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Hey all. Not an expert when it comes to this, so figured I would ask around.

Looking to do some lighting in a large cabinet. Can't run power to it, so will be battery powered. Lights will be on a switch for cabinet being open or closed.

Wanted to try using LED light strips. They seem economical and can be a fun project.

Any experience out there with the practical difference between 5050 led strips and 3528 led strips?

From what i can tell the 3528 pull about 4.8 amps per meter, and the 5050 pull about 6 amps per meter. They are 12 v.

Assuming I get 2 amps per AA battery and need 8 AA batteries to get me to 12 v.....I get about 3 meters of 3528's vs 2 meters of 5050's.

Thoughts?

-Vick
 

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Lots of problems here.

I don't think those LEDs draw nearly that much current. An AA battery with a 2 amp load would be very hot and very dead very quickly. If you were able to get 2 amps from a AA battery and wired 8 of them in series you would have 12v but still only 2 amps available. To increase the current output capacity, say to 4 amps, you would need another 8 batteries in parallel with the first 8.

Look into one lead acid 12V battery to run this. And double check those LED specs. Seems like those are high numbers. Unless they are REALLY bright.
 

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5050s are about double the lumens output of 3528s. I have 5050s in bright white as under-cabinet lighting in my kitchen. With a single strip its bright enough that I sometimes don't even turn on the kitchen lights in the evening, just the 5050s. I have 3528s in my safe and in an enclosed space they're plenty bright. Depending on how much light you need, 3528s may be sufficient.

Here are the 3528s in the safe. This is about 12' of 3528s. I'll try and get a pic of the 5050s for comparison.



I can't speak to battery power as I always run mine off transformers.
 

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Lots of problems here.

I don't think those LEDs draw nearly that much current. An AA battery with a 2 amp load would be very hot and very dead very quickly. If you were able to get 2 amps from a AA battery and wired 8 of them in series you would have 12v but still only 2 amps available. To increase the current output capacity, say to 4 amps, you would need another 8 batteries in parallel with the first 8.

Look into one lead acid 12V battery to run this. And double check those LED specs. Seems like those are high numbers. Unless they are REALLY bright.
NO LEAD *ACID* batteries near the guns!!!!!! unless you want a safe full of rust

they're more likely 4.8 Milliamps... (a quick look found .36 watt/foot)

And then - that 2 amps you mentioned, that's AmpHOURs... a "2 amp" battery will give you 2 amps for ONE hour.

IKEA has a bunch of LED strip solutions - not sure about battery powered though, but not expensive.
 

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I just built a cabinet and lit the inside with this 5 meter strip.

LE Lampux 12V Flexible LED Strip Lights, LED Tape, Warm White, 300 Units 3528 LEDs, Non-waterproof, Light Strips, Pack of 16.4ft/5m https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00HSF64JG/ref=cm_sw_r_awd_YCRYvbCBZG8B3

That whole strip draws less than 1.2 amps at 12v. And it lights up this big cabinet bright. This is dimmed down to a little more than half brightness. But these are not running off batteries. There is a small 12v power pack in the base cabinet.

 

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Vick, just noticed your numbers seem to be off a bit. I believe 5050s are .2W/led and 3528s are .08W/led. Each strip varies in density as well. You can get 3528s with 300 or 600 LEDs per 5m, 2A or 4A respectively. Most 5050s are 300 per 5m, or 5A.
 

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As for battery, I would use something like a rechargeable 12v LION battery pack. Something like this. SLA batteries tend to drain when not used. LION batteries will last much longer when left idle.
 

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I have built this kind of stuff commercially, and recently did several dozen stand-alone battery powered LED display case lights for a well-known French design house that begins with a "C".

We went through several iterations- it CAN be done, but you will need a charging station (had to build them a custom one) and it's cumbersome to set up- you'll need to use a PWM LED driver "puck" to maximize your battery life. We could not use Lithium batteries (Li-Ion or Li-Po) because of international shipping restrictions. That likely won't apply in your case. Your best bet IMO is probably a 6V Gel-cell (wheelchair battery) the puck will do buck-boost to get you to the right voltage.

In my opinion, your needs are much better served (and lower labor costs in the long run) using a transformer and LV line- the LV line can be 18/2 alarm cable, the real issue for a commercial space is most of the LED strip is not UL approved, so you have to source a UL strip or pay like $1200 to get some dude to come put a sticker on it. Could you get away without that in your EXISTING retail store? Probably. But not new construction.

If I read your post correctly, the lights are only to come on when the cabinet is opened? Then you might want to consider a rechargeable battery and solar array to power it, depending on location. Harbor freight and the like sell solar shed lights that include a storage capacitor. Cheap. But I haven't used them and I don't know what the realistic output is.

ETA: One of these guys will effectively double your battery life:
 
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