TP-Link Tapo smart lights are easy to set up and ultra reliable. This review covers the Tapo 630 GU10 color lamp; Tapo 920-5 multicolored light strip; and Tapco L530 multicolored bayonet bulb (B) or Edison screw bulb (E).
Let’s eliminate the easy setup. It’s all a dream to set up using the Tapo app for Android or iOS. Each supported Tapo product is clearly labeled – select the one you have and follow the instructions. I specify that it is a Tapo application. This is not a thinly disguised white label Tuya smart app with questionable privacy. All it needs is a verified email address, password, and location (for setup only). It connects to 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi – that’s it.
The app also integrates with Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, and Alexa. That’s fine, even if it means Google and Amazon know more about you.
It allows you to select themes, schedules and much more.
Tip: If you are replacing existing LED downlights, it is best to replace the entire part to ensure uniform color.
The Tapco line is expanding to include security cameras, smart plugs, bulbs, light strips and sensors. Lily TP-Link Tapo Smarthome range – cheap, good value.
This is a 3.7W (50W equivalent), 40°, 16 million color bulb using the GU10 fitting found in range hoods (as tested) and some light fixtures recessed. It produces up to 350 lumens (desk lighting) and its color temperature is adjustable from 2200 to 6500° Kelvin.
We’ve found it’s best to set up the lights one at a time and give them unique names like Rangehood Left and Right. We assigned them in Google Assistant to the kitchen. It can also control a more limited color palette.
We wanted to replace three standard Lifx bulbs which were giving us persistent problems after power outages. They never worked reliably despite being replaced several times and struggled with clunky application. Over time, we’ve replaced all Lifx products with Philips Hue (and now Tapco mainly because they’re so economical), and all voice-activated lights are reliable again. First, we tried removing the Lifx bulbs from the app and Google Assistant, but that was tricky and didn’t work. In the end, we didn’t like the Lifx app, and Google understood.
Tapo was, as usual, extremely easy to set up. Within seconds we had Kitchen Left, Center and Right running reliably.
It is a 9W (60W equivalent), 220° projection, 16 million colors with a color temperature range of 2500-6500°K. The body is similar in size to incandescent bulbs, so you won’t have any issues replacing with existing fixtures.
This one is unusual because it has both RGB and white LEDs, so you can control up to 50 zones with color, tone, and boost white levels if you need more lighting. The AC to DC 12V/1.5A/18W wall outlet connects to a separate small white control unit. Being 12V you can run it from a car or caravan.
Peak brightness is 2100 mcd (Millicandela) which doesn’t mean much in a 5m strip with non-reflective LEDs. We measured y around 200 lumens on maximum settings at 1 meter.
Consider the use cases: replace old single-bar fluorescent lights under kitchen cupboard overhangs, custom-light the TV area, fit out a trailer, hallway lighting, and more. You can cut it to length (the unused part is no longer usable) and peel and stick the 3M backed flexible strip to the wall etc.
CyberShack’s take – TP-Link Tapo smart lights are easy to set up and well priced
First let me say that Philip’s Hue is the Rolls Royce. But at $100 for a bulb, $339 for a 2m light strip, $99 for the control bridge, it’s for those who don’t need to ask the price.
For the rest, here are the RRPs of the TP-Link Tapo smart lamps. Tapo is excellent value and quality.
|Multicolor band L930-5 $99||5 meters, 13W, dimmable, 50 zones, advanced lighting effects, music synchronization, extra white LEDs for general lighting, 1000 Lumens|
|L920-5 multicolor band $69||5 meters, 20.5W, as above – no additional white LEDs|
|RGB Strip L900-5 L900-10 $49/$79||5 or 10 meters, 13.5/20.5 W, one zone, single zone RGB basic lighting effects|
|RGB bulb L530B (bayonet cap) L530E (Edison screw) $49 for two-pack||8.7W (equivalent to 60W incandescent lamp), 2500-6500°K color temperature (dimmable), 16.7m colors, 220° beam angle|
|White bulb L510B (as above) L510E $39 2-pack||8.7 W, 806 lumens, 2700° fixed color temperature, dimmable, 220° beam angle|
|LED spotlight GU10 L630 TBA||3.7 W, 350 lumens, 2200-6500° color temperature, dimmable, 16.7 million colors, 40° beam angle|
But one more thing – the Tapo app is an excellent, foolproof setup, and it enables voice assistants like Google, Alexa, Apple, and IFTTT. They should be able to be part of the coming matter ecosystem.
But more importantly, the app works and offers better privacy than generic smart bulbs and apps.
TP-Link Tapo smart lights
Refer to review