Kitchen lighting discovery

One of the bits that was left over from the installation was an extra lighting module, which seems to be the same as the ones that are installed. It’s an L&S Nova Emotion, which it turns out has a bunch of features that are available with the matching driver.

Mine didn’t come with the matching driver.

Well okay it’s not that many features, but it has variable color temperature (and possibly brightness?), and Bluetooth remote control support, as well as touch control built-in.

Not that it makes that big of a difference; I don’t really trust Bluetooth for this purpose (in terms of reliability and also the fact it has its own remote control dongle that’s easy to lose and it doesn’t seem to work with phones or whatever), but having the ability to change the color temperature is nice but the one that it seems to be fixed to is just fine.

Anyway I found this while trying to find the rated lifetime of the modules, and I did eventually find that they’re only rated for 25,000 hours. Which doesn’t seem like a lot (that’s 5-8 years at normal usage). And the way they’re installed makes it not that easy to replace them, and the individual modules are kind of expensive? From what I’m finding online, anyway.

Well, whatever. The lighting adds a lot to my kitchen and I do have the spare module, and replacing them probably isn’t that hard (cut the dead module’s wire off at the module end, use that as a fish tape to pull the new module’s wire through?) and I have several years before I have to worry about it, and it’d probably be easy to just splice in whatever LED tape to the current module’s wiring anyway. And that’s very much a problem for future me (or whoever owns my home in that future).

I did ask the designer about this and just now he got back to me:

I believe those are the units that we use. I can confirm that you can change the color and dim them with our add-on remote control system. There is also a driver option that allows for Bluetooth connectivity.

The individual units themselves are composed of a simple LED tape light, so swapping them out should not be an issue although we have yet to swap any out.

The last bit doesn’t make sense since these are almost certainly COB modules, not tape-based, but we’ll see.

Anyway I did ask him how much he sells the enhanced driver/receiver for. This one is $45 and would be an easy DIY option should I decide to do it later (although that doesn’t include the remote which is another $31). Another reason to consider that is it has a dimmer, which would at least theoretically extend the life of the lights as well.

But I also suspect that the enhanced driver is likely to add visible flicker; with the current setup I’m not seeing any, nor does my phone detect any when recording at 240FPS, but any dimming/temperature-modulating setup is almost certainly going to do it using PWM and I’d have to wonder what the carrier frequency is. I’ve measured the flicker of my overhead kitchen/studio lights at 120Hz (which I don’t notice) but if it gets down to, like, 60 I definitely will.

I guess I could go back to the showroom and ask to see the Bluetooth stuff in person. The other promotional video I found indicates that it does have an iOS app, at least, although I’m not really that keen on any of the remote control stuff beyond the dimming and maybe color temperature stuff. So I might just be nerding out too much about potential rather than anything I actually care about.

Whatever the case is, I’m already way happier with what I have now.


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