I want to develop a complete DALI Control Device with two important features, one being "3 DALI buses on the device" and other being the "RGB colour control feature"! Already, I have successfully designed a DALI Master-Slave prototype system using two STM32s.

As my next step, I want to make my DALI Master compatible with the available commercial products(DALI Gears). Also in parallel, I would like to buy essential DALI standards.

Q1. What are the essential DALI standards for my purpose?

I was going through these two (System Components- Part 101, Control Device- part 103) standards and I could not find any info related to RGB colour control! Rather it is noted that part 101 works in conjunction with part 102 and part 209 describe the colour control! I certainly cannot afford to buy 4 standards(101,102,103 and 209) now!!

Q2: What are the designated commands for RGB colour control?? or Can I just use some random un-allocated(reserved) commands for this purpose?

Q3: Are 102, 209 required for my purpose? I will not be developing DALI Gear rather just DALI control device! I am assuming these two define how the DALI Gear should be designed!!

Essentially, I cannot afford to buy 4 DALI standards rather at max 3! In general, any suggestions regarding this project will be appreciated.

EDIT: What are the essential standards for me to get started? Maybe over some time, I could purchase all 4 but I am on the tight budget constraint. I could only ask for more money when I show some practical results with the above two features. Is there any workaround?

PS: I am not interested in getting the product certified anytime soon! I want to test it first for various practical scenarios.


1 Answer 1


Q1: Your product needs to comply with Parts 101 System and 103 Control Device. But you need to read and understand Parts 102 Control Gear and 209 Color Control so that you know the commands that are available - the format of those commands, the use of DTRs, the requirements to send twice and/or to wait for responses etc.

Q2: If you don't use the commands listed in 209 for colour control, you won't be able to control commercial control gear which implements 209. You cannot use reserved commands and pass the compliance tests, but there are ways of communicating on a DALI bus which are allowable manufacturer specific methods such proprietary frame size (number of bits or bit timings) and Operating Modes.

Q3: see answer to Q1.

The cost buying standards can be reduced by joining the national standards body, but this has its own cost so you would have to decide if it was worthwhile. The cost of the standards is a small fraction of the cost of developing and certifying a DALI product - if you want to use the DALI name or logo on the product, you also have to join the DiiA and pass the official test sequences. These are to ensure that all products are interoperable.

Edit: if you are not interested in compliance at this stage but just want to get some functionality working, then part 103 is the most disposable part because you are only implementing a system which has a single control device on the bus, and part 103 is mainly about different control devices communicating with each other.

The various micro manufacturers NXP TI ST MCP have DALI App Notes which often include (usually out of date) information which covers the essentials of part 101 and 102, so that might be sufficient to get started. However, you are less likely to find any coverage of part 209 outside of the standard, so you probably need to purchase that one at least.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for your time. What is a national standards body? I am currently located in Germany. Please view my edited question. \$\endgroup\$
    – charansai
    Commented Jan 29, 2018 at 12:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ The IEC lists its member national committees. In Germany, the DKE is a joint organization of DIN and VDE, with VDE being the publisher of IEC standards. \$\endgroup\$
    – Martin
    Commented Jan 29, 2018 at 13:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Finally, is DALI1 part of DALI2? As most of the commercial products are DALI1 compliant and very few are DALI2 compliant. Is it a problem if I buy DALI2 standard? Thank you :) \$\endgroup\$
    – charansai
    Commented Jan 29, 2018 at 13:31
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Commands were added in DALI-2 that were not in DALI-1, and the standard does not list those changes explicitly. So you could find you have implemented commands due to using a DALI-2 spec that the gear doesn't know about due to it being DALI-1. You can still buy Edition 1 standards even though they have been superseded. Part 209 is still at Edition 1 for DALI-2. \$\endgroup\$
    – Martin
    Commented Jan 29, 2018 at 14:08

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