Lighting for Display Cabinet

Discussion in 'Electronics & Electrics' started by Frontl1ne, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. Frontl1ne

    Frontl1ne Member

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    Hey peeps,

    I've got no experience with electronics so I've come here seeking advice!

    The situation is: I've bought this display cabinet and built it up etc looks very awesome. But, it looks really dull because there's no lighting.

    Now I'm thinking about hooking up some kind of lighting for the cabinet however I'm not sure how to go about this. I have one idea of using LED strips down the back of cabinet and since it's right in a corner, hopefully the light will reflect off the walls and give the cabinet a nice lighting.

    What I'm not sure on though is how to power these things. In computers it's just a simple case of plugging the LED or cathodes to the PSU. But how do I power a lighting system without a computer? Do they use batteries or do they plug into outlet sockets?

    Also looking for other options in terms of lighting... preferably something simple to set up :)

    Thanks for any suggestions or advice!
     
  2. Indiana08

    Indiana08 Member

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    Adhesive/Flexible LED Strip is probably a cheap yet effective manner in which to do this. You can find the stuff online, and is quite easy to install (Peel off the back) and usually has a small amount of cabling that goes to a little controller, or even straight to a plug pack transformer, which you can plug into your wall socket.
     
  3. Indiana08

    Indiana08 Member

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    Oh, and there is a MASSIVE choice in colours, you can even get colour-changing ones. But IMO I think a cool white looks best.
     
  4. OP
    OP
    Frontl1ne

    Frontl1ne Member

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    Sounds good Indiana, I did a quick search on ebay and found this:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/5m-c...ptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

    And there's this one:

    http://cgi.ebay.com.au/12v-100cm-fl...AU_Boat_Parts_Accessories&hash=item4154ea79e9

    How can I tell if it comes with a controller or transformer?

    And they are pretty expensive! My cabinet is about ~1.6m tall :(

    Edit: Found a decently priced one here: http://www.ledsales.com.au/catalog/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=138&products_id=758

    Though I don't think it comes with anything to plug into the wall socket.

    Edit2: After doing a bit of reading... I think I need one of these? If I run two seperate strips of LEDs, will I need two power supplies or is there a way of joining the seperate strips?
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
  5. Indiana08

    Indiana08 Member

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    You'd probably be better off contacting the seller. I would guess that they would usually provide one, but don't quote me on that. The ebay one seems cheaper/better deal...
    You can pick up a 12v power supply a lot cheaper than too, Jaycar should have them cheaper, even look around the house, 12v is pretty common?
     
  6. merlin13

    merlin13 Member

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    Wandered through an Ikea last week and saw some nice strip LED lighting for shelving/cupboards, etc...
     
  7. Indiana08

    Indiana08 Member

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    These?
    http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/50119407
    They're super expensive compared to others on the net for #'s LEDS per metre.
     
  8. Turbine

    Turbine Member

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  9. Back Door Shen.

    Back Door Shen. Member

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  10. OP
    OP
    Frontl1ne

    Frontl1ne Member

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    Thanks for the replies guys, but I still don't know what I'll need to hook the suggestions up to a wall socket. Is someone able to link what I'd need?

    I thought about cold cathodes, but the cabinet is pretty much all glass and I think the cathodes will stick out quite a bit.

    The cabinet did say it came 'lighting ready' though, it has a small light hole at the top. Some pics here:

    [​IMG]

    Shining a torch down the light hole:

    [​IMG]


    What do people tend to use for those light holes? Need something fairly powerful but able to fit in the hole which is only about the size of a 50c piece.
     
  11. presch

    presch Member

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    The led strips come in modules of 3 led's each so you can cut them to suitable lengths that are multiples of 3 led's.
    You only need one power supply to feed as many separate strips as you like.
    It's very simple.
    Ledsales don't sell "cut to length" strips any more but you should be able to buy cut lengths from other suppliers.

    I used the strip lights from Ledsales in a night light behind a skylight diffuser and a 1 metre length hidden in a pelmet to light up the ceiling.
    Works a treat.
     
