Now I very much doubt at this stage, that Nanoleaf need much on an introduction. They’ve completely taken over the Internet as being the RGB lighting display that everyone needs in their homes. They’re essentially a flat panel, that sticks to the wall or ceiling, and they can connect to eachother to create intricate designs. Nanoleaf started with triangles, moved onto squares, and now, they’ve released their Shapes range, and have designed a hexagon style lighting kit. We were sent one to test, and I can tell you right now, they look absolutely AWESOME!
The starter kit itself has nine light panels, and all can be connected to one another. All fittings that you need will be included in your kit which are the light panels themselves, and small plastic connectors that bridge the gap between two panels. You only need one connector per bridge, even though the hexagons are more than likely going to touch more than one side together. We’ve set ours up on the TechNuovo set, and we made quite a bunched up pattern.
The lighting kit also needs power, and there is a sufficient amount of cable between panel and plug socket to either trail behind a stud wall. The control panel also needs to be connected to the kit, but isn’t too intrusive to your overall design. We stuck ours as far out the way as possible. On the control box are touch sensitive buttons to control power, cycle random lighting setups and even control brightness.
On the underside of each panel is a sticky pad, which is actually extremely sticky, so make sure you decide where these lights are going to go first, because there’s a very real risk of bringing up the wallpaper or paint if you change your mind. There are spare pads though in the box if you do make an error.
As expected, the Nanoleaf Hexagon kits can be controlled with an app, and inside the app you can change the lighting patterns, change the brightness and even set a schedule on which patterns display at what time. If you want to wake up to a beige morning light, and then want to get some blues and greens in there for the afternoon, you absolutely can. The lighting effects are split up into categories, which consist of solid lights, colour shifts which cycle through colour patterns and also scenes, which if you have more than one Nanoleaf setup in the house, you can categorise each setup into a playlist, and control them individually or as a whole.
The Nanoleaf Hexagons are also able to be controlled using a variety of smart home assistants, like Google Assistant, the Apple HomeKit and even Alexa. There are even interactive games that can be played on the panel, as each panel responds to touch. Now I’m not sure how durable these panels are, as I didn’t test the panels for their interactive games, but I wouldn’t go smashing your hands into them trying to light the panels in different ways.
Now, the app is very simple to use for the most part, unless you want to dive into creating your own patterns. This involves a little more work, but if done correctly, can achieve some pretty interesting patterns.
There are a couple of ways you can customise your setup. The first is to choose an effect. These effects generally cycle through the colours that you have chosen. Flow for example flows through the colour palette in order, and the wheel circles you wall pattern with colour. This is where the colour pallete comes in. You can choose from a selection of pre-set palletes, or you can create your own. As you can see above, we’ve created our own using purples and blues.
Once you’ve selected a lighting pattern, you can adjust the speed in which it cycles, or the delay before the next cycle starts or even the brightness of the lights in each one you create. Again, in the mornings you could have a dim warm light, and in the evening, a bright cool white light and in the evening a mid-brightness mix of greens and yellows. It almost feels like the possibilities are endless. But, if you didn’t want to mess around with all that, then you can simply download some presets from the Nanoleaf app. There’s even the ability to set your Nanoleaf to respond to music. So if you have a house party, your room will be filled with colour!
Now, even though the Nanoleaf Hexagons look absolutely stunning, and can really make a space look exceptiional – just check out the various Pinterest pins that show off Nanoleaf layouts – they do come with a price. The starter kit that we were fortunate enough to take a look at would normally retail at around £200 if they were in stock. And that’s just for nine panels. Imagine the cost if you wanted their largest pack with 21 panels included. That’s unbelievable money. But they do look wicked. For more information, head over to the Nanoleaf website.