By Request: The new dual-connector SolStrip X2
You asked for it, and you got it. Photon Solutions is excited to present the company’s latest iteration of its horticultural LED light strips, the dual-connector SolStrip X2. Brought to you, by, well, you…
If you’ve read some of my blog posts here you’ll know I advocate parallel wiring schemes in LED strip light projects for the added cushion of safety over high-voltage series-wired designs. Most LED DIY shops promote series wiring, arguing that series is simpler, “cleaner”, and offers more protection for delicate and expensive COB lights. Human safety is given short shrift by the series folks, IMO.
Luckily, we are building lights with LED strips, which by design have overpowering protection designed into them, negating the protective advantage of series wiring and allowing us to use much safer (for humans and light-emitting diodes) parallel circuits using ultra-low 24 and 36 volt power supplies.
This wiring style works well with SolSheets, where the “spider” of power leads leading to each SolStrip in a SolSheet lamp is easily contained within the lamp housing. But as several SolStrip DIYers have mentioned, it is less ideal in the increasingly popular SolStix Rack systems, where parallel wiring harnesses stretched across six and eight-strip racks can create a spaghetti-knot of wiring held together by a dozen or more connectors, like this:
The dual-connector design eliminates the mess and fuss of parallel wiring designs in rack systems by placing a dual-conductor, single-pole Molex connector at each end of the X2 strip. The design allows for all positive leads to be run along one side of the strips, using only the strip connectors, and all negative leads to be run along the opposite side. The design eliminates the overlapping wiring and additional connectors needed for extended rack designs, like this:
The new dual-connector X2 SolStrips will be offered exclusively with our X2 SolStix going forward, unless the single-connector design is requested. It should make for easier and cleaner rack builds, allowing builders to neatly tuck their wiring harnesses into the rack support hardware, and minimizing the number of connectors - and potential continuity issues - per circuit.
It wasn’t our idea, but it was a good idea, and the direct result of input from the SolStrip builder community. Keep offering those good ideas and we will continue using them to make SolStrips even better. -b420