LED Strip Desk Lights

When I bought a new computer a few months ago, I also purchased a replacement for my ten year old monitor. Although the colors on my old monitor are very inaccurate due to age, it has no other problems so I decided to keep using it in a two-monitor setup.

While it is great that I have twice as much screen space, I lost a lot of physical desk space. Which means that I no longer have enough room for my desk lamp. So I began to search for an alternative desk lighting solution and found a way to create custom lights using LED strips.

The interesting thing about LED strips is that you buy them in a large roll (usually up to 5 meters in length). Then you can cut them to whatever size you want, at marked two-inch intervals, and wire them together as needed.

So I bought some inexpensive multi-color LEDs from Amazon, which included a power block and a remote for controlling the lights. I also had to make a few local purchases for wire and additional connectors. Then I soldered together the LED strips in the general shape and size of the back of my two monitors. Finally, to add a little extra light (and make my desk look cooler), I added a strip of LEDs to the back of my frosted-glass desktop, so the light diffuses through the desk.

The picture below shows the result. I normally have the light set to a warm-white setting, but for the picture I set it to a deep blue. I can choose between about twenty different colors, which is mainly nice because I can choose which shade of white light to use (pure white from a LED is pretty stark — I prefer a warmer light, especially at night). Just in case I decide to have a dance party in my office, I can also turn on various strobe effects, but I doubt I’ll ever need those.

My new LED desk lights, set to blue. Click to view full size image.
My new LED desk lights, set to blue. Click to view full size image.