September 25, 2018 12:53
There are plenty of jokes about changing light bulbs, but they usually don’t involve 80 fittings.
However, that was the brief for Nick Abel and Mike Jones, the managing directors of New Zealand’s LS Group, when they were contacted by the management of Auckland’s Victory Convention Centre.
The Centre is a house of worship that also features a beautiful timber-lined 2200-seat, tiered auditorium, which is often used for concerts, conferences, symposiums, small exhibitions and expos.
“They approached us late last year to look at options to upgrade their house lighting systems to LED from the old incandescent system, which was installed in the Eighties when the Centre was built,” Nick says.
“We did some research and modelling and went back to them with a few different options using the Chroma-Q Inspire multi-purpose creative lighting range. It was the light fixture best suited to their needs because of its ability to run white light, but also run RGB as well, to give them a full colour wash.”
Nick says the Chroma-Q LED range also offers major energy savings, which is another reason the client signed off on that choice. The new system is drawing around a quarter of the power that the old system used, and while the cost of installing LED fittings is higher than simply replacing the incandescent bulbs, the new system will pay for itself in time, because of the lower energy cost.
“The other thing we also improved was the light levels in the building. When we did a survey of the original installation, there was an average reading of between 50 and 70 LUX, whereas the room is now operating evenly at around 200-plus LUX, for a quarter of the power.
“And the other side of this too, was the heat calculations. There is a serious reduction in heat output from the lighting by the change.”
Nick says the Chroma-Q range has a lot to offer a facility such as the Victory Convention Centre. Size, output and the fact the fittings are convection-cooled rather than using fans, were all part of the reason for the choice.
LS Group mainly used the Chroma-Q Inspire XT for the job. It’s a relatively new fitting but has one of the highest quality RGBW colour mixing capabilities on the market. The lights were sourced from Jands (New Zealand) Limited, as part of a working relationship that has been in existence for 10 years.
“The main thing was finding the right fitting, for the size, the weight restrictions, for the fact we wanted something quiet, without fans, as well as a high output,” Nick says.
“The XT must be one of the highest output fittings of that type available right now. It’s versatile, flexible and probably the best bang for the client’s buck, for what we wanted to achieve.”
The project involved 80 lights and the installation took around three weeks. According to Nick, the real challenge came when they discovered the floor of the Centre has a slope of about five degrees.
“We had to get a special machine to do the job – a spider, which is like a cherry picker with a fully adjustable leg system so you can level it out to get up to the fittings. The process of moving the machine around and getting everything level took a bit longer than we expected.”
The new system has been in operation since April this year and Nick says the feedback from the Centre’s management and clients has been 100 per cent positive.
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