Potential LED Dimming solution. Dali Gateway>Dali input LED Power Supply?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by MarkB, Feb 2, 2019.

  1. MarkB

    MarkB

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    As a total newbie considering a C-Bus system for a new house build, I'm concerned about comments regarding the C-Bus dimming units and compatibility with various LED lights. I'm specifically considering the use of strip lighting.

    There are a number of Dali controllable PWM power supplies that seem to do a good job of dimming LED's over a wide range. For example:

    https://www.power-supplies-australia.com.au/MEAN-WELL-PWM-120-24DA

    Thoughts? Any experience regarding the reliability of the DALI gateway and DALI networks in general?

    EDIT: Further investigation suggests that DMX is the way to go to control LED strip lights?
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2019
    MarkB, Feb 2, 2019
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  2. MarkB

    Ashley

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    For led strip lights with cbus, dmx is the way to go if you want an off the shelf solution. And you can do it all yourself as it is extra low voltage.

    Alternatively hook a cbus interface to a raspberry pi and do a bit of programming. Then you can use the individually controllable ws2812 strips which are much more fun :)
     
    Ashley, Feb 2, 2019
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  3. MarkB

    NickD Moderator

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    There's nothing wrong with using DALI for this, and the C-Bus DALI gateway is perfectly reliable, but the trouble with DALI is that you need another (usually DIN rail mounting) 240V power supply for DALI, and you need to treat the DALI wires as mains as it's not SELV. It's probably also more expensive.

    As Ashley says, DMX is probably easier.

    Other options are Philips Hue (which can be controlled from the SHAC) if you have the hue bridge, or a phase control LED driver like this https://haneco.com.au/led-lighting/dimmers-drivers-smart-controls/flexion-drivers/
     
    NickD, Feb 2, 2019
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  4. MarkB

    Dave_F

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    If using the DMX solution, do you need 1 per switched light zone? If so, it would be an expensive way of doing it.
     
    Dave_F, Feb 2, 2019
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  5. MarkB

    jboer

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    Hi Dave,

    I would really recommend the DMX path as well. DALI would work ok for you, but DMX is a bit simpler and actually gives a bit smoother operation if you want to dim your lights manually.

    The C-Bus DMX Gateway is able to do 12 C-Bus groups, so one unit would be able to do 12 'areas' if you are just using single colour downlights or strip. If you are using colour changing fittings then you would be using a group per colour. So for a fitting that uses 3 colour (Red, Green, Blue, for example) it would be able to do 4 'areas'. Hope that makes sense?

    Edit:
    I actually explain it a little better in this thread ;-)
    https://www.cbusforums.com/threads/dmx-gateway-help.9210/#post-51746
     
    jboer, Feb 2, 2019
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  6. MarkB

    MarkB

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    MarkB, Feb 2, 2019
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  7. MarkB

    MarkB

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    MarkB, Feb 9, 2019
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  8. MarkB

    Dave_F

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    Hi Mark,

    I have been in contact with LRA (lamp replacements Australia) over the past couple of weeks and told them the issue and that I am building. They have suggested the Philips LED down light and have gone back to their Philip's sales/tech guy's which have assured me that they will work with the leading edge dimmer. I haven't tried them yet but was thinking of getting them. I'm not sure if it's the right idea to buy all of them straight up or just get a few and do a trial run. The best bit of the Philip's DL is the price.

    The LED light strips, he says that he has a solution but want's me to go and see, so once I have the gear, I might make up a test panel and take it up there. He say's if I want to do multi colour, DMX is the way to go, but if it's just dimming a single colour he should have something.

    I'm a little nervous at the moment as I am waiting on a quote for all the C-bus hardware.
     
    Dave_F, Feb 9, 2019
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  9. MarkB

    MarkB

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    Hi Dave,

    I'm no expert, but I just don't see what DMX gives us over Modbus. All we want is a PWM output suitable to drive LED's and there are units available to do that with DMX or Modbus input (amongst others). Modbus is available from the SHAC whereas DMX requires a Gateway for each lot of 12 channels.

    I found another Modbus LED driver that looks quite nice. 12ch, 5A/Ch, up to 48v. Austrian company, and the price from a retailer is 255 euro. That's less than the price of a DMX gateway alone.

    http://www.resi.cc/prestashop/en/serial-products/41-resi-4led-modbus.html

    Again, I'm no expert so take what I say with a grain of salt. Hopefully one of the pros will step in.
     
    MarkB, Feb 9, 2019
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  10. MarkB

    jboer

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    You would be able to use a Modbus dimmer however you would be up for a lot of scripting to make it happen. Basically you would need to write code for every channel you wanted to control and write the the translation between the C-Bus command coming in from your wall stations ect to then do what you wanted on the Modbus dimmer. The DMX or DALI modules do all of this natively and smoothly.

    Like most LED solutions I would highly recommend you trial any solution first to ensure devices are indeed compatible and you are happy with the fades and dimming. LED is unfortunately is a fairly exact science and while many things will be marketed as 'dimmable' they do this in a very large range of outcomes.

    EDIT:
    Also I guess fairly obviously, I am very much a 'bus' person. I do believe there is little cost (and labour) difference between having to buy big DBs and lots of dimmers at $xxxx each and wiring every circuit back, to wiring all the actives around to the lights and then a control cable. With 1 or 2 gateways, the cost is in then the quantity of drivers needed however I still haven't found this to be more expensive than buying a universal dimmer for each circuit.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2019
    jboer, Feb 9, 2019
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  11. MarkB

    Dave_F

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    Ah, I think I might be (at long last) be picking up what you're putting down...

    So you don't have any dimmers, just multiple DMX units that control all your down lights throughout the house. Essentially, instead of having the 5508D1A you have a DMX module and 12 small drivers that control the LED's for 12 different switched zones.For this reason, it may save money as the DMX is slightly cheaper and the drivers are not that expensive, as well as 12 channels instead of 8.

    The other beauty of it is that you're guaranteed that the LED down lights (or any LED's for that matter) will dim perfectly no matter the type you get (as long as its dimmable).

    Is this correct jboer? Sorry for my slow pick up
     
    Dave_F, Feb 9, 2019
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  12. MarkB

    jboer

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    Yes basically, the place you just need to make sure and research a little is making sure you match your DMX driver correctly to your LED array.
     
    jboer, Feb 9, 2019
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  13. MarkB

    Pepper P!g

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    Hi Nick, could you elaborate on this option please? Does this give on, off, dimming and colour control with status feedback to EDLTs?

    I already have the SHAC and looking at the Hue spots for some garden lighting.
     
    Pepper P!g, Jun 17, 2020
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  14. MarkB

    NickD Moderator

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    NickD, Jun 17, 2020
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