Nanoleaf Light Panel Review: Canvas & Aurora Roundup

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The Nanoleaf Range Uncovered and All the Nanoleaf Alternatives

Lighting can change the way any corner of your house looks. Even the most beautiful piece of art can look like an eyesore if placed in the wrong kind of light. If you are looking to add some accent lighting to your house and don’t want to compromise on quality, Nanoleaf’s range of smart light panels cannot be overlooked. The company produces light panels and two different shapes — triangles and squares — giving you the freedom to install a bunch of them in a manner that fits well with the aesthetics of your home. Keep reading to find out more about the Nanoleaf light panels range and the alternatives that you can turn to if you want to try something similar, yet different!

Benefits of Using Nanoleaf Products 

There are many things that set the Nanoleaf light panels apart from their competitors in the field. First and foremost, the panels are impeccably designed and very easy to install and set up, which means that you have the freedom of putting them together in any way possible. While some people complain about the pricing being on the higher side, it is very easy to justify it because of the host of features on offer. This includes touch sensitivity, an in-built music module in some cases, and so much more! The features will be discussed in more detail under individual products.

Company History

Nanoleaf is relatively new on the lighting scene, as it was founded as recently as 2012. However, that has not stopped the company from carrying out innovative research in the field to give you personalized lighting solutions. The journey started when the three co-founders of the company — Christian Yan, Gimmy Chu and Tom Rodinger — met during the University of Toronto’s World Solar Challenge. They started off by developing one light bulb in 2012, and today they have a head office in Toronto, Canada along with supporting offices in Shenzhen, China, and Paris, France. 

Nanoleaf Light Panels

The most popular products manufactured by Nanoleaf are the light panels and in this section, we will be delving deeper into the two main light panels offered by the company. This may help you understand which of these panels suit your needs better.

Nanoleaf Canvas

The Nanoleaf Canvas is the company’s relatively newer innovation, which introduced square light panels as opposed to the triangular ones that the company had become synonymous with. Each package comes with 9 light squares that can be installed in whatever manner suits your needs.


  • Reactive to touch
  • Connected across edges
  • Rhythm mode
  • Easy setup with Nanoleaf app
  • Voice commands with Siri, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa


  • As all the light panels are reactive to touch, you can set up different personalized commands and activate them by touching the surface.
  • The setup process is fairly simple and you can use the included foam tape to put the panels in place.
  • It is compatible with Apple HomeKit, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.


  • The Canvas light panels are slightly smaller than the triangular ones that we will be discussing next.


This is one of the best ambient lights that you can place in your house because of the large host of features that you get with it. The Rhythm mode is a definite upgrade for people who want their lights to feel the music.

Nanoleaf Rhythm (Formerly Called Aurora)

The original bunch of light panels produced by Nanoleaf was known as Aurora. The company is still producing these but with a bunch of extra features and a new name — Nanoleaf Rhythm. These are triangular light panels that come with an add-on Rhythm module, which allows your lights to react instinctively to the music that is being played.


  • 9 light panels per package
  • Rhythm upgrade
  • Customizable through Nanoleaf app
  • Voice commands to Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant
  • Works with IFTTT


  • The Rhythm mode is a definite game changer.
  • The lights are slightly cheaper than the Nanoleaf Canvas products.
  • The app is easy to use, but you can also turn to Siri, Alexa or Google Assistant to control your lights.


  • The shape may not be in line with everyone’s aesthetic sensibilities.
  • The touch controls that Canvas offers are missing.


The triangular shape of the light panel adds a tinge of drama to the overall look of the lights. However, it won’t just be the looks that you would be investing in. The Nanoleaf Rhythm has all the features that you need in a good set of accent lights.

Nanoleaf Accessories

While the light panels have already been discussed before, it is time to look at the different Nanoleaf accessories that the company manufactures to make your overall experience seamless.

Nanoleaf Remote

The first accessory on the list is a Bluetooth-enabled smart remote that not only allows you to control the Nanoleaf light panels, but also any other Apple HomeKit products that you may have in your house. The remote has 12 different sides, each of which can be programmed to deliver different commands. This way, when you place one side in the top-most position, the scene that has been programmed into that side is activated.

Flex Linkers for Light Panels

The original light panels that you receive as a part of the package will come with rigid linkers, but you can upgrade the functionality of the light panels by choosing flex linkers. Each of these linkers — there are 9 in each package — can bend up to 180 degrees to give your light panels more mobility.

Screw Mounting Kit

The light panels come with foam tape that can be used to fix them in place. However, there are often some surfaces where the tape doesn’t work in a satisfactory manner. Here, you can opt for the screw mounting kit available on the Nanoleaf website.   includes 12 screw mounts, 12 wall anchors, 12 steel screws, as well as 4 of the flex linkers that were mentioned above.

