Why Are Recessed Lights Preferred For A Soft Illumination?

Why Use Recessed Lights for Art Displays?Recessed lights are often preferred for their sleek profile and their ability to create softer illumination. When placed inside the ceiling, they are less likely to create harsh, direct radiance from all angles. These fixtures also convey an air of sophistication and are usually found in more high-end establishments or homes. They reduce ceiling clutter and don’t have the gaudy feel that surface mounted fixtures often come with. In fact, museums and art galleries usually favor these fixtures because they are easier to control and are able to generate better illumination overall.

Phantom offers some of the most advanced recessed lights in the industry. Its contour art projectors are concealed inside the ceiling behind durable aluminum housing, so only a small aperture is visible. This makes it nearly impossible for people to see the projector, which preserves the clean, sophisticated look that these fixtures are known for. This is especially important in art galleries and museums where a sharp aesthetic is required at all times.

Phantom’s contour projectors use MR16, halogen, fiber optic fixtures to create reliable, powerful illumination. These are professional level technologies that are reserved for precious items, like artwork, sculptures or photographs. They are safe to use on delicate canvases and pigments and are ideal for color rendering. True color rendering is a must have quality in any recessed lights used to display artwork. Without it, the colors inside the subject will either be washed out and muted, or tinted another color. This is a problem with incandescent and fluorescent fixtures, both of which produce color tones on the extreme edges of the spectrum.

Contour art projectors from Phantom are designed to illuminate a specific subject. Using a  custom cut template or adjustable shutters, Phantom ensures that each projector can mask the light to perfectly illuminate the art work. This is what Phantom means when it states that its projectors contour to the subject. They produce zero spill illumination, which can cause harsh shadows or look sloppy. With radiance that is shaped to the piece, it’s hard to tell the subject is being lit up at all because the radiance will appear to emanate from within. This ethereal glow makes the piece pop and appear full of life. Even if a person looks for the source of illumination, they will find it almost impossible to spot the projector in the ceiling. In all, the effect is mesmerizing.

These projectors can be installed in nearly any setting, and though they are usually installed in high-end residences, they are also used in commercial buildings, art galleries, and museums. Phantom offers five varieties of recessed installation methods to house its projector. They can be blended into the ceiling perfectly, placed in a room with no bottom access, integrated into new construction or remodeled homes, or mounted to the surface of the ceiling instead of inside. With so many options available, the right fit can be found for any subject.

A Contour Projector Lights Art Displays Instead Of A Whole Room

Very few fixtures can produce the same illumination effects that a contour projector can. These technologically impressive devices are the best option available for presenting artistic pieces like paintings or photographs. This is because they can be adjusted to fit the profile of any subject perfectly. This may not seem like a big deal, but preventing spill light or shadows evokes a powerful illusion, making the piece seem like it is lit from within. This subtle, warm glow breathes life into the subject and can entrance an observer. In short, the effect has to be seen to be believed.

Fortunately, Phantom offers a range of devices that can fit any venue or setting. In general, a contour projector is built into the ceiling and is hidden from view using a cover plate. When the light is not in operation, the cover plate lies flat against the ceiling. Once switched on, the cover plate descends slightly and opens a small aperture for the fixture. Even when switched on, the device maintains an extremely low profile, which enhances the effect. Many observers won’t be able to tell where the light is coming from because the illumination is soft and the device is hidden from view.

Phantom has five different models available, all of them designed slightly differently to accommodate particular settings. The NC (new construction) and RM series (remodel housing) are the most compact units available and are built for ceilings that are shallow, which is common in newer buildings. The TA (top access) series is designed for settings where only ceiling access is feasible. The FF (float finish) series is installed flush with the ceiling and blends in completely when painted to match its surroundings. The SM (surface mount) series is an exposed fixture and is not shielded with a cover plate. It is the most economical contour projector available.

Professional Lighting Equipment

dawson_cabinet_300-702513What options does Phantom’s Professional Lighting Equipment offer to builders, electrical contractors, and lighting designers?

Phantom’s professional lighting equipment can be customized to any number of commercial and residential marketplaces. Our equipment must feature specification grade design that ensures reliable performance and cost effective energy management, and it is user-friendly enough for the client to manipulate when necessary. Through our Agent network the contractor can obtain a variety of linear lighting products and projector lighting solutions to meet the complex demands of a challenging marketplace.

Does Phantom Lighting make cove lights?

Yes. The Phantom CM series is designed to bend a full 360 degrees if necessary to accommodate any radius, or wind along any varying angle to accommodate a serpentine cove. Standard cove lights have limited applications in these environments because of their fixed linear build. CM series cove lighting fixtures feature a compact design that hides it from the viewer’s eye and uses smaller transformers that are easier to conceal.

