UPDATE: The current DIODER set that IKEA sells is now much more “yellow” and less bright. They look almost identical to the LEDBURG but cost twice as much. If your looking for bright, clean, while light this is not what you want anymore.
A while back I wrote an instructable on bias lighting for my computer monitors. As a quick recap bias lighting is a way to reduce eyestrain by back lighting your video source. It’s why watching tv in a completely dark room is so hard on your eyes.
So I was happy with the setup I had but when I was at IKEA last time I saw that they came out with a bright white only version of the Dioder at a lower price which is perfect for what I wanted which was a color of light closer to daylight. So long story short I bought two of them and brought them home to swap out my current IKEA Ledberg ones.
This time around I wanted to do things a little different. I wanted to see if I could run two sets off a single power supply to reduce my power consumption. To do that I grabbed my digital multimeter and set it up to measure amperage. Next I figured out the maximum amperage the power supply could put out using this formula (amp = watt / volt). The label of the power supply says 12v 5w which means it can run a max of 416 mA by my logic. With just one light strip connected it was only pulling 52mA. I then slapped all 8 (4 per package, I bought two remember) and the amperage still only hit 250mA which you can see in the second pic below.
Once I had that confirmed the next step was really just slapping them on the monitors (I have two HP x2301′s). I played around with a few layouts but ended up with the “M” shaped one below. Everybody might be different and I didn’t see any real different in light with all my mockups. I attached them using the double sticky tape they came with but didn’t bother with the metal clips. I then ran the two wires back to the power supply and I was done. The thing that makes these so much easier than the Ledbergs was that they come with little pigtails connectors so I didn’t have to de-solder and make them myself like I did with the Ledbergs. It’s literally plug and play!
Now that this was done I didn’t want to just throw away my Ledberg bias lighting setup. First thing I wanted to do was see if I could pull off the same power setup and run the two sets off just one power supply. Just like above I hooked up my DMM, set it to amperage and lo and behold a single strip only pulls 42mA, three pulls a mere 119mA and all six only pull 198mA! The specs on the power supply were identical to the Dioder so that means I’m well within my limit of 416mA max. All that was left was to slap the on the back of my work monitor (which I connect to my work laptop obviously).
One thing to mention when measuring amperage is that you have to cut the positive power supply. So unless I feel like getting the soldering iron and heat shrink out that means I ruined a Ledberg power supply. My sacrifice is your gain….although I might use it to add LED’s to my Kegerator. Point is both systems can easily support at least two sets of lights on a single power supply. I have all the lights (Dioder and Ledberg) connected to a single foot switch under my desk and all together they pull 10w. I don’t think that’s too shabby.