RGBW smart bulbs in Europe (without bridge)


#1

Hello everyone,

I am waiting for my SmartThings hub to be delivered, and I’m looking for some smart devices. Specifically I would like to start off with a dimmable RGBW smart bulb for the European market. I would prefer it to operate over ZigBee or Z-Wave.

The bulbs mentioned in this post seem to only exist in the US:

I can’t seem to find out how to know whether a bulb needs a bridge such as the Philips Hue Bridge in order to function with SmartThings. I should mention that I am a total noob to home automation.

What I would like to be able to do is change colors/dim it using my Google Home, as well as display events with colors.

Two bulbs that seem to fulfill my requirements are Osram, Aeotec and Zipato (?) Are there any other? What about Innr?

Honestly I’m a little reluctant to spend 45-50 EUR on a bulb, what life expectancy do these bulbs have?

Thanks to everyone in advance, I hope you can help me get started with my home automation.


#2

Cree and GE not available in Europe, but most of the other brands are. :sunglasses:

Sylvania/Osram, Hue, IKEA Tradfri, LIFX, Zipato, and Aeotec are all available in the UK.

You can use Hue or the Tradfri with the hue bridge. It does cost a little more to go that route, but if you use zigbee bulbs which connect directly to the SmartThings hub, including hue bulbs connected without the bridge, it can cause problems with messages from your other devices.

INNR bulbs when attached to the hue bridge should work with SmartThings, but be aware that they will cycle through multiple colours when changing from one to another, and this can be annoying. ( see the Amazon reviews for more discussion.)

I personally use the Hue white bulbs with the hue bridge for most places, and have been very happy with them. You don’t get colour changing, though. At a typical £15, these are very competitively priced. One bridge can support up to 40 devices, so the extra cost for that depends on how many bulbs you’re going to have.

Then I personally use Hue RGBW strips in a few places where I want colour, but different things work for different people.

Options without a bridge

LIFX are a Wi-Fi bulb and don’t have the same issue. Their “mini” size bulb costs less, although it’s also not as bright.

The Z wave bulbs like Aeotec also don’t have the same issue, so that’s another good option which will not require a bridge device.

So you have a number of possibilities, although they are all fairly expensive.


#3

Thank you for the reply. At this point I have only planned to buy one smart bulb, in the future I might get another one or two. For the rest of the lights I will be using smart switches. This is the main reason why I don’t want ot spend on yet another device. Also it feels quite silly to have a Google Home for voice control, SmartThings for remote access etc. a Hue Bridge/TRÅDFRI Gateway for communication just to control a single bulb (!).

I’d rather not use Wi-Fi, so the only option seems to be Aeotec. By the way how severe is the issue with messages from other devices? Seems many people went that path?


#4

It’s one of those things where one person might never have an issue and another person might find themselves going crazy because they think there’s a problem with their sensor when it’s actually a problem with the bulb losing the sensor’s messages. There are some workarounds. See the following FAQ,


#5

So I’m leaning towards the Zipato Z-Wave RGBW bulb, but it seems some say it works flawlessly while others say it doesn’t correctly report statuses etc.


Is there some way to know whether it will work? Would prefer not to buy it and then find out that I can use it as a paperweight


(Dani) #6

They are ok. The Z-Wave version required a refresh instruction line into DeviceHandler. But meanwhile maybe the DH or the firmware of the bulb was updated and it’s posibile that they will work from the box. If you can not succed I will give you my DH that works.


#7

Thanks for the reply. Is there no “official” device handler that works?

Why are the bulbs only OK? Can you recommend any other European bulb that will work without a hub? Otherwise I think I’ll go ahead and order the Zipato one for testing.


(Robert Vandervoort) #8

I have the Aaron labs RGBW and the Zipato RGBW bulbs. I like the Aeon one better myself. It has richer color. For instance the red is more pink on the Zipato than the Aeon. On the hub v1 both were very laggy in their instructions, changing colors slow and unreliable turning on and off, etc. since I moved to the v2 SmartThings hub, everything happens immediately. I am using the generic handler from SmartThings. I felt no need to write a custom handler. These I’m talkjng about are both the ZWave models.


