September 02nd, 2023

DALI (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface) and DALI-2 (DALI version 2) are both lighting control protocols used in commercial and architectural lighting systems. They share similarities but also have key differences:

  1. DALI (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface):
  • Introduction: DALI is an open standard lighting control protocol established in the 1990s. It was the original version of the DALI protocol.
  • Compatibility: DALI devices may not be compatible with DALI-2 devices, as DALI-2 introduced some changes and enhancements.
  • Functionality: DALI provides basic control functions like on/off, dimming, and grouping of luminaires. It can control up to 64 devices on a single DALI network.
  • Control Gear: DALI requires specific DALI-compatible control gear in luminaires and ballasts to function properly.
  • Limited Data: It has limited data capabilities and is primarily used for lighting control.
  1. DALI-2 (DALI version 2):
  • Introduction: DALI-2 is an updated version of the DALI protocol, introduced to address some limitations and improve interoperability.
  • Compatibility: DALI-2 is designed to be backward compatible with DALI, which means DALI-2 devices should work with older DALI devices, but the reverse might not always be true.
  • Functionality: DALI-2 offers more advanced features and greater interoperability between different manufacturers’ products. It allows for more precise color control (e.g., for tunable white and RGB lighting) and expanded device types, including sensors and controllers.
  • Control Gear: Like DALI, DALI-2 requires specific DALI-2 compatible control gear.
  • Enhanced Data: DALI-2 provides increased data capabilities, making it suitable for a wider range of lighting applications and potentially non-lighting building automation functions.

In summary, while both DALI and DALI-2 are lighting control protocols, DALI-2 represents a more advanced and interoperable version with enhanced features and capabilities. DALI-2 is becoming the preferred choice for modern lighting control systems, especially in larger commercial and architectural projects, due to its improved compatibility and expanded functionality. However, the choice between the two will also depend on the specific needs and compatibility requirements of your lighting project.