The basic ceiling lighting panel is a transluscent panel that conceals a recessed lighting fixture that is optionally framed by a reflector cowl to diffuse its lighting over the 1m panel area. The lighting unit used with the panel can be based on incandescent, fluorescent, large area OLED panels, or LED arrays. In some designs an OLED panel or OLED array may be bonded directly to the suspended ceiling diffuser panel. Depending on the concealed lighting unit type, some may require independent attachment to the ceiling grid by alloy angles.

This form of ceiling lighting is commonly used in flush panel arrangements but can integrate to fitted panel ceiling systems with the addition of a thin perimeter trim frame. The flat diffuser panel can be fashioned from many materials for different aesthetic effect. Even stained glass may be used.

Variants of the simple lighting panel may also be used on walls, employing a custom wall panel with cut-outs where desired. For general lighting, this will typically employ a shortened wall panel with a narrow lighting panel mounted along the top or bottom. However, some designs may employ a central mounted panel, particularly where it has a special functional use -as with X-ray and film hanger panels- or a special decorative function as with displaying a stained glass panel. In some cases, an entire wall panel area may be employed as a back-lit display.

Another variant of the ceiling lighting panel is the pin-array panel which conceals threaded fiber optic light emitters in a grid or random pattern within an otherwise opaque ceiling panel. This is usually used with a fiber optic lighting system, but stand-along panels based on an integral light pump are also possible.