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Is there really a market for this?

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by irrig8r, May 17, 2012.

  1. Classic Lighting

    Classic Lighting LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 492

  2. S&MLL

    S&MLL LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 751

    pretty cool idea. Just to self contained for my liking. Most of my installs require fixtures from at least 2 different manufacturers. Guess Hunter is making things happen over there.
  3. steveparrott

    steveparrott Sponsor
    Posts: 1,196

    Update on the calculator - I've been working with Ed Lethert on the LED calculator for nearly a year - it's been through multiple revisions and we still haven't been able to accurately predict voltage loss on large systems.

    Here are the challenges. As you know, accurate voltage loss prediction requires accurate wattage and power factor values to determine volt-amps. The problem is that mfgs. only report a single wattage and power factor, when, in fact, wattage and power factor (and other values) change with voltage.

    Here's what happens in an LED system over a long run (might surprise you):
    • Voltage increases at the transformer under light loads (this is partly due to inrush from the drivers), then decreases under heavier loads
    • Voltage decreases at the fixture
    • Wattage of the LED circuit decreases
    • power factor increases, peaks, then decreases
    • amperage decreases

    This means that the larger the system (more fixtures - longer runs), the more error creeps into the calculations. We now have a setup in our lab to measure these values with systems as large as 34 LED fixtures wired with up to 1,000 feet on a single run. On very large systems the calculator predicts large losses while actual measurements show very small losses.

    We'll continue to work on the calculator, but for those using the current version, don't be surprised if actual losses are much less than predicted losses.
  4. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    There is. I can't remember exactly how I figured that out. But I was on the phone with one of my lighting reps one day and they helped me figure it out. It turned out that the Kichler Design Pro LED system we were installing, with about 20-25 fixtures on it, at an avg. of 5 hours a night, at their rate for energy at $0.1082 / KWH - all equated to about $2-$3 per month in energy cost. So now, I don't figure that out every time. I just know that if it's a few less fixtures than that, it will be a little less and if it's a few more fixtures, it will be a tad more. And I quote approximates.

    But use the formulas the other guys provided though......
  5. sprinklerchris

    sprinklerchris LawnSite Senior Member
    from Georgia
    Posts: 281

  6. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,113

    Jim, The dimming capability of this system has nothing to do with saving a few pennies and has everything to do with creating varying lighting scenes for various functions that our clients may have. I often have clients who want to turn off their lights at night because they just don't see the need to have all of the lights blazing away, but if you were to specify a security zone and dim it 50% this would be a subtle and simple way to compromise. I totally see a market for this with my clients. (not all, but some for sure)
  7. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,841

    I trust you Tim. You are more of a lighting expert than I. And I don't doubt that it could be a good solution in some cases.

    I just find it hard to relate. I like my night lighting. If it was up to me, I'd keep them on all night long. And I like them at the brightness they are now. I can't imagine wanting to dim them by 50% or something. But I guess I can see where some people might like that.
  8. NightScenes

    NightScenes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,209

    We do this all the time. Look at Insteon, it uses UPB and RF together and the more components you use, the better it gets. Your client can control their lighting from anywhere with their IPhone.
  9. LLC RI

    LLC RI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 149

    I know it's been 6 months since this post got any activity, but I have something to contribute to it and wanted to chime in.

    Recently, I took a trip to San Diego and had the opportunity to visit the Hunter / FX Luminaire factories. Both facilities were pretty impressive. I never realized how much went into making something as simple as a sprinkler head.

    While at FX, one of the things I learned about was the new LUXOR system. I'm guessing that's what this thread was about- is there a market for it.

    Let me tell you, while I was sitting there listening to the sales manager speak of the LUXOR and its' capabilities, I was thinking to myself "who the heck would buy this".

    Based on the demonstration of the system, I was impressed with its' ability to segregate fixtures into groups and then illuminate those groups at varying degrees of intensity. The system has a way to go as far as increasing capabilities, going remote one way or the other, and having some sort of override remote - just my two cents of what would make it even better.

    The story continues.... I returned home on a Friday night and on that following Monday evening, I had to go meet a landscaper at a job we were planning together, to show the client some ideas on how I could light his patio and walls around it etc. One of the fixtures I had to demo was the FX LF, the under cap LED light.

    As I was demonstrating the lighting options, I learned that the client wanted all LED and liked the effect of the LF. He then said something that resonated in my brain - " I'd like to be able to control the lighting in sections and have dimming capabilities". I froze in my tracks and then began to tell him of this new system that I encountered on my trip to California.

    Since my description of LUXOR seemed to fit the bill of what he was looking for, I was able to sell him the system on the spot. In later conversations with this client, he mentioned how a competitor of mine, one with a three letter abbreviated name, had told him there was "no such thing as dimming led's."

    Had I not seen what I saw and learned what I learned, I would have had a similar opinion, though I would have known enough to say that I could look into it.

    So I'm almost done with this install. The client is happy with the options that the LUXOR affords him and we are both looking forward to the next upgrades to the system which will likely provide even more control aspects.

    Moral of the story.... read up on LUXOR and familiarize yourselves. It's a good thing to keep tucked in your brain and when/if you encounter a client like mine who asks about sectional control and dimming of LED landscape lighting, you too will be able to show that you are at the top of your industry and knowledgable about the latest technology in our field.

    Happy New Year

  10. Lite4

    Lite4 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,113

    Good post George, 1 thing I found interesting when looking at the LUXOR with the FX rep, was the fact that the system has the capability of controlling up to 290 different programs (or thereabouts). You could program up to 290 fixtures individually for complete control of everything. I was blown away by the output and versatility of the PO series fixtures. Oh yes, and I love the dimming capability. I have been to the hunter factory before but that was 6 years ago. Someday, it would be cool to see the FX facility.

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