What is LED pitch? Why are short pitch LEDs important in designing with strip lights?

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What is LED pitch? Why are low pitch LEDs important in designing with strip lights?

Our LED light strips come with many different options to decide on: color, length, size, lumens, and pitch. Most of those options are common sense when it comes to lighting, but what is LED strip light pitch.

What is LED strip pitch?Red arrow pointing the the "pitch" measurement

Let’s break it down:

What is an LED?

An LED is the acronym for Light Emitting Diode. Unlike a regular incandescent light bulb, there is no filament that produces the light. Almost all of the electricity is used for making light, which makes the LED more efficient.  On the other hand, think of an incandescent light as a heater that happens to emit light as well. Incandescents and fluorescents emit light with very high beam angles. Since LEDs are small and powerful with a definite beam angle, it is important when using them to have them arranged in a way that the emitted light is even upon the surface you desire to light. 

What is LED light pixel pitch?

Pitch is the distance between pixels, usually measured by millimeters. The term pitch is most commonly used when describing a direct or backlit display such as a television, monitor, or large LED pixel screen. The pitch is always measured from the center of one pixel to the center of the other pixel. A larger pitch, or a larger distance between pixels, creates something of lower resolution.

What is LED strip light pitch?

Now, what do these terms mean when put describing a flexible LED strip? It is the distance between each LED on the flexible printed circuit board (FPCB). [See: What are LED strip lights]. The image below demonstrates how pitch is calculated. Short pitch LEDs are typically measured and classified as being under 10mm. 

What is LED strip pitch?

Why is knowing the LED pitch important?

Why is knowing what a pitch is important? All LED strip lights are not made equally. LED strip lights with different pitches will create different lighting experiences. An LED strip with a shorter pitch will give off a more uniform light. That means that with smaller distances between diodes, the less you’ll see lighting gaps between each LED. Again, the smaller the distance, the smoother appearance of light you’ll have versus having a “dark space” between each LED. These dark spaces are known as spotting or lighting gaps.

Most architectural lighting and light design is designed with the goal of eliminating spotting and lighting gaps. Knowing the pitch of the LED light strip pitch will help you choose the best product for your lighting project.

When would you need short pitch LED strip lights?

Short Pitch LED Strip LightsShort Pitch LED strip lighting example in kitchen cove lighting. Notice the lighting is uniform and there is no spotting. 

It’s beneficial to have a low pitch LED strip when you’re looking to use high output light, compacted into a smaller space. You need to know how the light will be dispersed from the strip and how it will look when it is installed in its final location. It is important to factor this in when you are considering the style of LED strip you’re buying.

Installation location is the most important factor when determining which pitch you may need. If the strip lights will be very close to the surface you are trying to light, it is better to have a shorter pitch. In a cove that is very close the the ceiling, there may be visible spotting when the strip is illuminated and uplit on the wall or ceiling if the pitch is too long. When installing in a low profile aluminum extrusion, if it is consumer facing, the spotting may be a distraction.

A strip that is 6-foot long and has a short pitch of 6mm will be more uniform than a 6-foot strip that has a pitch of 33mm. 

Short pitch LED strip lights are great for when you have a project such as:

- Small cove lighting
- Toe kick lighting
- Path or walkway lighting
- Contour accent lighting
- Signage
- Product displays
- Some under cabinet areas
- Inside machinery that needs even lighting
- Photography lighting and panels
- More!

Our LED Strip Products

Strip lights are already a great home design investment because you can easily cut them to size, adjust the brightness, and select the perfect color for just about any project you have in mind.  Flexfire LEDs offer a great range of short pitch LED strip lights perfect for whatever you’re looking to do.

Our low pitch LED strip lights are made of the highest quality long-lasting LEDs, resistors, and PCB to make sure your accent lighting designs or mood setting lighting projects last a very long time. A list of LED strip lights that we offer come in a range of high or low pitch. If you need more information before choosing a product, feel free to contact us or read about How to Choose LED Strip Lights here.

Our Products


ColorBright Single Color Series

8mm - 5/16'' pitch

ColorBright RGB Color Changing LED Strip Lights 

33mm - 1 1/4'' pitch

ColorBright RGB2

17mm - 3/4'' pitch

UltraBright Design Series

8mm - 5/16'' pitch

UltraBright Architectural Series

7mm - 1/4'' pitch

UltraBright High CRI Series 

8mm - 5/16'' pitch

UltraBright Industrial

8mm - 5/16'' pitch

UltraBright Slim Series

9mm - 3/8'' pitch

Flexfire LEDs LED pitch calculations

Bonus Information - LED Chip Sizes: What is the difference between LED chips?

LEDs come in different shapes and sizes. The numbers associated to the LED chip are simply its size, in millimeters. For example, a 2835 LED chip is 2.8mm by 3.5mm. LEDs are packaged from many different manufacturers, for that reason, it is important to select an LED chip (regardless of its size) from a reputable company to ensure the longevity, color consistency, CRI, brightness, and heat dissipation.

[See: What makes Flexfire LEDs strip light some of the best in the world]. 

Example of LED chip sizes:

LED chip sizes and LED pitch


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