DMX Adaptor

The last Nanoleaf accessory to be discussed here is the DMX adapter, which can be used to operate the light panels through any DMX512 compatible control board. This product is essentially a signal converter and a control interface that can be connected to the light panels to give you greater control over their functionality.

Nanoleaf Alternatives

If you are looking for lights that look similar or offer features that are similar to the ones offered by Nanoleaf, you may find yourself in luck, as we have compiled a list and reviewed some of the popular Nanoleaf alternatives. After going through this list, you may be able to ascertain whether the alternatives suit your need or not.

Lifx “Feature Lights” Range: Strip / Beam / Tiles 

Lifx is another company that offers a great range of accent lights that you can use to take your home’s appeal to the next level. The range includes strip kits, beam kits and tiles, which come in a set of three or five pieces. The devices can be linked to the app using Wi-Fi and then controlled remotely.


  • 64 color zones
  • Option to create themes
  • Controlled through app
  • No hub required


  • The installation process is fairly simple and you don’t need a separate hub.
  • The app can be used to control the functionality of the tiles.
  • You get limitless color options.


  • The tiles cost significantly more than the Nanoleaf Canvas, especially when the number of elements is considered.


If you aren’t looking for some of the more sophisticated features offered by Nanoleaf, the Lifx range is also a great basic option. It is easy to control and looks good.

Brione Smart LED Light 

If you are looking for another set of light panels that move according to the music that you are playing, the Brione Smart LED lights may be worth a shot. These lights can be controlled through a remote control for one variant and with the company’s app in the other one. You can choose from a wide range of colors to get the exact effect you desire.


  • Music and remote control
  • Great colors and variable hue control
  • App control option
  • Personalize lighting


  • These lights are relatively more affordable than a lot of the other options.
  • You can choose from a wide range of colors and set up your own patterns.
  • The installation process is fairly simple.


  • You have to choose between the music and app control or music and remote control, which can be a dealbreaker.


This is great for people who want their light to dance with their music but want to save a little bit of money in the process. While the other features may not be remarkable, this product covers all the basics.

Yescom Wi-Fi Smart Light 

If you are not necessarily looking for a wall mounted lighting option, the Yescom Smart Light definitely deserves a mention on the list. This light comes with 10 different tiles that you can build up to the shape you like. It is mounted on the base that it comes with and can be placed on any flat surface. 


  • Control through app
  • Voice commands to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
  • Dimmable lights
  • Wide range of colors


  • This is the most affordable set of lights in this category.
  • You have the option to use voice control through Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.
  • There is no intricate installation process and you don’t need a hub or bridge.


  • You can only add two of these sets — 20 blocks — together at one point.
  • It cannot be put up on a wall.


This is a great option for people who don’t want to spend too much money but would like to add some accent lighting to their house. As it comes with a base, it can simply be placed on a table or a desk.

Frequently Asked Questions

After going through some of the most popular Nanoleaf products and some great alternatives, you may find yourself better equipped to pick one that suits your needs. However, there may still be some questions that may be on your mind. To answer all of these, we have compiled this list of the most frequently asked questions about Nanoleaf.

  • What are Nanoleaf light panels?

Formerly known as Aurora light panels by Nanoleaf, these are small triangular light panels that can be pieced together to form your desired shape and size, giving you a highly personalized lighting experience.

  • Does Nanoleaf need Wi-Fi?

Yes, Nanoleaf products do require Wi-Fi for setting up your Nanoleaf products. The light panels, however, also come with their own Wi-Fi hotspot, which can be very helpful when you are setting up the device with an enterprise router.

  • How big is a Nanoleaf panel?

One single Nanoleaf light panel weighs 210 grams. The panel is 21 cm high and 24 cm long, which can seem very small, but they are sold in sets of 9 panels, 15 panels or even 30 panels. This can work out to be a large light installation.

  • Does Nanoleaf work with Google Home?

Yes, Nanoleaf can be integrated with your Google Home devices and then controlled through voice commands to the Google Assistant. The initial setup, however, has to be done with the Nanoleaf app.

  • How many Nanoleaf panels can you connect?

While you have the freedom of bringing in multiple Nanoleaf light panels and putting them together, only 30 panels can be put together and controlled at one time. If you want to go beyond that number, you will need a separate controller and power supply. 

  • Does Nanoleaf work with Alexa?

Yes, Nanoleaf products like the light panels are compatible with Amazon Alexa. After the initial setup process using the company’s app, you can integrate the device with Amazon Alexa and control its functions through voice commands.

Nanoleaf has developed some very innovative smart lighting options that you may find yourself drawn to, especially because of the creativity involved in the design. If you are looking for wall accent lights that can be controlled remotely and add that tinge of style to the insides of your home, it is difficult to go wrong with Nanoleaf. However, if you still aren’t convinced, you can also consider some of the alternatives mentioned on this list.

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