Nordic-powered smart lighting control solutions offer robust wireless connectivity for complex installations


Casambi’s CBU-ASD-LR and CBU-TED-LR smart lighting control units, and Xpress-LR wireless switch employ nRF52840 SoC for long range Bluetooth LE connectivity

Global smart lighting control company, Casambi, has launched three new products offering robust, long range wireless connectivity for large areas, outdoor applications, and complex lighting installations. The ‘CBU-ASD-LR’ lighting dimmer control unit and ‘CBU-TED-LR’ trailing edge dimmer can be easily integrated into existing lighting fixtures or installed adjacent to the fixtures within the ceiling. Once installed, they can be used to control the lighting fixtures via the Casambi app or the ‘Xpress-LR wireless switch’.

Long range connectivity

The three devices are based on Casambi’s Bluetooth module, which in turn is powered by Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF52840 SoC. The SoC’s multiprotocol radio—featuring 8 dBm output power and -95 dBm RX sensitivity for a link budget of 103 dBm—is said to enable high throughput Bluetooth® LE wireless connectivity up to 200 meters range between the control units and the switch, or the user’s smartphone.

The CBU-ASD-LR is a Bluetooth LE-powered long range control unit for any type of LED driver with 0-10 V, 1-10 V, or DALI dimming interface. This is available with either analog 0-10 V (and 1-10 V) or digital Standalone DALI control interface. With standalone DALI output, the CBU-ASD-LR acts both as a controller and power supply, making it possible to connect directly to an LED driver with a DALI interface. With this unit, it’s possible to implement multi-channel lighting systems with adjustable color (RGB and RGBW) or correlated color temperature (CCT). 

We selected the nRF52840 SoC largely due to this low energy consumption, as well as the increased memory capacity for Flash and RAM
Joonas Rinne, Casambi

The CBU-TED-LR is a Bluetooth-LE powered long range trailing edge dimmer for dimmable incandescent, halogen, LED lamps, and LED control gear. With this unit, any dimmable load can be easily converted to become a part of a Casambi mesh radio network. It can be installed behind a traditional wall switch, inside a luminaire, or into a ceiling outlet box. The CBU-TED-LR can also be converted to a mains-activated sensor device. When acting as a presence sensor, this device provides presence information to the mesh network when it’s powered up.

The Casambi Xpress-LR is a Bluetooth-controlled, long-range user interface. This switch can be kept wherever the user needs it, providing direct access to Casambi lighting control functionalities. It offers all the basic functions: dim up, dim down, changes in CCT in steps of 25 Kelvin, change indirect/direct ratio, control individual or luminaire groups, recall scenes and animations. The wireless switch has a lifetime of up to five years using a CR2430 coin cell battery. The extended lifetime is made possible thanks, in part, to the ultra low power operating characteristics of the Nordic nRF52840 SoC. The SoC has been engineered to minimize power consumption with a fully-automatic power management system.

Wireless control

“The lighting controls market used to be dominated by wired solutions,” says Joonas Rinne, Vice President of Marketing at Casambi. “However, Casambi’s wireless lighting control technology, using Nordic SoCs, allows for software-based control of all lighting. As a result, a wide range of lighting control components can now integrate wireless capabilities, providing greater flexibility and convenience in the implementation of lighting control systems.”

The Casambi app allows users to configure lighting settings and serves as a remote control for changing lighting scenes. The app also enables users to perform tasks such as turning lights on/off, creating and savings lighting scenes, and recalling them as needed. It also allows users to adjust color settings for colored lighting and to control CCT for tunable white lighting. The app also includes a calendar feature so users can schedule specific lighting scenes at predetermined times. It also supports integration with sensors, allowing the triggering of scenes based on sensor inputs, further enhancing the flexibility and automation capabilities of the lighting control system.

“We selected the nRF52840 SoC largely due to this low energy consumption, as well as the increased memory capacity for Flash and RAM, and support for the latest Bluetooth 5.3 specification,” says Rinne. “By leveraging these features, we can achieve extended wireless ranges. This enhancement ensures our products remain future-proof, as they can accommodate upcoming software features and provide long-range and high throughput capabilities.

“We have also worked with Nordic products since Casambi was founded. Because Nordic’s design primarily catered to software developers—with open interfaces extending to the hardware level—we could create a remarkably compact and efficient implementation capable of running on the Nordic SoC. This level of versatility was unmatched by any other provider at the time. Even today, Nordic remains at the forefront of technological advancement while maintaining its commitment to openness for programmers.”