Though I’ve always been interested in gardening, amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and being stuck at home nearly all the time, I’ve really dove headfirst into the hobby.
Whether it’s borrowing a few flat rocks from a nearby Lake Ontario retaining wall for a path, building overpriced raised wooden garden beds or trying to outsmart the never-ending onslaught of animals trying to eat my plants, I’ve enjoyed every moment of creating my personal backyard oasis over the past year.
That’s why when Philips reached out to me regarding trying the company’s Amarant White and Colour Ambiance Linear Outdoor Lights, I jumped at the opportunity. I already have a wide array of Hue products, including Smart Bulbs, Lamps, Lightstrips and of course, a Hub, so the setup process was relatively simple.
It’s worth noting that like a lot of Hue’s outdoor lights, the Amarant doesn’t come with its own power supply. This means that unless you already own a power supply you purchased for other outdoor Hue lights, like the cylinder-shaped Calla lights, for example, you’ll need to buy a $79 power adapter on top of the $199 Amarant light.
On the more positive side, Hue’s ecosystem of outdoor lights is surprisingly modular. I used a Hue extension cable to extend my outdoor lighting setup along my fence, with the Amarant light in the middle behind my garden and one of my two Calla lights in the back corner of my backyard.
You’ll also need a Philips Hue Bridge to connect the Amarant, though I already owned one for my other Hue lights.
I slid the Amarant Light behind my raised garden to add a little ambiance to my expanding collection of crops. Given the backlight shines on my ageing fence that’s a rapidly fading grey, certain colours stand out more than others. For example, white is barely visible, while something more vibrant like pink or orange looks great and more intense than I expected. You can also mount the Amarant Light with screws if that better suits the placement of the smart light.
Like Philips’ other outdoor lights, the LED-powered Amarant can emit 16 million different colours, works with the company’s iOS and Android app and is entirely weatherproof. For example, I’ve left my Calla lights out for several winters now and haven’t encountered any issues with them. I expect the Amarant to feature a similar level of durability. The light is also compatible with Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Home platform, allowing it to work with voice commands.
As with all of Hue’s products, the Amarant is expensive, but in a sense, you really do get what you pay for. There may be cheaper ambient smart outdoor lights available, but in my experience, they don’t come close to matching the vibrancy, reliability and overall versatility of Hue’s product line.