The Philips Hue range of smart light products has just been optimised for gaming. You may have seen them light up TVs, but now they have sets built specifically for gaming monitors, and they look amazing.
The new Philips Hue Play Gradient lightstrips for monitors come in three variations to meet the needs of the different gaming setups. The single monitor version has two sizes to choose including the 24″-27″ version and the larger 32″-34″. The triple-monitor setup includes three 24″-27″ light strips. There is no double monitor setup as the majority of gamers use a one or three-monitor setup to avoid a blind spot in the middle of the gaming field of vision.
Before setting these up I was worried that my computers and graphics cards wouldn’t be able to handle them. Then I was worried about sticking them on wrong. Then I was worried about the different software needed to run them. Thankfully, that worry was unnecessary.
In the Box
Straight out of the box, you can feel the quality of the product. You get a 905mm lightstrip, five connectors, a power brick, and a Hue bridge. The 45-degree lights and flat backs ensure the light is directed properly and is easy to secure to most TVs. The design is elegant and feels both flexible and durable.
The Set Up
Positioning the lights is easy. By using a small centre triangle as a guide, you can add the corner bracket first before using the three straight brackets. Once the two sides are level you can remove the 3M tape and stick them in place. The stick is strong but moveable if you make a mistake. Once in place, you stick the power brick to the back and plug it in.
The Hue Bridge is a hub that brings together the Philips range of products. Each smart light connects to the bridge and the bridge connects to your router. As each light sees the bridge, a simple tap on top of the bridge confirms control and you are ready to rock.
The Glow Up
The standard light is impressive from the outset giving between 700-800 lumens of light. The 16 individual light areas can be used in one colour or change dependent on wants on the screen. Without the Sync app, the lights are simply that, a light that can be controlled from the app.
The newly updated Philips Hue app for your phone connects seamlessly with the Philips Bridge and gives you control of individual lights, groups of lights, and entire rooms. Here you can create automation around certain times or specific voice commands from your smart assistant.
For the full gaming experience, you will need to install the Hue Sync App for PC & Mac. Installation is quick and easy and looks very similar to the phone app. Once connected the lights work wonderfully. From the burnt orange of Firewatch to the cool blues of Fez, the colours looked amazing and added to the gaming experience. Watching the colours move in sync with Hello Neighbor was mesmerising and really complete any gaming setup.
During my initial setup, I couldn’t get it working with Netflix, but this was soon fixed by disabling the hardware acceleration on Chrome.
Overall, the Hue Play gradient lightstrips for PC and Mac enhance the gaming experience whilst making your gaming setup look pretty darn cool. The build quality is good and the kit is easy to install both physically and digitally. The lights can be used as standalone backlights or used for gaming, movies, and even music. Whether you are using a 24″ inch, three 27” inch, or playing on a 55” monster, the Philips Hue light strip range has you covered. It’s a shame you need the Hue Bridge and two apps to run them but the setup is painless and the tools can be used across your smart home. I totally underestimated the impact coloured back lights had on my gaming experience and I won’t be going back ever again.