#9

Are you talking about the gen 5 model here?

Pretty bad reviews on Amazon, how’s the white light for you?

An Amazon review for the Zipato light says it can’t be used when the SmartThings hub is offline, is this true?


(Robert Vandervoort) #10

Sorry I meant Aeon labs / Aeotec. I have the 5 not the 6. I didn’t even realize the 6 was out yet. As to their operation offline I am not sure. Generally device handlers are run either in the cloud or on the hub. I think most of the generic handlers run direct on the hub. They add more when they do firmware updates. They just added support for their multisensor 6 code (not my preferred version as I wrote my own but prefer @erocm1231 device handler since it supports latest firmware and has better functionality. I just use the generic device handlers for my bulbs and they work great. I have no experience with the version 6 bulb.


#11

It it seems Gen 6 is not yet released, should come later this year. Thanks for the info.


(Dani) #12

They are the most cheap RGB Z-Wave. But all Z-Wave RGB bulbs are not cheap. But the colors are great and also the brightens intensity.

If you want the far most cheap RGB illumination go with Ikea Tradfri RGB on ZigBee. They can be easy integrated into SmartThings. And they came also with wall switch.


#13

I thought the IKEA Trådfri couldn’t be integrated without a gateway, or at least not easily. They are cheap, but how is the quality compared to other bulbs? I guess when you say they are the cheapest, you also mean they aren’t that great.


(Robert Vandervoort) #14

I just got my engineering sample of the Aeon LED Bulb 6: Multi-White ZWA001-A / ZWA001-C
. Writing the handler for it now. stay tuned for my handler and review.


#15

Great, looking forward to hearing your opinion on them. Personally I went for the IKEA Trådfri RGBW bulb (without gateway), it’s alright, some colors are a bit off but it comes with a remote and at a good price.


(Robert Vandervoort) #16

Interesting. I didn’t know they were offering smart lighting products. Haven’t been in a while, but am a big fan.


(Roy) #17

My two-penneth (for what its worth)

I have a real mixed bag here, personally going for the cheapest.
INNR E27 & B22, not colour (5 white of apart from one) work very well.
Osram E14 tunable whites (13 of them), again all work very well.
Trådfri GU 10’s (10 of, 3 working as smart - work in progress but need to replace my fittings)
And of course Hue.

All are connected to the Hue Bridge now, but at one time I have had some connected to ST but none of them really didn’t played very well with other devices. Mostly because my other half would hit the switch (Grrrr). But never found them to be completely stable.

Trådfri - Connected to ST, interfered with my Xiaomi devices, so I took them off. Now have 3 working flawlessly through Hue

Osram - Will connect to ST, but then dropped offline, and having to power cycle the hub to get them back was a pain, ever since I have had them on Hue, no issue.

INNR - Wont connect to st, so they went straight on the Hue bridge, never have any issues with them.

Aeotec Gen 5, - Zwave so the only way was ST. I found these sucked big time and now sit on a shelf, would work for a while then play dead. That was an expensive mistake.

So maybe consider the Hue bridge at least? Its cheap and can lead to cheaper bulbs and you get the local processing too :slight_smile:


#18

Don’t I get local processing with my ST? Read somewhere that this was fixed in a recent update.

I have been thinking of getting the Hue bridge, but at this stage I only have one bulb so it doesn’t really make sense to add a gateway which is more expensive than the bulb. If/when I start adding more bulbs I will think about it!


(Roy) #19

You can get local use, but also depends on what your trigger for them is going to be.


(Darren) #20

I don’t have any hue bulbs but have a large number of the IKEA gu10s smart bulbs.

Am I right in understanding if I got a hue bridge these bulbs would connect and i would also get local processing?

Thanks

Update I just looked at my devices and my Ikea TRÅDFRI lights are down as local processing already.