Blinding properties incan vs. LED

greenpondmike

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High cree led's in the 2700-4000 color temprature range still can't quite match the spectrum of the incan. Synthetic vs natural. I think the natural has more red in it. The spectrum is also long wave in an incan which helps with distance and glairback.
 

FastTurtle

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Did anyone also notice, most LED flashlights only BLIND you, so you in fact rather see LESS instead of more when turning the light on? I have known this for ages, but now my former colleague - who is into building robots professionally - also came to that conclusion, after he took his standard LED light... it only blinded him, shining on those metal surfaces.... and exactly the same happens to me, when I inspect my Studer A807 recorder for clean heads! Just notice the Surefire E1E and C3 Centurion...

And.... seriously.... what I've always been asking for is now possible... to just attach pictures, without having to upload them to some photobucket or whatever service... that is a GREAT improvement, and I cannot praise this new feature enough! THANK YOU!!View attachment 14719
 

FastTurtle

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One of the major problems with LED's that are intensely White is the amount of Blue Frequency in them. Yes they throw quite a bit of light but it's the wrong part of the spectrum, especially if in the 5+k range. I've found that the 2700-3000k range is just about perfect as it's the closest to natural light and so long as the lumens output is rated less then 800, they don't directly blind you.

This also impacts new headlights on autos as the DOT has been receiving lots of complaints about them being so much brighter. Simply put, check the temp range and many of them are getting up into the 6k+ range and outputing lots of Blue and even UV-A. Not good and they do need to be regulated.
 

alpg88

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i noticed it too, even comparing with warm leds, when i turn on cool white light in a dark, my eyes get hit, it is like ouch moment, but when i turn on a warm white light, the situation is very different, it does not make my eyes uncomfortable. i do not want to turn away, or close the eyes.
 

richbuff

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I don't have any problems with too much light. For up close use, I select a small led light and I set it on low mode. No problem.
 

Candlestick

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I've found lights that meet my needs well. Pure flood for close up work otherwise the hotspot is too bright to be useful, blinding even. I had that problem with low cri pencil beam lights where the hotspot is too bright and narrow so it makes it hard to see. Medium throw for outdoors and spotlights where needed. For EDC general purpose a wide hotspot .01-200 lumens is all I need.

I find myself preferring warm white lights when I can get them. 2700-3000 kelvin. Blue light is energetic and tires the eyes more quickly, while also messing with my sleep. Every light I have is high cri and I don't think I'd even consider buying a low cri led light ever again. I have an old peak el captain in warm white and you cant tell its not incandescent other than its 200 lumens.

I recently got a pure flood 2700k light and it looks like evening sunlight. No problems being blinded or being unable to clearly see things. It helps being able to set the brightness.

The technology is getting better, If I had to choose between incandescent and LED based on color and beam pattern alone I'd pick LED for the even beam.
 

greenpondmike

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That is the main drawback for me as far as incans go is the uneven beam, but that can be fixed. Manufacterers just never put a lot of time into incan beams, but they got down fer sure with the led beam.
 

vicv

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That is the main drawback for me as far as incans go is the uneven beam, but that can be fixed. Manufacterers just never put a lot of time into incan beams, but they got down fer sure with the led beam.
While I agree with this, I don't use my lights to stare at white walls so it's a moot point
 

greenpondmike

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While I agree with this, I don't use my lights to stare at white walls so it's a moot point
Who stares at white walls? Some bulbs are hard to get centered and it drives me crazy. That is my pet peeve and it interfears with throw. I can handle some rings because I know if they cleaned up the beam it would also tone down the hotspot too much and also effect throw.

They make or used to make some cheap flashlights (rayovac industrial and dorcy) that have a special made reflector and those incans have a purdy and a good enough beam, but way less throw. They might be good for close to mid range whereas a maglite's smooth reflector can sure enough throw.
 
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vicv

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Who stares at white walls? Some bulbs are hard to get centered and it drives me crazy. That is my pet peeve and it interfears with throw. I can handle some rings because I know if they cleaned up the beam it would also tone down the hotspot too much and also effect throw.

They make or used to make some cheap flashlights (rayovac industrial and dorcy) that have a special made reflector and those incans have a purdy and a good enough beam, but way less throw. They might be good for close to mid range whereas a maglite's smooth reflector can sure enough throw.
Ya I like the mag smooth reflector. I don't find the non-perfect beam to be an issue when using it outside.
 

greenpondmike

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Ya I like the mag smooth reflector. I don't find the non-perfect beam to be an issue when using it outside.
Up close outside it even bothers me.

