Sunday, May 23, 2010

EL Wire FAQ's

EL Wire is a great new product that glows when an electrical charge is applied to it. This is a quick guide to answer some Frequently Asked Questions. If you have any of your own, feel free to post in the comments or send us an email to
Q: What is EL Wire?
A: EL Wire is a decorative, flexible wire that glows similar to old school neon tube lights. The main difference is Electroluminescent Wire comes from the element phosphor, whereas neon comes from, well, neon. EL Wire can be bent, cut, knotted, and spliced together and generates no heat when charged. It can be taped, glued or sewn to nearly any surface. Neon can't claim any of those traits.
Q: Will EL Wire Electrocute Me?
A: No. EL Wire when a charge is applied, sends a safe voltage throught the wire. It may tingle if non-sealed ends are touched, however it will not do any damage to the skin or body.
Q: How Hot is EL Wire?
A: Not Even. Unlike many other lighting sources, EL Wire doesn't get hot when it glows. The temperature is the same whether it is on or off.
Q: Will EL Wire Glow By Itself?
A: No, a high frequency alternating current driver must be used in order to make the wire glow. These are relatively inexpensive and can either be battery powered or plugged in to a standard electrical outlet.
Q: Will EL Wire Make a Sound?
A: Yes and no. The wire itself will make no noise, but the driver will emit a high pitch sound. The loudness will depend of the specific driver itself, so making sure the driver is a fair distance away from ears is key.
Q: Where Can I Purchase?
A: There are no physical storefront locations that sell EL Wire, but EL Wire can be purchased online at EL Wire is available in 10 bright colors.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

EL Wire Tron... For Real

EL Wire is starting to become more and more popular as times goes on. As people are starting to see other uses for EL Wire, Hollywood picks it up and runs with it. The new movie TRON by Disney has some amazing uses for EL Wire which is sure to attract more people over the next year to this still up and coming technology.

Here is a shout out to Tron and the costuming department at Disney. Nice job!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Restrictions of EL Wire

With every action there is an equal or positive reaction. Or that’s how the phrase should go. I have been talking enough about what EL Wire is, what it is capable of, and why you should douse yourself in it. This time I would mention some of the limitations of the wire. This is not meant to persuade you to buy, however inform you so you know what to expect.

Durability. Most EL Wire is fairly delicate. Other than the super pull wire (available via special order only), most EL Wire is not meant to have a high tinsel strength. Although EL Wire can be bent, cut, and twisted, EL Wire should not be installed where you will see repeated flexing, such as around knees or elbows. This will over time, cause the copper wire to break thus providing you with no light. EL Wire can be repaired, but you will lose some length with every cut. Finding applications where not a lot of movement is used is generally your best bet. Hats, bras, signs, stages and dark walkways are all great places for EL Wire. They generally stay rigid and not a lot of movement is used.

Brightness. EL Wire is brighter than many lighting sources, however not as bright as any LED Lights. Although it has a number of other positives, it will “most likely” never carry the same amount of brightness to LED’s. Someday, maybe. Dark spaces are great for EL Wire, as it shines bright across the darkness, but a bright room or bright stage, the wire can be overshadowed.

Waterproof. Very few electronics are waterproof and the same for EL Wire… well, sort of. The actual wire is actually water resistant and can withstand running it under water, or stand a degree of sweat. The ends of the wire however, have a certain amount of susceptibility to moisture, and water can damage the phosphor which makes the device light up. Luckily it is able to be wrapped inside a thick plastic coating, that helps protect it from the elements.

Noise. EL wire is powered by a high frequency and high voltage driver that emits a high pitched humming noise. Microphones may pick up these noises, and can be annoying to people that hear the noise. Keep in consideration when making hats or applications where the drivers may be around ears or microphones.

Although EL Wire is a great technology that continues to get better with age like a fine wine, there are certain things that it does not allow us to do. Try playing with EL Wire and see what you can do with it. The possibilities are endless.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Drivers and Inverters - Part Deux

After seeing a few items that were left out, we realized a few other pertinent information should be told about EL Wire Drivers and EL Wire Inverters. The main difference between a Driver and an Inverter are drivers are generally hand held. Drivers are common to battery packs or any portable device that makes your EL Wire glow. You will notice them in EL Wire Glasses, bracelets, and many different sized battery packs.

On the flipside, Inverters generally have a AC or wall unit that it plugs into, in order for the EL Wire to glow. The Inverter changes the energy given from the wall into a smaller, usable dosage for the proper length of EL Wire. This keeps your EL Wire lasting the longest it possibly can, while also making sure that it is as bright as can possibly be. Without the inverter, EL Wire will be just as bright, but will transfer too much energy causing the EL Wire to short, or go through a more rapid lifespan.

The correct size for your project can make a big difference when talking inverters. You should start by making sure you have your concept first. Then turn your concept into a quantifiable number. Say you have 4 walls that need to glow, and each wall needs to have two strands. If each wall is 10 feet long, then a total of 80 feet need to be accounted for, unless you have more before or after. Each inverter has a specific length involved so making sure you have selected the correct length can mean having your concept succeed.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

What's Cooler Than EL Wire Headphones?