  12. Fraggle

    Fraggle Member

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    Ikea sell 10W lighting kits for the Deltof too, but they're kinda downlights and for the use of displaying, the lighting is somewhat uneven. Sorry can't find link on Ikea site but they're sold in a cardboard box with clear top. Picture from Google search: http://www.bloglobyte.com/diy/i-hate-ikea-lighting-the-under-cabinet-light-saga/

    Haven't had the same heat problems as described in the blog, but honestly I've switched on the lights about 1-2 hours total in the last 2 years :lol: (Actually after reading the article, I'm a bit hesitant to recommend them!)

    Using the hole, the light will be coming from the middle of the cabinet and anything displayed to the front will suffer from backlighting. I've been using the downlight but unhappy with the backlighting so the LED strips look a good idea, only problem of course will be the untidy wires as the cabinet is basically four glass panels with wire supports. Probably try and place the LED bar horizontally across the front of each shelf and run the wiring up one of the support, at least that way the source will be from the front of the display rather than the middle.
     
  13. OP
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    Frontl1ne

    Frontl1ne Member

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    Thanks fraggle and presch, sounds like LED strips are the way to go.

    Does anyone have a guide or can someone give me a run down on how to set up these strips? Is it possible to set them up without soldering? Would love some links to stores that sell the stuff too :D
     
  14. cvidler

    cvidler Member

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    I've used CCFL's sourced from Jaycar in the past for cabinet lighting, work very well, a more diffuse 'soft' light compared to LED strips.

    They're 12V, so buy a 12V "wall-wart" and wire them up. Easy, and pretty cheap.

    I've used LED strips too, the multiple point sources of light are more harsh, but created some highlights. A different lighting effect you may or may not like.
     
  15. RyoSaeba

    RyoSaeba Member

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    The hole is for you to run the power cables through. I just buy the IKEA lights to go with my detolf. :)
     
  16. OP
    OP
    Frontl1ne

    Frontl1ne Member

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    I quite like the diffused lighting of the CCFLs myself, have some in my computer, however they're too large and bulky for a full glass cabinet.

    With the wall wart, how do I solder wires to it? Looking at something like this:

    http://elderly.com/images/accessories/ELA/EH24DC.jpg

    I know LED strips have two wires (ground and don't know the other one! voltage?), do I just solder both of them to the wall wart plug thing?

    How did I not think that the hole is for wiring :o Wish I thought about lighting before I left IKEA, it's a 45 min drive from where I am :(
     
  17. cvidler

    cvidler Member

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    Jaycar have 'bare' CCFLs available, they are not in plastic tubes - makes them somewhat fragile (the CCFLs are thin glass tubes), but they are then only a few mm in diameter, so really compact.

    As for connecting the wall wart, two options there, buy a matching socket wire that up and plug in the wall wart no worries, or cut the plug off and wire it up permanently - be sure to check which is + and which is -.

    A more professional finish, would get a panel mount DC socket*, fix it to the cabinet, and the wall wart just plugs into the back.


    *e.g. http://jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=PS0524&CATID=35&form=CAT&SUBCATID=651
     
  18. RyoSaeba

    RyoSaeba Member

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    http://www.ikea.com/au/en/catalog/products/30143658
    That's the one.

    Can order online. :D I have 5 Detolf too and use a pair of the Non in each. They're not overly bright and does cast uneven lighting in the overall cabinet. The top will obviously be much brighter than bottom. Also if you have a sheet of paper in the top shelf like you do there with the liger, you'll block all light going down through the shelves. So you'll either need to remove the paper or have different lighting system. I used to screw the lights down into the top panel (they're just particle boards so you don't even need to drill it). These days I just use a copious amount of double sided tapes (thick type).
     
  19. merlin13

    merlin13 Member

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    Yup, think they were the ones. They also had other LED-based lighting things as well.

    Exxy yes but basically Plug 'n Play, and he can wander in to see what they actually look like in action... and I am not affiliated with Ikea either. :)
     
  20. OP
    OP
    Frontl1ne

    Frontl1ne Member

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    Thanks for the links to the ikea lights. Will probably get them depending on how much I can get led strips and stuff for. Gonna have to wait for funds though :(
     

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