Using Colored MR-11s for Christmas???

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by JimLewis, Nov 3, 2008.

  1. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,872

    I was at a local wholesale lamp supplier recently and noticed they had all sorts of colors available for MR-11s. Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, and more. I was thinking, "Wow. I could just buy some of those and then switch out my spot lights in the front yard for those colors and just be done with my Christmas lighting in 30 minutes."

    Anyone ever done that? Does it look nice? Have any photos???
  2. JoeyD

    JoeyD LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,933

    Why wouldnt you just pop in colored or diachroic lenses?
  3. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    There are also a lot of MR16 lamps available in various colours. But as Joey said, why would you not just use coloured glass or dichroic lenses?

  4. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,872

    Well, for one Dichroic lenses don't really change the color a lot. I got blue dichroic lenses on my big waterfall and you can't even tell the difference between them now and before. So I doubt those are going to make a huge difference. They seem to slightly "tint" the color. But as far as making a strong green or red glow, I seriously doubt dicrhoic lenses would do that.

    As for the glass lenses, that's an idea. Probably less expensive. But that would be a special order. None of the lighting distributors around here stock special lenses of any kind. Whereas the colored lamps are already in stock. Regardless, I think the glass lenses would work.

    My question still remains, has anyone done this? Any photos? Examples?
  5. NightLightingFX

    NightLightingFX LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 580

    I don't know what kind of dichroic lens you used, but from my experience dichroic lens work very well at creating a colored light. I think they work too well coloring the light, that is why I don't use them - they don't look natural. I would be willing to bet you will get a deeper colored light from a dichroic lens than a colored MR16/11 lamp. I had a customer use red and green lens on the up light grazing of their home two years ago. The look didn't turn me on and the customer didn't do it again so???
  6. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,102

    Jim, there are different saturations or intensities of dichroic lenses. I am away on biz right now so I dont have my library here but last time I checked there were 4 different saturations in the blue dichroic's. Perhaps the lens you have there is a light blue.

    The coloured glass lenses work by shading the light output. The dichroic lenses work by filtering the light spectrum and only allowing a specific spectrum to pass through. As a result, they can at times reduce the intensity of the light quite a bit.

    Lensing is the way to go for seasonal lighting changes. You don't have to catalog and store the removed yet still good lamps from the system or invest in a whole new set of lamps for the seasonal effect. Simply buy the lenses and pop them in. Take them out when it is all over.

    Jim, do a google search on the net... I would bet you can have any lens you want or need within a couple of days from online lighting vendors, and at very competitive prices.

  7. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,872

    Perhaps that's true. I suppose there are different kinds of lenses. But we're kind of getting off track here. The question was; does this look nice and has anyone done it? That is, instead of up-lighting trees and splashing walls and downlighting architecture with all normal lamps, if you switch them all out for color lights, or lenses, does that create a nice Christmas effect?
  8. Mayor_tx

    Mayor_tx LawnSite Member
    from Austin
    Messages: 62

    I installed colored dichroic lenses on my home and a few others last year for Christmas, alternating green, red and white. It looked pretty good and the customers were very happy. Definitely different than string lights like the neighbors. Call or have your distributor call Lee Filters.
  9. wurkn with amish

    wurkn with amish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 662

    Jim I used mr-16s green and red before. red shows up alright, but the green is a washed out green. i didn't care for them.
    Now there are some pretty cool LED light bars out there that would light up an area pretty good.

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