Red-Green-Blue (RGB) LED strips are all the rage these days, use them for edge lit signs, accent lighting around the home, or just for blinging out your hobby projects! One sweet feature they have is that their IP65 rated, silicone coating allows them to be used in outdoor applications.
These LED strips contain 60 RGB LEDs per meter. The strips have a self-adhesive backing that you can use to stick the strip to cabinets, enclosures or the dash in your car (probably not recommended, check the laws in your area). They include current limiting resistors, so just add 12 volts and you're good to go. We've tested this strip over 12V and while they do draw a bit more current and get a little hotter but they do okay. So using around 14VDC is fine but try not to get up around the 20VDC mark as the silicone coating on the first meter tends to like to start smoking.
Oh, and did we mention they are waterproof? They are IP65 rated which means they can handle a pretty good soaking of water. Officially the IP65 rating is described as the following: Protected against low pressure water jets from any direction.
This strip comes with a 4-pin machine socket connector that is designed to mate with the 24-key IR led controller which gives you remote control over switching the colors and effects (flash, strobe, fade, & smooth). We even have a 12V 5A supply to power this string through the LED controller or you could use a 2.1mm female power jack and provide your own supply.
Here are our the results of the tests we did with a strip of 5 meters at full white with a Phidgets precision light sensor (distance of 10" away, 55 lux of ambient light) recording lux and a variable power supply adjusting the voltage and recording the current:
Please Note: We don't recommend going higher than 14V with these strips as the current draw gets pretty high and the traces on the strip start to get quite warm.
Also Note: There is a minor color misrepresentation on the very end of the strip: the green and blue wires are the other channel's color (green=blue, blue=green).
Yet another Note: They come in 5 meter reels and are sold by the meter! If you buy 5m at a time, you'll get full reels. Less than 5m means you will receive a strip cut from a reel, which may or may not have a connector that comes with the full 5m spool. You might want a set of connectors, just in case!