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Moonside Neon Lighthouse Review: A Simple, Sleek Smart Lamp

Rating: 7/10 ?
  • 1 - Absolute Hot Garbage
  • 2 - Sorta Lukewarm Garbage
  • 3 - Strongly Flawed Design
  • 4 - Some Pros, Lots Of Cons
  • 5 - Acceptably Imperfect
  • 6 - Good Enough to Buy On Sale
  • 7 - Great, But Not Best-In-Class
  • 8 - Fantastic, with Some Footnotes
  • 9 - Shut Up And Take My Money
  • 10 - Absolute Design Nirvana
Price: $96.90
Moonside Neon Lighthouse Blue Light On Desk
Megan Glosson / Review Geek

The smart light market has exploded since Phillips Hue bulbs launched nearly a decade ago. Now, there are many options for smart bulbs, fixtures, and lamps that people can control from a smart device. However, the Moonside Neon Lighthouse is by far one of the slimmest additions to the lineup.

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not the best when it comes to interior design. Although I enjoy the character that decor can add to a home, I am all about functionality as much as I am aesthetics. However, I do think there are instances where you can find a middle ground or, at the very least, items that offer the best of both worlds—and that’s exactly what the Moonside Neon Lighthouse is trying to achieve.

Moonside, the company that lives by the motto “smart lighting redesigned,” launched its Neon Lighthouse lamp as an homage to one of the most beloved, yet functional architectural structures in existence: the lighthouse. However, this lamp is more than just a simple beacon. Instead, it’s a fully-functional smart lamp with a sleek design and endless lighting options.

Here's What We Like

  • Sleek design
  • 50,000-hour LED lifespan
  • Tons of lighting customization options
  • Compatibility with Google Assist, Amazon Alexa, IFTTT, and Apple Homekit

And What We Don't

  • Not sturdy out-of-box
  • Less-than-stellar music responsiveness
  • Time-consuming connectivity process with smart home apps

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Simple Design, but Not Necessarily Sturdy

Moonside Neon Lighthouse Set Up Turned Off

  • Height: 14in (35cm)
  • Power: 15W USB-C adapter
  • Lifespan: 50,000 hours (10 years)
  • Base Color Options: Silver, Black, Blue, Green, Pink

The Moonside Neon Lighthouse is a sleek smart lamp with a slender, low-profile design. In fact, it looks less like a lamp and more like an aesthetic fixture that also emits light. This cylindrical smart light is made from high-end acrylic and vibrant RGB LED lights that shine in over 16 million color options. The lamp is rated to last for 50,000 hours of use and offers a total of 90 individual pixels that you can control.

The Lighthouse is attached to a small aluminum base which you can customize to come in one of five color options: black, blue, green, pink, or silver. The base also has a small USB-C port that connects to the power adapter and controller that comes in the packaging.

Moonside Lighthouse Power Adapter And Controller Placed On Desk
Megan Glosson / Review Geek

Thanks to the simplistic design, the light is easy to unpack and set up. The package includes the light, a total of two USB-C cables, the controller, and a USB-C power adapter. You can choose to leave the controller on your desk next to the lamp, or let it run along the side. Although it’s nice to have easy access to the controller to turn on and off, it’s not necessary thanks to the smartphone app, which I’ll explain in the next section.

Bottom of Moonside Neon Lighthouse Smart Lamp
Megan Glosson / Review Geek

Personally, I love that the base takes up less than an inch of space on my desk when standing upright. However, I’m not thrilled that the design lacks stability. Even though the base is aluminum, I found that even small movements of my desk (such as bumping it with my knee) made the light fall over.

If you plan to put the light upright on a surface that someone could easily bump into, I highly recommend shelling out the extra money for the aluminum base holder Moonside offers for these lights.

A Variety of Settings for Any Mood

Moonside Neon Lighthouse Smart Lamp Set For Custom Lighting Setting
Megan Glosson / Review Geek

  • Connectivity: 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth LE V4.2
  • App Availability: iOS (12.1 or later), Android (5.0 or later)

Obviously, the appeal of the Moonside Neon Lighthouse isn’t its exterior design, but its features. After all, Moonside says the light offers “endless lighting effects” through the Moonside app, so why not enjoy all it has to offer?

The app installation and connection process ran smoothly for me. I simply downloaded the app (available on iPhone and Android), then opened it and asked to “pair new device.” The app searched and found the Neon Lighthouse, then connected within a few seconds.

Once you set up the app with your device, you have dozens of customization options at your fingertips. You can set the light to simply shine a single color, choose from over 50 “lighting themes,” 21 “music reactive themes,” or fully customize your own color scheme by choosing a color for each individual pixel. You can also change the brightness or control the power all from the app.

Personally, I wasn’t thoroughly impressed with the music reactivity feature of the Moonside Neon Lighthouse, especially when compared to other smart light options. It only seemed to respond about half the time, even with upbeat music that I thought would surely trigger the reactivity. That flaw aside, I did find the variety of lighting themes to be vast, and I felt like I could find a setting to fit any mood or ambiance I wanted to match.

If you’ve got your smart home already set up, the Moonside can help you there as well. From the app, you have options to connect with several smart home platforms including Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, IFTTT, or Apple Homekit. The process is a bit complicated and requires lots of back and forth between the Moonside app and your preferred smart home app (Alexa for me), but it can be a handy addition if you’d like to control the light remotely.

Even if you don’t feel like dealing with the Moonside app or customizing anything, the light still offers several options as is. In fact, you can change the settings right from the controller that plugs directly into the light.

The 6 Best Smart Lights of 2022

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Best Starter Kit
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Best Light for Outdoors
Most Creative Option
Nanoleaf Shapes
Best Ambient Lighting
Govee Immersion

Should You Buy the Moonside Neon Lighthouse?

If you’re looking for a low-profile, feature-filled smart lamp, the Moonside Neon Lighthouse is definitely worth a look. It’s fairly affordable, compatible with multiple smart home platforms, and comes with a simple-to-operate smartphone app.

Personally, I found the Neon Lighthouse to be a simple smart lamp that would be great for someone who just needs a basic light with some fun features. The price point alone makes it much more affordable than other options, such as the Philips Hue Gradient Signe table lamp.

The compatibility with Google Assistant, Amazon Alexa, IFTTT, and Apple Homekit also gives it a leg up on some of its competitors, not to mention makes it appealing to those who already have established smart home systems. However, I wasn’t all that impressed with the stability of the design on its own, and the music responsiveness left something to be desired.

Flaws aside, the Moonside Neon Lighthouse is a beautiful addition to any home, especially at the under-$100 price point for smart lighting.

Rating: 7/10
Price: $96.90

Here’s What We Like

  • Sleek design
  • 50,000-hour LED lifespan
  • Tons of lighting customization options
  • Compatibility with Google Assist, Amazon Alexa, IFTTT, and Apple Homekit

And What We Don't

  • Not sturdy out-of-box
  • Less-than-stellar music responsiveness
  • Time-consuming connectivity process with smart home apps

Megan Glosson Megan Glosson
Megan Glosson is a freelance reviews writer for How-To Geek and Review Geek. She has over 5 years of experience researching and writing technical content for a variety of companies and online publications, including MakeTechEasier and Clean Email. She prides herself on writing content in a way that is easy to understand regardless of your level of comfort with technology. Read Full Bio »