Thursday, August 10, 2023

Bluetooth USB led strip

This is a review of  a cheap Bluetooth USB led strip.

AliExpress advertisement campaign tells you you can buy 3 (or more) items from a selected list for US $1.99 or ~1.84 Euro each. Often interesting products can be found and i already did buy some of them. I stumbled upon a one meter USB Bluetooth RGB ledstrip. For this price it is an an interesting product and perhaps i can use it later in my new shed so i decided to put it on the pick list and ordered it.

Very soon it arrived together with other below 2 euro products in a packed in a separate plastic envelope. Here below a short review of the cheap Bluetooth USB led strip.

Bag with the led ledstrip

When powering the leds on a changing a red - green - blue light sequence started. According to the description it should be possible to control this led strip via Bluetooth. However there was no clear description how to do this.

On the cable is a small QR code. I tried scanning it however i was not very successful. I hoped the QR code would link to some vendor website or an app on the Google playstore for controlling the led strip.  Instead the QR  code linked to some (unrelated ?) TikTok video (i don't have TikTok installed). Perhaps when TikTok is installed a video about the device will be shown, however on my phone some unrelated TikTok movie started and i was asked to install TikTok. However i did not want to re-install TikTok just for this device after i de-installed it for security reasons some time ago,

QR code on led strip

On the vendor's page at Aliexpress was also no clue so i scanned for Bluetooth devices. My Android phone i did find a BlueTooth device named "ELK-BLEDOB". When connecting to it my phone told me i needed a special app for it.

After some quick searches on the internet this device name seemed for LedStrips and i decided to install some 'generic' app for led strips. In the Google App store i found an app called "duoCo Strip" and installed it. After installing i found a new app named "Lotus Lantern" and after a virus scan i started it.

 I did struggle a little to connect the bluetooth device in the app, however finally it worked and i managed to change the colors of the led strip, tested some of the sequences and also tested the color changing using music or sounds received by the smartphone microphone. For details see the help pages of the app. (you can find screenshots of this in this blog posting),

After disconnecting and reconnecting the USB led strip started using the last selected sequence. I did not test the led strip for a long time , sometimes i needed to reconnect it and also in the beginning the led's reacted relative slow to the app, however that improved during the use.

 In summary for this price (less than 2 Euro's) a nice USB powered 1 meter Led strip that can be controlled via Bluetooth.

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