You guessed it... Nothing! Remyx LED Headphones are a brand new product just hitting the market and people absolutely love them. What are they you ask? Read on...

As summer is fast approaching, many people realize that it also means swimsuit weather is right around the corner… again. We all want to get out and exercise but we still don’t have the daylight required after we get home from work. There’s nothing more de-motivating than going out in the dark by yourself. Would you be interested in finding a more permanent solution to your running needs, no matter the daylight outside?

A new technology has come up that makes it possible to light up your nighttime run. Glow headphones are a thing of the future, that allows you to listen to music, while enabling cars, bikes, and oncoming runners to spot you from a mile away… Literally. EL Wire Headphones, called Electric Fonix use the latest technology which threads speaker wire and glow wire in one, creating a fantastic, fun new product that is sure to be the talk of the town. They come in 4 colors (blue, green, pink and orange), and allow yourself to be visible even when the sun goes down. Glow headphones have a solid Bright light, or they can even dance to the music you are listening to. They are compatible with iPhone, iPods and nearly any mobile device or MP3 player.

Running in the dark can be scary, but not when you have a little help on your side. These glow headphones can make the darkest path lighter, and keep you more visible even when it is pitch black. Improve your health, stress and overall well being. All while getting noticed on the path to hopping back into that swimsuit that has been eyeing you all winter.

The Laser Living Room

Ever wanted to grow up in a laser house, with laser children, with a red picket laser fence? Or wonder how you could get your living room to look like the latest video game? Designers United Visual Artists us this as a tribute to the 10th Anniversary of broadband in the UK. Imagine this after a Tiesto show.

This installation is said to have 148 laser wire across six rooms. While the room is completely nonfunctional, it sure does add something to the imagination.  Sitting or watching the Boob Laser is not happening, but still pretty neat to think about.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

EL Wire Drivers and Inverters

What is the deal with EL Wire Drivers and EL Wire Inverters anyway? I don’t get what the issue with them is and why I need to use them. Well, that's what I hear quite often. People seem to use the two terms, "drivers" and "inverters" synonymously.

EL Wire Drivers are basically the lifeblood or the source of the wire’s power. Think about powering a lamp inside your house. Would you expect the light to turn on without plugging it in? Well, that would be nice… I would too, but in today’s world that doesn’t happen... Yet. Drivers send power and regulate the amount of power that are used to power your wire. Having too much power in your driver will send too much voltage throughout the wire and cause the element phosphor to break down more rapidly. This will cause your EL Wire to burn out quicker. Let me say, EL Wire does last a long, long time. However using the right amount of power for your application, will not only make your wire lasting the longest amount of time, but also ensure your light stays as bright as it possibly can. Having too little wire will make your wire to seem weak or dull, and we all know EL Wire is anything but dull. Your wire, wherever used, should make a statement. It should tell people where you are. It should provide a runway to your location. And lastly, it should enhance everything surrounding it. It doesn’t need to be the only focal point, but should provide a good foundation of light.

Finding the correct driver should be simple. First, think about your project in mind. Think about what you are creating. Whether it is an outrageous costume for Burning Man, or to create a window piece for your business, have a concept in mind. Next once your concept is complete, imagine the amount of wire you think you will need, then times it by about 1.5. That is the amount of wire you will probably need, but also the size of the driver you should purchase in order to power your mission. Once you have these two components in mind, turning a concept into reality is quite simple. Make sure you have thought out your plan before the cutting begins and you will have the masterpiece you envisioned.

Friday, May 14, 2010

What is EL Wire

Electroluminescent Wire (EL Wire) is one of the newest lighting technologies on the planet. Its unique qualities are unmatched by many and it is much cheaper per lumen than pretty much anything on earth. In a nutshell, EL Wire is a glowing wire that is similar in size to a standard speaker wire. It comes in a number of different thicknesses, can glow about as bright as you can stand, and uses so little energy that it can be powered by common AA batteries or even common watch batteries. It can also be bent to nearly any shape imaginable.

Electroluminescent Wire is made from the element phosphor which is what makes the wire glow. When put to a power source, the phosphor element conducts the energy from the power source and emits one of the brightest lights we have seen. Unlike neon lights or halogen lights, the wire stays cool to the touch even when lit for hours.

EL Wire comes in 10 different vibrant colors, and is starting to pop up all across the world, from movie theaters, to new age business signs, to clothing costumes. It last longer than most light bulbs as standard EL Wire will generally last between 3,000 and 6,000 hours. As opposed to most other lighting sources like halogen lights or filament lights that burn out, the phosphor in EL Wire slowly starts to break down, and the wire subtly becomes dimmer until it doesn’t light up anymore. Most wire can be expected to glow for 20,000 to 40,000 hours.

For more information on purchasing EL Wire, or various uses, check out the EL Wire Buyers Guide for information on how to order.

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