I just installed 3 LED shop lights in my workshop (ok they're actually meant as bathroom lights, but the price was right).

They are wired in parallel, with a master switch in front of everything (in series, obviously). Each light has its own dimmer, and this works fine when the master switch is a regular old on/off switch.

However I'd like to be able to control the overall light level, regardless of the dimming status of each individual light, by replacing the master switch with another dimmer. However, I did this, and as the astute among you may realize, the outcome of this with a traditional LED dimmer is sketchy at best and an utter failure at worst, due to the weird frequency interactions.

I realize there's a similar question, and it was illuminating (sorry), but as the author's goal was different, there was no answer to my question; only an explanation as to why this is difficult.

So to boil it down, my question is, does there EXIST any commercial LED dimmer products that will work in series, while giving the desired result? Based on my (admittedly shaky) understanding, this would be pretty easy with incandescents by controlling resistance, but not with LEDs that work by turning the elements on and off.

Thanks, == Matt

  • 2
    I don't think you will find series sets of dimmers to work with LEDs. I actually was a little surprised to learn that even incandescent dimmers have (apparently) not been a simply variable resistance for a long time. In any case, the solution may be one of the new smart switch products where multiple controls communicate with each other. – manassehkatz Jan 1 at 1:16

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