Up until a few years ago, very specific types of kitchen cabinet lights were used for either in cabinet or under cabinet lighting needs. Most people preferred puck lights for under cabinet lighting because they cast bright circles of light onto counter tops and provided great visibility and clarity for work. Back then, of course, most counter tops were made of cheaper materials that absorbed light without reflecting it back into the eyes.
People in the 60’s, 70’s also used a lot of fluorescent under cabinet lighting because they helped conserved electricity. Their lower heat output also made them everyone’s favorite under cabinet / over the stove light for cooking.
This, of course, is all changing now. Increasingly large numbers of people are replacing generic counter top materials with custom, granite and marble. These surfaces are highly reflective and introduce an entirely new element into the lighting equation. Kitchen cabinet light manufacturers must now shield the eyes from reflective glare in addition to providing the same levels of light as they did before.
While it is a fact that fluorescent lights are normally housed in frosted fixtures that minimize glare, they do not render color with enough detail to do justice to the subtle shades and variations that custom counter tops feature. Puck lights, that use halogen lighting, render color very well in most cases, but they are simply too intense and will almost always throw reflected light back into the eyes.
In this type of kitchen, it is almost always better to go with custom linear strip lights such as those manufactured by Phantom Lighting. This is due to both their low profile design and the unique qualities of glare free light they produce.
Each Phantom under cabinet lighting strip is custom pre-fabricated to exact cabinet or shelf dimensions. It will install seamlessly to either a horizontal mount or vertical shelf mount and remain virtually invisible to the casual eye. It also contains patented lamping designs and features special shielding that reduces reflective glare to near-undetectable levels.
Phantom strips can be fitted with a variety of festoon bulb types. Our most popular bulb type for under cabinet lighting in kitchens is xenon. Xenon will render colors at a level almost equivalent to that of sunlight. When xenon low voltage lamps are installed in conjunction with a low voltage transformer and dimmable lighting strip, they will bring out the subtlest red of granite and the multi-dimensional hues of marble like no other form of light—at a fraction of the cost of competing in cabinet and under cabinet LED strip light fixtures.
Incandescent festoon lamps produce the “warmest” form of light and make everything within the cubic interior of the cabinet clearly visible. Unlike pucks, they consume virtually no cubic space within cabinets, and leave more room for storing larger cookware items. Phantom strips also make cleaning the shelves much easier as they require little external wiring. You can even remove shelves fitted with our lighting strips without risk of shock or fixture damage.
Restaurants should consider retrofitting their existing kitchen cabinet lights strips with one of Phantom’s newest innovations—LED replacement festoon lamps. These lamps produce a lumens output equivalent to that of incandescent and fluorescents, but they use 80% less electricity. Although a restaurant kitchen requires little, if any, aesthetic consideration, employee comfort and cost consciousness are of vital importance.
Fluorescent under cabinet lighting emits UV radiation that is never good for anyone’s eyes, and incandescent lights left on for long hours will result in expensive light bills. The one-time procurement cost of replacement LED festoons will immediately begin returning investment through lower monthly power bills.
To learn more about Phantom Lighting, contact us at 713-863-1133 or ask one of our United States lighting agents to show you first hand the many benefits of Phantom Strip Lights and the Phantom Contour Projector.