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Dynamic Color Changing

History of Color in LEDs

Color has long been the greatest asset and largest drawback when LEDs are considered. Early LED lights were capable of instant color changes and bright saturated colors, but lacked intensity in pastel tones. Plus, few instruments produced an acceptable white light. The shortcoming was largely due to LED’s reliance on RGB diodes to produce colors by way of additive color mixing. It was easy to get a hot magenta by turning red and blue up to full, but difficult to fine tune a pale straw. Incandescent lighting, relying on subtractive color mixing, seemed the superior technology as bright pale tones could be achieved by placing a very light filter in front of the lighting instrument. Try that with a Congo Blue filter, though, and the inefficiency of subtractive filtering becomes apparent.

Current LED Fixtures

Today’s LED fixtures have evened the gap by employing more powerful light emitting diodes and by including more colors in their emitter array. Some manufacturers have added white LEDs, amber LEDs, or multiple shades of each color in order to mix natural usable color. Now that the fixtures are capable of producing all of the colors required by lighting designers, fewer fixtures are required in lighting plots. A single, specialized fixture can provide all necessary colors for any focus area.

With fewer fixtures, lighting systems require less power. Since LED lighting instruments are not controlled by the power flowing to them but rather the control signal, fewer power circuits are required, and they need not be dimmable circuits. It is still advisable to have control over the power running to the fixtures, but only on and off operation is required.