What is the best LED driver for LED Strip?
LED Sign Supplies Australia recommends that you use a LED driver with a PWM output if you would like to dim your LED strip.
Why is this?
If your LED driver has a PWM output it will dim evenly, regardless of the load on the LED driver.
Many dimmable LED drivers work by varying the amplitude of the LED driver’s output current. For the dimming function to work correctly the load on the LED driver must be as close to the maximum as possible. LED Sign Supplies Australia recommends that such LED drivers are loaded to 90~95% of their maximum rated output.
If there is not enough load on the LED driver, dimming performance can be adversely affected. For example, if the load on the LED driver was only 50% of the driver’s maximum rated output, nothing would happen until the dimming control is turned down past the half way point, after which the light level would drop straight down to its minimum level.
This doesn’t happen if the LED driver has a PWM output and this is the reason why we list the MEAN WELL PWM series LED drivers for this application on our website.
When working with LED strip it can be a challenge matching the actual load to the maximum capacity of the LED driver. Especially if LED strip is being cut on site. A variation in the length of the LED strip cut will alter the load on the LED driver and could cause poor dimming performance.
Again, this is something you don’t need to worry about if you are using a LED driver with a PWM output.
Things get even more difficult if you intend to control multiple LED drivers from one dimming controller. All the LED drivers need to be loaded to exactly the same level in terms of percentage, so that they dim in unison.
For example, if you are using a 150-Watt LED driver and a 240-Watt LED driver, you would need to ensure you loaded each of the LED drivers as follows:
150-Watt driver: Minimum suggested load required is 142.5 Watts
240-Watt driver: Minimum suggested load required is 228 Watts
The actual load values shown above are equal to 95% of the maximum capacity of the LED driver.
So, if your LED strip is rated at 12.5W per metre, you would need 11.4 metres for the 150-Watt driver and 18.24 metres for the 240-Watt LED driver for these LED drivers to dim in unison.
Using a LED driver with a PWM output makes life so much simpler, as you don’t have to worry about any of this.
If you have any questions about selecting a suitable LED driver, do not hesitate to contact LED Sign Supplies Australia on 1800 632 693. A member of our expert team will gladly help you.