Let there be dimmable lights!

Yeelight started the year with a bang, launching a range of smart lighting products including the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Multicolor), which was highly successful because who doesn’t want color-changing lights?

The Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) is the W3 (Multicolor)’s serious sibling, offering the same convenience that all of Yeelight’s bulbs have to offer, but this time on a more subdued level. The W3 (Dimmable) stays true to its name — it’s a smart LED bulb that you can dim.

If you didn’t know, Yeelight is owned by Xiaomi (yes, that Xiaomi), so it isn’t surprising that their smart lighting solutions are affordable yet high-quality. The company released its first-ever smart LED bulb in 2019, so it’s exciting to see how far they’ve come since then.

Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) Overview
Right off the bat, the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) is the older brother of the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb 1S (Dimmable). Their features are essentially the same but the W3 is slightly smaller and offers compatibility with additional smart home platforms.

Here are the specifications for the Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) from Yeelight’s website:

● Lamp Fitting: E27
● Rated Power: 8 Watts
● Standby Power: 0.3 Watts
● Connectivity: Wi-Fi
● Color Temperature Range: 2700K
● Dimensions: 60 x 118 mm
● Integration: Google Assistant, Alexa, MTC Smart Home, SmartThings, IFTTT, HomeKit
● Dimmable: Yes

Design
The Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) doesn’t look like your ordinary light bulb. It doesn’t have that rounded, egg-like shape that many light bulbs have, whether smart or regular. Instead, it has a slightly squared top that’s reminiscent of the Philips Hue White Ambiance Bulb, although side-by-side, the two look nothing alike. The Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) closely resembles a flashlight, while the Phillips Hue looks like an ice cream cone. However, this shouldn’t matter, as the bulb will be concealed within a lampshade, anyway. The Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) is also taller than the Phillips Hue, measuring 60 x 118 millimeters.Unlike the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb 1S, the Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) bulb is compatible with only one base, the E27. While many people would argue that E26 and E27 bulbs are technically interchangeable, we wouldn’t recommend installing the Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) bulb on an E26 socket. It might work, but it isn’t exactly safe.
Lighting Quality
The dimmable bulb can be tuned to 2700K, a warm color that’s more orange than yellow. At 2700K, the Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) offers illumination that can be likened to the way that an unadjustable light bulb would light up a room. It can emit up to 900 lumens — 100 lumens higher than the Yeelight 1S (Dimmable).The perfect way to describe the Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) at maximum brightness is that it feels like going on a fancy dinner date. Its color can be likened to candlelight.It’s important to note that the Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) is dimmable but not color-tunable. So, if you were planning on having multicolored lights, this smart bulb may not be for you. You may want to check out the Yeelight W3 (Multicolor) instead — it lets you choose from millions of colors but the downside is that it can’t be dimmed.
Setup
How long does it take to change a light bulb? With the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable), only a few minutes.Getting the bulb up and running is pretty straightforward. If you’re using a Yeelight bulb for the first time, you will have to download the Yeelight app on the App Store or Play Store. You will then have to create a Yeelight account as the app won’t let you log in through Facebook or Google.Once you’ve verified your account, you can add a device by tapping on the “+” symbol. Screw the bulb into the socket and then connect it to your Wi-Fi. This will activate its pairing mode.Keep in mind that the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) is compatible with 2.4GHz Wi-Fi networks only. If you’re having trouble connecting to a dual-band (2.4GHz/5GHz), you may want to disable the 5GHz network during setup.

Features and Smart Home Integration
The Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 can be controlled directly from your smartphone. This means that you can adjust the color temperature, turn the light on/off, and more wherever and whenever. If you’re not sure if you turned off the lights before leaving the house, you can open the app to check.

You can also create groups of lights to control multiple bulbs at once. This makes it easy to turn on/off the lights by room and to create lighting schedules. For example, if you want to turn off all of the lights except for the kitchen lights at night, you can customize this (and more) from the app.

Another plus side is its compatibility with most of the smart home systems including Google Assistant, Alexa, and HomeKit. This means that you can tell your lights what to do. We know it’s not a brand-new concept, but the convenience does make the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 worth every penny.

Testing the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable)

We tested the Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) using one bulb to see how it responded to commands from the app. The Yeelight W3 (Dimmable) was able to follow our in-app commands without noticeable delay. It consistently delivered rich warm light, but the default 2700K color temperature was a bit too orange for our liking. We quickly dimmed it down to 2000K as we found 2700K to be too distracting. If you’re planning on using the bulb as a reading light, you may have to turn its brightness down a notch.

The Yeelight bulb had no trouble responding to commands from Alexa. We were able to turn the lights on and off without repeating ourselves. However, there was a two-to-three second delay when using the smart home system to control the lights.

Our Verdict
If you’re looking for a smart lighting system that doesn’t have to be connected to a router, the Yeelight Smart LED Bulb W3 (Dimmable) is your best bet. It works perfectly fine, responding to commands such as turn on/off, dim brightness levels, etc. with ease. At around $10 cheaper than the Philips Hue White Ambiance bulb, it’s definitely a steal. It may not have the color-changing features of other bulbs, but it serves its purpose. However, if you’re looking to entertain, Yeelight’s Smart LED Bulb W3 (Multicolor) may be a better choice.