Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Sparkly Ceiling

I saw several "star shower" laser projectors last christmas while driving around.

While they look pretty cool, putting them outside and potentially spraying laser light in to air traffic lanes doesn't seem like a great idea. But I thought it would probably look awesome on a ceiling!

I kept an eye out for deals on laser projectors, but the ones with blue lasers are still well above $100 each, more than I was willing to spend. But while I was out grocery shopping, I saw a display of LED-based projectors and played with one. I wound up buying a "kaleidoscope" version with red, blue and green lights for under $20 to try out at home.

I initially set it up on a camera tripod, aimed at the ceiling. With the rest of the house lights off, it actually looked pretty good!

For a permanent set up, I bought a second projector, and mounted both inside floor lamps in the Great Room:

I had to replace the original bulb with two bulbs on a y-splitter in order to fit everything inside the lamp shade.

Here is a picture with the conventional lights on, and the projectors off:

And here's a shot with the conventional lights off and the projectors on:

And here's what the ceiling looks like:

Both projectors are plugged into a zwave switch behind the couch, so it was pretty easy to add these to the rest of home automation system.

Ideally, these cheap projectors will last a few years until the laser projectors come down in price, at which point it should be a fairly simple job to upgrade from LED to laser.

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