Lighting Control Buckhannon WV
April 10, 2008 By Chris Sharp
The other day I asked my 9-year-old nephew what he wants for his birthday. He responded with the usual list of toys and games, but when I asked his mother the same question, she summarized her desires with one phrase: “I wish life could be more convenient.”
What she needs is a lighting control system.
Lighting control can range from a simple outdoor light fixture with a built-in light sensor to programmable systems that can control and coordinate hundreds of lights within a home. A lighting control system not only makes it easier to control your lights, it can actually anticipate what lights you would want to turn on and off and perform the task for you. And what’s more, it makes it possible to design your home’s lighting schemes in ways that would have been completely impractical before this technology emerged.
Lighting control opens new possibilities in design through the concept of lighting scenes. Technically, the core idea in creating a lighting scene is to program various light levels for multiple fixtures in a room. The levels are memorized, and different sets of light level settings can be recalled at the touch of a single button. The button can be on an in-wall keypad, which combines the function of potentially any number of dimmers into a single device on the wall. The button can also be on a touchscreen, as part of a complete home automation system. “If you were to try to mimic the same effect with wall mounted switches and dimmers, it would be practically impossible” according to Derek Jensen, marketing communications manager for Vantage Controls.
Most of the home theaters we feature in Home Entertainment use lighting scenes, but you don’t see the effect of it because we show only a single lighting scene. Fortunately, the lighting control specialists at Vantage Controls recently sent us a series of photographs that perfectly illustrate the concept of lighting scenes. In the photos that accompany this article, you see the same room illuminated with four different lighting scenes—creating four dramatically different effects.
The lighting scenes may be adjusted for practicality or to achieve a desired ambiance. For instance, the homeowner may want the installer to program a “nap mode” in which all of a room’s lights turn off except for indirect background lighting dimmed to 25 percent, creating a nice environment for a relaxing siesta.
Other scenes could include a romantic atmosphere, where all lights in the room are dimmed to set a nice mood for a romantic evening of champagne and chocolate dipped strawberries. Also, when a lot of light is needed for hosting parties with friends and family, a bright and cheerful lighting scheme utilizing all of the lights in the room might be best.
When watching T.V., light is the enemy, therefore the installer can tailor the lighting controls for the optimum lighting configuration for enjoying that new movie that just came out on DVD. In this scenario, dim...