LED bulbs for household lighting


  1. Clementine_3

    Clementine_3 Well-Known Member

    Anyone switch to led light bulbs?
    I need to replace a few bulbs around the house and am thinking of giving them a try. I'm just starting to read/research them but wondered if anyone had any tips or experiences with them.

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  2. Unforgiven

    Unforgiven ~Play Nice~ Moderator

    I have a couple. It is tough to gauge the brightness and warmth with them. I do like the instant on as opposed to the lag it takes for CFLs to fully light.

    Oh man, this must be a tech forum as I just complained about lag in a lightbulb.:rofl:
    IOWA, davoid, Granite1 and 2 others like this.
  3. Clementine_3

    Clementine_3 Well-Known Member

    I just don't want them to be blinding bright/white, a soft white is what I'm after. I know the color won't be the same as incandescent, that's OK as long as everything doesn't look blue or green or, well, not normal.
    What brands have you tried...do you recommend one over another?
  4. Unforgiven

    Unforgiven ~Play Nice~ Moderator

    I'd have to look. I put them in the bathroom over the mirror and my wife didn't complain like she did with the CFLs about the color.
  5. novox77

    novox77 Leeeroy Jennnkinnns! VIP Member

    i started researching LED bulbs recently after a flurry of my CFLs that I installed when I moved in to my house started to fail. They were advertised to last a lot longer than they did.

    But when I started looking into LED bulbs, I read lots of reviews of the same kind of issues; bulbs dying prematurely. So... you end up paying a ton more, but aren't guaranteed good life. So for me, I don't think I want to be an early adopter.
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  6. Clementine_3

    Clementine_3 Well-Known Member

    The little bit of poking around the web I've done so far seems to confirm the lack of long life. I don't want to pay extra for the same bulb life I get with incandescent, seems a silly thing to do. I still may pick one or two up though and see. Oh, I don't know. :stupido2:
  7. zuben el genub

    zuben el genub Well-Known Member

    I have them where I need to really see. I put one over the cutting table in the sewing room. I'm getting a strip of them to add to the sewing machine.
  8. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member

    I use a few in the studio, but I still do not like the color temperature. The color is a tad cooler than I prefer so I took them out of my office and put them in the studio work area. I have noticed that CT can vary from lamp to lamp.

    I am thinking about running them in the TV room when it is finished.

    I still prefer the old incandescent lamps. I'll never switch to those golly dang CFs. Partly because of the color temperature and partly because I want to rage against the green machine. I am too lazy to picket, so I vote with my cash.
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  9. Speed Daemon

    Speed Daemon Disabled

    High efficiency lights have come a long way since I bought my first CFL bulbs more than 20 years ago. In the last year, both CFL and LED lamps have become available in a variety of color temperatures. Also in the last year, LED lamps that can screw into a standard Edison socket have finally become inexpensive enough to buy on merits other than "they'll pay for themselves after 20 years".

    One place where the current LED technology lags behind CFL and old-fashioned tungsten bulbs is in being able to provide a nice even isotropic pattern. This problem may be solved soon because of the way that "white" LED light is produced. The method involves using phosphors to absorb light at a certain wavelength (UV to blue) and re-radiate it at other wavelengths to produce what looks like white. (It's just like fluorescent lights, except it uses a different way to stimulate the phosphors.) The latest LED bulb designs put the phosphors in the same place where they are on fluorescent bulbs. This should go a long way towards making a LED table lamp bulb look more like a tungsten bulb.

    I don't pay much attention to brand names any more, now that every brand is made in some nameless Chinese factory. I would look for names like Cree or Luxeon, which are leading manufacturers of the LED component parts.
    AntimonyER and Clementine_3 like this.
  10. Speed Daemon

    Speed Daemon Disabled

    What kind of studio?

    The only time I've ever seen a distinctive green tinge from fluorescent lighting was through the vacuum tube imagers in old manual white balance TV cameras, in rooms that had industrial fluorescent overhead room lighting and tungsten TV lighting turned on at the same time.
  11. zuben el genub

    zuben el genub Well-Known Member

    If you want color balance, OTT has true color lighting (supposedly) Quilters use it since dye lots can vary just enough to throw off a color scheme. They aren't LED, but some type of florescent. They are bright enough for most handwork.

