Transformer

The transformer aids a low-voltage lighting system. A transformer is an electrical device that transfers energy between two circuits through electromagnetic induction and raises or reduces the wattage of lamps in a lighting system.  It is a device that converts normal house current to the current required by a lamp.

There are two types of transformers, magnetic and electric:

Electric Transformer

Electronic transformers can be used both in commercial and in your homes, its usually used in the residential arena because it only allows so much support to the lighting system before needing additional transformers.

Advantages:

  • it is much smaller in size than a magnetic transformer and aesthetically more pleasing
  • compatible with dimming options
  • less expensive
  • more versatile in use, you can fit them in smaller places

Disadvantages:

  • has a shorter life span than a magnetic ballast
  • can not have long runs of lights; without additional support the electronic transformer can push enough power down the line for 6-8 ft from the source

 

Magnetic Transformer

Though magnetic transformers can be used in both the residential and commercial applications they are most often used in commercial spaces. It steps down 120VAC or (277+ for commercial) line voltage to 12VAC or 24VAC.

Advantages:

  • provides additional boosts
  • has a higher capacity to support more circuits than that of an electronic transformer
  • a longer life span

Disadvantages:

  • aesthetically not pleasing; its heavy, big and harder to hide
  • has to be closer to the source

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