I’ve wanted to add some bias lights to my monitor for a while. I always use my computer at night (especially now that it’s winter) and I’ve heard that bias lights really help with eye strain and can improve the perceived contrast of your screen. Everyone is using cheap LED strips, I wanted to kick it up a notch and use a smart LED strip that can be controlled with my google home and my phone.
I wrote a review and impression of the LED strip lights you can check out if you’re interested in knowing more. If you want to buy the lights you can get them on Amazon.ca or at Bestbuy. The ones that come from Bestbuy are a better deal though because you get 3 meters instead of 2 from Amazon.
Here’s what it looked like before I added the bias light. Not bad, but it could definitely be better. For the curious my monitor is the LG34UM65.
Ok time to disassemble my desk and get ready to install. I’ve got my monitor mounted on a VESA arm, so that’s what the weird gray thing is on the back of the monitor.
I gave the whole screen a good clean. The LED strips come with a 3M double sided tape pre-applied for application, but this is shiny black plastic so I wanted to be sure it would grip as well as possible.
I started in the middle close to the bottom to minimize the amount of cable I’d have left dangling. Peel and stick at this point. Pretty easy. I’d suggest doing a dry run first though to figure out your pattern.
It was at this point I realized that I may have bought too much. The strip lights come in 1 meter sections. I probably could’ve got away with just using 2 meters, but I decided I’d coil the extra meter around the middle to add some additional brightness.
Unlike cheaper strip lights you can’t just cut these lights where ever you want. Instead each piece has a female and male end. So you’re stuck working in 1M increments.
Here’s the final pattern. The pattern the lights throw is pretty uniform so I’m happy. It’s too bad the LED strips aren’t black, but what are you going to do?
It’s hard to see in the photos but these LED strips are actually coated in a thick gel. I assume that protects the LED lights and helps diffuse the light, but it also makes it hard to do 90 degree corners. This was the solution I came up with and seems to work pretty well. Not the best looking, but you really don’t see it when the monitor is in its place.
I’m not super into making my room look like a night club so I mostly stick to hues of white, but…
There are so many different colours you can make these lights. You can adjust both the color and the saturation of lights. It’s near infinite adjustability. This is the smart phone app, but I usually just use my google home to control these lights. I was surprised at how granular you can get with your voice commands. I was even describing colours and the google assistant was getting them. “Ok Google, make the bias lights warm white”
Like I said you can get right up on the monitor without seeing the lights.
Just a single white cord comes off of the light and goes to the power brick. Again, I wish it was black, but you can’t win them all.
Ok the desk is reassembled, time to test out some colors. They go red!
They go green!
They even go blue!
I think I’ll just stick to warm white though. Keep it nice and simple.
This is a super quick project anyone can do. Even if it weren’t for the reduced eyestrain and better contrast I’d still suggest people do this if they need a way to add light to a room without adding much clutter. Plus I just love having gizmos I can control with my voice.
Leave any questions in the comments. Oh and comments too, you can leave those as well.