colors and flash to the beat or rhythm of the song. There are countless Rhythm scenes to choose from in the app, with designs ranging from sunset glows to vibrant pop beats, there is a choice of bright colors that flicker on and off as the music rises and falls.

If you want to get creative, you can use the app’s built-in creation tool to do it yourself. This is the one area we wish the app was easier to use. By creating a basic design, you can choose a single color for use on the lights. Or you can choose a scene that allows you to create a paint or dynamic scene. A paint scene lets you choose which lights should have which color, while a dynamic scene is one where the colors move across the bars and they flash and light up.

Jason Cipriani / CNN

Nanoleaf Lines can be controlled via a companion app or through a smart home ecosystem.

Maybe we just weren’t patient enough when we tried to design our own scenes, but hitting one of the two lighting zones in each bar was not hit. It was mostly miss. And if you want to add some movement to your design, the options are not intuitive at all.

In other words, making your own light scene is not a simple process. It’s trial and error, and it’s boring. Fortunately, however, there are plenty of pre-built options already in the app.

Nanoleaf Lines is a great product that adds a bit of personality and ambiance to a room. By connecting them to your favorite smart-home platform, you can customize and customize how they work beyond just turning them on or off.

Our complaints about creating custom scenes are not new when it comes to Nanoleaf, but it’s something we hope the company streamlines and makes easier in the future. However, we would not get Lines just for this feature.

If you are in the market for interactive lighting, Nanoleaf Lines is a worthy option. But if you prefer something that does not take up so much space on your wall, or that can be installed in several places, then the LIFX or Philips Hue alternatives are a better option for you.

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