Andy Douglas, MD at Timeguard, explains how the new NIGHTeye Plus range puts the latest LED technology to work.
We all know that as new technology advances, prices come down – but who really beneﬁts? There’s a downwards price spiral which always ends the same way with low margins all-round and poor quality low-end products queering the pitch for everyone.
But sometimes someone decides to take a diﬀerent approach and use the new componentry to create much more value, not just a price cut. Take Timeguard’s new NIGHTeye Plus range – designed and built for the installer market with easy installation, guaranteed ﬁt-and-forget quality and the looks and functionality that will make it an easy sell. The NIGHTeye Plus project started with the introduction of LEDs that don’t need drivers to smooth out the current, which initially made possible the slimline panel-shaped ﬂoodlights you’ll have seen around. They have their place, and Timeguard now has a few in its range along with most other manufacturers. But with NIGHTeye Plus, slimming down was only the starting point.
Maximising the ﬁeld of illumination is important when using LEDs for ﬂood lights and, without
precisely oriented LED arrays and reﬂector plates the beam would be too straight and focussed.
Timeguard’s prismatic lenses make a feature of the LEDs, a million miles away from the old arrays of early LED lighting. The reﬂector plates on these new lights are made of tough polycarbonate and you’ll notice that there is no clear glass window: the recessed reﬂector and diode lens are used to create new beautiful sleek lines.
There will be no rusting of the polycarbonate plate front lenses either and they’ll look good for years. The all-white models, with white casing and matching white reflector plates will hardly be seen when mounted on a white soffit board.
Branded quality is an assurance that corners have not been cut on the circuitry. With the driver eliminated it is important to maintain quality standards for all the other circuitry or there is a high probability of flicker, which has been designed out wherever possible from the NIGHTeye ranges. It might not be immediately visible to the naked eye, but such flicker means that inferior LED floodlights will not be so suitable for certain indoor applications.
Driverless or not, LEDs generate a lot of heat on start-up with the inrush current. The 30,000+ hour life expectancies we all have of LED lighting these days are unlikely to be met if the circuitry is consistently overheating. So any design needs to incorporate a cooling mechanism. If the back is smooth, with no cooling fins, then are you totally sure the product is designed to eliminate heat build-up. Perhaps it is a case of buyer beware!
When automating these lights, remember too, that PIRs should have been tested and rated speciﬁcally for use with the LED – they too have to cope with inrush currents.
Ease of installation has been an essential consideration in the design process. The range features full-size wiring terminals that are easy to terminate your cables into and a cover with captive screws, plus two self-locking glands (supplied) designed specifically to maintain weather proofing for UK twin-and-earth cable and “loop out” to other luminaires on the circuit. Even the “easy-hang” wall brackets all add up to simplicity for the installer.
Here perhaps is the smartest touch of all. Simply “swap” the standard terminal cover for a Timeguard NIGHTeye Plus unit with a PIR sensor or photocell plug it in – no extra wiring needed – and you’ve instantly got an automatic security light. It really is that simple!
There’s also a fourth terminal in the wiring block to simply connect other lighting and also be controlled by the PIR or photocell as slave lighting. NIGHTeye plus is oﬀered in black or white designs, with outputs of 10W (650L), 20W (1400L), 30W (2050L) and 50W (3600L). Plus, the simple plug-in PIR sensor and Photocell units are rated to switch up to 140W of LED lighting.