    The LEDs are great for things you really need to see what you are doing.
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  12. AntimonyER

    AntimonyER AF Addict VIP Member

    I have CFLs throughout my entire house, mainly because I got them free, and they did reduce my electric bill noticeably. But I loathe paying for even those, so I don't see myself going LED.
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  13. Clementine_3

    Clementine_3 Well-Known Member

    I have tried to like CFLs but just can't. They don't seem to last that much longer and I have had more than a few look burned at the base. Like real burn marks. That just doesn't scream safety to me at all so I no longer use them. I have had some that weren't too blue and the color was OK but I just won't use them any more. Besides, they are not really environmentally friendly and should not just be tossed in trash. Overall I just can't, in good conscience, use them. That's why I was hoping LED would be the way to go.
  14. Unforgiven

    Unforgiven ~Play Nice~ Moderator

    Here's a pic of the lights in my bathroom if it helps.:)
    [​IMG]
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  15. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member

    I have a small photo studio. I might add on and see if I can manage a tiny recording studio or a darkroom. Darkrooms need light, but the correct kind to be sure. I hope film stays with us . . damm you digital!

    There are many different kinds of fluorescent lamps. At our retail photo store, we had a variety of tubes. Some were very blue and some were warm. We preferred those that produced a more or less daylight balance. Some were blue and some had a slight pink color.

    The big deal with tubes is the occasional hum. At least back in the day. Some people could hear it and some could not. I only noticed with the starters and/or ballasts started to go bad. When the ballasts went, they sometimes left a really sticky mess.

    I do think LEDs are here to stay. Take a look at some of the powerful LEDs from Lumex. Amazing and a far distance from the first LEDs I remember. God . . . how old I am to remember when LEDs arrived.
  16. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member


    I suggest you Google "LED Lighting" and see what you can come up with. There are suppliers of everything from over priced single LEDs in most any color you can imagine. There are LED headlamps and LEDs so bright they will blind you; not to mention, high power blue LEDs that let you make a laser poibter that can set things on fire.

    Lots of interest in home and commercial building lighting. If you want a good source for data and suppliers, try Thomas Register.
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  17. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member

    Interesting you mention quilters. Indeed, lighting can change the color and even dyes from different makers can look different under artificial lighting. That is why we often used a color temperature meter and filters to make sure CT matched the film. Some dyes and pigments do look different depending on the type of lighting.
  18. Speed Daemon

    Speed Daemon Disabled

    Ha! For "organizationally challenged" people like me, digital photography is a godsend. I've lost countless snaps to limbo and the occasional camera thief. These days the first thing I do after a shoot is back up everything to an off-site location, over the Internet.

    But I hear you about real film. The nice, orderly rows and columns of digital pixels is so sterile compared to the randomness of film grain. Some of my favorite photos are grainy on purpose. There's a lot more, of course.

    I've seen fluorescent light fixtures used in TV since I was in the audience of "Bozo's Circus" at WGN-TV, circa 1968. I was the only kid there who spent the whole time watching the guys in the control room. ;)

    The thing is that the kinds of bulbs that you get at a camera store cost a lot, and are often made only for a certain type of fixture. I'm curious about how well plain old retail bulbs might work. Right now I'm shopping for a good portable 3-point lighting kit. I'm going to buy some good broadcast quality lights, but would love to know if I could augment the pro lights with inexpensive LED PAR lights.

    Thankfully those days are over. The inexpensive switching power supplies used in CFL bulbs operate at frequencies beyond the human range of hearing. Higher frequencies allow smaller transformers. That saves money and eliminates the flicker and hum. Win-win.

    I remember going to the local Allied Electronics store and buying LEDs in quantities of one. I might have made the first LED flashlight when I took the first green LED I could get my hands on, and crammed it and 3 AAA cells in a then-new plastic Kodak 35mm film container. It worked pretty well, considering that was 40 years ago. Today I have a pocket flashlight that I can conceal in the palm of my hand and puts out 500 lumens. I've replaced all the exterior signal lights in my cars with LED modules. The instant-on makes them a lot more visible, and I'll never get a ticket for having a light out. :D But in the home the only place where LED lighting is clearly superior is with outdoors lights. CFL bulbs can't handle the temperature extremes. I have a 2W LED in my porch light that's survived two winters so far.

