Smart lamp and conventional bulbs
As scary as it sounds, smart home systems turned 70 this year: in 1950, American engineer Emil Mathias created the Push-Button Manor, in which control panels located throughout the house allowed the garage door to is open. Control the light and even turn on the radio. Then, to implement the project, it was necessary to spend two kilometers of cable, and such a “smart home” could not be available. However, in the next 60 years, smart home systems were not cheap. They are only becoming available to everyone due to two factors: instead of cables, wireless technologies are not in use, but most importantly, the smart home has ceased to be a single extensive system – you can buy inexpensive individual components that implement some function, such as light control.
A smart lamp differs from a conventional one in that a microcomputer with a wireless communication module is built into it. Also, many lights have LEDs of different colors and color temperatures. Such lamps can be controlled from a smartphone, using voice assistants, wireless remotes and switches, and in some cases even conventional switches, turning them off and on several times.
Now on sale, you can find smart lamps with three types of control:
Bluetooth:- The most primitive and cheapest lamps. Controlled directly from your smartphone.
Wi-Fi:- They are connected to a home router and could control both from a smartphone and other devices.
Zigbee:- An additional gateway is required for operation.
The main advantage of Zigbee is its ultra-low power consumption. But for lamps powered by mains, the consumption of the wireless interface does not matter. Zigbee has other benefits: the ability to use a MESH network (devices interact with each other, bypassing the gateway), a large number of devices in the network is permissible, and workover long distances.
Philips HUE, IKEA TRÅDFRI, Xiaomi Aqara lamps work with the Zigbee protocol, and, despite the standard protocol, they are far from always compatible – Philips lamps are unlikely to be controlled by an IKEA dimmer.
Wi-Fi lamps are now the most popular and inexpensive. Their main plus is connecting to a home router without a unique gateway: you can buy one light bulb, and it will work. Disadvantages are related to the peculiarities of Wi-Fi operation: due to the clogged 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi range (all smart lamps use it), the stable communication distance is reduced, cheap household routers do not support a large number of devices (although routers provide addressing to 255 machines, many of them are difficult to “pull” 15). However, if the number of smart lamps in your apartment does not exceed a dozen or you have a powerful router, it is quite possible to use lights with Wi-Fi.
The lamps Gauss, Yandex, Xiaomi Mi, Hiper, TPlink, Navigator, and many others are controlled via Wi-Fi.
There are three types of smart lamps:
On and brightness control:-Almost all smart lamps can not only turn on and off on command but also change the brightness.
Controls color temperature, power-on, and brightness:- Many smart bulbs are equipped with LEDs with two color temperatures (typically 2700 K and 6500 K). These lamps can smoothly change the color temperature from warm to cold light by mixing the two types of LEDs.
Variable color and color temperature lamp:- These lamps are equipped with LEDs of five types: white, “warm,” white, “cold,” red, green, blue. As a rule, the brightness of colored LEDs in such lamps is much lower than that of white ones. Most lamps of this type give either white light with a variable color temperature or colored light. Only a few bulbs can combine white and colored LEDs to create white accents.
Gauss smart lamps
Gauss has launched a series of Wi-Fi-controlled smart LED bulbs and luminaires. The main differences from other elegant lamps’ brands are a wide range and a very convenient WiZ application.
There are 27 products in the Gauss Smart Light series: lamps, recessed luminaires, ribbons.
The Gauss smart lamp series includes all three types of lamps:
- with variable brightness and constant color temperature;
- with variable brightness and color temperature;
- with varying brightness, color temperature, and color.
It looks like only Gauss has smart filament lamps, including those with decorative bulbs. And besides the lights, there are intelligent lamps and even smart tapes. Probably the most amazing Gauss elegant lamp is the variable color temperature filament lamp. Two of its threads are “warm,” two are “cold,” and the “warm” ones have a color temperature of 2200 K, which allows you to make the light not only cold, neutral, and warm, but also “super-warm,” like a candle or an open fire.
The lights can be controlled using a smartphone with the WiZ application, a voice assistant (including “Alice”), as well as a Wi-Fi remote control, which will be on sale soon.
