Osram Lightify vs Phillips Hue

from looking at these two bulbs, it seems that I can make either work with a ST v2 hub without other hardware, although ST recommends that we use the Philips bridge for the Hue whereas the Lightify is directly supported with no extra hardware. Is that right?

What do you all think of one vs the other? Which has nicer colors and which is easier to work with?


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I prefer Hue attached to the hue bridge because then I have all kinds of other options with it and it is a very reliable system.

There is a current known problem with zigbee bulbs attached directly to the SmartThings hub where they may be selected as zigbee repeaters by your other zigbee devices, such as sensors, but they can get into something kind of like a buffer overflow situation where they end up dropping some messages. This makes the sensors appeared to be not reporting when they actually are.

There are a number of community members who have ended up removing these bulbs from their account because of this problem. If the bulbs are attached to the hue bridge instead, this problem will not occur because they will not be seen as potential repeaters by your other zigbee devices.

SmartThings engineering is aware of the problem and is working on finding improvements for it, but it still exists.

Note: OSRAM LIGHTIFY bulbs have a known firmware issue that can occasionally cause them to fail as ZigBee repeaters. This can potentially cause other ZigBee devices to fail to update and/or respond.


Thanks for that @JDRoberts. I was thinking I would prefer to use some bulbs without extra hardware. I realize the bridge adds some extra capability but it also adds more hardware and expense. It it really worth it?


Not much else to say but yes going Hue is worth it. If you get >8 or 10 osram or cree connected bulbs your zigbee mesh goes to the dumps real fast. I fixed all those issues by buying a Hue kit. There are tons of issues without it. Just search this forum for osram or cree or even threads I started… 10mins of search you will see that for connected bulbs its almost universally better to go with a Hue setup. I have >25 bulbs on hue, and shared to ST. Then a under 10 directly connected.

Find a hue starter kit on sale. What’s another little box thats a little smaller than the ST hub really going to hurt?

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Speaking of Osram, is it the bulbs only that are the issue? Do you know if the strips or gardenspots bring the same problems? I have a pretty stable system, I don’t want to add something to bring instability.

I have 6 strings of Gardenspot and have not seen any issues, other than 1 of them dropping or freezing up occasionally . The Osram 5/6 RGBW cans don’t seem to have any issues. The A19 white are constantly needing to be powercycled and the Iris PIR in the room with the A19s is also constantly dropping, needing to have battery popped to wake it back up. I found if I shut off the A19s at the switch, repair ZigBee mesh, then turn the A19s back on it will usually stay stable. until somebody does something to break it.

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Okay guys thanks very much. My hope was to get my GF a ST hub and a color bulb for Christmas, as she has no HA now at all. I was also going to get her a door lock. From the description of the issue it seems that if someone has no other zigbee devices it would be okay.

For now she would not, but that could change and she is not going to want to deal with that issue. Also I see that the Hue 2nd gen starter kit comes with 3 bulbs and a hub now $119.00. The Lightify bulbs are at about $40 each. I would prefer the 3rd gen bulbs but that starter kit is $199 and I don’t think the newer bulbs are worth the extra expense. I would rather spend that extra on a ST hub for her.

As for my HA setup, I currently have 100% Z-Wave. So Zigbee bulbs would probably be fine. But I’m in no hurry for colored bulbs and don’t need any more connected bulbs, so I’ll hold off or maybe get one Lightify bulb to play with.

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Hue run on ZLL , not ZHA. So they do not interfere with other HA like some others do.

With the current sales you can get both the V2 hue starter and an ST hub for less that Just a Hue starter " normally"

Just for clarity: If you attach a Hue bulb directly to the SmartThings hub it will also then run on ZHA. Any ZLL certified device is supposed to fall back to A ZHA profile when paired to a certified ZHA coordinator.

So the trick is to use compatible Zigbee bulbs with the hue bridge because then they will act as a ZLL device ( regardless of brand) and they will not be selected as repeaters by your ZHA devices. :sunglasses:

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With all I said…I have both and heck just bought more Osram things just like an hour ago.

Knowing more about your situation, if you are looking just for lighting then go Hue. I still dont want to automate a lock on a door…esp with ST and how unreliable its been in general. But for lighting for your GF, go Hue. Seriously go Hue. This is very polarizing to say but its like Apple vrs Android. Hue = Apple, ST = Android. I gave my dad an iPad and an iMac he loves them. Friends love hearing about my HA setup but I would never tell anyone to go down the road of ST at this point that arent a bit ‘hacky’ people. For a GF wanting some ‘pretty lights’ but also getting benefits like geofencing and schedules just go Hue. Now with their own motion sensors you could even get a little more automated.

if you just are dead set on an automatic lock for her, look at August.

If i were giving a GF or my dad some automated lighting, I’m giving Hue. My bed bud that is as hacky as I am, he got ST and we’ve been bouncing ideas off each other. I just got myself some more osram led strips for more cabinet lighting because its on sale. I wanted to switch to Hue, but heck Im getting close to the Hue limit per bridge so I’m kinda rethinking some situations.

Unless you just want to be tech support for her lights…go Hue.

