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Touch And/Or Remote Controlled Light Dimmer

Old-fashioned light dimmers with knobs are passe! This one dims up or down at a touch or you can use an infared remote control.

By John Clarke

Click for larger image

Every now and then we get a letter or email criticising our use of a microcontroller when (perhaps) a similar job could have been done with (lots of!) discrete components.

Well, look at our latest light dimmer - and what it does. We make no apologies for using a PIC because it does so much, so simply. A project such as this demonstrates perfectly why we use microcontrollers.

There would be very few homes that don't have a light dimmer or three. So-called "mood lighting" became the big thing in the eighties; today light dimmers are installed in living rooms, lounge rooms, bedrooms - in fact, just about anywhere.

But the traditional wall-mounted, knob-controlled light dimmer has a major drawback. You decide you want to dim the lights and you have to get up out of your comfy chair and go and do it. Wouldn't it be nice if you could do it by remote control?

You can with the all-new SILICON CHIP light dimmer. What's more, there's no ugly knob. There's not even a light switch!

  • Attractive slimline appearance - no knobs!
  • Touch Plate dimming
  • Soft start for lamp when switched on
  • Last dimming setting stored and returned at switch on
  • Full brightness restored on second touch
  • Remote control operation
  • Full control features with Touch Plate extension
  • RFI suppression
  • Reset for brownout and blackout

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