Difference Between PoE Lighting vs LED Lighting

Posted on May 14, 2024 by

The landscape of indoor and outdoor lighting is rapidly changing. The two of the most notable innovations are PoE lighting and LED lighting. Both technologies promise energy efficiency, cost savings, and enhanced control, but they stand on somewhat different platforms. In this article, we delve into the specifics of PoE lighting vs LED lighting, exploring their operation and benefits.

What is Power over Ethernet (PoE)?

PoE is a technology that enables the transmission of low-voltage direct current (DC) power to network devices over the same Ethernet cables used for data transmission. By using this method, there is no need for a separate AC power source. It provides more flexibility in device placement regardless of proximity to a power outlet.

PoE is a cost-effective, reliable, and adaptable method for energizing intelligent devices. It is important in facilitating the development of smart buildings and their range of connected devices, including lighting, window treatments, sensors, HVAC controllers, cameras, and security systems.

The Advantages of Using Power Over Ethernet Lighting

Using PoE for supplying power to low-voltage DC-powered LED lighting offers numerous advantages compared to both conventional lighting choices (such as incandescent, fluorescent, CFL, and halogen) and modern AC-powered LED alternatives.

Power Over Ethernet Lighting

  • Decrease initial expenses and expedite the wiring, setup, and configuration processes in wiring, setting up, and configuring. This method reduces the environmental effect by removing the need for conduits and high-voltage copper wires.

  • Reduce the overall costs of capital, labor, and materials needed for construction and upkeep.

  • Enhance versatility in the design and positioning of lighting.

  • Use the building's network to control and connect devices more accurately, saving energy and reducing costs and environmental impact.

  • Demand less power, generate less heat, and offer a more compact size due to the elimination of the need for AC/DC conversion and transformers.

  • Employ the widespread 90W UPOE+ technology for supplying power to, and for the surveillance and management of LED lighting, IoT devices, as well as centralized and automated environmental control systems.

What is LED Lighting?

LED lighting refers to a type of illumination based on light-emitting diodes (LEDs). LEDs are semiconductor devices that emit light when an electrical current passes through them.

The spectrum of light emitted and its color are determined by the semiconductor materials employed. White light has been traditionally the only option. However, the introduction of LEDs based on gallium nitride (GaN) has broadened the range of attainable colors. This development has also improved the capacity to modify luminance and alter colors instantly. Therefore, it unlocks a multitude of new uses and functionalities.

By using various semiconductor materials that possess distinct bandgaps, it's possible to generate varying hues of light. Adjusting the makeup of the semiconductor's light-emitting (active) area allows for fine-tuning of the specific wavelength/color emitted.

The Advantages of Using LED Lighting

Low-voltage LED lighting can offer a dramatic reduction in energy required per lumen when compared to incandescent, halogen metal halide, and fluorescent equivalents. LED lighting has several other advantages:

  • Widespread Availability: LED technology is widely available and can be easily retrofitted into existing fixtures.

  • Initial Cost: Generally lower upfront cost compared to installing a new PoE system, especially in facilities without existing Ethernet infrastructure.

  • Versatility and Efficiency: LEDs offer a broad selection of fixtures for various applications, maintaining high levels of energy efficiency across different contexts.

What Distinguishes PoE Lighting From LED Lighting Powered By AC?

1. Power and Data Delivery

The most significant difference lies in how power and data are provided. PoE lighting uses a single Ethernet cable for both, simplifying the installation process but requiring a compatible PoE network. LED lighting typically only requires access to a power source, with smart LED solutions connecting to wireless networks for control and data analytics.

2. Installation and Infrastructure

PoE lighting control systems can offer lower installation costs, especially in new constructions or renovations where Ethernet cabling can be incorporated from the start. In contrast, traditional LED lighting systems may not require extensive network infrastructure, but each fixture still needs wires.

3. Control and Flexibility

PoE lighting shines in its capacity for integration into smart building networks, allowing for automated control, energy usage tracking, and even integration with other building management systems. While smart LED lighting can also offer these features, the level of integration and ease of installation offered by PoE systems is often superior.

Choose A PoE Switch for Enhanced Lighting System

As a leading provider of networking solutions, FS offers a range of high-quality PoE switches designed to efficiently power and manage PoE-enabled devices, including lighting systems. FS PoE switches, S3200-8MG4S-U, are engineered to deliver stable power transmission, advanced management features, and excellent compatibility with various PoE lighting control systems. It provides reliable and efficient power distribution, enabling enhanced control, scalability, and flexibility in managing your lighting infrastructure.


Choosing PoE lighting vs LED lighting involves considering the specific needs, existing infrastructure, and future scalability of your lighting system. While LED lighting provides an easily accessible, efficient solution for most lighting needs, Power over ethernet lighting offers advanced control and integration capabilities, proving invaluable in smart buildings and for those prioritizing innovative management technologies.

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