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LED Strip 5V vs 12V, Which Is Better?


Both 5V and 12V are the most common driving voltages for LED strip lights. Some people might wonder: why there are so many different driving voltages for the LED strips? Which is better and should we choose? So let's look at their 3 differences before we jump to conclusions.

1. Driver

The LED driver can be power supply, transformer, adaptor, battery pack, and so on, which can provide electric power for the LED strips. 12V DC regularly should be produced by the specific AC-DC transformer, while 5V is more common in life. The battery pack of 3 dry-batteries, the USB port of the computer and TV, the charging treasure, etc. can be used as the driver of 5V LED lights.

5v vs 12v led drivers

2. Components

The components of the 5V LED strip and 12V LED strip is the same except the PCB. Contrast the 5V 5050 LED strip with the 12V 5050 LED strip, from the picture below, you can see that a single unit of the 12V PCB contains 3 SMD LEDs and that of the 5V PCB contains only 1 LED. Therefore, the minimum cutting length of the 5V LED strip is shorter.

5v vs 12v led strip

3. Applications

As mention above, 5V LED strip lights are can be driven by some small portable power supply devices and USB ports. It's easier to integrate into other products such as bikes, PC cases, TV backgrounds, and so on. And 12V LED light strips are used more decorative lighting and commercial lighting projects. Most of the LED strips used in homes, offices, showcases, shops, signboards, etc. are driven by 12V DC, which are more stable and durable, and the accessories are cheaper.

applications of 5v and 12v led strip lights

In conclusion, the result of 5V vs 12V LED strips is a draw. Both have their advantages and application areas. The choice should be made according to our requirements and applications.

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