Are Nanoleaf Light Panels Worth It?

Nanoleaf has ushered in a new way to light up your home!

These modular LED lights can be fully automated to illuminate your personal space and make it stand out. The wall-mounted light panels are available in all sizes and shapes. And they can be interconnected and used to create appealing designs and patterns.

The vibrant colours Nanoleaf devices display are a major draw for anyone who seeks a perfectly lit room or a mood-defining ambient light. Nanoleaf has refined the technology to the point of being one of best options in the product category. 

And although pricey, these smart home devices are well worth the investment for the lighting quality they provide.

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Quick Summary

  1. Nanoleaf Shapes
  2. Nanoleaf Lines
  3. Nanoleaf Canvas
  4. Nanoleaf Elements

An Overview Of Nanoleaf Panels

Boasting 16.7 million colour support, Nanoleaf lights hold the ability to alter the mood and feel of a room completely. They can be programmed to emit a range of colours and shades depending on the time of day. 

The boards can be paired with devices like Amazon Alexa and Google Home, so they can be controlled via voice command.

That doesn’t mean that they are simple mood lights that respond to only voice commands. They can sync with an array of apps and devices alike. You even may pair these with music, movies or video games, and they will react accordingly to the media. This versatility makes them highly valuable as lighting devices.

What You’ll Get From Nanoleaf Smart Lights

Along with being the ultimate conversation starter at a party, these highly customisable lighting setups can be expanded and experimented with endlessly. Nanoleaf Light Panels are bright and robust, boasting up to 25,000 hours of runtime.

The panels are connected with linkers and powered by the mains. And since each panel can be fully customised separately, there is no compromise when it comes to experimentation. You may also combine boards of various shapes to make unique variations of the typical lighting setup. Create an intricate honeycomb with hexagon panels, or use triangles and lines to form lettering – the possibilities don’t end here!

Where They Fall Short

Nanoleaf devices can be pretty pricey, even for starter kits. The Nanoleaf kit can singe a hole in your pocket with expansion packs.

And as far as the future goes, the 2.4GHz network requirement can be a spot of bother. These networks are currently standard in homes, but you may have to find a middle ground once the technology advances sufficiently.

Installing them can be a bit of a challenge as it’s entirely possible for uneven gaps to be left between the lights. Though they can be removed and placed again, the adhesive loses strength with each successive removal.

In fact, you may have to get creative with hiding the power supply cable since the Nanoleaf starter kit has no way of hiding them. There have also been reports of minor flickering and LED flashes on rare occasions.

The Size Of Nanoleaf Panels

With a surface area of 20×23 cm (for a typical Nanoleaf hexagon or triangle), these are some of the larger smart LEDs on the market. The mini triangles of the Shapes series are just about half the size of triangles, covering an area of 10×11.5cm. The other Nanoleaf products aren’t far behind in terms of size.

Nanoleaf Elements are dimensionally identical to the hexagon from the Shapes lineup. Nanoleaf Lines, the thinner variety, have a 0.80×27.85cm surface area, while Nanoleaf Canvas, the square kind, have a surface area of 15x15cm.

A significant portion of your wall can be covered with the Nanoleaf starter kit, which includes nine boards of the mini triangles or hexagons variety.

The Versatility Of Nanoleaf Panels

Nanoleaf panels are compatible across the Shapes series, meaning that you can combine triangles with hexagons or lines. This expands the opportunity of what you can do with these smart home devices by a significant degree.

Since these lights can also pair with various media, you can have your Nanoleaf panels create a unique lighting experience.

1. Sync Them With Games And Movies

Nanoleaf panels come with a Screen Mirror function that has them react to games or movies in real-time. Using the Ambient Link feature, you can enhance your media experience by synching them with your smart light. This allows the boards to simulate ambient lights from the in-media colours.

2. Use Them As Music Visualizers

You can use the built-in Rhythm feature for music visualisation. This will create a dynamic light show that shifts according to the beat of your music. The feature is accessible using the controller or the Nanoleaf App.

Alternatively, you can connect your Spotify playback directly to the lighting setup using the Nanoleaf Music feature, bypassing the need for a Rhythm module. The colours are fully customizable and will display according to the music being played.

3. The Nanoleaf App

Every Nanoleaf feature can be accessed via your smartphone using the Nanoleaf app. The application has presets for scenes and allows control over every aspect of the panel systems. You can use the app to define what a panel displays, coordinate the colours, and use the Rhythm feature as well.

The various dashboards of the app will have you in complete control of your smart light panels. You can use it to create the perfect ambience or a surreal light show, and make your Nanoleaf panels the talk of any gathering at your home.

The Lifespan of Nanoleaf Panels

Nanoleaf panels are sustainable and reliable, boasting up to 25,000 hours of run time. These can be left on for several hours at a time without a hitch and may last years before requiring replacement. An ordinary incandescent bulb can only run around 1,200 hours in comparison.

The reports of issues with Nanoleaf panels’ runtime have been few and far between, making them an excellent pick for your lighting setup.

Experimenting With Different Shapes

Nanoleaf light panels are available in a few shapes and sizes to choose from. Hexagons, triangles, squares and lines are the standard package, which can all be combined and mixed freely with the Connect+ feature. Thanks to compatibility across the shapes, your creative freedom with lighting setups expands significantly.

