An excellent blend of decorative and task light functionality can be obtained through the use of linear or ribbon under kitchen cabinet lighting fixtures. These custom designed, adjustable devices produce superior results in the arenas of illuminance and uniformity. Illuminance is a term that describes the amount of light that is visible on any given surface. In most designer circles, an illuminance level of at least 300 lux is necessary to generate sufficient visibility for ordinary kitchen tasks like preparing food. Uniformity is necessary in order to create a decorative effect that can contribute to overall kitchen aesthetic. Ideally, such fixtures should allow users to adjust illumination levels at will so as to better blend it with luminance from other sources in the room.
Lamping options range from traditional incandescent, which is seldom used now do to poor energy conservation, to fluorescent, halogen, xenon, and LED. Xenon typically offers the best uniformity and also adds a golden touch to surfaces much like that produced by incandescent lamps. Xenon has long been a designer favorite for under kitchen cabinet lighting applications because of these reasons. In recent years, however, LED lamps have developed to a level of quality that they can now be used for a wide range of decorative, as well as task oriented applications. LEDs have the longest lamp life of any option, and they offer the best energy conservation as well. When engineered to dissipate heat and allow users to adjust levels of luminance, LEDs offer a blend of functional and aesthetic value that is likely to become the preferred option for designers in only a few short years.