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Frequently Asked Questions

The Company

Where is Ketra headquartered?

Ketra is headquartered in the heart of Austin, Texas—a vibrant design and tech hub recently monikered “Silicon Hills.” While Austin is firmly established as a technology and music hub, the city is emerging as an art and design destination, and we’re excited to be in the center of that transformation.

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When was Ketra founded?

Ketra was founded in 2009 by Horace Ho, Jason Lewis, and David Knapp, three visionary engineers with a flair for connecting the analog world and digital worlds. Together, they developed a driver chip that addressed the deficiencies of typical LED lighting, while also improving the performance and range of the light source. 

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When was Ketra acquired by Lutron?

In April 2018, Ketra was acquired by Lutron Electronics, an established leader in the lighting control and shade industry with a rich history in manufacturing excellence. By pairing Ketra's innovative lighting technology with Lutron's world-class controls and shades, we bring new and exciting possibilities to both brands and to our customers.

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Ketra Lighting Capabilities

How does Ketra mimic natural sunlight?

Ketra’s unparalleled ability to move precisely along the “Black Body Curve” is what allows us to mimic the dynamic nature of sunlight. By shifting in color temperature and intensity throughout the day, Ketra light seamlessly emulates sunlight so people feel more connected to the outdoors. While many color-changing solutions on the market attempt to mimic natural light by jumping between a limited set of color temperatures, Ketra shifts gradually over time like true daylight.

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Is Ketra a circadian lighting solution?

Ketra is a human-centric lighting solution built with advanced technology to produce high quality and dynamic natural light. The word “circadian” refers to human biology and is often linked to health claims, which we prefer to leave to the experts. That said, we’re encouraged by researchers who are discovering how lighting influences our wellbeing—and we continue to follow and support their progress.

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Do I need a tunable white or a color tunable lighting solution?

There’s a lot to consider when selecting a lighting system. Start by determining which of the following options is the right fit for your project and the experience you want to create:

  • Tunable white solution: Uses two LEDs—one warmer and one cooler—to create a moderate range of white light.
  • Tunable color light solution: Mixes red, green, blue, and white LEDs for a broader range of white and colored light but typically requires extra programming to create custom scenes.
  • Ketra’s tunable color solution: Offers 16.7 million colors and the widest available range of high quality white light to accurately mimic natural light and incandescent dimming. Learn more about Ketra’s Tunable Lighting solution here.
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What is Dynamic Spectrum light?

Ketra’s Dynamic Spectrum light creates white light experiences that no other architectural lighting solution can produce from a single source. By tuning the amount of energy across the visible spectrum of colors, precisely following the black body curve, and changing the “recipe” of white light, it creates the following human-centric experiences:

  • Natural Light: Brings natural light indoors by offering flexible color temperature and light intensity.
  • Natural Dimming: Allows white light to be gradually adjusted to match the dimming curve of traditional light sources.
  • Vibrancy: Creates unique white light formulas, enhancing your space and the objects within it.
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What is Vibrancy?

Vibrancy changes the recipe of white light to enhance a space and the objects within it. As you “sweep” the Vibrancy control on a Ketra product from 0-100%, the recipe of white light within that fixed correlated color temperature (CCT) shifts, revealing a previously hidden spectrum of color nuances in a space. Rather than tune the color of a light, Vibrancy tunes white light to bring color to life. It is often applied to art displays, showcasing works in their best light and rendering colors the way the artist intended. Learn more about Ketra Vibrancy here.

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How low do Ketra lights dim?

Ketra lights can dim down to 0.1% while uniquely emulating the warm glow of a sunset. Because we combine white LEDs with varying amounts of red, green, and blue light, Ketra’s white light can be gradually adjusted to match the dimming curve of a traditional light source and mimic incandescent dimming—shifting to an amber color as intensity goes down. Unlike other LED light sources, Ketra lights dim by adjusting their CCT while always following along the black body curve. Learn more about Ketra's Natural Dimming here

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How is Ketra different from other consumer color changing lights?

