Thursday, September 24, 2009

New LED R30 Product

Last night while shopping the light products aisle of one of the largest DIY stores I saw that they had started carrying a complete line of brand-name LED lighting products. I just had to purchase the R30 LED - "Ideal for Recessed Lighting" model. So here is my complete biased assessment of the "best of breed" LED product from perhaps the world's largest lighting manufacturer.


• Instant on
• Mercury Free
• Rugged design (yes, seeing that it weighs in at ¾ of a lb due to
all of the cast aluminum heat sinking)
• Same size and shape as regular bulbs (No, it is actually 3.25 inches tall or more than 2 inches shorter than a standard incandescent R30. I could barely fit it into the can fixtures in my kitchen - it was too short. And my wife’s first impression was “it looks like a shower head”.)
• Quiet (hope so. It's a light bulb not a entertainment center)
• Emits virtually no heat
• Color Rendering Index of 85 (equals “poor”)
• Color temperature not specified but appears to be 4000-5000K (blue white). The color made the kitchen counter look like a morgue table.
• Replaces 50 Watt halogen Par30 bulb (No not quite, not with a lumen output of only 418 lumens)
• Very directional, very strong glare
• 11 watts
• 25,000 hours life
• And probably the most surprising spec an energy efficacy of only 38 lumens per watt - Less than most CFL bulbs. What happened to the 100+ lm/w we have heard touted over and over again from the super efficient new LED bulbs?
• And last but not least $49.97

The package says it will save you $97 in electrical costs if you keep it for 17 years (4 hours per day, 25,000 hours). Of course after you deduct the $50 purchare price you will have a "return on your investment" of over $2.47 per year! Oh yes, sorry - it can't be used with a dimmer