Pixels vs Strip

Lachlan889

New elf
Joined
Apr 30, 2020
Messages
7
Hi All,

When I first started researching my planned display I found a guy on YouTube who made some quite informative videos, CanispaterChristmas, and he made a joke I wasn’t quite expecting “friends don’t let friends use strip”. His opinion was that nobody should be using strip LED in their display only pixels, this threw me a bit because I was considering strip!

What is everyone’s opinion? Strip seems quite widely use......he was worried about how strips were manufactured which may lead to joins in strips that can fail eventually.
 

lithgowlights

Senior elf
Generous elf
Joined
May 6, 2010
Messages
939
Location
Lithgow, NSW
Strip looks great, but is a real pain to repair if you have a faulty pixel. It's not impossible to repair, just a lot harder, and again more difficult to keep waterproof. I dont use any strip in my display at all, but thats a personal choice
 

djgra79

My name is Graham & I love flashing lights!
Generous elf
Joined
Dec 27, 2011
Messages
1,514
Location
Cranbourne West
I started with strip because its easy to get straight lines and easy to install. I got my sections custom length with pigtails attched from Ray. Once a pixel fails, its harder to repair and replace, especially to keep weatherproof.
I've replaced my roofline with nodes now as its easier to swap out a dud node. Only strip left in my display are 2x spinners and my arches.
As Lith said, personal choice at the end of the day and comes down to what you're prepared to spend time on repairing/replacing in the future.
 

bpratt

Full time elf
Generous elf
Joined
Mar 31, 2019
Messages
204
Location
Jimboomba, Queensland
as per the above, strip can be very nice, but when you have problems, they are more problematic to fix up and re-waterproof them.
 

ChasingTraction

New elf
Joined
Dec 17, 2017
Messages
15
I ran 200m of strip last year, this year running 5k pixels and 100m of strip.

Nothing wrong with strip but its harder to manipulate aside from straight lines or spirals. Pixels have a lower resolution in most cases but a much nicer looking bulb, Im running strip still for outlines of house and pixels for models
 

TerryK

Retired Elf
Joined
Feb 9, 2020
Messages
87
Location
West Central Ohio
I've watched most of those videos and that particular comment was qualified somewhat to the extra effort of maintaining a strip versus a string and being a bit more finicky to work with; axis of bending and environmental protection as such.

I would say whether string or strip depends upon how one intends to use and wants from the pixel(s) and then if that individual is willing to put forth the extra effort to maintain them.
 

ICon

New elf
Joined
Dec 27, 2018
Messages
30
Strip requires more care if you want it to last, as it is mounted on light flexible circuit board it will not last if you knock it around, stretch it or mount it under tension. For this reason a lot of members find pixels more forgiving. I have not yet had any reliability issues mounting on conduit, with small 3d printed brackets under the cabel ties to prevent ties damaging the silicone tube it is in.

There are some very large displays about that use mostly strip, as it does have the advantage of being more elegant, easier to make look tidy in daylight, straighter lines are easier. cheaper per pixel.

My case is outlines strip, and props are all being designed with pixels.
 

Seancrv

New elf
Joined
Jan 8, 2020
Messages
9
Location
Bainbridge Island, WA
I follow Canispater and The Hook Up (THU) on YouTube. Both are run by experienced and knowledgeable people with tons of good info. Canispater is anti-strip lighting; The Hook Up uses mostly strips.

I asked THU about the friends comment on Canispater and why strips get a bad rap. His said if your strips are permanently mounted they will be reliable, especially if you put them in enclosed channels like he does. He elaborated that most problems come from trying to make them seasonal, in other words, the bending, stretching, and flexing of putting them up and taking them down that others have mentioned.

I use self-sealing clear shrink-wrap with a dab of hot glue under the ends for any repairs or connections and so far no problems. I live in the Seattle area so poor waterproofing will be apparent.

I am outlining the house the way THU did, strips inside channels. They are permanent and so far no problems, although I dread having to make repairs in the future. The perfectly straight lines really do look good too.
 

Lachlan889

New elf
Joined
Apr 30, 2020
Messages
7
Hmm thanks all. Sounds like it’s a proceed with caution, understanding the maintenance issues. I do agree the lines that strip provide when outlining the house is much better looking, gets a bit tricky bending around the corners etc though. Think I’ll try use mostly pixels where I can, but something like my keeping arches I want to build I’ll do strip
 

Snowy

Phil
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Messages
35
Location
Perth
I have ten Arches with strip 50 nodes in each . This is my own personal choice as i found it hard to run pixels through the air-seeder pipe and drilling holed for each node was going to be a pain . yes they are a pain to repair but i made a spare arch if i had problems with one and it was a simple swap. i think they look great.
 
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