How to Extend Philips Hue Light Strips
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I’m a big fan of using smart light strips to enhance my home lighting. They’re versatile in their placement and can be used to create a wide variety of moods. They’re also bright enough to light up a room for casual use without the need for harsh direct light sources.
I use a Philips Hue setup because it provides a fast, reliable whole home lighting system that covers sensors, switches, indoor and outdoor lights, and a huge variety of form factors and automation capabilities. Naturally Hue light strips are my go to when it comes to ambient lighting, and sizing them to fit any given need is a handy feature.
Like most smart light strips, Hue strips can be cut to length at defined intervals, or extended using handy plug in extension strips. A single Hue light strip power supply can support up to 60ft/10m of extensions, which is equal to the base strip plus 8 extension strips. That should provide coverage for most installations. Longer ones will need a second power supply and controller.
Extending a Hue Light Strip
Basic Light Strip Extension
The basic method of extending a Philips Hue light strip is to simply add the extension strips. Hue light strips all end with a female 6 pin connector. There are two sizes of these connectors; The older style known as v3, and the newer Light Strip Plus, aka v4. The newer ones use a smaller connector.
You will need:
Each extension strip will have a male version of the 6 pin connector on one end, and a female version on the other. To extend the strip you simply plug these into the loose end, they should seat firmly with a slight ‘click’ feel. Keep adding extensions up to the limit of the power supply.
That’s simple enough if you just need a longer strip, but what if you need unlit sections in your installation?
Advanced Light Strip Extension
There are plenty of situations where you might want to have light strips in a number of positions controlled by the one controller and, importantly, saving on power outlets. This could be situations like multiple shelves or cabinets, adjacent bench tops, or where you want to go around corners without the corner itself being lit or damaging the light strip by bending it too tightly.
In these cases it’s good to have a splitter to break up the light strip. For corners, and perhaps certain shelving situations, Philips Hue provides a small splitter in each extension pack. It’s a short cable about 3 inches long with the 6 pin connector on each end.
Cool, but what about it you want a longer break? Hue doesn’t provide anything for these situations. Thankfully the accessory maker Litcessory has us covered.
They make a wide variety of additional extension products for Philips Hue light strips, as well as other popular brands. In this case, you can get ribbon cable splitters in lengths of 2 inches (for corners), 6 inches, 3 feet, or 10 feet. Like the official splitter these use the same 6 pin connectors on each end. Simply insert them into your design the same as normal extension strips. Unlike the official one these are much more flexible, so can be easier to run around tight corners.
As a simple example, I wanted to backlight the shelves in a book case. Normally the only way to do this would be to run a separate lightstrip to each shelf. All that extra cable, controller complexity, cost, and use of power sockets was not appealing. By using a Litcessory splitter between the end of one shelf and the start of the next one down I could instead connect extensions along each shelf to a single controller and have it all secured away on the back of the bookcase.
For other scenarios you can also get a two-way splitter if you want to branch your light strip in two different directions, which offers more versatility than normal. If you have a mix of v3 and a v4 strip off-cuts there’s no need to waste them just because the connector changed. Litcessory has a converter for that too, so you can mix and match as needed.
Power Supply Extensions
Another problem that Philips Hue doesn’t provide for is when your power socket is too far from where you want to install the light strip. The included 8ft power cable isn’t bad, but it’s very easy to find it not long enough, and running bulky extension leads is messy when you end up having the power brick in an unsightly position.
Litcessory has a 25ft power extension lead that should resolve this is most cases, simply unplug the Hue one and replace it. This can be a godsend if you’re limited on where you can hide the cable, and it’s a lot neater not having to have the break in the middle like you would with an extension lead.
Cutting and Joining Hue Light Strips
Getting a light strip just the right length is important to give the best effect, and Hue Light Strips provide marked intervals where you can safely cut them to length. These intervals ensure the necessary electronics for each block of LEDs are not damage, and they also provide metal contacts on each side of the cut so the excess can be used elsewhere.
You can cut these easily enough with a regular pair of scissors, leaving the cut end as is. The off cut will now have the metal contacts on the cut end, and most likely a 6 pin connector on the other. Each base Philips Hue light strip strip comes with a cut-end connector. These slip onto the cut end of the strip and press spring contacts against the metal tabs. You then snap it closed to hold it tight. The provided one allows you to connect two cut ends together, but if you want to connect a 6 pin to a cut end, you’re out of luck again.
Litcessory to the rescue. They have a number of cut end connectors addressing both cut end to cut end (if you need more than Hue provides), and cut end to 6 pin connector, both male and female variants.
More About Litcessory
These guys have been around since 2014 and are real life savers for any lightstrip project that isn’t just a single run. There are plenty of cases where combining lengths on a single controller is more preferable than multiple independent runs, and the range of connectors and extensions on offer covers pretty much any situation you may run into.
Even if their splitter lengths aren’t quit what you need, they have 6 pin to RJ45 adaptors so you can use custom lengths of regular Cat5 cable to meet the exact length you might need.
The US store page has accessories for Hue, LIFX, Wiz, Lumen,, GE, Eve, and Nanoleaf strips. Other regions have only Hue and LIFX, although you can get away with using Hue v3 connections with Nanoleaf strips. The pins are a little short so they don’t hold as well, but so long as everything is secured well it will work fine in my experience.
The store page has a handy visual menu showing each model of lightstrip and where each accessory fits in, so you can figure out exactly what you need.
Oh, and they also sell rolls of lightstrip adhesive mounting tape in case you need to remove and relocate your lightstrips, as I have on multiple occasions.
The Wrap Up
Cutting and extending Philips Hue lightstrips is easy to do so long as you’re just dealing with a single continuous run, but there are plenty of good reasons to want to have more flexibility in how your lightstrips are laid out.
In those cases, accessory maker Litcessory has a wide range of additional extensions and joiners that allow you to take your lightstrip designs to the next level, and cut down on power sockets too.
Even if you use other brands of lightstrip as well, they have similar accessories for the most popular brands besides Philips Hue, so it’s worth taking a look at what else you can do when designing your next lightstrip install.