Test ten dimmers with LED lamps

    Most LED lamps do not support brightness control, but there are also dimmable lamps, which are more expensive than ordinary ones, but their brightness is adjustable.

    Anyone who bought dimmable lamps probably faced compatibility problems - not all lamps work correctly with dimmers and choosing the perfect combination of lamps and dimmer is not easy.

    I checked how ten different dimmers work with fifteen models of LED lamps.

    Two-wire and four-wire dimmers are available.

    A two-wire dimmer is placed in the open circuit of the lamp instead of the usual switch.

    Two wires of the network are connected to the input of the four-wire dimmer, two wires are connected to the output to the lamp. Four-wire dimmers are of two types: for installation instead of the usual switch and radio-controlled chandeliers for installation in the junction box.

    Two wire dimmers

    Almost all two-wire dimmers that can be found in stores are not designed specifically for LED lamps, moreover, many have a minimum power of 40-60 W and this power is often greater than the total power of LED lamps that will be installed in the chandelier. However, many dimmers with LED lamps work quite correctly.

    I tested the work of five such dimmers:

    1. ABB Cosmo 619-010200-192 40-800 W, 990 rub.
    2. Legrand Valena 770261 40-400 W, 2100 rubles.
    3. Schneider W59, 60-300 W, 919 rub.
    4. Lezard Mira, 800 W, 470 rubles.
    5. Ying Hua LED Dimmer, 15-200 W, 180 rub.

    Only the Schneider W59 dimmer has a minimum regulator. This allows you to fine-tune for each type of lamp the minimum level of brightness and avoid extinguishing some lamps when turning the knob to a minimum.

    For testing, 30 dimmable LED lamps were used.

    Lamps were switched on in parallel by 4-6 pieces.

    To quickly switch between dimmers, I assembled this design.

    The minimum brightness was measured using a Lamptest-1 brightness analyzer.

    The table shows the minimum brightness in percent for each type of lamp and each dimmer. If the value is marked in red, there were problems with the lamp, which I will write about below.

    Cheap dimmer Ying Hua LED Dimmer with Aliexpress, as it turned out, is not at all suitable for LED lamps, despite its name: the minimum adjustment is 16-67% and it is no good. Only for lamps “IKEA 102.667.54 LED1543C6 candle 400 lm” it reduces the brightness to almost zero, but with a small brightness of the lamp, it goes out, then burns, then some of the lamps go out.

    Lezard dimmer reduces the brightness to more or less low values ​​only in three types of lamps.

    The most expensive dimmer Legrand was far away, not the best. In both models of X-Flash lamps, light jitter was observed at certain brightness values, and not all lamps were able to achieve minimum brightness.

    The Schneider dimmer turned out to be the champion in minimums (largely due to the additional regulator), but it does not work with X-Flash filament candles: their brightness does not rise above 55% (all other lamps with all dimmers have a maximum of 100%), the light flashes and trembles.

    The ABB dimmer turned out to be the most trouble-free and in most cases providing a minimum of brightness, only the old IKEA 102.667.54 LED1543C6 candle was extinguished at the minimum of adjustment and the minimum level was difficult to “catch”, and in two lamp models (more precisely, at five: Nanosvet with the same electronics, but different color temperature and type of diffuser), the minimum adjustment is 13-15%.

    The best of the two-wire ones were ABB and Schneider dimmers, and for some lamps one of them is better, and for others the second one.

    4-wire dimmers

    The four-wire dimmers for installing a conventional switch in place are actually three-wire - the input and output neutral wires are connected. When installing them, a problem arises - there is usually no neutral wire in the switch box. However, there is a solution - if the wiring was designed to use a chandelier with two groups of lamps, there are three wires going from the switch to the chandelier and one of them can be made zero by connecting it to the zero wire in the chandelier base.

    The first two dimmers are designed to be replaced with a conventional switch, the other three are radio-controlled and are put in the base of the chandelier.

    All dimmers, except Noolite SU111-300, are designed for LED lamps.

