Retrofitting a lamp is usually the faster and cheaper way to convert a lighting system into a much more efficient installation.
We have developed a wide range of solutions that cover almost every existing lamp in other old-fashioned technologies. BUT, when retrofitting, we are occupying one space in a luminaire that was originally thought to manage another technology and this can cause serious problems because:
These are important reasons why we have developed a special range of external driver LED retrofit lamps. The external driver allows us to gain more space (separating the electronics from the LED lamp itself enables more space for release the heat or make smaller lamps) AND to move away the electronics from the heat released by the LED (providing also a more easy replacement of the driver in case that in the future this can be needed).
Last but not least, external driver allows also to include more electronics able to accept different dimming systems: 1~10VDC, PWM signal, resistance, DALI, etc. And to dimmer is not just an aesthetic question; it is also an excellent way of reducing energy consumption (and increase the cost savings).
If there is an option, we always recommend using external drivers even if this can imply a little bit more cost when installing the lamps (because probably will need some more labour time).
You can retrofit your existing fixtures and lights in two different ways:
Internal driver makes retrofitting much easier for you because, usually, you only must replace the existing lamp (incandescent, fluorescent, etc.) by your new LED lamp. But this is not for free because this means that the light source (the LED) and the electronics that control the energy supply to the LED (the driver) are together (one with the other inside the housing) and the electronics components will suffer more heat effects than if they stay at some distance of the heat released by the LED. This can reduce the lifespan of the electronics and, being like they are inside the housing, his replacement will be not easy.
The problems described above can be solved using an external driver. The substitution process will require a little bit more of effort (time), but this decission will extend the life of your new equipment and the possible future replacement of some electronic parts will be much easy.