Does Phantom Lighting manufacture cabinet lighting fixtures?

Yes. Our professional lighting equipment intended specifically for cabinet lighting can be used for under cabinet, in-cabinet, and over the cabinet lighting. Both horizontal and vertical mount lighting strips are available for these applications. Builders can choose from lamping types that include incandescent, xenon, and LED in a complete spectrum of colour temperatures that will match luminance precisely to custom cabinetry and counter top color and texture. (Be sure to read about our latest development, the 2800K festoon lamp, as an example of this).

Does Phantom Lighting manufacture display lights?

Yes. Phantom specializes in overcoming the challenges of specialty display lighting with professional lighting equipment that is designed to hide its own physical presence within the shelving structure of display cabinets and utilize dimmable, sophisticated festoon lamping technology to showcase any variety of display items. Interior designers often use Phantom linear retail display lights to illuminate antiques, collectibles, and collectors’ firearms that require precise colour temperatures to showcase their true value. Professional lighting designers also prefer our equipment when illuminating items such as wine, rare books, and documents on display that require the totally heat less light source and the superior colour rendering of our 2500K LED festoon lamps.

Does Phantom make art lights?

Yes. Our Phantom Contour Projectors offer a low profile, art lighting fixture that mounts central to the room in the ceiling. The projector itself is smaller than competing models and is virtually invisible to the viewer’s normal line of site. No other form of professional art lighting equipment has proven so successful in minimizing glare and eliminating spill light. This is because Phantom’s proprietary engineering that focuses and shapes the light to the artwork in such a manner as to keep the beam itself invisible until it strikes the surface. This results in a magical “lighted from within” effect that causes the artwork to glow with an aura of seemingly sourceless light. Art consulting professionals use this art lighting equipment to create the most unique art lighting effects, including the illumination of statuary which requires a complex interplay of light and shadow to be effective, and which the Contour Projector is ideal for producing.

Phantom Agent Network for the Professional Contractor

Phantom Lighting Systems is a Houston-based lighting manufacturer specializing in energy-efficient professional lighting equipment designed for a variety of interior, decorative, and fine art lighting applications. If you are a builder, architect, electrical contractor, interior designer, or art consultant, we want you to call us and become familiar with our Lighting Agents. They can customize our technology to your client’s needs and oversee delivery and technical support for your order.

Our lighting manufacturing facility is located in Houston, Texas with professional lighting sales agents located throughout the United States that enable us to service all of Canada, Mexico, Central America, South America and the United States including Washington DC, Nashville Tennessee, Reno Nevada. Portland Oregon, Oklahoma City Oklahoma, Tucson Arizona, Los Angeles California, Atlanta Georgia. Austin Texas, Dallas Texas and Palm Springs California.

We invite you to call toll free 800-863-1184 to request literature online, visit our lighting blog, visit our mobile website to learn more about Phantom custom low voltage lighting products.

Low Voltage Art Lighting Techniques, Picture Lighting Products & Artwork Lights For Illuminating Fine Art

Thomas_3There are countless varieties of low voltage art lighting fixtures on the market, and an almost infinite number of fixtures styles available within each individual type.

Low voltage over the picture lights

These lighting fixtures are also called picture lights because they attach directly to the frame and extend over the top of the picture. The most popular over the picture art lights are low voltage LED units that either operate with a concealed low voltage transformer or eliminate wiring altogether with internal battery power. They are remarkably inexpensive, safe, and easy to install and transport.

Although they do not create the most formal presentations, they often prove invaluably convenient in temporary settings such as picture lighting public art sales, lighting exhibitions and lighting municipal displays where local art or classroom art from public schools is showcased.

Low voltage art lighting with recessed fixtures

Recessed picture lights are so named because they resided in a recessed fixture that is either partially or completely embedded in the ceiling. They can be equipped with dimmers to allow the user direct control over lighting levels. Lenses can also be covered with filters to eliminate UV and IR radiation, placing only the desired portions of the spectrum over the piece.

The primary advantage of recessed accent lights is a concealed light source that can be projected at a precise angle toward a picture(s) on display.

The disadvantage of low voltage recessed art lights is that multiple fixtures must be used to light an entire row of pictures, or a large number of pieces along a wall. If there are too many works in the collection, it becomes impractical to install an equivalently large number of recessed lights in the ceiling.

Low voltage art lighting with track lights

Track lights are so called because they hang suspended from a track that runs parallel to a wall. They offer an advantage in number over recessed lights. In a gallery where a wall may be full of paintings or photographs from a specific genre, any number of track light installation techniques can be installed to provide an individual light source for each individual work.

