Case interior RGB lighting help

Oct 5, 2018
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Hey everyone! I’m going to be constructing my very first build soon, and I wanted to know some things.

I’m getting an NZXT H500 black, but I wanted some interior lighting without breaking the bank, or going for the H500i. (I’m on a very tight budget, no more than $730). My solution to this was to buy RGB strips and put them inside the edges of the case. I have 3 questions:

Will they work?
how will I power them?
Would it be a better option to get the H500i?

Here’s my parts list: https://pcpartpicker.com/list/cM9nw6

Thanks!
 
I think instead of going for the led strip, rgb component lighting is a much better choice :

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

CPU: AMD - Ryzen 3 2200G 3.5GHz Quad-Core Processor ($98.79 @ SuperBiiz)
Motherboard: MSI - B450-A PRO ATX AM4 Motherboard ($69.99 @ B&H)
Memory: Team - T-Force Delta RGB 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR4-3000 Memory ($80.98 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung - Spinpoint F1 DT 750GB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($31.99 @ Amazon)
Video Card: PowerColor - Radeon RX 570 4GB Red Devil Video Card ($179.99 @ Amazon)
Case: NZXT - H500 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($69.99 @ Amazon)
Power Supply: Corsair - CX (2017) 550W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply ($32.98 @ Newegg)
Case Fan: Cooler Master - MasterFan Pro 120 Air Pressure RGB 3 in 1 w/RGB LED Controller 35.0 CFM 120mm Fans ($34.99 @ Amazon)
Monitor: Acer - KG241Q bmiix 23.6" 1920x1080 75Hz Monitor ($109.83 @ Amazon)
Keyboard: Redragon - K552 Wired Gaming Keyboard ($29.99 @ Amazon)
Total: $739.52
Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
Generated by PCPartPicker 2018-10-15 23:56 EDT-0400

Use AMD StoreMI for a 250gb of ssd like drive with 1gb of system ram.
 
If you want to stay with your original idea of simply adding RGB lighting strips into your case (rather than lighting included in system components as above), I suggest you do NOT use the YHG RGB strip kit in your list. But first, some basics of RGB lighting.

There are TWO common RGB lighting systems in use in computers these days, and they are different and incompatible, so you need to get the right type IF you want your mobo to control them. Now, that is not necessary - the YHG system you linked has its own separate power supply and controller system which is manual control only, and does not need to be matched to your mobo unless you want additional features. The simpler system based on type 5050 LED's uses a 12 VDC supply to the strip and has three LED colours at each light node, so manipulating those three can produce many colours. The lighting devices have a FOUR-pin connector on the end. In operation, the entire strip will all be the same colour at any one time, although the controller can change that for the whole strip at once any time. If you use a RGB Splitter to connect two strips to the output of a single controller, or if you "daisy-chain" one strip onto the end of another, all the strips will do the same thing, so they are co-ordinated with each other.

The second type is called Addressible RGB or ADDR RGB or ARGB. In it, each node has the three LED colours but also a controller chip for that node only. The strip has a THREE-pin connector (looks like the 4-pin of the other type, but with one pin missing) and it is supplied with 5 VDC on two pins, plus a controller signal line. The controller signals are sent down to all the separate controller chips in the strip, but each has its own address and operates differently from others in the strip. So the lighting effects can be more complex if the controller sends signals to do things like have a sequence of colours travel down the strip. If you use a RGB Splitter to connect two or more strips to a single controller output port, all the strips will receive the same signals and do the same thing, so again they are co-ordinated. Because both the voltage supply and the control systems are different, these two systems are incompatible.

Now, the YHG system you linked has its own power supply and controller included, so compatibility with your mobo is NOT an issue. But it only has manual control possible using its control box. Further, and of more concern I think, is that reviewers claim it is troublesome with poor adhesive for attaching the strip in your case. It seems attractive to get 5 metres (over 16 ft) of strip to string around, and you CAN cut it shorter, because that is too much stuff to fit into a computer case. (This type of RGB lighting system originally was sold for use in houses as accent lighting systems, not for computer cases.) But if you cut it shorter, the piece you cut off is useless unless you spend money to buy and install a new connector on the ends and then get a cable to plug that into something. So in effect you are limited to using ONE continuous strip of whatever length you choose.

The length also becomes an issue IF you decide you would rather connect this strip to your mobo's RGB lighting header and let its software tools control the strip effects. This certainly CAN be done. Your mobo has such a header - download its manual as a .zip file containing a .pdf document here

https://www.msi.com/Motherboard/support/B350-TOMAHAWK#down-manual

and see p. 35. The mobo header is of the 4-pin plain 5050 RGB type, and so is the YHG system you linked, so they ARE compatible. However, that strip is 5 m long, and will consume about 5 to 6 A maximum current, BUT the mobo header can only supply up to 3A max. SO, you would NEED to cut the strip length to no more than 3m (about 9 ft) anyway to meet that mobo header limit, but that CAN be done.

As an alternative suggestion, consider instead buying a couple of much shorter RGB strips that are more reliable and can be mounted separately (instead of in a single continuous strip) and connected together in a "daisy chain" fashion by a cable. Then that two-strip system can be plugged into your mobo's RGB header and controlled by it and the software utility that comes with your mobo. The limits here are that the total current draw by two strips cannot exceed 3 A, and they must be of the simpler 5050 4-pin type. For this option, I suggest the Phanteks PH-LEDKT_Combo kit here

https://www.amazon.com/Phanteks-PH-LEDKT_M4-Strip-400mm-Length/dp/B01HUFMIZ2/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1539704039&sr=8-3&keywords=rgb%2Bstrip&th=1

It contains two strips of 40 cm (about 16 in) each, and each draws 0.4 A max. The kit contains an adapter cord to allow the non-standard connector on the end of a strip to be plugged into the standard 4-pin RGB header of your mobo, and an extension cord to connect the second strip to the end of the first. The strips contain magnets embedded in the strip to attach to your case, plus some double-sided adhesive tape as an alternative. It is possible (considering the current rating) to buy an additional strip and extension cord to add more RGB lighting if you choose.

Regarding the lighting effects available this way (control by software in your computer rather than by manual external box), see the info on your mobo, the MSI B350 Tomahawk, which includes their Gaming app that can manipulate the RGB lighting effects. I found this YouTube video posted by someone who used this combination - helps see and understand what you can achieve and how with such a system.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b7yxrF6grMY
 

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