3' Recessed lights: Cooper IRIS v Philips Lightolier

drtechnoJune 28, 2010

Hi all

Putting in 3" low volt. recessed lights throughout the house and I have the options of IRIS or Lightolier lights. Obviously, the IRIS is (much) more expensive (double actually, ~$10k more) so I am curious if the added expense is worth it. I have heard the transformers don't make any noise, the color temperature is constant throughout the range (on dimmers), there are more trim options with lensed wall washers, etc.

Anyone have any experience with the Lightolier stuff and the IRIS gear?

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Iris fixtures use a toroidal type transformer which has two taps, one is a 12V for switch applications and the other tap boosts the voltage for use with a dimmer to make up for the 10% or so loss so the light levels can equal a switched fixture. They used to have a premium Q-Tran made transformer in them but it's been replaced by a Chinese manufactured transformer with less efficiency. I'm not sure what you mean by color temperature is constant. All halogen lamps will become warmer looking as they are dimmed because the filament is cooler if kept off longer. That has nothing to do with the fixture.

Other premium features include aim locking so that the person relamping the fixture does not accidentally move the aiming adjustment. They also have better lamp concealment and adjustability.

Juno's Aculux is a bit less expensive but comparable.

There are other premium fixtures to consider if they are all to be 3" LV.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2010 at 1:36AM
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Good to know.

What other premium fixtures would you consider?
"My hopes lay with these (him)."
"No.. there is another!"

Sorry.. a Star Wars quote. Ya 3" LV is what I need.

From the IRIS brochure regarding color temperature:
Separate output for circuits controlled by dimmers compensates for losses in dimmers, improves color temperature and lumen output.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2010 at 2:11PM
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The dual tap transformer can bring the lamp in a fixture back up to specified voltage when the dimmer is at its highest setting. Once you start dimming the lamp its lumens drop and the color temperature shifts. It's not a constant effect once you purposely dim.

USA Illumination would be preferred over Iris if you don't need the other sizes and types of fixtures Iris can supply.

Here is a link that might be useful: USA Illumination

    Bookmark   July 1, 2010 at 2:18AM
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Juno has redesigned their Aculux line and it deserves a close look. It was in some ways inferior to Iris. Juno appears to have fixed all of the issues from their new specs while Cooper has degraded Iris by changing suppliers of parts over the years reducing quality.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2010 at 9:43AM
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