Nanoleaf Lights – The Best Lighting for Streamer DJs?

nanoleaf lighting review

Nanoleaf Lights – The Best Lighting for Streamer DJs?

“Lights, Camera, Action!”

Nanoleaf lighting is taking the live-streaming world by storm, with DJs and a generation of internet content creators bringing their products to the attention of online audiences.

nanoleaf review

One incredible advantage Nanoleaf products now offer live-streaming DJs is their integration with Engine DJ hardware. Having the facility to control lights from within the decks will likely appeal to those who wouldn’t otherwise bother having a light show to go with their setup.

Although they are not the only smart lighting company to integrate with Engine DJ, their reputation now precedes them thanks to users who swear by their simple yet effective lights. 

At the Crossfader studio, we’ve had ours for a while now and can confidently say we consider ourselves fans!

Nanoleaf benefits

  • Easy to install
  • Integrate with all Engine DJ hardware via the built-in dedicated control software, Engine Lighting
  • Work with SoundSwitch for custom light shows on a track-per-track basis
  • Are sold in convenient bundles
  • Easily expand if installations need to grow
  • Have good out-of-the-box modes that include moving patterns and audio reaction, so don’t need to be used with third-party control software
  • Have their own app for controlling lighting effects

nanoleaf tutorial

What they do and how much they cost

All Nanoleaf lights serve the same purpose, to make your performance environment look great! The lights are bright and throw a nice ambient glow far against the wall, so it only takes a few to have a big impact. The LED lights have been engineered to cycle in union with a filming camera’s standard shutter speed to avoid any flickering appearing on film; a common problem when filming LED lighting. This makes them an excellent broadcasting partner!

The lights hang on the wall and click together with tabs. The shapes available are lines, hexagons and triangles, with plenty of inspiration available for pattern design on the Nanoleaf website. With the ability to mix and match, no two setups have to look the same!

A starter pack of 15 panels costs around £225, with expansion packs of between 4 and 9 panels costing up to £120. Although not the most cost-effective lights on the market, they are good value for money by offering more than similarly priced competitors!

nanoleaf app

Engine Lighting integration

DJs who own any Engine DJ hardware, such as the Denon DJ SC Prime and SC Live controllers or the Numark Mixstream Pro can control Nanoleaf lights directly from within their DJ hardware.

Engine Lighting, the control software built into Engine DJ OS, places plenty of convenient control over the lights at a user’s fingertips. The function is plug and play and integration is effortless, taking just a few button presses.

The lighting parameters include options for changing the type of pattern displayed, the colour and strobe intensity, and being able to white or black out all of the lights at once. 

Most of the modes are reactive to audio. To create various levels of energy, the lights can be set to react according to different lengths of musical time. If reacting to a single bar of music at a time, for example, high energy is achieved. And if reacting every 4 bars, a much more relaxed tone is created.

engine dj nanoleaf


For even more control over the lights, users can integrate SoundSwitch with Engine Lighting to control their Nanoleaf lights. 

SoundSwitch is a professional light show software which allows for very precise lighting instructions and automation which are not available in Engine Lights alone. As an example, lights can automatically respond to bespoke commands like completely blacking out when the phrase “turn the lights out” is said on a track.

SoundSwitch is typically used with specialist external equipment like the Control One, which connects professional DMX lights to the DJ rig and controls them. However, this is not necessary when used with Nanoleaf, as the lights connect to SoundSwitch via Wi-Fi instead.

Editing a light show in SmartSwitch

There are a couple of ways to use SoundSwitch with Engine Lights:

The first is to prepare music files within the desktop version of SoundSwitch, writing light show metadata to them. Engine Lights can then execute this metadata. Once the metadata has been recorded to the music files, export them to a USB drive to be plugged into some Engine DJ hardware.

The second way to integrate SoundSwitch with Engine Lights is by running the software on a computer in conjunction with the Engine DJ hardware. The Wi-Fi network needs to be the same for the Nanoleaf lights, the computer and the Engine DJ hardware for them all to “see” each other. 

The functions found in Engine Lights are free of charge. SoundSwitch is a monthly subscription costing around £8. It can also be bought outright for £200.

Standalone use

Those who don’t have any Engine DJ hardware can still benefit from using Nanoleaf lights. They have fantastic out-of-the-box modes, accessible by their intuitive app or hardware controls which sit inconspicuously on the wall as part of the light installation itself! All of the standalone functions look stunning and can enhance any rig they are used with. 

Although these are not the only smart lights available, and there are competitors that also integrate with Engine DJ OS, they are proving to be the most versatile and easy to use.

They do a great job of making streaming spaces look professional, especially for DJs when used in conjunction with their music and mixes. These lights offer a great finishing touch, taking social media to the next level and demonstrating the significance of lighting, especially in this post-Covid, live-streaming entertainment landscape.

nanoleaf sound to light

See the Nanoleaf Lights In Action!

Check out our review video to see how they work with Denon DJ’s Engine Lighting and in stand-alone mode too!

Go Viral

Are you a DJ looking to level up your socials and get more gigs? Check out our video below on making your DJ mixes go VIRAL!

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