Perth 7th February 2013
As I drove to site tonight where I was due to check out some visual lighting mock up I could not help marvelling at the wonderful skies we have in Perth. The transition from day to night in Perth can be pretty magical, certainly after another blue sky- sunny day. The light is so pure and crisp with wonderful blue, yellow and amber hues gradually fading over to darkness…beautiful…Nothing beats natural light. We do try our best to reproduce lighting artificially in our projects but nothing beats purity.
Interestingly my VMU inspection was one I had requested to prove that LED lighting is not always the best solution as nearly everyone seems to be promoting. I had the LED linear lights set up in comparison with new generation long life T5 and it was an easy test. T5 came out in front on all points; cost being just one of them! Performance and durability were some of the other points. The light distribution of the 5 was pleasant and just the kind of soft wash I wanted. The LED was too pronounced and not as performing. Key elements such as power consumption and lifespan, the key selling points of LED most of the time, did not come out with a big advantage. Yes the wattage was slightly less for the LED (21W to 26W) which in the long run does not really provide such big energy advantage. In fact we would need slightly less T5 tubes to cover the required area. Life time of T5 is nowadays rated at a min of 20,000hrs, while LED (if properly quality controlled) is rated at around 35,000 hrs. The issue here being that the LED proposed was of an untraceable China make…, wich brings me to the warranty…no issues with the T5, but serious questions for the LED! How will it be enforced…In the end it was a no brainer for me. We are going in with the T5, a simple installation, saving the client not only a lot of money but also a lot of headache!
Light Watch 4-24: Perth is currently enjoying the Perth Arts Festival, one of the installations is called “Scattered Lights” by Jim Cambell, currently on display at King Park.