Philips Hue Lighting Setup 08/2016
As a fan of the smart Philips Hue lighting system, I'm interested in how other people implement smart lights into their apartments or houses. In the following piece, I want to give an insight into how and why I've set up my Philips Hue lights the way I did.
I started in 2013 with a StarterKit containing the Bridge 1.0 and two Hue Bloom lights. Some years and several other StarterKits, single Hue lights and devices later, my setup today contains
9 x Hue White & Color bulbs (805 lm)
4 x Hue White Ambiance bulbs (805 lm)
2 x Lightstrip+ (1600 lm)
1 x Lightstrip+ Extension (1m)
1 x Lightstrip (120 lm)
1 x Hue Go
3 x Hue Dimmer Taps
1 x Hue Tap
1 x Hue Bridge 2.0 (w/ HomeKit)
I always enjoy buying new Hue lights/devices and I'm constantly on the look out for perfect Hue compatible lamps. I use a basic floor plan consisting of a table and a graphic that I always keep up to date. I once created it inside a Numbers file and I really like it, because it helps me to track where which light is used, how much I already spent on them, how I might rearrange them and where there’s room for potential new lights.
Now since every lamp consists of a bulb and the actual lamp (except the LightStrips), I also track every lamp I use or plan on buying. I know the whole “lighting map” thing is a bit of an overkill since I have a rather small setup/apartment, I guess I just love tracking (my) stuff.
The first contact with Hue peripherals in my apartment starts right in the entry area. There is a basic ceiling lamp and a spotlight-lamp I mounted on a shoe cabinet. Both equipped with Hue White Ambiance bulbs. A Hue Dimmer Tap mounted right next to the entrance gives quick control over both lights. It’s a pretty small room that is usually just a passageway to get in and out of the apartment, there is not much to light up here, so I kept things basic.
Next up: the living room. The largest room of the apartment and the one where my girlfriend and I spend most of our time. That’s why most Philips Hue lighting products are set up in this room.
I'm not a lighting- nor an interior-expert by any means. My basic idea that I try to apply is to have sources of light in every corner of the room and additionally highlight specific areas where activities and daily life happen. That would be the living rooms TV/couch area and the dinner table that we use for eating and sometimes working.
So I have a Hue White & Color bulb in a standing lamp in the corner next to the couch. It’s a flexible lamp whose light I can point in different directions and work with the distance to the wall, but most of the time it’s pointed up into the corner. The white walls reflect it's light into the room and especially over the couch area, which is nice when you have a talk with guests for example and want to light up this particular spot.
Entering the living room, on the left hand side, I placed my TV lowboard. Since I love playing with lights around the TV display, I went for two Hue White & Color bulbs on each side of the TV. I added a Lightstrip+ to the back of the TV itself. Since the TV is quite large (65"), I extended the Lightstrip+ with a 1m Extension Kit to cover both sides and the top edge. This setup offers me full freedom to play around with colors for different use cases like watching movies or gaming, but it also plays an important role in lighting up the room in general since the lowboard-setup alone is capable of emitting roughly 4.000 lumen in total.
The light above the dining table is set up with another Hue White & Color. We use our dining table for different purposes like eating and working, the different temperatures of white are super nice to adjust the light according to the activity happening on the table.
Next to the dinging table I placed another lamp equipped with a Hue White & Color on the window board. I had a Hue Bloom here before but to be honest, got annoyed that it's not capable of the light receipts, which forced me to always set the Bloom separately. So I switched it for a lamp that I equipped with a Hue White & Color.
The seventh and last light in the living room is offered by a floor lamp on the other side of the couch containing a Hue White & Color bulb. Since the lamp it sits in offers a large surface area, it can be used as a real light source if needed, but works as an indirect accent light in most scenarios. It sits below a little side table that hosts home peripherals including the Hue Bridge 2.0.
Leaving the living room, we enter the apartments small hallway; and by small, I mean tiny. It only has a wall mounted lamp with a Hue White Ambiance in it. It’s rarely used so I decided to keep it affordable but still making the lamp smart and controllable through the app.
In the Kitchen another ceiling lamp comes in place. Because different colors of light are - in my opinion - not necessary in the kitchen, I went for another Hue White Ambiance here. That view may differ for people with large kitchens where a lot of time is spend. Right next to the entrance I attached a Hue Dimmer Tap to allow for quick control over the ceiling lamp. Dimming it is also handy for late night trips to the fridge, but most of the time it runs on 80% brightness. I definitely need more Hues in the kitchen, especially a light source for the worktop (below the cupboards).
In the bathroom, I installed a Hue White & Color in the ceiling lamp and attached the third Hue Dimmer Tap to the wall next to the door. Dimming plays a bigger role in the bathroom, since it’s comfortable to start with about 15% brightness in the morning. I set a “rising” timer that starts monday - friday at my wake up time with 10% and raises brightness to 80% over a time frame of 5 minutes. When you use the bathroom in the morning you start with an eye friendly brightness that rises constantly so your eyes can adjust to it, provided that I get up directly after my alarm, what I usually do. I have a Hue White & Color set up here, because I recently got two of them as a gift. I probably would've went for a Hue White Ambiance otherwise, even though I somehow began to enjoy showering in blue light sometimes.
Last but not least, my bedroom, where Hue light comes from a desk lamp with a Hue White & Color and a Lightstrip+ attached to the back of the table top. Another Lightstrip on the back of the bedroom-TV and a standing lamp with a Hue White & Color covering the opposite site of the room.
The Hue Go is used in different rooms or on the balcony, since it's intended to be carried around. It can be found on the living room couch table most of the time and it's candle light simulating mode adds a nice atmosphere.
See below for some pictures with my Hues actually running in a couple different scenes. I hope to spark some inspiration for you.
So that is the current state of my Hue setup. I really hope you enjoyed reading and maybe feel inspired to make changes to your Hue setup. Or maybe you just got inspired to buy into the Hue system? If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to leave a comment, tweet to me (@thejulianw) or shoot me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org