Industry lighting control
Parent Philips
Website http://www.dynalite-online.com/

Dynalite is a product range of Phillips lighting. Up until 2009 Dynalite was also the name of the company which manufactured and sold the product until it was bought by Phillips. Dynalite is commonly used for lighting control, building automation, home automation and room automation applications and is sold worldwide.


System design

Dynalite products fall in to three categories: Dimmers / Controllers, Panels / Switches and network connectors.

The dimmers range anywhere from a single 240 V relay controller to leading and trailing edge dimmers and DALI / DSI controllers. They are on the side of the network which actually control lights, fans, louvers, etc.

Panels are typically standard sized (Australian or European standard size) wall switch plates, but instead of normal rocker switches, they have buttons of various designs, usually with an indicator LED inside.

Network connectors extend the range of the network, as well as providing integration with other technologies such as AMX, Crestron, etc.

Areas and channels

The network is Dynalite designed as a system of Areas and Channels. Any given lighting, fan, louvre, and relay circuit is a Channel in an Area.

For example, a house might have 3 rooms. Each room is called an Area. The kitchen may contain overhead lights, a range-hood fan and lights over the bench. These three are called Channels.

Those Areas and Channels are in states called Presets. In Preset 1, typically, all lights etc are fully on, in Preset 4, all of the lights are off. This is all customisable either by the programmer, or if it has been allowed, by the end user as well.

So, sending 'Area 3 Preset 4' will turn off the lights in Area 3 (room 3). Sending 'Area 3 Preset 2' will set the lights to a low level, which is customisable.

Channels can also be sent presets aside from the preset of the area to which they belong. 'Area 3 Preset 4' turns off the lights, then 'Area 3 Chanel 7 Preset 1' will turn that light back on.


Dynalite components communicate using DyNet, an open source modified RS-485 serial bus running along CAT5 cable, blue and blue/white carry the hot and cold signal respectively, orange and orange/white carry +12 V DC, green and green/white carry 0 V, Brown and Brown/white are unused.

DyNet 1 is the most commonly used protocol over the bus, being messages of 8 bytes of data, the 8th byte being a checksum. Commonly there are two types of message sent via DyNet 1: logical and physical. Logical messages talk to Areas and Channels, and physical messages talk directly to the devices. These 2 are typically called 1C and 5C messages, on account of the first byte of their message.

A 1C message is defined as such: [1C] [Area] [Data 1] [OppCode] [Data 2] [Data 3] [Join] [Checksum]

Area is the Logical Area the message is to control.

OppCode defines the Action to be taken on the Area.

Join is a bitswitch which can be used to filter out selected channels.

An OppCode of 00 to 03 means the action is to send the given area into preset 1 to 4 plus 8 times the value of Data 3 over the time specified by Data 1 and Data 2.

An OppCode of 0A to 0D means the action is to send the given area into preset 5 to 8 plus 8 times the value of Data 3 over the time specified by Data 1 and Data 2.

That gives a possibility of 8 * 255 presets. A usual job uses 4 to 8, and generally 4 are reserved to Off.

DyNet 2 is used mainly to upload data to devices on the network. It allows larger messages of data to be sent, significantly reducing lag time.


Each device contains its own programmable logic controller and follows the peer-to-peer model, the main advantage of this is that there is no reliance on a single central controller, the system is capable of a high level of resilience and therefore well suited to situations where total failure could be a safety issue, such as lighting systems in public places.

The 'Message on Change' system only sends a message every time a lighting state is to change, as opposed to DMX which is constantly streaming the entire data-map. This allows for much more devices on a single bus.

The simplicity and open source means that DyNet is easily integrated with third party devices.


If a message is missed, it is missed. It will not be sent a second time.

The current Dynalite programming software (dLight 2) was built progressively from Windows 3.11 days, and there are many undocumented keyboard shortcuts which are necessary to program a system. One needs training (usually free) provided by Dynalite distributors. (Although the new software, due for release in September 2010 may be better written.)


A selection of large scale installations of DyNet in buildings:

See also

Melbourne Arts Center


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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