Spotless LED Strip is a type of lighting that utilises Chip on Board (COB) technology. It creates a ‘spotless’ or smooth effect, resulting in uninterrupted, seamless finish that looks especially good on strip lighting.
Despite COB technology existing since the 1960s, it has only recently become a practical option for use in the lighting industry. With both the reduction of cost and labour required to create circuits with COB LED, this made spotless LED strips an cost effective option for the average consumer and it has become a very popular option to illuminate your property both indoors and outdoors for both commercial and residential applications.
Whilst COB and SMD LED are both used for the creation of LED Strip light, they are both different in how they are manufactured as well as the finish in the resulting LED strip.
Firstly, COB stands for ‘Chip on Board’, this refers to how the chips (LED diodes in this case) and integrated circuits are attached directly to a printed circuit board. As opposed to this, SMD (Surface Mounted Devices) refers to how the LED chips are mounted directly on one side of the printed circuit board using surface mount technology, as opposed to being on board when created. Due to this difference in manufacturing, COB LED strips produce much less heat and are much more efficient compared to SMD LED strips.
The differences between COB LED and SMD LED are also visual, for instance, COB LED strip does not suffer from ‘hotspots’ like SMD LED strip, this being a juxtaposition between dark and light, resulting in an unpleasant contrast between the strip and the surface. On the other hand, COB LED cannot be multicoloured like SMD LED, this means colour-changing or RGB COB is not possible. The main difference however, is the appearance of the strip when using COB LED, due to the chips being engraved directly into the circuit board, a spotless effect is created. This means the COP LED strip has a smooth finish from beginning to end, as opposed to SMD LED strip which has spots in between chips.
COB LED strips are brighter than SMD LED strips. This is as a result of the greater lumen-per-watt efficiency of COB LED. This means you can create the same or greater amount of light with less COB LED strip compared to SMD LED strip.
Just like regular LED strips, COB LED strips are designed to be cut to match the length required for your lighting and design needs. LED strip has set cut points that you must cut to if you want to shorten the length of your LED strip.
The maximum length of COB LED strips is 8 metres. The reason it can be no greater than this is because electrical cables do not have zero resistance. To elaborate, when power is being pulled across the electrical wire inside the LED strip, some of it is converted to heat within the line. If this happens, the tail end of your LED strip would look yellowish and not match the colour output of the rest of your strip. This is due to the colours red and green passing through correctly, but the colour blue not making it through due to the required power to produce white light being lost earlier in the LED strip.