Room lighting options

I would like to explore some newer lighting options for my home. I currently have a mix of CF's in all the non-dimmable rooms (bathrooms, hallways, utility rooms, etc.) and a mix of old-school bulbs and halogen pots where I need dimming (kitchen, office, livingroom).
The problem is that it's the high-wattage lights that are used the most. Specifically, my kitchen, living room and office make up something like 80% of all the lighting turned on in the house over time. All of the other lights combined are turned on for maybe 2 hours a day combined.
So it's the lights that are the least effiecient that are being used the most. I'd like to hear any suggestions you might have on how to attack this.
I have tried dimmable screw-in CF's, but they buzz terribly, give off a green-tinted light at lower settings, and have a very high "lowest setting" that makes them basically useless IMHO. Perhaps there's some good ones I could look at?
I'm also very interested in xenon, I used them for my under-counter and I really like the light. Are there dimmable xenons? Are there fixtures suitable for replacing pot halogens in a room-lighting situation?
Any other options I should consider?
Thanks!
Maury
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Last First... Xenons are dimmable, just like any other low voltage incandescent. Use a dimmer rated for the kind of transformer you have (magnetic - electronic) and your fine.
The best answer for the big areas is to have multiple sets of lights. 1. Have some big fluorescent fixtures (on cabinet tops, center of room...) on a swich. (BTW screw-in CFs are less efficient than fixtures built to be fluorescent.) 2. Have some tightly focused incandescents for the most important areas. These can be dimmed easily and will make look nice when on by themselves. 3. Select a few decorative fixtures, if you want and dim them seperately.
This 3 layer trick will give many varied looks from bright to dim, with full control and high efficiency.
The drawback is that you need to re-work most of the electrical and maybe the fixtures too. Standard homes are not built to use newer ideas. If that is too much money then spend your money on power. Do the math, it may be cheaper!
Richard Reid, LC
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Thanks for all the info Richard. One follow-on though... the main area, the living room/office/kitchen area (it's fairly open), is already wired with the potlamps that we installed -- I'm happy to replace them. As is it is the lights are a pretty good fit and light fairly evenly. Is there any sort of drop-in replacement for this? Money is not a major concern, the brickwork is going to overwhelm anything I can do there!
Maury
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