Let’s take a look at a few Nanoleaf light products and draw a comparison between them in regards to this aspect.

1. Nanoleaf Shapes

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These panels feature touch controls and the Rhythm module, as mentioned earlier. The boards come in hexagonal, triangular and mini-triangle varieties. With the Connect+ function, they can be arranged for varied lighting setups. These lights can be mounted on the wall with double-sided tape that can be removed for later reuse.

2. Nanoleaf Lines

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The Nanoleaf Lines are thin smart home devices with the standard Nanoleaf features bundled in a small package. Though these lack the Connect+ and touch control features, they can be used similar to Shapes owing to their slim design.

3. Nanoleaf Canvas

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Nanoleaf Canvas are square devices that share all the features of Shapes, save for the Connect+ function. The light they emit is relatively low, but they consume less power per panel as a trade-off.

4. Nanoleaf Elements

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Nanoleaf Elements have hexagon panels with a wooden finish. Since these are meant for a more organic look, they offer low luminance compared to other Nanoleaf devices. They boast touch-sensitive control and music sync capabilities but lack a screen mirror function.

Alternatives To Nanoleaf Panels

Due to its price range, Nanoleaf may exceed the desired lighting budget. Luckily, they have alternatives aplenty. 

These competitors offer a similar performance and lighting range while missing other features. They often lack features like music visualisation or screen mirror and fall short in terms of reliability, but they provide an ambience similar to Nanoleaf lights.

And where they lack in features, they make it up with their low pricing. Costing a fraction of the premium Nanoleaf products, you’ll find that these cheaper alternatives are well worth the money spent.

The Philips Hue Play Bar is a budget replacement for Nanoleaf. Armed with the ability to sync with digital assistants, these come with a wall mount included in the package. Like its Nanoleaf counterpart, the Hue Play Bar can be controlled remotely through a mobile app. And with preset lighting scenes that change depending on the time of day or mood, the Hue Play Bar is a worthy alternative for Nanoleaf devices. It shares a few similarities with Nanoleaf while being reliable to boot.

If you seek a replacement similar to the hexagons from the Nanoleaf’s Shapes series, consider the Luminosia Hexagon Lights. Now, they don’t come with any extra features outside of colour adjustment through a remote. So, if lighting is all you need, the Luminosia is an excellent alternative for you. 

However, there is no limit to the number of hexagons you can connect, as long as you have a USB cable plugged in for every ten boards.

Setting Up Nanoleaf Panels

Nanoleaf Light Panels can be set up using the double-sided tape included in the box. The adhesive is powerful and will hold the devices for a long time. However, you may want to be careful about the layout while installing them.

Planning becomes a vital part of the installation process since the adhesives become progressively weaker the more they are removed and reused. The Nanoleaf instruction booklet recommends trying out your desired layout on a table beforehand so there are no errors with the design once the installation nears.

Once you have finalised the layout, all that’s left is to use the included tape to place the devices on your wall. Using tools like a spirit level and the Nanoleaf App AR Layout Assistant will help adequately set the smart devices up. 

If an adhesive tape is not the permanent solution you seek, you may also use a screw mounting kit, available separately.

After installing a panel, you can connect different shapes with linkers. Since the Nanoleaf Shapes are compatible with one another, it’s only a matter of snapping two shapes together. That is all there is to Nanoleaf panel installation!


Can Nanoleaf Light Panels Be Reused?

Yes, they are designed to be reusable. Since these devices last for a long time, removing and reusing becomes an inevitability. The only thing to remember here is that the stickiness of the tape lowers every time the panels are removed.

Can Nanoleaf Devices be installed on any wall?

It is generally recommended to use a mounting kit while installing Nanoleaf devices on uneven or textured surfaces. Textured walls have less area for the included adhesive to stick to, so the panels may be prone to falling.

Installing Nanoleaf devices on wallpapers is also not ideal. The adhesive is likely to cause damage to the wallpaper when the panels are removed.

Using a screw mount kit would be preferable in either case, since there is a reduced risk of the devices falling off.

How many Nanoleaf light panels can be connected together?

Up to 30 light panels can be installed to a single controller. If you wish to bypass this limit, you may install multiple controllers and have as many light panels as you want with the expansion kits.

Are panels from different series compatible with one another?

The Shapes panels are compatible with one another, but panels from different series are not. Each series will require a separate power supply and controller module.

Conclusion: Are Nanoleaf Light Panels Worth It?

For the longevity and reliability that Nanoleaf’s modular smart lights provide, you may consider investing in them. Boasting features like touch control, Connect+ and pairing with other smart home devices like Google Home and Alexa, these may prove to be your favourite lighting kits.

The priciness of the lighting kits is offset by the versatility and future-proof design decisions.A After all, the future will be all about customizability and Nanoleaf products fit the brackets to a tee. It’s no wonder that they lead the product category.

Nanoleaf is far ahead of its competitors when it comes to modular LED lighting. Its flagship product is flexible and has some of the best ambient lighting capability on the market. The alternatives have yet to catch up in the fields. 

These factors together contribute to making Nanoleaf Panels a unique and worthy purchase!

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