I hadn't done it yet, but I read on here that you can take out the lense and reassemble the head and then you can center the beam. Bykfixer knows a secret to also centering bulbs because none of his incan pics are lopsided.
 

xxo

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Not all bulbs are the same. Good bulbs like the old PR Mag xenon's usually give a real nice practical beam (not for white wall staring) that works well in the smooth Mag reflectors. Some old/cheap krypton or vacuum bulbs can be pretty pathetic and won't put out a good beam no matter what. The new Mag bi-pin bulbs would be OK, but I can never seem to get them centered. Because of this, I think the bi-pins are a downgrade from the old Mag PR base xenon bulbs.
 

alpg88

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even when you center them perfectly i takes one bump\drop to knock it out of alignment, i too think old pr based magnumstar were the best maglite bulbs
 

LEDphile

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For smoothing beams, don't TIR optics work for incan bulbs?
Theoretically, yes, but you'd need to find a TIR optic designed for the filament source, and one that can handle the temperature of the incandescent lamp. The temperature issue leads to the first, as the maximum operating temperature for the plastics used in most TIR optics is only around 100C, far lower than incandescent filaments run and likely lower than the area immediately surrounding the bulb.
 

bykfixer

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The shape of the globe of a light bulb matters as well. The PR base Maglite xenon has a straight side globe with a rounded tip. Their bi-pin has a sorta conventional bulb shape instead of straight side like the PR version. The bi-pin were produced by the millions upon millions and it just makes sense that there were tiny variations in the globe at times. The buldge area at the tip being off, even slightly can result in a skewed looking beam.

The Streamlight bi-pin globe more closely matches the Maglite PR bulb so the beam from the Strion bulb or TL3 bulb appears pretty correct if inserted correctly.

I have some old (read antique) bulbs that have a football shaped beam. Some of my SureFire A2 bulbs also have an oval shaped beam. It's part of the reason I like those Tad's bulbs so much. Those put out a nice beam.

Now back to topic, the light put out from a light bulb, even a halogen is just way easier on the eyes. But……I have a Streamlight ProTac HL4 that has a frosted optic and when I aim it at a shiney white object with all 2200 lumens screaming back at me I barely squint. So the lens can also make a difference in self-blinding from an LED flashlight. Same with the optic of an Elzetta Bones or SureFire EDCL-2T. Those have a nice combination of throw with much less self blinding than a conventional reflector light.
 

325addict

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I agree, the blue content of LED flashlights seems to produce much more glare than the yellower tones of incandescents or even some lower color temp LEDs.

Nice Studer BTW! I haven't seen that name in ages. It looks glorious.
That Studer A807 is in TOP condition, with butterfly heads, and I just calibrated it to SM468 tape using an Audio Precision 515, and I adjusted the azimuth correctly. Now it sounds SUPER-sweet! Even at 3 3/4 IPS...
 

325addict

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325addict, what is a "standard LED light"? Not fair we don't get to know what kinda LED light ya'll were using.

Also, you say most LED lights only blind you… well, which ones don't blind you? 3000k Nichia or SST20?
A Standard LED light is nearly.... every LED light. WAY too blueish. and even the "warm" LEDs I own (I have a few) tend to blind more on the (bright metal, shiny) heads of my Studer and ReVox recorders. For some reason, that's simply no problem at all with incans - even the quite bright Surefire C3 Centurion with P90 lamp assembly doesn't hurt my eyes when inspecting the heads. The output of the E1E however, is enough. Never going back to LED....
 

PhotonWrangler

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Some white LEDs use a violet pump diode instead of a blue one. This should reduce the problem of blue glare, and if the dome is equipped with UV blocking properties then it should reduce glare a little further. GE was experimenting with violet pump LEDs early on in the development of white ones and they were marketing the product for applications where color quality was important. I don't know if they're still producing their "VioLEDs" but I know that others are.
 

Olumin

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This discussion is interesting since I recently tried to switch back to using a Lumens factory 50lm incan module on my MDC. Due to the more concentrated beam, the bulb actually appeared brighter then my previous 80lm SST-20 3000k setup. I found the incan too bright and blinding to use for close up tasks, and ended up quickly switched back to the M61WLL, which with its warmer tint (yes, incans at full brightness are actually closer to 3200 - 3400k) and more diffused beam is more gentle on my eyes and versatile IMO. This can go both ways.

Edit: I did say in my precious comment that there is little difference in tint and color rendering between incandescent bulbs and warm, high CRI leds, and this is true, for normal output lamps or light fixtures. These encompass most light sources we see and use daily. On lower output LEDs, like my M61WLL here, the difference in tint becomes apparent. However since incandescent bulbs dim rapidly as the voltage of the cell drops, this is only really true when comparing them to bulbs at full output with fresh batteries. So my opinion on that stands.
 
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