The obvious disadvantage to track lighting is lack of concealment. Track lights are impossible to hide and are clearly visible to the viewing audience.

Low voltage lighting with Art projectors

Recessed Projector lights represent the highest level of sophistication in low voltage art lighting. They hang suspended from the ceiling on inverted pedestals. Capable of rotating a full 360 degrees, art projectors can be aimed at any point in the room to illuminate a two dimensional image or three dimensional sculpture.

Most contain some sort of filtration technology as well that strips the light beam of IR and UV wavelengths prior to the light ever passing through the lens. However, many art lighting manufactures are limited by fixed optical systems that prohibit fine-tuning adjustments known as “key stoning”—a technique lighting designers use to eliminate glare and frame shadows. Others are bulky and clearly visible hanging from the ceiling and present an inconvenient challenge to rotate and fine tune. This can result in a “fuzzy” lighting effect, or it can create light “spillage” beyond the boundaries of the frame.

To achieve the level of precision adjustment necessary to completely shape the light to the exact dimensions of the artwork itself, it is necessary to use a projector such as the Phantom Contour projector with a variable optical design that will allow the shutter blade system to be locked into a specific position and fine tuned using custom templates and internal filters. This then allows the light beam to shape itself to the piece, making it look lighted from within.

To learn more about Phantom Lighting and this highly effective and versatile form of low-voltage display lighting with Phantom products check out our lighting blog, contact one of our fine lighting representatives for a demonstration or visit http://www.phantomlighting.com/ for more information.

Spanish website in the works for Phantom Lighting System

Our Spanish website will feature all of our Phantom Lighting System products.Phantom Lighting Systems specialize in residential and commercial specification grade lighting products designed for fine art picture lighting and low voltage display lighting. We are recognized as one of the country’s premiere lighting manufacturers of Art lighting, Custom Cabinet Lighting, Cove Lighting, and Adjustable Shelf Lighting.

For our Latin American friends, we are currently in the process of creating a Spanish version of the Phantom Lighting Systems website. Feel free to contact us toll free at 800-863-1184, visit our mobile website, lighting blog or online lighting showroom to discover which Phantom Lighting products and models will best adapt to your particular lighting needs. Together, our professionals will ensure that your next Phantom Lighting Systems project is an astounding success!

Lighting manufacturers who specialize in niche markets always shine bright!

Phantom Lighting - Lighting Manufacturer of "Lighting from Within" Equipment for Fine Art LightingPhantom lighting systems is one of those unique lighting manufacturers who shines bright in a very exclusive niche market.

Focusing strictly on fine art lighting and low voltage display lighting equipment for ceilings, bookcases and cabinets, the designers at Phantom Lighting Systems have created a name for themselves over the last 30 years. Phantom Lighting is a Houston based lighting manufacturer that was established in 1980 to service the lighting and design community. The professionals at Phantom Lighting have enjoyed and earned a loyal following of satisfied customers and now their products are available nationally through traditional distribution channels, lighting manufacturer agents and lighting representatives.

Phantom Lighting specializes in high performance lighting products designed for low voltage adjustable display lighting and precision optical framing projectors for the illumination of art. The unique design and unparalleled performance of our products, makes it a preferred choice of architects, builders, interior designers and homeowners who expect only the very best money can buy.

If you are building a home, remodeling the office or just interested in learning more about how a Phantom Light can highlight your art or possessions, please give us a call at 800-863-1184. You can also visit our mobile website, lighting blog or online lighting showroom to discover which Phantom Lighting products and models will best adapt to your particular lighting needs. Together, the professionals at Phantom Lighting will ensure that your next project is an astounding success!

Wendelighting Optical Projectors – Phantom Contour Projector – How Can You Tell Them Apart

Contour_fourI am often asked what is the main difference between a Wendelighting® optical projector and a Contour projector? The answer is quite simple – new halogen lamp technology, precision optics, user friendly housings and multiple confinement masking methods.

Low Voltage Halogen Lamp Technology

The Contour projector utilizes a special Ushio 75MR16/FO lamp that was originally designed for use in fiberoptic light engines. The optical engineers at Phantom Lighting Systems devised a way to harness the power of this lamp, condense the light and project a focused light beam which can be shaped to illuminate objects of art.

Precision Optics

The optical chamber on the Contour projector has been cleverly designed to include an aperture component as well as several Pyrex condensing lenses. The aperture mimics the characteristics of the fiberoptic light engine, by forcing the light through a defined area which is tuned to match the MR16 lamp. The result is a 70% pass through of light. Imagine, more light output with less heat.

