Confused on CR4 v. CR6 v 5" and Adjustable LEDs

frogsterJanuary 26, 2013


We are in the process of gutting our house for a relatively high-end renovation. Our local lighting guy has specified 5" cans throughout the house with 75w incandescents, except where we are using low voltage 4" adjustables for art, etc. There are also one or two instances of 3". Our interior designer thinks we should definitely use 4" or 5", but not 6". Our house has 8' ceilings throughout, except in the dining room, which is just under 14'.

We raised the possibility of LEDs, and our lighting guy says he isn't thrilled by the current options. We are not required to use them, and he thinks we should wait. We want to consider them, but are having a few problems making the final decision.
We are having a hard time identifying the differences between the CR4 and CR6. And, we have some thoughts about what to do outside of our kitchen due to our plans to have some adjustable lights.

So, here are the questions:
1. I gather that the lamp in the CR4 is closer to the ceiling (lower down) and therefore more noticeable and potentially more glare compared to the CR6. Is that correct?
2. It seems like neither one matches the lumen output of a 75 W incandescent. Is that correct? (To the extent that this is an issue, perhaps we should be thinking about the CR6 800, instead. Still, though, I think that gives off fewer lumens than the 75W.)
3. I gather that the CR4 and CR6 575 have the same output, but can they be spaced in the same way and have the same coverage as each other? I think the answer is yes, but I am not certain.
4. Can the CR4 or CR6 be spaced the same way as the 5" cans, or do they need to be spaced differently?
5. In the Living Room and Family Room and maybe even the bedrooms, some of the recessed lights were going to be adjustable (gimbals, not eyeballs) so that we have options, including for wall washes or highlighting specific spots. That is relatively straightforward with traditional incandescents, but I am not sure how to deal with that with LEDs. (I know there is the LE6, but we had been planning on gimbals, not eyeballs, and we had been looking for a smaller aperture.) What would be the best approach? Surely we would not want a mix of CR4's in the same room where we are using adjustable incandescents? Should we just use incadescents in those rooms for now and then wait to see what becomes available in the future? If so, what size cans?
6. And, generally speaking, if we do keep using incandescents, are 5" cans a bad idea given the lack of availability of LEDs now and possibly in the future?
7. Is it odd to use different sizes and types of general recess lights in different parts of the house? (Maybe we would use LEDs in the kitchens, bedrooms and study, but use incandescents in the living room and family room and other rooms where we want adjustables (i.e., gimbals) to get light on walls or particular spots.)
8. For our "art lights" we were going to use low voltage 4" with MR16s. I realize that there are LED versions of the MR16, but I am not sure if there is a better option than that.

Thanks in advance for the help.


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A number of your questions have been dealt with in the attached link

Here is a link that might be useful: Led recessed lighting discussion

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 2:19PM
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Thanks David. We read that post first, but didn't find that it really answered our questions. I actually thought your guidance in this post about someone's family room was quite direct and helpful and in this post on someone's kitchen there was also some clear guidance .

At the end of the day, I think I can figure out what the answers are to most of the questions, but I cannot for the life of me figure out the way to go on adjustable/gimbals. Any help on that really would be much appreciated.


    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 11:19PM
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