I have a pretty cooperative neighbour. He and I set floodlights in-between our houses in such a way, that PIR sensors attached to the units illuminate the path for anyone going in each direction. It’s a neat and simple idea. It makes me appreciate the floodlights just a little bit more. When Novostella reached out to me with their 20W Novostella floodlights (Amazon, UStellar Store) with WiFi connectivity and RGB LEDs – I thought – that was a fun idea, especially since I already played with their smart light bulb (review).
Water-tight, shatterproof – Novostella floodlights
Made of metal, enclosed in IP66 rated shell, Novostella floodlights already went through the drop test several times. The cable is a little short for indoor testing, and I tripped over these things connected to an extension cord countless times. The cable isn’t an issue really (even if I prefer it to be a little longer), by clumsiness is. The light is intact despite the falls.
It’s relatively small (compared to other halogen-based alternatives) and it’s made of white and RGB LED arrays. Novostella floodlights are super bright. Bright enough to cause serious discomfort to your eyes in the daylight. Even colour lights are strong enough to fill the room with light during daylight. I had no doubt that these could put up a show at night!
As I’m writing this review in July, the days are incredibly long and I actually had to wait till midnight to see these in action at night. With no holiday in sight, I was the only one setting my house to festive colours at night. In solidarity with no one, I was going through the colours to see how out of place the house would look on the mostly dark street. These things should be reviewed at Xmas time, where I could put some additional Xmas tree lights to go with it, or set moody purple colours to scare the local kids coming to get MY CANDY on Halloween.
Smart Life or Tuya
In the same fashion as their smart bulb, Novostella floodlights can be used with the Smart Life app and Tuya. I connected mine to Tuya since I have more devices there for now, but considering that I already hacked the smart bulb, something tells me the same faith awaits the floodlights.
The app sees the floodlights as smart lights. There are all associated bells and whistles – dedicated white temperature controls, colour with saturation, scenes and the support for smart assistants: Alexa and Google Assistant. These are floodlights, so the lack of sunrise and sunset scenes doesn’t bother me much as it did with Novostella smart bulb.
Novostella floodlight doesn’t come with a PIR sensor, but you can easily get a Tuya one and use an automation panel to set up specific behaviour. Some may see this as a disadvantage, but a well placed PIR sensor would eliminate the need for 2 floodlights with a fixed PIR sensor in the opening example. I like that I could get really creative with how the lights can be triggered.
At the moment, Novostella floodlights (Amazon, UStellar Store) fill my room with extra light in the videos. Not an ideal solution but fills the side of the frame with light and the videos are much better this way. I look forward to automating these. You could link it with Tasker and create a really cool light effect for each family member arriving home at night. Plus I can’t wait for Xmas to absolutely dominate the hood with colour! There is a competition going on each year (although no one admits it) and everyone tries to have the most illuminated house! I may have a standing chance in 2020! Let me know what your thoughts are in this Reddit thread.