Ketra is an architectural lighting system that offers premium lighting experiences for projects ranging from luxury residences to complex commercial spaces.  

Architectural lighting solutions like Ketra offer professional designers a collection of integrated lamps and luminaires with multiple beam and trim options, and more advanced technology than traditional tunable white or tunable color solutions. 

Consumer-grade colored lights don’t offer the same range and flexibility for professional installations. Ketra is designed to seamlessly integrate into A/V and building management systems and provide luxury experiences that adapt to changing needs. Learn more about the Ketra difference here

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Using Ketra

How do Ketra lights communicate with each other?

Ketra light sources communicate through a proprietary wireless protocol designed specifically for light sources. 

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How is Ketra lighting controlled?

Ketra lights are controlled through a 2.4 GHz wireless network that facilitates flexible installation. Ketra lights can be wirelessly controlled through mobile apps and a variety of wall control options, including Lutron’s premium Palladiom keypads.

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Can I use Ketra for a project seeking WELL Certification?

The WELL Building Standard focuses on several aspects of wellbeing in the built environment, one of which is lighting. Ketra’s high degree of tunability, addressability, spectral power distribution (SPD) and control—along with its pre-programmed Natural Light show—offer a solution that closely aligns with WELL’s lighting requirements. See how Delos HQ in New York used Ketra to meet WELL standards for their space here.

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Can I use Ketra lighting outside?

Ketra lights are not rated for outdoor use.

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Can I control Ketra lighting from my phone?

Yes, Ketra lighting can be controlled through mobile apps. You can control scenes, shift color temperatures, and more—all from your phone. 

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Does Ketra operate over Wifi?

No, but Ketra occupies wireless channels adjacent to WiFi networks. Our proprietary wireless mesh protocol is built to IEEE 802.15.4 standards, designed to maximize communication between devices. Ketra’s radio antennas are designed and tested for superior performance in built environments. Ketra also has the ability to change channels along the 2.4 GHz to optimize performance.

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Ketra Works With...

Does Ketra integrate with Lutron HomeWorks?

Yes, Ketra’s residential lights use Lutron’s proprietary Clear Connect Type X wireless protocol to enable direct communication between lighting controls and light sources. Clear Connect Type X operates on a 2.4 GHz frequency.

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Does Ketra integrate with Lutron Vive?

Ketra lighting does not currently integrate with Lutron Vive. 

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Does Ketra integrate with Lutron RadioRa2?

Ketra does not currently integrate directly with Lutron RadioRa2. 

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Does Ketra integrate with Lutron Quantum?

Currently, there’s no integration for Ketra and Lutron Quantum. If you’re undergoing a larger project that requires Lutron Quantum and you’d like to incorporate Ketra lighting, contact your local system sales engineer to determine the best approach for your project. 

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Which smart home systems work with Ketra?

Ketra lighting can be used with Google Home, Amazon Echo, Apple HomeKit, and Josh.ai. Learn more about our Ketra + HomeWorks solution here.

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Experiencing and Buying Ketra Lighting

Where can I see a demo of Ketra products?

You can experience Ketra at the Lutron Experience Center in New York, or at one of our certified residential dealer showrooms across the US. We’re working to expand our showroom coverage in partnership with Lutron, so you can always check our Contact and Where to Buy pages for the latest list of showrooms. In the spring of 2020, Ketra opened its new headquarters in Austin, TX. Explore the inside of Ketra's new HQ

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Where can I buy Ketra products?

For residential projects, work with a Lutron sales rep and/or Ketra qualified dealer in your area. They’ll help you design and customize a personalized lighting system for your smart home. For commercial projects, a Ketra sales representative can design and provision a complete lighting solution.  

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Where can I visit to see real applications of Ketra light?

