For many years the mainstay of garden lighting has been the 12 volt MR16 reflector lamp (bulb). This 50mm (2 inch) diameter lamp features a miniature halogen capsule lamp mounted in a multi-mirror reflector to provide a precisely controlled beam of light with little peripheral light spill. These lamps run on 12 volts, so although this requires the installation of transformers to step the voltage down, it also permits very flexible low voltage wiring configurations and the ability to adjust the lighting easily because 12 volts is so safe. It is twice as energy efficient as old-fashioned Par 38 tungsten lamps and the “dichroic” multi-mirror reflector reflects all the light forward while allowing much of the heat to dissipate through the rear of the lamp; in other words, you are projecting much less heat towards your planting or down onto the dining table. MR16 lamps are small and available in a wide choice of wattages from 10 to 75 watts and beam angles from 12 to 60 degrees, which gives the designer much more choice in accurately and precisely lighting subjects without glare. The result is garden lights which can be much smaller and yet produce more light, with greater versatility, than old-fashioned tungsten fittings.
The majority of directional garden lights supplied by Lighting for Gardens are 12v halogen spotlights, uplights and downlights, although many of Elipta’s Compact spotlights are also available in 240v models. Some smaller MR11 12 volt lamps are also available for lower wattage applications where a miniature spotlight is required, such as Elipta’s MICROSPOT. 12 volt spreadlights and some steplights typically use a halogen capsule lamp without a reflector to diffuse light in all directions.
A more recent innovation has been the advent of the GU10 halogen reflector lamp to combine the advantages of the MR16 halogen lamp with the installation convenience of 240v input; these lamps are nearly as small as MR16 lamps, meaning spotlights can be about the same size without the need to incorporate bulky integral transformers. While 240v GU10 lamps are less efficient than 12 volt lamps and the choice of lamp beams and wattages is not so comprehensive as 12v MR16 lamps, 240v GU10 Elipta’s Compact wall spotlights and downlights are often chosen for ease of connection to 240v wiring on house walls, gate pillars and locations where hiding a remote transformer would be difficult. The Compact spotlight range offers the widest choice of both 12v and 240v spotlights in wall and spike mount models featuring advantages such as easy-clean flush lenses, easy lamp changing without tools and a wider choice of low energy options. Microspot Wall are 12v miniature adjustable wall spots for MR11 20w halogen lamps or led lamps and are mainly used on garden structures such as pergolas where 12v wiring is easier and less conspicuous than 240v wiring.
Refer to product pages for direction to popular halogen lights:
- Downlights and wall spotlights
- l.e.d. lighting
- Hanging lights
- Recessed uplights
- Spike spotlights and uplights
- Path lights and spread lights
- Step lights
- Tree spotlights
- Underwater lighting