I have searched the internet for technical information regarding the Hue Lightstrip Plus and have found very little so I figured I would create a thread to collect what I find in order to help others searching for the same information required to maximize and customize their Hue Lightstrip Plus based projects.
Please consider this thread a work in progress. Although I will try to keep a logical organization of the information provided, I cannot guarantee it so please excuse the possible hodge podge. I will be glad to integrate any pertinent information others want to contribute.
Declared output: 1600 lumen at 4200K (20.5W)
Even though the lightstrip is extendable up to 10 m, and each meter long extension supposedly outputs 800 lumen, the reality is that the total lumen output is limited to 1600 for a single lightstrip. The power supply provided is just powerful enough to power the provided 2 m of LEDs so extending it further will not result in increased light output. I have yet to find out how this is achieved, whether current is limited in the control unit or it is just an effect of the load on the relatively small traces that with length might start too high of a resistance for the current required.
To reduce the effects of possible voltage drops due to increasing resistance as the strip gets longer, I would recommend a star configuration (control unit to individual lengths of lightstrip) rather than series (lightstrips daisy-chained together sequentially).
Each lightstrip is made of a number of smaller segments. Each segment is about 33 cm / 12.9 in long and the schematics are obviously the same for each segment. On the back of the lightstrip each connection point is connected straight through to the other end. The largest trace is VCC, then C and F, and the smallest are R, G and B.
Included Power Supply Specifications
Input: 100-240Vac 50-60Hz 600mA 24W
Output (Constant Voltage): 24Vdc 20W
Center pin is the positive pin.
Lightstrip Plus segment Schematics
Please excuse my poor ability in creating schematics… but I think this should be easy enough to interpret even though I may have made mistakes in my choice of representation.
R1, R5 = 78.7 Ohm, ? W
R2 = 294 Ohm, ? W
R3 = 330 Ohm, ? W
R4 = 232 Ohm, ? W
D1 = I believe it is a diode but I am not sure what type
LED1-6 = Light yellow LEDs
LED 7-12 = RGB LED (Blue)
LED 13-18 = RGB LED (Green)
LED 19-24 = RGB LED (Red)
LED 25-30 = Dark yellow LEDs
The pin marked C is for powering the light yellow LEDs that generate the cold white.
The pin marked F is for powering the darker yellow LEDs that generate the warm white.
The pins marked R, G, and B are for powering the individual LED junctions inside the RGB LED. The pin closest to the golden dot next to the RGB LED is the Blue LED cathode. The middle pin is the Red LED cathode and the bottom pin is the Green LED cathode. The pins on the opposite side are the respective anodes.
Generic image I found online of a similar RGB LED:
Cable to connect multiple segments together
I have seen many people stating they used regular ethernet cable to connect separate segments together. Although it surely works, I believe that not to be the best solution. I found a better cable that is more flexible, much smaller, has the right number of conductors, has a larger gauge (less voltage drop over distance, more current,etc) and was relatively easy to purchase online (eBay). The cable I used in my kitchen install was BELDEN 5504UE
I had absolutely no issues soldering it to the lightstrips and it was super easy to work with given its great flexibility and reduced outer diameter compared to ethernet cable. I also prefer the fact that it is stranded cable rather than solid.
Given the Hue Lightstrip Plus is actually 5ch (R, G, B, C, F), I am having a hard time finding an amplifier that might work. It may be possible to combine two 3 channel amplifiers, one for RGB and one for the two whites but I am not sure as I have not tried yet. The goal of using amplifiers is to get around the limited power of the supplied power supply and surely the limited ability to handle current of the control unit. I have not found specifications of the power components handling the current required by the LEDs (all I can make out is “WK9 58”) but given the size and limited heat dissipation I doubt they even get to 1A.
Alternative Control Units
This seems to be the best candidate…
It is compatible with the HUE ecosystem, handles much more current and is cheaper… but it only handles one of the whites…