color temps

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by Mike M, Feb 2, 2013.

  1. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Posts: 1,941

    With the tighter frequency of an LED, which is better for reflecting color (green vegetation, as well as planters with flowers), 2,700 or 3,000?

    Also, dark green tropicals that are not translucent are like black holes. In many applications they look great with green light on them. Anyone developing a green LED MR 16 or PAR (not with a green lens)? It would be so awesome if fixed colors were available.
     
  2. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,109

    Mike, on your dark green foliage plants and blue conifers, try a 4,000k LED. The blues and greens will pop and not look so washed out with the traditional 3,000k warmer lamps.
     
  3. dglights

    dglights LawnSite Member
    Posts: 44

    2700k is most popular from what I've seen.

    I've seen Brilliance displayed with fixed colors. Fixed color LED was sold as "vibrant" but it tends to be too much of the color. For the right application it's perfect but in my opinion using color filters is still the best way to get exactly what your looking for. LEE has filters specifically for LED.
     
  4. steveparrott

    steveparrott Sponsor
    Posts: 1,182

    In my opinion, the goal to enhance green vegetation is not to use green light because that makes everything green - looks very unnatural, calls too much attention to the light, eliminates the beauty inherent in contrasting and complementary colors, and takes away from the overall positive experience of selective illumination (revealing) of natural objects.

    Instead, let's consider the plant's natural colors revealed as though they were illuminated by sunlight (albeit with a nighttime look as achieved by direction, contrast, and light level). The greens of plants do 'pop' in sunlight - couldn't do any better than that! Although, even in sunlight, changes in color temperature throughout the day (or from day to day) change the appearance of greens. At mid-day in bright sun (~10,000K), greens are more purely green - as sunset approaches (~4,000K), light greens appear lighter, more saturated, and yellower. Darker greens get darker, and become less saturated (more grey). On cloudy days, all colors become less saturated and more grey. The affect is complex.

    Again, I think if you want greens to pop, then mid-day sunlight is the best model. For light greens, low CCT's - for dark greens, high CCT's.

    Unfortunately, incandscent light is closest to sunlight and does the best job of reproducing green - if you look at the LED spectrum, you see a high spike in the blue, a dip in the green, a bulge in the orange/yellow/red then a dip in the deep red - that means that of all colors, greens and deep reds are most poorly reproduced.

    This problem relates to color rendering (CRI). All led's suffer from good, to fair, to poor rendering of green. So, what is the solution? Use LED's with high CRI's (above 85, if possible) and high CCT's (above 3,000K) (but only for the special effect of making greens pop - otherwise 2,700K is still best for a warm natural lighting overall).

    Personally, I suggest using all 2,700K and achieve the pop with strategic placement, direction, and composition.
     
  5. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Posts: 1,941

    Steve summarizes the problem well, the narrower spectrum of LED's (vs. halogens or natural light).

    Tim, that 4K idea might be the easiest way to achieve what I need. Also, I could play with some filters like Sherman said, where I have control over just how much color. This is why I like doing demo's.
     
  6. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Posts: 1,941

    Sound advice :)
     
  7. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,109

    Thanks for the CRI info Steve. I had heard that before, it's easy to forget though.
     
  8. dglights

    dglights LawnSite Member
    Posts: 44

    A little off topic but an application where fixed color LED excels is amber for turtle friendly areas. The LED produces amber in a very narrow spectrum eliminating any other wave lengths. Other wave lengths/colors coming through can be a possibility when using white light and a color filter.
     
  9. steveparrott

    steveparrott Sponsor
    Posts: 1,182

    I've been experimenting with various dichroic filters (we'll be offering a selection in a few months). One useful filter is a Full C.T. Blue - it changes a 2,700K LED to about 4,000K. You can also get 1/4, 1/2, and 3/4 C.T. Blue's to achieve intermediate CCT's. Lee and Rosco make the above.
     
  10. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    Hi Steve. Have you been testing the dichroic filters with LED lamps/sources? I have found that many LED light sources fair poorly when shining through lenses and filters. The filters seem to drastically affect the light output. Its as if the LED light does not have enough 'punch' to travel through the media.

    Have Lee and Rosco come out with new lines specifically designed for LEDs?

    Regards.
     

Share This Page