The LED driver acts not only as an electrical current management system, but also protects LEDs from current or voltage fluctuations. The latest trend in LED lighting ties into wireless networks by replacing a variable resistor known as a potentiometer with wireless electronic control. One of GRE Alpha's technology partners, Lutron, offers its Caseta smart lighting control system to seamlessly integrate other smart home products such as Alexa, Siri, Google assistant, Sonos speakers and more.
As lightning-fast advancements in LED technology transform the commercial and residential lighting and markets, new challenges are constantly arising. One of the things we have learned over time is that life and reliability expectations will not be met if we do not pay attention to the type of drivers and power supplies used for powering and dimming LEDs.
While LED lighting has many great benefits -- including energy savings -- one of the potential disadvantages is LEDs require a flow of consistent and constant electrical current, at the exact required voltage.
Dimmers use an array of technologies to control light sources. Two common dimming technologies are forward phase and reverse phase.
Forward Phase (TRIAC)
TRIAC dimmers are leading edge in which the electrical current is turned off at the front of the AC input waveform immediately after the zero crossing. TRIAC dimming is the most common dimming method. While originally paired with incandescent bulbs, some models are compatible with CFL and LED loads. Forward phase dimmers are often more affordable and simpler in terms of design than other types of dimmers. However, LED's do not respond well to the irregular, "chopped" wave forms that simple TRIAC dimming provides. They work best with a constant voltage, with dimming accomplished lowering the current supplied to the LED. Attempting to use the direct output of a TRIAC dimmer could result in flickering, diminished LED lifetime and possibly an LED dimming range of less than the ideal 0 to 100%. Selecting the right components can address these issues.
Reverse Phase (ELV): The ELV dimmable LED driver is a trailing edge or reverse phase dimmer which means that the electrical current is turned off at the end of the of the AC input waveform immediately before the zero crossing. It has a lower minimum load (often 10W), making it a better choice for dimming modestly sized low-powered lighting circuits. Reverse phase-cut dimming is designed specifically for low-voltage (ELV) systems and almost always requires the use of a neutral wire. ELV dimmers are generally very compatible with LED loads, offering smoother dimming to low levels. Reverse phase dimmers are more expensive but tend to outlast their forward phase counterparts.
Flickering (typically seen with LEDs and CFLs) can be rectified by adjusting the dimming range on the Caseta Wireless dimmer. Recognizing the performance advantages and limitations of TRIAC and ELV, GRE Alpha's design team created the XLA series which incorporates a patented synchronized dimming technology that mimics incandescent dimming technology to allow full range, flicker-free dimming of LED lighting fixtures for both CC and CV loads. The long-term savings are significant.
GRE Alpha's ELV dimmable LED driver is fully compatible with most TRIAC/ELV/SCR phase dimmers on the market today. There is no dimmer on the market which provides better dimming performance or wider dimming compatibility. To maximize savings and sustainability, you can source the ELV driver directly from GRE Alpha or any of our authorized distributors like Arrow Electronics. You will find the same quality reputable products at Lutron and Lutron retail outlets. Lutron's Caseta Wireless PRO products are available to professional installers. These specialty products have features that may assist professionals in installing Caseta Wireless systems in a wider range of applications.
Hong Kong, August 12, 2020 – The strategic partnership recently created between GRE Alpha and Casambi Technologies is already proving fruitful with the release of GRE Alpha's first Casambi compatible dimming module. GRE's new SLD-DIM-CB is a 240-Watt single channel output constant voltage LED dimming module that allows for seamless integration with Casambi-enabled luminaires, sensors, wall-mounted and wireless switches.
Preferred by the world's leading architects, designers, and lighting companies, GRE Alpha's easy-install LED drivers and dimming modules are designed to operate with the highest efficiency and reliability at extreme environmental conditions. GRE's new Casambi compatible dimming module is a vital extension of Casambi's growing ecosystem of wireless lighting controls and networks based on Bluetooth low energy.
According to GRE North America's Business Development Manager, Rick Araujo, "GRE Alpha's partnership with Casambi allows us to combine our best-in-class LED powering solutions with state-of-the-art Bluetooth technology. We are confident that GRE Alpha's Casambi-ready SLD-DIM-CB dimmer will further help OEM lighting companies with the quick and easy cost-effective upgrade of their existing lighting systems to smart connected lighting."
Utilizing the latest in Bluetooth mesh, the SLD-DIM-CB dimmer features direct, peer-to-peer communication between nodes, ensuring instantaneous response to input from switches, sensors, and mobile devices without the need for hubs or a central controller. The result is instantaneous, flicker-free dimming. Applications include retrofit lighting, commercial, retail and residential lighting, museum, hotel, and office lighting.
