Poor Man’s Ambient Lightning Made Easy

I have always liked how Philips Ambilight looked but didn’t want to replace my carefully selected gaming monitor just yet. The other after market solutions were too expensive and too clunky (a camera pointed at the screen? really?). Last time I checked (back in USA) there wasn’t a good solution for this.

A week ago, I read u/112358132l3455‘s Reddit post on cheap and easy ambient lightning, and now, exactly 7 days after the post I have my very own ambient lightning set up. It didn’t even take that long to implement. Came home to find the led lights and controller units delivered. Put the kids to bed and started tinkering and in a couple hours I had it ready. It was that easy, really.

I probably need to configure the smoothing and color calibration a bit further but it is amazing what can be achieved in a few short hours thanks to the open source community. The reddit post details what needs to be bought, and which software to install.

I was using Linux and the flashing tool recommended did not work for me. So, I used esphomeflasher to flash the WLED on to the WS2812 controller. Once WLED is set up (how many leds in array) you use Hyperion to control the leds to match what is shown on your screen. To be honest I didn’t do anything creative, it was essentially just following what u/112358132l3455 outlined and adjusting to fit my circumstances.

I am very happy with how it turned out, but the idea of a wireless controller unit just lying in my network makes me a bit queasy. I will probably forget to update it at some point and god knows what kind of bugs lay in the firmware waiting to be exploited. Perhaps I should look into using USB to control the WS2812 as my next project.

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