Smart lighting is an easy way to create a mood in a room and change the feeling of space. It comes in many forms these days, from smart bulbs and light bands to all kinds of oddly shaped lamps. The Govee Flow Pro is one of those RGB accessories designed to flank a TV or monitor screen to bring a touch of diffused light and color to your setup.
It’s easy to choose colors or animations, but the real appeal of these vertical light bars is their ability to match on-screen action and react to music, all for just $ 80. It’s significantly more affordable than other devices that offer responsive smart lighting. It takes a bit of setup and finagling to make the Govee system work, but it works. The trap ? It is based on a camera.
Some parameters required
The Govee Flow Pro system comes with a pair of 10.5 inch rectangular plastic light bars and a choice of two mounting solutions: glue them to the back of a TV or monitor, or pop in. them in brackets. The light bars connect to a separate control unit via a long USB-C cable, and the camera – yes, the camera – plugs into the unit’s USB-A port. You will then need to plug in the AC adapter to the control unit to turn everything on.
The control unit has a power button, a color cycle button, and a button to switch to audio-responsive lighting, which brings us to why there’s a camera here. You point the webcam-like device at your monitor or TV so it can see what’s going on and adjust the colors of the light bars accordingly. Watching a fiery scene from a movie? The camera tries to capture the colors and directs the light bars to mimic them for a more immersive feel.
To do all of this, you first need the Govee app for the home on your phone and go through a calibration process of pasting orange foam squares on your TV screen or monitor. It took about 30 minutes to complete this installation process. Both the control unit and the camera have an adhesive backing, so you will need to carefully choose a permanent location for them. The camera is tilted to view your TV or monitor and should be in the center at the top or bottom of the screen. This will not work for all households, as some models of frameless TVs make placement on the top difficult, and placing it on the bottom may block the TV’s infrared sensor for the remote control.
Light bars are also designed for screens between 27 and 45 inches, and responsive lighting will not work well with other screen sizes. If you have a 55 inch or 65 inch TV, you can get similar functionality from Govee’s Immersion TV light strip.
Govee’s app has a ton of preset colors, scenes, and other lighting effects. It looks a bit chaotic and takes some getting used to, but it’s worth experimenting here. You can create lighting effects if you’re willing to spend some time learning how it works, and you can also schedule your light bars to turn on and off automatically.