Among the many benefits:
GRE Alpha is looking forward to creating many more innovative, interoperable powering solutions in partnership with Casambi that continue to advance smart lighting technology. For more information about the SLD-DIM-CB Casambi-ready dimmer or any other GRE Alpha product, please visit the GRE enquiries page.
About GRE Alpha
GRE Alpha® Electronics, Ltd. specializes in the design and manufacturing of solid-state lighting power supplies and lighting control accessories, which are the lifeblood of indoor and outdoor LED lighting systems. Their superior performance products are the power behind LED lighting systems. GRE's unique modular approach allows their dimming modules and drivers to be used either with used in either new or existing installations.
Ultra High Resolution and Digital Filtering Enhances Dimming for Smooth Dim to Dark
GRE Alpha, an emerging leader in the design and manufacture of solid-state lighting power supplies, is excited to announce the release of their newest smart dimming module.
The SLD-DIM1X module is an enhanced version of GRE's innovative SLD-DIM1B dimmer, featuring ultra-high resolution dimming. With 10,000 dimming steps (versus 1024 in the SLD-DIM1B) and GRE Alpha's advanced digital filtering technology, the SLD-DIM1X dimming module provides best-in-class, flicker-free (PWM) pulse width modulated dimming for 0-10V dimming applications. These enhancements make the dimming process smoother, especially at the low end- dim to dark. For cost sensitive projects with moderate dimming performance requirements, GRE Alpha's original model SLD-DIM1B remains the wise option.
These easy-to-install dimming modules work with commercial 0-10V dimmer controls (1V=0% brightness, 10V=100% brightness), and connect between any Class 2, AC-DC LED driver and LED Fixture/Luminaire to enable exceptional, flicker-free dimming. The SLD-DIM1X can be installed into any of GRE Alpha's SLD/XLD series LED driver's DC wiring cavity, eliminating the need for external junction boxes, resulting in a quick, low cost installation.
GRE Alpha's executive director, Richard Fong, had this to say: 'I am proud to announce that GRE Alpha's talented design team is continuing work on a series of innovative, high-quality LED drivers and modules that will take our popular line of LED powering products to the next level. The exceptional performance of the SLD-DIM1X is a prime example, with its enhanced, superior dimming. The architectural lighting industry- especially lighting OEM companies that continually strive to provide higher quality dimming performance in their LED fixtures- have been among the first to adopt our newly enhanced dimming products.'
It is important to note that the SLD-DIM1X is a new addition to GRE Alpha's growing line of high-quality LED dimming modules and drivers. The SLD-DIM1B as well as the rest of GRE's high-efficiency, high reliability SLD series products will continue to be offered and supported. The following chart illustrates the functional comparison between our new SLD-DIM1X and our original SLD-DIM1B dimming modules:
Preferred by the world's leading architects, designers and lighting companies, GRE Alpha's LED drivers and dimming modules are designed to operate with the highest efficiency and reliability at extreme environmental conditions, for any LED Lighting applications, including:
When it comes to LED lighting, our dimming modules are the best choice for hassle free, high quality dimming. For additional information about the SLD-DIM1X module or any of GRE Alpha's wide range of adaptable, high performing powering products, please visit the GRE contact page. With teams strategically located in North America, Japan and Hong Kong, GRE Alpha's technical advisors are within reach and ready to answer LED power source related questions.
About GRE Alpha
GRE Alpha® Electronics, Ltd. specializes in the design and manufacture of solid-state lighting power supplies and lighting control accessories, which are the lifeblood of indoor and outdoor LED lighting systems. Our superior performance products are the power behind LED lighting systems. GRE's unique modular approach provides ideal, easy to integrate powering solutions for new and existing installations.
GRE Alpha Electronics, Ltd., a leader in the design and manufacture of LED power supplies and systems, is excited to announce the expansion of their popular line of LED power supplies. Implementing a Bluetooth dimming solution has never been this easy. The SLD-DIM-XG4, the SLD-DIM-XG4-Ul and the original SLD-DIM-XG utilize the latest in Bluetooth mesh, featuring direct, peer-to-peer communication between nodes. Thus, ensuring instantaneous response to input from switches, sensors and mobile devices without the need for hubs or a central controller.
The XG line’s interoperability offers a distinct advantage. Unlike other controllers in the market, components in the XG series empower OEMs with the flexibility to choose between several vendors in order to mix and match various solutions based on features, form and pricing to meet an end customer's lighting control requirements. Users appreciate the ability to work within popular DALI, Zigbee and EnOcean protocols.
