When Sacramento, Calif.-based Sage Architecture was building out the loft space in its 1,400-sq.-ft. office, the principals wanted a sleek modern look that offered high-quality, energy-efficient, ambient lighting plus task lighting. The architectural firm, which specializes in refined residential and commercial projects with a strong focus on sustainable architecture, recently renovated its space from the raw shell of a racquetball court.
“We were going for a modern minimalist, high-tech look,” explains Pam Whitehead, AIA, principal of Sage Architecture. “We needed high-quality lighting fixtures that would give good overall general and task lighting with energy-efficient LEDs. The LED Flat Panels project a warm light, not a cold blue light like fluorescents.”
MaXLite supplied Sacramento Lighting Systems with six 1’x4’ LED Edge Lit Flat Panels that were installed and suspended from the office’s 20-foot ceiling on the mezzanine level. Although the panels are suspended by aircraft cables and from the ground, they appear to be floating in mid-air below the finished ceiling.
“Clients and colleagues are very impressed and intrigued with our unique lighting design,” Whitehead comments. “This follows our mission to offer architectural ideas that are both thoughtful and thought-provoking. People are amazed at how thin the panels are and at the amount of light the Flat Panels generate. If you look at our space at night from outside, the entire office glows.”
All six panels are strategically installed in a row, allowing for even illumination from the front of the office to the rear wall. The luminaires are suspended over the plotter, copy machine, workstation, and library and can be controlled as a group or as individual units. The Flat Panels are compatible with many building control systems and are programmable, so they can be switched on/off and dimmed to meet user preferences. (The Flat Panels recently received an Honorable Mention in the 2011 Lighting for Tomorrow awards.)
“We have the power and control to switch on each fixture individually for the space in which we are working,” Whitehead states. “The luminaires are silent and cool. They don’t emit heat over the office surfaces and desktops and they don’t make that annoying buzzing sound like other fixtures. The panels provide comfortable lighting and outstanding color rendition that is ideal for choosing color finishes for a project or reading contracts and architectural drawings. They create a nice, bright working environment that we all enjoy.”
The LED Edge Lit Flat Panels have a thin profile of 1.6 inches including the control box. They offer shadow-free light distribution and 85 CRI (Color Rendering Index). According to MaxLite, the fixtures have a potential life of 50,000 hours – at L70 standards – for more than 13 years of life, based on 10 hours of use per day.
“Our workspace is a great place to meet clients and colleagues,” Whitehead notes. “They are fascinated with the amazing thinness of the fixtures and the floating effect.”