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A Guide to LED Strip Colour Options: RGB & RGBW

Time to read 4 min

Advice Centre > LED Strips > LED Strip Colours > A guide to LED strip colour options: RGB and RGBW

If you need to solve a lighting problem using seamless, high-quality lighting controllable at the touch of a button, RGB LED strip lights are the solution you’ve been looking for. They are perfect for weddings, events, signage, and a range of other functions.

RGB LED stands for Red Blue Green Light Emitting Diode, which refers to the three hues of light that are generated in these LED strip lights. The LED strips use a combination of different brightness levels in each of the three colours to generate a full spectrum of colour.

An RGBW LED is a newer model that follows the same format as an RGB strip but with an additional white LED chip. This may be a white chip alongside three other individually coloured chips or a white chip alongside a single RGB colour chip.

This guide covers everything you need to know about RGB and RGBW LED strips, including how they work, their benefits and typical uses, and some of the products in the WeLoveLEDs range. Click on one of the links below to jump to that section:

How do RGB and RGBW LED strips work?

RGB LED strips require you to input different intensity levels of brightness to configure the various shades of colour. Thanks to the proximity of the LEDs, the result looks like a combination of colours, instead of the individually coloured lights.

Fortunately, it’s not the case of changing each individual colour, as our RGB and RGBW LED strip lights come with a remote control device that will adjust these colours automatically to produce the colour that you input. There are several types of controllers that you can purchase. Standard ones are simple and easy to follow, allowing you to select specific hues or to flick between different colours at varying speeds and intensities.

There are other types of LED light strip that you should be careful not to confuse with RGB LEDs, such as single-colour LED strips. The LED chips in these strips are exclusively one colour that you are unable to change. This limits your options for design and creativity in comparison with RGB and RGBW strips, which give you a full spectrum of colour.

However, if you are setting up an event and have a specific colour code, or you require different shades for individual target areas and you don’t want to accidentally alter them when using a remote, you will find single colour LEDs useful. For more advice, check out the guide we have to single colour LED strips in our advice centre.

Benefits of RGB and RGBW LED strip lights

RGB and RGBW LED strips have a number of benefits beyond their obvious colour versatility, making them an ideal lighting solution for the home, hospitality, signage and events.

The biggest advantage of using RGB and RGBW strip lights is most certainly the energy-saving and cost-effective nature of the lights. LED strip lights are far and away superior to traditional fluorescent lights by converting 95% of the energy supply into light, whereas fluorescent lights only convert around 10%, wasting the majority of their energy through heat.

LED strips are also far easier to install than alternative lighting solutions. LED strips have an adhesive backing, so simply require a clean and dry surface to stick to and a nearby power source. This means they can be placed almost anywhere, including rooms susceptible to moisture—our Water-Resistant RGB is splash-resistant and is a popular choice for bars and nightclubs.

Products in the WeLoveLEDs range

Our 12V Water-Resistant 60 RGB LED Strip lights are ideal for internal and external use. These LEDs carry an IP65 rating, meaning they are splash- and water-resistant so can be used in bathrooms, kitchens and bar environments where moisture may be a common issue. These LEDs have a lifespan of up to 30,000 hours and will perform exceptionally with a full range of RGB colour performance.

Another of our RGB products is the S-Type 48 LED strip in 12v, which has a good economy with a long lifespan of 50,000 hours. It has an IP20 rating and is best used for lighting interior decorations such as letters, shapes and brand logos for signage. It’s hard to go wrong with these manoeuvrable strips.

Our Classic 60 RGBW 24V strip is perfect for decorative lighting applications which require a white LED chip as well as colourful RGB, such as an office or at home. It has an IP20 rating and a long lifespan of up to 30,000 hours of use. The Classic 60 strip is also available as an strip in 12V .

Frequently asked questions

What do you need to make your LED strip lights work?

All you need in order to make your LED strip lights work is a plug socket within reach of the cable that runs from the end your power source is connected to.

Are LED strip lights bad for your eyes?

While there are some reports that LED strip lights may cause eye strain, the research is inconclusive. It’s important to contextualise our everyday life and how we interact with screens such as our smartphones, which we use and look directly into far more often than we do an LED strip light. Some LEDs are equipped with the ability to emit blue light, thus reducing the harm they may do to the eyes.

Contact us today for more details of all our high-quality LED Neon Flex lighting products and accessories.