TPLink has doubled down on its smart home lineup dubbed Kasa, shining light on their second generation of Smart Light Bulbs. Like the first generation, which we reviewed here early 2017, they are offering dimmable, tunable and a multi-color variant each with their own model number.
The KL110, 120 and 130 are the new models of Kasa Smart Bulbs. Each of these units are offered in an A19 bulb E26 base configuration. All three models support Voice control with Amazon, Google, and Cortana along with scene control and scheduling via the app.
Connectivity is achieved over a 2.4GHz 1T1R radio that uses the 802.11bgn spectrum. As with the past Kasa solution, they do not require a hub to operate. Looking at the specs from Gen 1 to Gen 2, it appears efficiency has been increased slightly as power consumption has dropped from 11w to 10w for the Dimmable and Tunable models and 11 to 10.5 for the Multi-Color. Beam angle has also been increased for the Multi-Color from 180 degrees to 230 degrees.
Compatibility includes Android and iOS for the Kasa App. MSRP comes in at $34.99 for the Multi-Color, $24.99 for the Tunable and $19.99 for the Dimmable. Each carries a three-year warranty.
Packaging includes an image of the bulbs on the front with plenty of details surrounding. Each bulb has its lumens displayed below including its compatibility with Assistants.
The back goes into more detail with longevity and power consumption figures for the bulbs.
Included in the box we have the bulbs and a quick guide on how to set them up.
Aesthetically, between generation 1 and 2, the design has changed, adding in this underlying colorway to separate the models.
Diving right in, we are using version 2.4 of the Kasa Smart app for setup and control on iOS.
Just as before, we start setup by selecting the smart bulb in the bottom right.
Setup continues by connecting to the bulbs SSID and then connecting to your home network through the app. We simply repeat these steps for each bulb, naming each accordingly each time.
Each bulb has its own "selling" feature. The menu above is the Tunable bulb which allows us to choose the color temperature of the light.
The Multi-Color bulb seen above here allows you to tune the bulb color.
Each bulb has an energy usage monitor that will show both the current days usage along with estimated energy savings.
Back to the main menu, we have status of each bulb under the name long with a power switch to the right.
Coming from the first generation Kasa Bulbs, having used many other Amazon bulbs along with the LIFX that seem to be very popular, I can say the new Kasa Bulbs feel like a much higher quality bulb. From the weight to the feel of the plastics, the new Kasa bulbs are much more substantial similar to a Cree LED bulb vs a Meijer or Walmart special LED bulb. Color saturation seems much higher on the multi-color solution this time around, and that might have a lot to do with the increased beam angle. The Tunable and Dimmable solutions seem brighter than the last generation, but specs show no difference in lumens.
Kasa Smart hasn't changed too much apart from the increased traffic from the number of products supported. The menus are all still quite easy to navigate with intuitive controls, and the Wi-Fi setup process is quite effortless.
As far as pricing, the Kasa Bulbs are quite competitive in the current market; not many vendors are pushing 800 lumen Smart Bulbs at the moment, the closest competitor would likely be LIFX or Hue by Phillips which ropes you into a separate ecosystem.
Tyler's Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Prime Z370 (buy from Amazon)
- CPU: Intel Core i3 8350K (buy from Amazon)
- RAM: Corsair Vengeance 32GB 4x8GB DDR4 3200 (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: Corsair Hydro H115i (buy from Amazon)
- Case: Corsair Air 540 (buy from Amazon)
- OS Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 250GB (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: Corsair RM850x (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 (buy from Amazon)
- Wi-Fi NIC: ASUS PCE-AC88 (buy from Amazon)
- 10Gbe NIC: ASUS XG-C100C (buy from Amazon)
- Thunderbolt 3: ASUS Thunderbolt EX3 (buy from Amazon)
Last updated: Sep 24, 2019 at 12:27 am CDT
The Bottom Line: The Kasa Smart Bulb is one of the best lineups I have seen that cut no corners in quality while still being offered at a reasonable price.
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