Difference Between RGB, RGBW(4in1), and RGB-CCT(5in1) LED Strip

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LED strip lights are an economical and beautiful way to illuminate our houses. RGB is one of the classics, not only can use white light, or single color, but also a wide range of customizable colors. And in response to market demand, a new product RGBW has now been developed, which adds an additional white light chip to the mix, 4 in 1 chip. And RGB-CCT,5 in 1 chip, which add two white light chips are added on the basis of RGB.

What is an RGB LED strip?

RGB denotes Red, Green, and Blue. That is why RGB LED light is known as 3 in 1 chip LED strip.  RGB LED lights combine these three colors to produce approximately 16 million hues of light. Although pigment color such as brown or pink is difficult to achieve, and some colors are just outside the triangular range of RGB LEDs, it provides a considerable variety. RGB LED strip can also produce white color with the combination, but it is not pure enough.

The accessories of RGB LED light are universal because it has a four pins input. Also, RGB LED light is cost-effective. So, if you are looking for a color change and dynamic LED option, RGB might be the best available cost-effective option.

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5050 RGB LED strip
RGB LED chip

What is an RGBW LED strip?

RGBW denotes Red, Green, Blue, and White colors. This is why this LED strip is called four in one LED strip. This LED strip is similar to RGB LED light but with white color as an addition. So, along with 16 million RGB LED variations, the white color produced by RGBW is purer than the RGB LED strip, which had blue content in white color.

RGBW can be divided into three different products;

  1. RGBW- It includes Red, Green, Blue, and White colors.
  2. RGBWW- It includes Red, Green, Blue, and Warm White colors.
  3. RBGCW- It includes Red, Green, Blue, and Cool White colors.
Three shades of RGBW LED strip

RGBW LED light accessories are also universal, but RGBW has five inputs compared to four inputs of RGB. This one extra pin is due to the white color addition, and it also increases the cost. That is why RGBW is costly as compared to the RGB LED strip. Its main application includes the sites where pure white light, pure warm white, or pure cool white light is required.

RGBW chip

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What is the RGB-CCT LED Strip?

RGB denotes Red, Green, and Blue, and CCT denotes correlated color temperatures. It is the Five in One LED strip. The colors include Red, Green, Blue, White, and Warm White. It can be considered an upgraded version of RGBW because it does not have a fixed color temperature like warm white or cool white but has two color temperature LED strips. Warm white color temperature is usually 2700K, and cool white color is 6000K. Color temperature adjustment allows toggling between these two temperatures to get the desired results.

If you need regular adjustment between cool white, white, and warm white, RGB CCT LED a strip is an ideal option. It is costlier than RGB and RGBW LED strip but certainly allows more options in color adjustment.

RGB-CCT LED chip

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How to Choose Between RGB, RGBW, and RGB-CCT LED Strip?

RGB is the most commonly used LED strip but the additional features offered by RGBW and RGB-CCT are quickly helping them find a space in the LED market. While choosing an LED for you, keep these things in mind:

  • Budget: RGB is the cheapest of the three among RGB, RGBW, and RGB-CCT. Also, RGB allows a comprehensive color combination facility. So, if you are running low on budget, RGB is the best option.
  • Permanent white color: If you want any one of these: white, warm white, cool white color, and Red, Green, and Blue, RGBW is the perfect option. For this, remember purchasing RGBW for white, RGBWW for warm white, and RGBCW for cool white. It is a more costly option than RGB but cheaper than the RGB-CCT LED strip.
  • Adjustable white color: If you are unsure which white color to use, you can go for the RGB-CCT LED strip. It has an adjustable white color scheme along with Red, Green, and Blue. It provides 16 million color variations of RGB and three options of RGBW; RGBW, RGBWW, and RGBCW in one LED. It can cost more but will provide the most comprehensive range to choose the color theme.

How to Connect an LED Strip to an LED Power Supply?

While connecting an LED strip to an LED power supply, few things must be kept in mind:

  1. The combined voltages of LED power strip lights should be less than the power supply’s total output.
  2. Identify the type of connection on the ‘Power supply’ side.
  3. Identify the type of connection on the ‘LED strip’ side.
  4. Using soldering or solderless connectors to connect LED strips.
  5. The connection can be either in series or parallel, but a series connection is not recommended if there are many LED strips attached because it can cause a voltage drop.

For a more precise understanding, look at this chart and apply the above five steps.

How to connect an LED

How to Choose RGB, RGBW, and RGB-CCT LED Strip Controller?

LED controller control LED lights to display the function of the switch. The driver circuit of the LED power supply is controlled by a programmed controller so that the power output of the supply can be adjusted according to the needs.

The different types of LED controller available in the market are:

  • RF LED controller
  • IR LED controller
  • Tunable white LED controller
  • DMX 512 controller
  • DALI RGB controller
  • 0-10V LED controller
  • Programmable RGB LED controller
  • Bluetooth LED controller
  • Wi-Fi LED controller

These controllers give a wide variety of controlling the LED strip lights from your home without even moving an inch. For example, a Bluetooth LED controller can work in an area where no other network is available. Also, a programmable RGB LED controller can be programmed through an application on a smartphone. However, choosing a controller for LED strip light depend on the type of project. More complex programmable controllers like DALI and DMX 512 LED controllers are used in larger buildings only.

Most controllers are compatible with RGB, RGBW, and RGB-CCT LED strips and can be used alternatively. While choosing an LED controller, the usage of LED strips should be kept in mind and not the LED driver or any other complex technicalities.

For more information about LED driver and controllers for the led strip you can visit the below articles:

In a nutshell, you have a wide variety while choosing an LED strip for your use. The final decision of choosing a suitable LED will depend on your budget, usage of LED, and the number of color variations required.

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