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Thread: Creating a lighting program that appears "natural"

  1. #1
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    Creating a lighting program that appears "natural"

    Do any of the designers/installers on this site have any tips for creating a realistic looking program for controlling lights in a home? What I am trying to create is a sequence of light changes that doesn't look like it is controlled by a program.

  2. #2
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    Please elaborate on what you don't like about a system that would make it appear controlled by a program that you wouldn't like?

    In my own home, most of my lights are LED-based and use very little power. I have scenes that fire with long fades around dusk and dawn to just make lighting appear so that no action needs to be taken. It's clearly done by a program, but it feels natural to my family because we don't worry about lights at all. We also use some occupancy sensors, but not many.

  3. #3
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    I think you may have misinterpreted my question or I didn't phrase it clearly. Like you we have created scenes that correspond to our daily usage patterns. What I was asking was whether any of the pros on this forum had tips for creating a lighting pattern that can be used for security purposes that looks "natural" even though the house is unoccupied. For example, is it preferable to have kitchen lights go on and off randomly during the evening hours or left on?

  4. #4
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    I now understand.

    I like having LEDs just come on whether people are home or not. With the low power consumption of LEDs, it really doesn't matter if one day lights are on and no one is home. As a result, during normal activity lights don't go on and off anyway, so there's no need to do it during away times. I wouldn't suggest this with incandescents for sure.

  5. #5
    I find that long/slow fade times starting at (or just before) sunset is the best way to turn on interior lights without having them "jump out" at you

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jkvossen View Post
    I find that long/slow fade times starting at (or just before) sunset is the best way to turn on interior lights without having them "jump out" at you
    Do you have an AWAY setting and, if so, how do you arrange your lighting schedule with that option?

  7. #7
    Not sure how you would do it with RA2, but for QS I make all of my interior scenes conditional based on the house being "occupied" (or not). If the client has an alarm system, this is driven by the state of the alarm, if not, there is a keypad in the garage (or house entrance) that is used to indicate to the system that the home is "occupied" (or not).

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