    1. Simon 1591796 5-215 W, 2100 rubles.
    2. X-Flash 47475 300 W, 1690 rubles.
    3. Noolite SU111-300 300 W, 1500 rub + remote 1500 rub.
    4. Noolite SUF-1-300 0-300 W, 2140 rubles + remote control 1500 rubles + programmer 4500 rubles.
    5. EasyDim RX-AC-DIM 100 W, 2800 rub + remote from 1400 to 4300 rub.

    Simon and EasyDim dimmers have minimum adjustment, while Noolite SUF-1-300 has a minimum brightness set using an additional programmer.

    Test results:

    Dimmer Simon worked perfectly with X-Flash filament candles, worked incorrectly with IKEA candles (did not provide maximum brightness), and then unexpectedly failed for unknown reasons, therefore there are only two tests in the table. Before that, he worked for me for a long time, and I don’t know what happened to him during the tests.

    Dimmer X-Flash has a non-standard size and will not fit in a regular podrozetnik. It comes with a case, so it can be used for surface mounting, but this is not very aesthetic.

    With most of the lamps, this dimmer worked correctly, providing a minimum of 0.1 to 3%, the same problem was observed with X-Flash 47291 and L240, L241, L242, L243 lamps — the lamps started to flash at the minimum brightness values. Due to the design features, the brightness of LED lamps is regulated by this dimmer only at the very beginning of the knob's rotation (literally one-tenth of a turn), and then it immediately becomes maximum, so it is difficult to “catch” the desired brightness level. Due to the lack of minimum adjustment, many lamps go out when the knob is turned fully counterclockwise.

    The Noolite SU111-300 dimmer, although not designed for LED lamps, works with most of them, but the minimum levels are too high. With IKEA 102.667.54 lamps, the dimmer does not work correctly - it is difficult to “catch” the minimum, the lamps turn off at minimum levels, sometimes individual lamps start to flash at different levels of adjustment, and never burn at full brightness.

    The Noolite SUF-1-300 dimmer works with LED lamps almost perfectly, providing a minimum level of 0.1-0.6%, but rather expensive USB programmer is required to set the minimum.

    Dimmer EasyDim RX-AC-DIM worked correctly with all lamps except for IKEA 102.667.54 candles (they did not want to burn with it at full brightness), but despite the possibility of adjusting the minimum, some lamps had a minimum brightness of 5%, which is quite a lot .

    The “capricious” IKEA 102.667.54 candles that did not work correctly with many dimmers are no longer sold. They came to replace 603.888.28, which work with dimmers much better.

    Alas, most dimmable LED lamps are buzzing. Of the tested, only three models turned out to be absolutely silent:

    • X-Flash 48700 XF-E14-FLMD-C35-4W-2700K candle filament,
    • IKEA Ledare 603.650.92 LED1706X11 GX53 1000 lm,
    • Camelion LED ULTRA LED5-C35-D / 830 / E14 5 watt candle.

    Two models buzz very quietly:

    • IKEA Ledare 403.632.30 LED1722R8 GU10 600 lm,
    • IKEA Ledare 703.651.00 LED1707X7 GX53 600 lm.

    Three models buzz perceptibly:

    • IKEA Ledare 703.887.57 LED1709G7 pear 600 lm,
    • IKEA Ledare 503.888.38 LED1705G7 pear E14 600 lm,
    • IKEA Ledare 703.888.18 LED1721C6 candle transparent 600 lm.

    The hum of the remaining lamps can be felt only in a quiet room at minimum brightness levels.

    According to the study, it turned out that some dimmers, not intended for LED lamps, work fine with them, but not all dimmers, specially designed for LED lamps, work correctly with any lamps. Among the lamps, too, come across "capricious", well working only with individual dimmers. Choosing dimmable lamps and a dimmer for them you need to be prepared for the fact that they will be incompatible, so it’s best to buy a dimmer where it can be returned without any problems if something goes wrong.

    © 2018, Alexey Nadyozhin

    Also popular now: