Disappointing trend in LED manufacturing

kaichu dento

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LEDs are better for garages
Absolutely superior for any unheated building. I changed out some tubes in the old fluorescent fixtures in a shed in the interior and the difference in winter was that it was too bright, especially coming in from and going back out into the dark. Flipping the tubes upside down helped a lot, but 8 tubes for what was probably a 20' x 30' shed was at least twice as much as was needed.

No more waiting for fluorescent tubes to warm up to a dim glow at -20 to -50 was fantastic; instant light.
 

fulee9999

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CFL feels like a dead branch of the light evolution, I for one am glad it's basically almost completely gone. I remember the first "economic" CFLs that took literal minutes to come to an acceptable brightness, on power on it was just a dim glow. I hated it. Also the color rendering on those is just horrid, I only have two CFL bulbs now for spectroscope calibration.
 

Lynx_Arc

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Absolutely superior for any unheated building. I changed out some tubes in the old fluorescent fixtures in a shed in the interior and the difference in winter was that it was too bright, especially coming in from and going back out into the dark. Flipping the tubes upside down helped a lot, but 8 tubes for what was probably a 20' x 30' shed was at least twice as much as was needed.

No more waiting for fluorescent tubes to warm up to a dim glow at -20 to -50 was fantastic; instant light.
What amazed me is the same lumen output light of a 4 foot LED light vs 4 foot F40T12 the LED light looked 50% brighter to me. I keep wanting my fluoros to run out of tubes so I have an excuse to retube with LED drop in. I have about 4 fluorescent shop lights only 1 however is in service the others I never installed. I was also looking at LED tubes to swap out in a 18 inch fixture but they are as expensive as a LED light itself.
 

PhotonWrangler

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As for efficiency of colored vs doped blue/white LEDs I've seen that for a long time. For me red LEDs vs firefly/candle mode white LEDs is a no brainer. I don't need to use red and the efficiency of RED LEDs as the same current/output is worse which makes them less attractive than ever. The two things I like about LED vs CFL is start up time and temperature in use. LEDs are better for garages
I believe the CFLs with the long start-up time are based on a mercury amalgam rather than just straight mercury. We had one of those in the basement and the warm-up curve was annoying. I also prefer LEDs for this reason.
 

Lynx_Arc

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I believe the CFLs with the long start-up time are based on a mercury amalgam rather than just straight mercury. We had one of those in the basement and the warm-up curve was annoying. I also prefer LEDs for this reason.
I agree the startup time is slower especially in colder temps. As I'm more used to lower light levels having 40-60 watt CFLs only running half as bright to startup is not a huge issue it is only in my garage that it becomes a problem where it is most problematic is in the garage when it drops below 40 the lights there located in the ceiling so being 1/3 to half normal brightness till warmed up makes it not very bright in the garage to see stuff. Now that I have a 4 foot LED fixture the 100 watt EQ CFL I typically don't see it. I have an old screw in light socket that I've put a power adapter inline to hook up the LED light fixture so it comes on with the light switch.
 

kaichu dento

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I keep wanting my fluoros to run out of tubes so I have an excuse to retube with LED drop in. I have about 4 fluorescent shop lights only 1 however is in service the others I never installed. I was also looking at LED tubes to swap out in a 18 inch fixture but they are as expensive as a LED light itself.
I got rid of any remaining fluorescent fixtures I had a few years ago, replacing 4' fixtures in a couple places with short LED fixtures that I got from Home Depot for about $16-18 each. I liked them so much that I've probably bought a couple dozen in the last few years.

At two of my friends stores I brought them boxes of LED replacement tubes and helped swap out all the remaining glass tubes and both places benefited hugely from the additional light and neither minded the tradeoff in getting rid of tubes that were still serviceable.

I'll be over next week to start on your place.
 

kaichu dento

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I agree the startup time is slower especially in colder temps. As I'm more used to lower light levels having 40-60 watt CFLs only running half as bright to startup is not a huge issue it is only in my garage that it becomes a problem where it is most problematic is in the garage when it drops below 40 the lights there located in the ceiling so being 1/3 to half normal brightness till warmed up makes it not very bright in the garage to see stuff.
You ought to see how dim those 100 watt equivalent CFL's are at -50 and -60 below; they look like anemic little night light bulbs, especially with the ice fog. Pretty pathetic as a light source.
 

jtr1962

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You ought to see how dim those 100 watt equivalent CFL's are at -50 and -60 below; they look like anemic little night light bulbs, especially with the ice fog. Pretty pathetic as a light source.
I'm surprised they even start at those kinds of temperatures. I have 4 40 watt T12s in the garage. On days when it's below freezing they stay pretty dim. The two CFLs sharing the lone socket in the garage were even worse. Two years ago I bought one of these to put in the socket. Almost instant on, crazy bright. I looks even brighter in cold weather, which kind of makes sense. LEDs love cold. BTW, my review of it is still rated the most helpful.
 

bykfixer

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My home is loaded with curly fry bulbs. As they konk out they get replaced, sure but for now they get the job done.

When I bought my first LED light it said 100,000 hour lifespan. Soon after 50,000. Then 30,000. But that's still over 3 years of constant running.

Some say conspiracy to purposly shorten lifespan, some say profit margin to make them cheaper, some say it's capitalism and keeps people employed. Since I don't build lighting stuff for a living it doesn't really affect me all that much if at all. I turn on a light, it works year after year... good enough. It don't work, I replace it. First world problem.
 

PhotonWrangler

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I got rid of any remaining fluorescent fixtures I had a few years ago, replacing 4' fixtures in a couple places with short LED fixtures that I got from Home Depot for about $16-18 each. I liked them so much that I've probably bought a couple dozen in the last few years.

At two of my friends stores I brought them boxes of LED replacement tubes and helped swap out all the remaining glass tubes and both places benefited hugely from the additional light and neither minded the tradeoff in getting rid of tubes that were still serviceable.

I'll be over next week to start on your place.
I have one of those desk magnifier lamps with a circular fluorescent tube surrounding the magnifying glass. I replaced the fluorescent tube with an LED equivalent recently even though the flourescent bulb still worked. Now I have more light with no UV, better CRI and no strobing, making it much less fatiguing to use. I can imagine what a difference it must have made in an entire store.
 

kaichu dento

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I'm surprised they even start at those kinds of temperatures. I have 4 40 watt T12s in the garage. On days when it's below freezing they stay pretty dim. The two CFLs sharing the lone socket in the garage were even worse.
When it's really, really cold most of them just limp along and many will be on all day since the daylight hours are so short and to have the CFL's produce any semi-useful light, they're just better off being left on. Many of them refuse to do anything in the time span you need, so carrying a flashlight becomes all the more important.
Really pathetic they made us change to the worthless things, only a few years later to finally start replacing all of them with LED bulbs and tubes.
 

desert.snake

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I have one of those desk magnifier lamps with a circular fluorescent tube surrounding the magnifying glass. I replaced the fluorescent tube with an LED equivalent recently even though the flourescent bulb still worked. Now I have more light with no UV, better CRI and no strobing, making it much less fatiguing to use. I can imagine what a difference it must have made in an entire store.
What about flicker, do you notice it? I mean PWM

LED lamps are quite economical, but so far those lamps that have a shelf life of 10 years, and those that have a shelf life of 3 years equally quickly fail after 1.5-2 years. I come to the store, and this store no longer exists to use the guarantee))
 

PhotonWrangler

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What about flicker, do you notice it? I mean PWM

LED lamps are quite economical, but so far those lamps that have a shelf life of 10 years, and those that have a shelf life of 3 years equally quickly fail after 1.5-2 years. I come to the store, and this store no longer exists to use the guarantee))
I don't notice flicker directly from fluorescent lamps but I see it in terms of strobing if I wave something quickly underneath the light. I don't notice anything at all from the LED replacement tube.
 

Lynx_Arc

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You ought to see how dim those 100 watt equivalent CFL's are at -50 and -60 below; they look like anemic little night light bulbs, especially with the ice fog. Pretty pathetic as a light source.
We rarely even see 0 degrees here where I'm at so that isn't a problem at all.
 

Lynx_Arc

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What about flicker, do you notice it? I mean PWM

LED lamps are quite economical, but so far those lamps that have a shelf life of 10 years, and those that have a shelf life of 3 years equally quickly fail after 1.5-2 years. I come to the store, and this store no longer exists to use the guarantee))
Long term guarantees from small corporations are almost worthless. All they do is differentiate between products with no guarantee. You see all these lifetime guarantees of products on TV but you don't see those products in stores 1-2 years later and products that last 5 years like you said the company that sold them changes their name and moves to a now rented warehouse with a new phone number or they charge twice the shipping it takes to send it back enough to pay for a chinese product on ebay and shipping usually.
LED lamps aren't economical when the larger output ones like 100 watt EQ ones cost $5 each and CFLs were to be had costing $1 each before they were no longer available in most stores. You have to replace one 4 times to match the price and the savings of a 100W LED vs CFL back in the day was pretty small only a few watts difference in energy use taking 4 months to save maybe 15 cents in power if used 8 hours a day. I haven't shopped for LED bulbs but the efficiency of higher output bulbs and cost have not changed enough. You would think we would see 150W LED bulbs for $3 or so each by now but nope. I have a 150W CFL bulb that I bought about 20 years ago that I use about 2 hours a year that I'll likely never replace with LED. As much as I think LEDs are superior I don't see tossing out my flouros till I need to instead of spending $50 on LED bulbs and having to wait 10 years to get it all back in power usage

I'm still wanting a 3 way lamp that has 200 watts on high mode but the way the 3 way sockets work the other two modes will have to equal 200 watts leaving them too close together
 

desert.snake

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I didn't have fluorescent or arc bulbs, or very powerful incandescent lamps, my main incandescent bulbs were 40-60 watts for a long time, but in the last 5 years the power quality has deteriorated. Frequent power outages or power surges killed incandescent lamps + the stock of high-quality lamps of the 70-80s is over, and modern incandescent lamps serve in my conditions for about 2-3 months and burn out, their price is $ 1.3. The cost of LED lamps which i buy is $ 4.5 dollars. it turns out that they pay off in about 1.2 years, the LED lamp itself dies after 1,5-2 years, but it eats less energy - 7-10W.

As for the companies, you are right, it is a big problem to find their official representative and he does not answer calls :(
 

Lynx_Arc

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I didn't have fluorescent or arc bulbs, or very powerful incandescent lamps, my main incandescent bulbs were 40-60 watts for a long time, but in the last 5 years the power quality has deteriorated. Frequent power outages or power surges killed incandescent lamps + the stock of high-quality lamps of the 70-80s is over, and modern incandescent lamps serve in my conditions for about 2-3 months and burn out, their price is $ 1.3. The cost of LED lamps which i buy is $ 4.5 dollars. it turns out that they pay off in about 1.2 years, the LED lamp itself dies after 1,5-2 years, but it eats less energy - 7-10W.

As for the companies, you are right, it is a big problem to find their official representative and he does not answer calls :(
Even if you the company is honoring the warranty they can want you to pay one way shipping of the item which can eat up the cost of the bulb especially if you have to drive somewhere to mail it etc. It isn't worth a half hour of time and $3.50 postage to get another $5 bulb as you could spend $2 worth of gas and stand for 20 minutes in line at the post office and then have to wait 3 weeks for one back. Meanwhile you have already bought another bulb to replace the bad one. If they really want to warranty bulbs they should offer a swap in store for a good one.
 

LEDphile

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Looks like this thread was revived with a topic swerve - perhaps it makes sense for a moderator to split the recent general LED lamp discussions from the original discussion around phosphor-converted red LEDs...

That said, retrofit LED bulbs seem to have gone through at least three distinct technological maturity levels over the time they have been on the market.

The first was the "can this be done" level of the first couple generations of the bulbs. At this point, the focus was on getting a viable product into the market. Costs were generally high, performance was typically at about the same level as CFL or perhaps slightly above. Products were typically positioned as a step up from CFLs with longer life, and especially in the case of directional lamps, much better performance.

Once it was established that acceptable performance was possible, the market shifted to focus on cost-down. Corners were cut, limits of acceptable performance were tested, but it was possible to purchase an 800 lumen LED retrofit bulb for $1 on sale.

Once it was established that LED retrofit bulbs could compete on both performance (first level of maturity) and cost (second level of maturity), manufacturers shifted to finding a good balance between performance and cost. Costs crept back up, but fewer corners were cut, and performance generally increased from the rock-bottom price offerings.

At this point, LED retrofit bulbs are commodity items, with little variation between vendors and a couple different levels of price/performance tradeoff available. Within a tier (premium, economy), performance, lifetime, and price are essentially the same across vendors.

If you want something that's decent quality (at least in the US), I suggest looking for bulbs that meet the requirements of Energy Star. In addition to the efficacy, color quality, and light distribution requirements, Energy Star also requires at least a 35khr rated life, and performs testing to validate a manufacturer's claims. I'm guessing you'll pay more for that quality vs. the cheapest options on the market, though.
 

PhotonWrangler

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Once it was established that LED retrofit bulbs could compete on both performance (first level of maturity) and cost (second level of maturity), manufacturers shifted to finding a good balance between performance and cost. Costs crept back up, but fewer corners were cut, and performance generally increased from the rock-bottom price offerings.
One of those steps of maturity was the development of LED filament bulbs. This breakthrough meant that it was finally possible to maker an LED bulb with essentially the same radiation pattern as an incandescent filament, as opposed to previous "ice cream cone" bulbs where only the top half lights up.

The latest trend is towards tunable white bulbs as well as bulbs with a bland of cooler white and warmer white filaments. And it seems that everyone is putting wi-fi radios in their bulbs now where they no longer need a hub to control them. This trend actually bugs me a little bit because of the steady increase in unnecessary RF noise being produced by these bulbs in the 2.4ghz band. It's also wasteful - if the LEDs or driver burns out, you're throwing out a wi-fi transceiver as well as a bulb.
 

desert.snake

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Even if you the company is honoring the warranty they can want you to pay one way shipping of the item which can eat up the cost of the bulb especially if you have to drive somewhere to mail it etc. It isn't worth a half hour of time and $3.50 postage to get another $5 bulb as you could spend $2 worth of gas and stand for 20 minutes in line at the post office and then have to wait 3 weeks for one back. Meanwhile you have already bought another bulb to replace the bad one. If they really want to warranty bulbs they should offer a swap in store for a good one.
Everything is simpler here)) There is always a supply of replacement lamps, if the store still exists, they offer to replace it with another lamp of the same price. I do not pay for gasoline, I walk about 3 hours to the store, this can be considered as a workout. I am too fat and exercise is not a waste of time and loss possible income, but an improvement in the body.

But other than that you're right, the warranty sometimes sucks, I paid $30 to ship a faulty flashlight to China, waited 5 months for it to come back and it was in the middle of the year when they didn't have a new year otherwise it would have taken Seven months. Only because the store changed its name, otherwise they would have simply changed it on the spot to a serviceable one.

These diode bulbs get warm, I think because of this they mostly fail, I mean the E27 bases. But they still heat up less than incandescent lamps, and now my carbolite cartridge does not need to be changed every 1.5-2 years, because of the temperature it starts to crumble. Old lamp ~1950
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