Image source: SLD-DIM-XG4 Datasheet
GRE Alpha’s dimming modules are part of the Xicato Controls ecosystem, allowing quick and seamless installation and commissioning of lighting systems using Xicato software applications. GRE Alpha’s new SLD-DIM-XG4 is a 400-watt constant voltage LED dimming module. While our original SLD-DIM-XG supports one channel, the new 400-watt SLD-DIM-XG4 supports four. The new unit will give additional flexibility when addressing the wireless design needs related to:
The table below compares three popular wireless dimming modules.
The SLD-DIM-XGA is a high-quality LED controller that can source up to 100-watts output into each of four channels for a total of 400-watts. The SLD-DIM-XG can source up to 260-watts into one channel. These BLE dimming devices are completely wireless dimming modules based on the BLE (Bluetooth low energy) protocol. Aside from being able to source more power, the primary difference between the SLD-DIM-XG and the newer SLD-DIM-XG4 is that the XG4 has four channels rather than one. This allows artists, designers and architects to effect finer lighting control in any situation. The SLD-DIM-XG is great for color temperature control in a wireless environment and is a lower cost solution. This high-quality LED component your first choice for general commercial and residential use. The SLD-DIM-XG4-UL is what you need when the situation requires a UL listed LED controller.
The units are manufactured in multiple facilities. Buyers in the U.S. market can take advantage of tax advantages as GRE Manufacturing in Vietnam is producing the SLD-DIM-XG4, the newest four channel Bluetooth dimming module. Along with the SLD-DIM-XG, it is just one of GRE Alpha’s LED controllers that are now made in Vietnam for U.S. customers.
GRE Alpha® Electronics, Ltd. specializes in the design and manufacture of solid-state lighting power supplies and lighting control accessories which are the lifeblood of indoor and outdoor LED lighting systems. Unlike many in the LED industry, GRE Alpha focuses on a modular approach. Their products can be used either in conjunction with existing systems or with new setups. With more than two decades of power conversion expertise and a commitment toward innovation, GRE Alpha engages with industry pioneers to deliver highly efficient, installation-ready and agency-approved LED power conversion products for a wide variety of industry applications. www.grealpha.com.
Hong Kong, 4/24/19 – GRE Alpha Electronics, Ltd., a driving force in the design and manufacture of LED power supplies and systems, is excited to announce the imminent release of their first DALI-2 product. The new driver with DALI-2 certification brings the promise of significantly improved multi-vendor interoperability as well as functionality compared with DALI-1. With popularity of the new standard firing up demand, GRE Alpha has already started taking pre-orders for the new driver.
When GRE Alpha acquired DALI testing accreditation in November 2018, they became one of the first manufacturers in Asia to offer full-service testing. That giant leap forward put GRE in a unique position to offer value-added services to their customers. The SLD-DIM DALI and GLD DIM modules from GRE Alpha enable both new and old LED fixtures to become dimmable without the added fuss of complicated wiring and circuitry required in the past. Topping that off with groundbreaking new benefits is the DALI-2 protocol applied to GRE drivers.
According to GRE’s Executive Director, Richard Fong, “The introduction of our new DALI-2 certified driver is a major milestone and right in line with GRE Alpha’s goal to provide our customers with reliable products on a flexible platform. With improvements in functionality, use of DALI-2 certified products will undoubtedly result in fewer problems in lighting systems. We are proud to be adding our first new DALI-2 driver to the Digital Illumination Interface Alliance database and excited about the many next-generation products that will follow.”
DALI, short for Digital Addressable Lighting Interface, is a protocol developed by leading manufacturers of lighting equipment to make lighting control systems simpler and easier to specify and operate. Simply put, it allows devices to ‘talk’ to each other. While DALI-1 revolutionized options for regulating artificial lighting, DALI-2 is helping fill the gaps in the original standard. Not only does it allow for more interoperability with other wireless protocols such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and Zigbee, it also adds a host of new functions previously unavailable. Additional benefits include:
GRE Alpha is standing by to answer any questions about DALI and provide information on their easy-to-install DALI-compliant dimming modules. Pre-orders for the new DALI-2 driver are also being taken.
About GRE Alpha
GRE Alpha® Electronics, Ltd. specializes in the design and manufacture of solid-state lighting power supplies and lighting control accessories, which are the lifeblood of indoor and outdoor LED lighting systems. With more than two decades of power conversion expertise and a commitment towards innovation, GRE Alpha engages with industry pioneers to deliver highly efficient, installation ready and agency-approved LED power conversion products for a wide variety of industry applications. https://grealpha.com/about-us/
For more information on GRE Alpha products and services or to speak with a service representative and set up a one-on-one appointment with a technical expert, visit www.grealpha.com/contact/.