LED Light Bulb Discussions - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums
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post #1 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 02:24 PM Thread Starter
 
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LED Light Bulb Discussions

Hi everyone,

I've been considering replacing 50W PAR20 halogen bulbs with 7-8W LED equivalents for the pot lights in our high use areas - kitchen/dinette area, possibly a few others. For the kitchen at least I figure those lights end up being on for an average of 5-6 hours a day easily (maybe less in the summer but certainly most of the rest of the year).

If you do the math and use an average cost of $0.12/kWh, that ends up being around $13/yr per bulb whereas the LED equivalent would only be about $2/yr. With the good LED bulbs now costing around $25-$35 each it only takes 2-3 years for them to pay for themselves, and they will supposedly last 10+ years (25,000 hours).

I've been looking at some of the newer ones available and the Philips bulbs seem to be some of the better ones. Does anyone have experience with these or other PAR20 LED bulbs? I'm mainly interested in:

- How good is the brightness compared to halogen?
- How is the colour?
- How well does the dimming work?

The dimming is especially where I'd like more info. I heard early versions of dimmable LEDs had a lot of flicker. I also experimented a bit with dimmable CFLs and found they didn't work very well at all.

Finally, ideally I would also want to be able to use them with an intelligent dimmer like Insteon, UPB, etc. Do these work okay together?

Thanks
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post #2 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 04:22 PM
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From what I've seen, LEDs are better than CFLs and Halogens in every way except:

- Price
- Cannot get as bright has the high-lumen bulbs - they more or less top out at about 1100 lumens.

If you're looking for bulbs in the 700-900 lumen range there are some excellent LED options available to you. I recommend you check out Consumer Reports and see the LED bulbs that they recommend.
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post #3 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 04:37 PM
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Unlike Halogen bulbs, LEDs cannot produce a true white light. You will notice this difference immediately when comparing the two bulb types, regardless of the colour temperature of LED used.

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post #4 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 06:46 PM
 
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I have two Par 20 equivalent LEDs, 1 spot and one flood. Different brands, both came from Rona. I also have a Vanity type bulb from Rona of a third brand.

The spot and the vanity bulb are dimmable and they seem to dim in distinct stages...not surprising really... but they both dim well. The vanity bulb does flicker when it is very dim just before it goes out altogether but it is ok in the mid range and higher.

The Par20 LEDs are whiter than the halogen Par20s they are replacing. They are in my tv room in the basement and will be used many hours per day. Funnily enough, a few minutes before seeing this thread I was down there wondering about replacing the remaining 4 Par 20s with LEDs to save a little money.
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post #5 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 07:51 PM
 
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I have bought direct off ebay for my RV bulbs - very nice light color/brightness. The same vendor has standard household bulb LED's for about $3.50 including shipping. Very tempting to try one - however the safety/CSA/fire risk is keeping me away.
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post #6 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 08:12 PM
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LED incandescent replacements for $3.50 including shipping? That doesn't seem right....

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post #7 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 08:13 PM
 
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want to share the ebay member name so some of us could take a look?3.50 a pop sounds ridiculously cheap
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post #8 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 09:03 PM
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I got mine for $10 each (LG), so a noname brand without certification for $3.50 doesn't sound far off..
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post #9 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-20, 10:35 PM
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Pay attention to colour temperature and colour rendering index.

Halogen is 3000-3500k, cri of 100.

The minimum cri for decent light is around 80.

WARNING: The HVAC information I provide is not based on field experience and DOES NOT constitute professional advice.
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post #10 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-21, 12:50 PM
 
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Seller is "2011_led" Looking again -the are all 220 volt. Still good for the 12 v lights though.

Where were the LG bought? Ebay - or box store?
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post #11 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-21, 01:25 PM
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Costco. $20/2
They're not par20, though. Standard bulb shaped A19, 485lm.
If you like it super bright obviously not for you. But I use one bulb to light the entire living room, and it works for me.
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post #12 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-21, 02:33 PM
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I'll be picking up the new Philips L-Prize winning bulb when its released tomorrow.

2700K temperature, 92 CRI, 10W and 25000 hr rated life. If it passes the wife test, I 'll migrate my CFLs over time.
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post #13 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-21, 02:52 PM Thread Starter
 
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Yes, it was the new Philips bulb that prompted me to give LEDs a serious look again. I looked into them a few years ago when I was doing some renovations and installing a bunch of new lights. However, at that time the only ones worth considering were $50-$60 each so the payback was just too long unless they were on 24/7. Plus, even at that price they still had brightness, colour, and flicker issues.

These new Philips ones look really promising though, and I expect it shouldn't be too long until the same technology makes it into the rest of their bulb line.
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post #14 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-21, 03:07 PM Thread Starter
 
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BTW, I see on the Philips site that they list compatible dimmers. I was hoping to use these with Insteon dimmers which are TRIAC dimmers. Will LED lights work with these kinds of dimmers?
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post #15 of 314 (permalink) Old 2012-04-21, 04:46 PM
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There are lots of LED lamps on eBay. There's not a lot in the way of savings though. Savings of 25%-50% are typical with close to nothing on well known name brands, and that's without the shipping. There is a lot more choice in styles, which is expected, so it might be worthwhile for hard to find lamps.

I was looking for a couple of PAR38 flood lamps for outdoor use. Replacing 2x200w incandescents is worthwhile but at $25-$50 each, payback would take over a year. I'll wait a year an see if prices drop to more reasonable levels.

At 20 I had a good mind. At 40 I had money. At 60 I've lost my mind and my money. Oh, to be 20 again. --Scary
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