User Friendly Housings

Probably the biggest difference between the Contour projector and the Wendelighting® optical projector is the user friendly mounting methods and multiple masking methods. A variety of ETL Approved housings have been created to handle just about any situation or room condition:

Float Finish Housing
Top Access Housing
New construction Housing
Remodel Housing

Multiple Confinement Masking Methods

Gone are the days of the technician flying in to meticuously install a picture framing lights. Now professional results can be achieved by anyone who can follow our detailed instructions. If you are illuminating a square or rectangular work of art, use the shutter system for a fantastic results. If multiple objects, large objects or 3D objects is the task at hand, use our hand cut template method to achieve dramatic results. Our template cutting instructions will guide you through the process.

What do you think?

You be the judge. See for yourself just how effective a Contour projector can be. Contact Us at 800-863-1184 or one of our lighting sales reps for more information or a demonstration on what Phantom Lighting can do you!

Fine Art Lighting With And Without The Phantom Contour Projector

Lydick_Before    Lydick_After

We recently received some beautiful before and after digital images of an art lighting project using the contour light. The images really illustrate how beautiful a painting can look with the proper lighting and without. In this case, one Phantom Contour Projector was mounted in the ceiling and adjusted to illuminate only the canvas of the art by adjusting the handy shutters. The entire project took the lighting technician roughly two hours from start to finish, excluding electrical to install the phantom light. By using the Phantom remodel housing, the installer accomplished the installation without have to patch or paint the ceiling. The client was pleased and the art looks great! Thanks so much for sending the great pictures.

Phantom Lighting is an original equipment manufacturer who specializes in illuminating fine art with the Contour Projector or custom display lighting with light strips.

For more information, visit our website at http://www.phantomlighting.com/, visit one of our lighting agents or call us toll free at 800-863-1184 for a free color brochure. We are here to help with your art lighting needs and look forward to assisting you.

Before And After Images Of Fine Art Lighting With The Phantom Contour Projector


Do you have any before and after photographs showing the Phantom Contour Projector in a dining room setting? My interior designer wants us to install one for a new painting she just installed. I just want to see what a projector light looks like!

We have several nice before and after photographs of Phantom Contour Projectors in living rooms, libraries, studies, master bedrooms, dens and dining rooms. The above pictures illustrate the use of one 75-watt Contour Projector mounted inside a float finish housing. The projector cover plate was textured and painted to match the ceiling for a very clean look. The projector light is also on a dimmer control so that the intensity of the light can adjusted to match the mood of the setting.

Please let me know if you would like us to send our a complimentary color brochure or schedule a time for a consultant to call. We can be reached toll free at 800-863-1184 or online at www.phantomlighting.com. Phantom Lighting is an original equipment manufacturer who specializes in illuminating fine art with the Contour Projector or custom display lighting with light strips.

In a world of lighting manufacturers who market similar products with cliche claims to fame, Phantom Lighting stands apart as a source of proprietary technology whose adaptability makes it possible to meet each client’s lighting needs on an individual basis. This marriage of aesthetics and science has made Phantom Lighting a leader in lighting creation that enlightens the mind as much as it enlightens the room. We have lighting agents in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Central America and South America who will answer any questions, provide literature and schematics, and arrange for local product demonstrations. Our team of experienced technicians is always willing to share their knowledge of fine art and display lighting. Feel free to contact us toll free, visit our mobile website or lighting blog to discover which Phantom Lighting products and models will best adapt to your particular lighting needs.

Together, the professionals at Phantom Lighting will ensure that your next project is an astounding success!

Q-Tran Magnetic Transformer Option For The Phantom Contour Projector?

logo_qtranI am very interested in using your Phantom Contour Projector. However, I am not crazy about using an electronic transformer. Do you have any models with magnetic transformers?

We recently introduced a magnetic transformer option for all Contour Projector models that uses a Q-Tran magnetic transformer. Q-Tran has a stellar track record in the lighting industry for making some of the most quiet lighting transformers on the market. The torodial design of the Q-Tran transformer provides superior voltage regulation and a 96% energy efficiency rating. A built-in thermal auto reset breaker protects the product from overloading as well as a built-in filter choke for sound reduction. All Q-Tran magnetic transformers are tested 3 times before leaving the factory for quality and safety. This magnetic lighting transformer is specifically designed for use with all Phantom Contour Projectors.

Thank you for contacting Phantom Lighting System with your specific request. We are delighted that you are interested in our lighting projector and we hope that we have addressed your concerns by adding this new feature. Many lighting designers, architects and electrical professionals prefer to use magnetic transformers over electronic transformers. We now have both to satisfy everyone.

If you need more information on Phantom Contour Projectors or our Phantom strip lights, please contact us at 800-863-1184.