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Automating the locking of a door , or having a light come on if a door is unlocked is fine. It is only when you decide to trust automation to unlock the door ( without any human input ) that there are real issues. My Schlage locks are set to autolock ( I think they call it Lock N Leave) . However on their own the locks have no way to notify me if they are in fact locked. Amazing how often people don’t close the door all the way so the bolt does not fully extend. By adding lock the door to away and night modes in ST I get a notification if the lock is jammed. As soon as somebody unlocks the door I get push and text notification of who unlocked the door. Unlock the door at night and the hall lights come on and the outside lights brighten from 20% to 80%.
There are plenty of ways to automatic with a lock that do not compromise security ( too badly ) . I cringe with all of the people talking about garage doors opening or doors unlocking based on geofencing , and being happy with this happening when they are within 1/4 mile of their house. Even our ST presence sensors are only set to turn off all the lights, turn down the heat and check they doors are locked when leaving. Arriving just turns on the motion sensors for the lights. Contrary to a security system motion sensors are all disabled in away & night modes so the animals don’t turn lights on. I don’t even trust it to unlock the door if my phone connects to my WiFi.

My plan has been to get a smart lock for the entry door from the garage door to the laundry room. So its still behind a ‘door’. Sure the garage door is not the most secure door but its at least one level deep. I just dont want a door that is accessible by passerby’s to be unlocked by a screwy system. Security measures are mostly to keep opportunity crimes down. Someone that wants in my house can get in my house. I dont want to make it easy. But I do want some ease of use so when i get home then the garage door opens, unlock that laundry room door. I wouldn’t put it on my front door at all, not to mention who uses their front door in a house setting. I am also the person that has turned around halfway to work because i didnt remember locking the door. So the one door I do use, it would be nice to have notifications on lock/unlock status. I have a totally separate alarm system, but I use ST as my information into it all. I do not connect them at all.

I am a bit tinfoil hat. But given the amount of times my lights have randomly came on, or turned off, or just didn’t do what I expected… I don’t that level of questionable results in my door, not one that isnt behind another door. Thats just me, and when I give suggestions I only give what i would do myself…and try to preface that with I am a bit paranoid (but that doesnt mean Im crazy :wink: )

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Yeah that seems to be the general consensus. I dd order the Hue 2nd Gen starter kit on sale for $119.00.

She really likes my Schlage lock. I don’t have a problem with this lock at all. First, in the event of a total ST failure this lock can still be opened with the combination. If the batteries in the lock die it still can be opened with a key.

The garage door opener I am much less happy with. Once it’s triggered to open or close, it does all this annoying blinking and beeping forever before it actually gets around to opening the door. You would think we were getting ready to fire off an ICBM the way it carries on. Closing no so bad, but sitting outside int he car waiting for it to open is very annoying.

I have osram gardenspot bc it’s functional for outdoor use, but I also have Hue inside the house. heck, I have Cree, ge links and hue. I like hue better so far. I am keeping and adding more gardenspot for outside, but adding more hue inside. I feel the variety of apps and sofwarrt available for the hue makes a difference

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I started out with TCP Connected , then GE/Wink bulbs. Have 1 Cree I got just to beta test for Securifi since they could not get one delivered to Korea and too many people were asking for integration.
Over the past 6-9 months I have replaced just about every bulb in my house with Hue. Grabbed 3 kits this weekend which I think will replace every GE bulb left,and upgrade my V1 hub to V2. Which I hope will assist with my problem of Hue dimmer switches dropping off and being a royal PIA to get connected again.
4 Osram 5/6" RGBW cans in kitchen don’t give me any problems. 7 strings of Gardenspots outside work 95% of the time , but one ( not always same one) will occasionally freeze up or drop off. 3 Osram A19 ( from kit to get Osram hub for FW updates ) are constantly dropping off. Seems Osram does color & specialty lights fine, but just can’t handle a simple A19 white bulb.

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So to introduce yet another variable, how about Lifx? It seems these make nice colors and are much brighter than Hue. They are sort of hub-less. I say sort of because they are wifi so need a wifi router, and are dependant upon the Lifx cloud. Of course, ST is dependant on the ST cloud…

LIFX are fine, some community members have selected those because they are brighter. They also run much hotter, though, which means they don’t work in all fixtures. And obviously they are cloud dependent. So they are good choice for some people. And choice is good. :sunglasses::bulb:

Here is a link that compares temps across a bunch of bulbs:


So the Lifx seems to run about the same or a bit cooler than the Hue bulbs, but within 5 degrees or so. This chart says an incandescent runs at 300 deg F, so the worst of the tested LED bulbs run at about half that, and most even less.

Cloud dependant would be a bigger concern but at $45 each (and that’s cheap) these won’t be in every fixture, at least not at my house.

I bought two at BestBuy and I’ll pick them up on my way home from work. My Phillips Hue 2nd Gen starter kit arrived from Amazon today but I hesitate to open it, as I may very well return it. And a friend of mine just bought one of the Lightify bulbs. So maybe tonight there will be a light bulb comparison party at my place. Everyone is welcome; if you come, bring beer or snacks :slight_smile:

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That chart is showing that the cooler LIFX is the new GEN three which only recently came out. Many stores are still selling the Gen Two, and you can see from the same chart that that bulb ran very hot, over 10° hotter than the Phillips Gen Two And they don’t seem to have measured the Phillips GEN three at all. So it’s a bit of an apples to oranges comparison, but the LIFX Gen Two is a very hot bulb.

Fair enough, but I’m sure we can all agree that it’s much cooler than an incandescent. A few years ago I put a 100W incandescent bulb into the bathroom fan/light fixture rated for 60 watts. Sure enough the lense melted, so I replaced the lens and put the brightest LED I could find - at the time a 75w equivalent. Problem solved, and now that I think about it I think I’ll go find a brighter bulb for it.

So my point is, for the most part I see my fixtures rated at 60W. I would have to check but I would expect any of the LEDs emit less heat than that.

All that said, I like incandescents. They are all of a few bucks each and people with lesser means can afford them. It will be awhile before LEDs are even close to that price. Mandating CFLs and LED bulbs is just a tricky way of raising electric rates, and it’s a very substantial raise.