Software and features
Lamp addition that I have seen: the application adds any number of lamps at the same time, and all that needs to be finished with the lights is to turn them off and on again.
The application provides an extensive range of lamp control options: you can adjust brightness, color temperature, speed of dynamic programs. ways controlled by a conventional light switch (WiZclick function).
The application integrates with a variety of voice assistants and automation systems, including Yandex. Alisa and IFTTT.
Cloud software affects the speed of lamp control and their compatibility with voice assistants and smart home systems. How convenient it is to control lamps from a smartphone depends on the mobile application. Gauss Wiz is perhaps the most user-friendly application I’ve come across.
In addition to a user-friendly app, Gauss smart lamps delight with attention to detail in software and firmware. When choosing lights, few people think about these little things, but they determine how convenient it will be to use the lights. Here is some of them:
- Power-on behavior:- Each time it was connected to the network (turned on with a wall switch), many lamps turn on in one specific mode, regardless of how they were in before turning off. Alas, many Chinese lamps turn on in the coldest light mode. Gauss not only remembers the state but also allows you to choose in which state to turn on (in the memorized or explicitly specified).
- Dynamic modes:- Most lamps can only shine continuously; Gauss can change brightness and color according to the program (simulated fire, relaxation modes, party modes, sunrise and sunset modes, color change modes depending on the day).
- The ability:- Most bulbs cannot turn on white and colored LEDs at the same time. Gauss knows how and thus adds accents to the white light.
- conventional switches:- Gauss smart bulbs allow you to use a conventional switch to select two preset modes. To change the way, you need to turn off and on the button quickly. I have not seen such a function in other smart lamps (it happens only in simple uncontrolled lights with two color temperatures or three-stage dimming).
- adding a new lamp:- Some Chinese lamps have to struggle for tens of minutes before they successfully bind to the application. Gauss could add in a few seconds, and you can add multiple lights simultaneously.
Six lamps took part in the test: a pear and a candle with a variable color temperature and additional RGB LEDs, a regular and filament pear with a variable color temperature, a pear and a decorative filament lamp with a constant color temperature.
In the white light mode, the measured wattage of all lamps is close to the declared one.
Ripple maximum brightness in white light modes absent in all lamps, except for the last one (for a filament-shaped lamp, the ripple coefficient was 3.9%). At minimum brightness, the “candle” ripple is also zero; for other lights, it increases to 7-20% (such a wave is visually invisible).
Non-filament lamps reduce the brightness by 5% when the supply voltage drops to 211-213 V, filament lamps at 217-225 V.
Temperature has a maximum warm light – 2200 K, this allows you to get a hot yellow light, but you can also set the usual 2700-3000 K.
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Gauss Smart Light bulbs are perhaps the best Wi-Fi-controlled bulbs on the market today: they have the wealthiest assortment, including not only ordinary pear bulbs but also candles with an E14 base, filament bulbs, lamps, ribbons. A comprehensive model range allows you to choose a solution for almost any device and lighting scheme. Alisa, Google Home, Amazon Alexa, and the IFTTT control system allow you to connect these lamps to almost any smart home system.
Of course, Gauss smart lamps also have drawbacks. Perhaps the most significant for today is the lack of wireless switches. It is not always convenient to control by voice or from a smartphone; often, you want to press the switch button on the wall. Of course, to control Gauss lamps, you can still use switches, for example, from the Xiaomi smart home; for this, you need to configure through IFTTT, which requires specific technical skills, and not all users can do it. I hope that over time, Gauss will have its own convenient and beautiful switches that are not inferior in uniqueness to lamps.
Smart bulbs can be used by those who “build” a real large smart home with many devices and centralized control and ordinary people who can buy one or several intelligent bulbs and use their capabilities without any additional equipment and complicated settings.
If you want the lighting to help you wake up in the morning (dawn mode), change your mood and time of day, create coziness in the house with color shades and be controlled by your voice, try using smart lamps. The Gauss Smart Light, with its handy WiZ app, is an excellent option for that.