    How about the fluorescent additives in laundry detergent that makes clothes brighter...literally. :rolleyes:
  19. Bob Maxey

    Bob Maxey Well-Known Member

    I prefer the soft orange glow of the Nixie Tube and the little bulbs with flowers inside. I know, I know . . . you are all Goggling "Nixie Tube" to see just how old that old fart really is.

    I'll save you the time. I bought most tech things you see in museums while they were still under warranty by Tommy Edison.

    In following this thread, I found lots of interesting LED products. I think it is time to start cobbling together some cool projects. I would like to create accent lights with some orange and purple lamps. Or a nice big honking laser.

    Try this for interesting LEDs. Apparently, the site is massive with 0.0712025943288373929 terabytes of data.

    http://ledmuseum.candlepower.us/led1/index.htm
  20. Speed Daemon

    Speed Daemon Disabled

    Ha! I've used equipment with Nixie tubes when they were still fairly new. And I'm not talking about the new retro clock kits either.


    One thing that I've been wanting to do for some time now is to use theatrical LED fixtures with DMX control, hook them up to a computer to do stuff like make my indoor lighting match the color, brightness and position of the ambient light outside. I live in the ideal place that has vaulted ceilings and places to hide the fixtures.

    Lasers? Been there, done that. I'd love to figure out how to use lasers to paint a message on the windshield of the car in front of me. I can see all kinds of possibilities with automotive lighting. For example, for all the idiots who are competing to have the brightest lights shining in people's faces, I'm toying with the idea of concealing a pair of 2000W Strong Xenon Super Trouper follow spots in the bed of my pickup, and having them pop up when I need them.

    [​IMG]


    Thanks! Got it bookmarked.
  21. mikedt

    mikedt 你好 Guide

    Now I've just gone back to using real old fashioned light bulbs in my apartment, after a couple of CCFLs(Made in China :rolleyes:) blew-up and filled the place with acrid smoke. Not tried LED bulbs yet though
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  22. partyd

    partyd Member

    My local HD have a big display of light by the door most of the big ones start around 45.00 last Sunday i when in for some chain and found the led CED6 WW 120 WH on special for $29.00 so i purchase 4 , they ar enot install but the light looks very good
    they come with 5 years warranty
    Clementine_3 likes this.
  23. zuben el genub

    zuben el genub Well-Known Member

    I got my minis. These things are great. The fact that they are so small is amazing.

    EcoluxLighting lighting for your sewing machine

    Expensive, but not as bad as buying cheaper lights that don't really put the light where you want it.

    I haven't looked, but stores where sewing notions are sold have a variety of small clip-on battery operated LEDs that would be good for any tiny area. The smallest one I've seen at Lowe's had a head about the size of a golf ball.

    Here's a page with some tiny ones:
    Lights - Erica's Craft & Sewing Center

    Those finger ones look extremely useful.
  24. SamuraiBigEd

    SamuraiBigEd Under paid Sasquatch! Moderator

    I have to disagree with this. I have tried the best and brightest (yes, I said that) of both and I haven't found a CFL yet that can hold a candle to (there I go again) the Phillips AmbientLED bulbs. The light is bright, even and on the warm side how I like it. Add to that they are more efficient per lumen how could you not use them.

    And these look really cool! Multicolor LIFX LED light bulbs can be controlled by smartphone
  25. Speed Daemon

    Speed Daemon Disabled

    If that's true, it's news to me. The last time I checked, fluorescent lighting had the efficiency edge over LED.

    I notice that you used the lumen SI unit. That's what I use for long throw lighting like flashlights and searchlights. But the lux unit is typically used for indoor lighting. Also note that non-CFL fluorescent lighting is common in household lighting. I suspect that a purpose-built fixture will be more efficient than a product made to fit Edison bulb fixtures.

    If LED technology has overtaken pure fluorescent, then I stand corrected. But how exactly does that make CFL better for outdoors use?

    That sure beats the cost of an industrial DMX lighting control system! OTOH my home decor is "real, live rock concert", so I'm still leaning towards the big DMX fixtures. :D

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