Casambi announces wired DALI controller during Light + Building

March 6, 2024
The smart lighting controls provider expands its ecosystem with a wired controller developed to enable hybrid connectivity in lighting systems.

This week at Messe Frankfurt’s Light + Building trade fair, wireless lighting controls developer Casambi debuted an offering that diverges from its standard portfolio — the wired Salvador DALI controller series.

One might wonder at the prospects for a wired controller from a company that has repeatedly stated its intention to provide “Wireless Controls for Everyone.”

In a blog post on the Casambi website that expands upon the company’s March 3 product announcement, co-founder Timo Pakkala explained that Casambi’s intent is to deliver additional development opportunities for the 300-plus partners in its ecosystem and interoperability for system integrators, designers, and end users.

“Our aim is to support the entire lighting controls project workflow, from initial design to commissioning, making the process efficient and accessible to all stakeholders,” Pakkala noted in the blog. He continued, “Our decision to enter the DALI system provider domain is rooted in the understanding that the lighting industry values traditional standards like copper wires and DALI-based solutions. […] We can essentially take the best bits of DALI and offer an easy way of lighting that is better aligned with today’s digital consumer.”

DALI advantages

As an open standard protocol, the Digital Addressable Lighting Interface (DALI) has generally been deployed via wired networks. The appeal of wireless systems — with the potential for reduced installation complexity and commissioning of networked devices — has gained traction in recent years, leading the DALI Alliance to launch its DALI+ specification that supports a wireless DALI control architecture.

Last fall, DALI Alliance general manager Paul Drosihn wrote for LEDs Magazine, “[T]here are still scenarios where a wired solution is preferred [over wireless] or even may be mandated. In some circumstances, hybrid solutions may be desirable. Some technologies enable choice and keep future options open by enabling wired and wireless lighting-control networks to operate together.”

Drosihn proceeded to summarize the potential for deploying DALI control in wired, wireless, and hybrid scenarios, and observed that certification programs like those promulgated by the DALI Alliance enable wider adoption, lending authority to “proven technology” while promoting multiple options for lighting designers, especially when multiple systems must be integrated within the same building.

Pakkala’s words in the Casambi blog echo the need for flexibility, choice, and ease of use for connectivity and controls solutions. “[A] hybrid solution might include controlling luminaires through wired DALI and additionally having wireless Casambi Ecosystem products in the same lighting controls solution,” he stated. “This adaptability ensures that our comprehensive solution remains applicable across diverse settings, empowering users to choose the most fitting configuration for their needs” with technologies and products from Casambi partners.

Specs and availability

Casambi’s two new Salvador controllers are capable of managing up to 64 DALI addresses, supporting DALI DT6, DT8, and D4i via the company’s cloud API. Salvador 2064 with integrated 130-mA power supply utilizes an internal real-time clock with energy storage backup and is expected to begin sampling in the third quarter of 2024. Salvador 1064 requires an external power supply and is available now for sampling, with full production expected in the second quarter of this year.

The company’s product release indicates that a version of the controller will be developed specifically for the U.S. market. LEDs will bring more details as they are available.

CARRIE MEADOWS is editor-in-chief of LEDs Magazine, with 20-plus years’ experience in business-to-business publishing across technology markets including solid-state technology manufacturing, fiberoptic communications, machine vision, lasers and photonics, and LEDs and lighting.

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