How to Choose between LED Strip and LED Rope Lights

LED lighting is a common approach when it comes to interior design. However, shopping for LED lights is very confusing as it’s difficult for a beginner to understand different types of LED lights.

The two most confusing terms in LED lighting are the LED strips and rope. These lights are used for decorative and aesthetic applications with some mutual features. But it’s quite intimating to understand which one to choose between these two.

This article will elaborate on the detailed difference between LED strips and rope lights so you can make a better choice while purchasing.


What are –

LED Strip Lights?

The circuit boards occupied by surface-mounted diodes (SMD) that radiate light are called LED strip lights. These lights are specially designed to adhere to the walls or surfaces rather than hanging or placing them in holders.

LED Rope Lights?

Small LED bulbs walled by the plastic pipe, typically PVC, are LED rope lights. It’s like a chain of bulbs hung by the walls or ceilings to decorate the place. Unlike LED strips, rope lights are easy to remove and replace.

Differential Features

1. Light Dispersion

LED strip lights have 2D light distribution. These lights are attached to the surfaces, limiting their light direction opposite the wall/surface.

LED rope lights have 3D light distribution. These lights are always hung up with surfaces and walls, which allow them to spread the light equally in all directions.

2. Power Source

LED lights are designed to save energy, whether it’s rope or strip. However, the LED strips work only with a DC voltage of up 12 or 24V. The 120v led strip light is one of the most commonly used types in homes.

Unlike strips, LED rope lights can have AC or DC power input. AC is used in rope bulbs where incandescent bulbs are used.

3. Installation

LED strips are installed with double-sided tapes, which make them highly adhesive. These lights can last for a long time in one place and are difficult to remove.

To install LED ropes, usually, mounting clips are used instead of tapes. These lights are easy to remove and replace in another place.

4. Available Colors

LED strip lights can provide you with up to millions of different color combinations. Strip lights are available in single, multi, RGB, or changeable color combinations.

LED rope lights are of one color at a time. You can’t change the color of a specific rope, but the RGB color combination is available in rope lights.

5. Flexibility

LED strip lights are highly flexible. You can bend these lights up to 90 degrees without damaging their quality. This flexibility makes it easier to use these lights.

LED rope lights are flexible but not as much as the strip lights. You can bend the rope lights only to a narrow-angle.

6. Price Range

LED strip lights come up at high price than LED rope lights. The advanced features and technology used in strip lights make them more expensive than rope lights.

LED rope lights’ working mechanism is very simple like other LED bulbs, which makes them a cheaper option than strip lights.

However, LED strip lights to have a long life span and are more convenient than rope lights.

7. Brightness

LED strip lights have higher brightness than LED rope lights. The LED strips have different levels of brightness to choose from.

However, the LED rope lights have less brightness. These rope lights can’t be used as a primary light source.

Which Option to Choose?

All the differences mentioned above will help you decide which one is the best option for your particular requirements.

LED strip lights are mainly used in home interiors, places with water, signage, walls, and other surfaces for long-term use.

However, LED ropes are used chiefly for outdoor decorations where you need to remove the lights after the event or specific time. These lights didn’t seem to be much used in home interiors as strip lights.

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