Lighting control systems bring magic to a well designed home. You can accent pictures and building features throughout the house. Now with the new PYNG technology you also can adjust every scene and groups of lights throughout the house without any programing from the integrator which makes it so you can have it exactly like you want it when you want it.
Types of lighting control systems
Centralized Lighting control systems
This is the preferred method when designing lighting control systems. The lighting loads are ran back to dimming panels throughout the project. You then locate low voltage keypads in each room that can control multiple lighting loads. This reduces wall clutter since now you can control various lighting loads with one switch. This method does take more planning up front but you end up with a much better result.
Wired and wireless dimmers lighting control systems
Using wireless dimming allows you to be able to retrofit a lighting control system into existing residence. Unfortunately integrators who don’t want to go through the work of planning a panelized lighting control system fall back on this type of system to often because it’s easier. You will still have the availability to turn on and off each light but it still leaves you with excess wall clutter.
Lighting fixtures types
This is a reliable LED dimming control protocol. The control signal is DC voltage that ranges from 0 to 10 volts. This is wired like a normal light fixture except there are also two control wires. This makes it a great choice for new construction but not recommended for basic remodels since you would have to run two extra wires to each load.
DALI stands for Digital Addressable Lighting Interface. This is a great format to use if budget isn’t a concern. With this standard you can actually control each individual fixture. This is also wired with two extra control wires and the fixtures can either be wired in a star or bus topology.
2 wire phase control
This is the most common type of lighting fixture. They work great with incandescent lights and most LED. They don’t handle low level LED dimming very well sometimes you will get flickering.
Best practices when designing lighting control systems
I would use panel based lighting for every room in the house, but in some cases budget restraints lead us towards using a hybrid approach. We accomplish this by using panel based lighting control and low voltage switches in the larger common areas then using wireless or wired dimmers in small rooms with only one or two lighting loads.
When it comes to fixtures I would recomend 0-10 volt fixtures they seem to meet the perfect mix when it comes to price and functionality.
Here is a link to a case study done about a lighting control system. Case Study
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