Cheaply lighting a 3x3 tent with DIY light strips

I know, I’m not the only one on a budget, who is sick of the blurple led’s. I want better penetration with fewer actual wall watts used and less heat. I currently use 2 led lights running 520 actual watts.
I’m new to this all. I have the most basic of wiring skills. I can soldier if need be; though, looks like the Wegos resolve the need. I will be running in series and not parallel as shown here:

Design was chosen from
Thanks @Aolelon for that link. Also @dbrn32 @MattyBear @BIGE @MattyBear @Covertgrower @1BigFella and more from, Let’s talk diy lights thread.


i’ll never purchase another blurple light @Budbrother


Did you decide on an led package yet?

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Nope I just ran to the bank ta deposit the check. Got home and created this quickly. Time to roll one, then begin.


Awesome! You’re in good hands with @dbrn32 and the other DIY-ers here :v:️:+1:


Basic strip and COB knowledge: Wire these in series and don’t run near their maximum current. They are not very efficient at maximum current. Better to buy more strips or COBs up front and run at lower current. These are going to last for years, so you will have lower electric bills for all that time.


I really don’t know where to begin or where to go to look for parts. I’ve heard Arrow mentioned, but that requires knowing parts numbers. I don’t even know what all I actually need.
Maybe this should be renamed, diy lighting for dummies lol


If you look around your area for a metal supplier and find one close to you call for 1" or 1 1/2" u channel. I found a place close to me that sells it for 2.09$ a foot

First things first. You are going to need to decide what strips you are going to want to go with, if any. The bridgelux gen 2 strips are nice because they have similar output to the samsung f-series and are a lot cheaper, but you would need a few more of them.


i’m gonna burn this bowl and watch the magic smoke roll…lol
speaking of magic smoke,the jenie does not appear after the magic smoke starts rolling…


1-Footers (280mm):

BXEB-L0280Z-xxx1000-C-B3 (56 Diodes, 7 Series x 8 Parallel, Voltage = ~20V, Max Current = 700mA)

3000K: BXEB-L0280Z-30E1000-C-B3

3500K: BXEB-L0280Z-35E1000-C-B3

4000K: BXEB-L0280Z-40E1000-C-B3

5000K: BXEB-L0280Z-50E1000-C-B3

2-Footers (560mm):

BXEB-L0560Z-xxx2000-C-B3 (112 Diodes, 7 Series x 16 Parallel, Voltage = ~20V, Max Current = 1400mA)

3000K: BXEB-L0560Z-30E2000-C-B3

3500K: BXEB-L0560Z-35E2000-C-B3

4000K: BXEB-L0560Z-40E2000-C-B3

5000K: BXEB-L0560Z-50E2000-C-B3


You crackin me the f🤬 up!


sorry about all of that ,i just like saying MAGIC SMOKE!!


Those are the bridgelux parts numbers. Tbh everything you would need is in that link, I suggest reading through it thoroughly before beginning. It should help you out on deciding and it has all the part numbers and places to buy ect…


Hey @Budbrother from another mother…
those strips are pretty great. I would use those or the quantum board 120’s. You’ll have these for years after the initial investment. I went with a COB set up, but the strip lighting has its place also. Thanks for the tag. I’ll watch another epic light build!


Thank you for part numbers. I know that they had part lists for their builds. Over time prices, versions, etc change and links fail.

I have a starting point for pricing and asking more questions. The above design may be just what I start out with. Plans change frequently in the beginning.

I may decide to opt for 1’ ers instead, and use multiple 3000k & 3500k or 4000k spectrum. Everything is relative to price in the end. I just dot have a lot to work with. Oh and finding U channel locally isn’t going to be an issue.


Places like Arrow and Digikey have very nice websites with ALL the parts, prices, order minimum quantity, and even links to the part datasheets and application notes. They can all show you the whole spectrum of COBs, arrays of LEDs, individual high power LEDs, and so forth. Or you can just type in one of those part numbers and they find it. You don’t have to join a club or be an engineer, or anything.

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I would actually consider going with the 560mm length for 2 reasons. 1, there’s twice as many parallel strings as the 280mm. Meaning twice the current the strips can handle. Since most of us will agree that you should use series connection, this will help you out a lot when selecting drivers. 2. A single row of them long enough will give you adequate coverage in 3x3.

I would also not bother with mixing the color temps unless it comes down to only having a few of each available. An equal amount of 3000k and 4000k will give you the same spectral performance as 3500k. Since most will discount at 10 pieces, and you’ll probably need 10 or more, just stick with one and take the discount. In which case I would recommend the 3000k or 3500k.

I wouldn’t get too caught up on things like the mounting at this point. I’m really not sure if you’re gonna find enough of those strips in stock anywhere. In which case, we’ll look at some other alternatives. But I’ve done them 4 different ways, mounting will be least of your issues. I promise.


Arrow has 9 of the 3000k in stock atm at 11.88
You can order the 3500k from digikey with a minimum purchase of 1 with a lead time of 4 weeks atm
and digikey is a lot cheaper than arrow by 4$

That won’t be actual price at digikey. That’s the price per strip if you hit moq, like 200 strips I think?