These are a few of our favorite spots to experience Ketra light in action: 

  • Nike - House of Innovation 000 in New York, NY: A 68K sqft dynamic retail experience that integrates the personalization of digital shopping with the tactile thrills of traditional retail. 
  • Honeybrains in New York, NY: With a neurologist and nutritionist on staff, Honeybrains creates food that promotes the overall wellbeing of the body and brain. 
  • The Art Institute of Chicago in Chicago, IL: The historic museum houses 300,000 works of art, ranging from ancient artworks to creations by some of today’s most prominent artists. From sculptures to modern photography to ancient altarpieces, the AIC’s color tunable lighting offers infinite possibilities while still ensuring the highest standard of preservation. 
  • Ramen Tatsu-Ya in Austin, TX: Restauranteurs Tatsu Aikawa and Takuya Matsumoto created a space that evokes the comforting, traditional vibe of ramen—without sacrificing the beauty of a modern aesthetic. 
  • Eataly NYC Downtown in New York, NY: Guests can indulge in Eataly’s vibrant marketplace with fresh, regionally-sourced ingredients while they shop and immerse themselves in Italian culture.
     
  • Tamarindo in San Clemente, CA: Transformed from a beloved food truck to a vibrant brick and mortar space, Tamarindo is a feast for the eyes and the palate.
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Designing With/Ordering Ketra Lighting

Can Ketra lighting be adjusted after it’s installed?

After a space is built, painted, and furnished, designers are typically bound to the color they chose when the lighting was first installed. With Ketra’s advanced wireless control capabilities, designers are able to pick the Correlated Color Temperature (CCT) they want, even after installation. Ketra lighting can be adjusted to suit the finished space, and with Ketra’s D3 downlights’ field-adjustable optics, modifications of light positions and beam angles can also be made. Personalized scenes and lighting zones can also be reprogrammed after installation, ensuring that the lighting accommodates the unique and evolving needs of the space’s occupants. 

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How much does Ketra lighting cost?

Since Ketra is a professional grade lighting system, the cost of the lighting is determined by the individual design of a space. A certified Ketra dealer or a lighting designer can help you develop a lighting plan to inform the recommended Ketra products for a space. If you’d like to learn more, reach out to a Ketra dealer or commercial sales rep who would be happy to assist you. 

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Is Ketra available outside the U.S.?

Yes, Ketra is currently available in Canada. 

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What is the warranty for Ketra products?

All Ketra products come with a warranty of 5 years, starting at the date of shipment. For more details, read Ketra’s full warranty policy here

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LED Lighting Terminology

What is human-centric lighting?

Human-centric lighting is dynamic, flexible light that simulates natural light and enhances the human experience. It seamlessly blends with daylight, allowing you to start your day with bright, energizing light, and wind down with the same warm evening glow of sunset. By satisfying the human craving for natural sunlight, human-centric lighting allows people to look and feel their best. 

Lutron HXL—a broad approach to human-centric lighting—incorporates several elements of lighting design to promote comfort, enhance well-being, and foster human engagement. Learn more about Lutron HXL here.   

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What is warm dimming?

“Warm dimming” refers to a light source’s gradual shift from a cooler, “daylight white” at a higher level of brightness, to a warmer, amber color at a lower level. Ketra’s white light can be gradually adjusted to match the dimming curve of a traditional light source, such as an incandescent lamp—shifting to a warm amber as the intensity goes down. Learn more about Ketra’s warm dimming capabilities here.  

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What are lighting optics?

Through reflection and refraction, lighting optics place light where it’s wanted—and away from areas where it’s not. It shapes a wide distribution of light into a selection of beams, from narrow spotlights to wide floodlights. Ketra’s TruBeam optical system is our unique, patented approach to optics. A tightly packed cluster of LED die within our proprietary silicon dome creates a small-point light source. A reflector optic collimates the light, while a secondary pillow-lens optic smooths the beam. By combining the reflector and lens, Ketra produces the maximum range of beam spreads at a uniform color and intensity.

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