Just Got GE Enbrighten LED Lantern

Hamilton Felix

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My wife just came back from shopping at Costco, where she picked up a GE "Enbrighten" lantern for about twenty bucks. It holds eight D cells in the base, apparently a 6v series-parallel scheme, because it will also run on four D cells, with half the rated runtime of eight.

So far, we've done nothing more than turn off the kitchen lights and try the lantern. It has three levels, claiming 350 lumens on high. It also claims pretty long runtimes, particularly on low, where it claims 350 hours on eight D cells. You can work fairly well at even the low setting.

Just at a glance, it compares very favorably with a handful of older two tube Coleman fluorescent lanterns (also eight D cells in base) that we have at work. Maybe I'll bring it to work and do a side by side comparison.

So far my only "disappointment," speaking as a collector of kerosene lamps, is that with this lantern around I may not have many excuses to light my lamps. ;) Our winter power outages usually are not much more than overnight, a few days at most.
 

Hamilton Felix

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Lanterns.jpg


OK, I took it to work to compare. Turns out the lanterns we've had around there for a few years are Rayovac, not Coleman. They have 8 D cells in the base, same as the new GE. I wish I had a light meter. My best estimate trying one then the other in a dark room is, Low on the GE is about equal to the Rayovac fluorescent with one tube lit. High on the GE exceeds the Rayovac with both tubes lit. I think Medium is not far behind both tubes in the fluorescent lantern.

Clearly, these are not camping lanterns, unless you have a truck to carry your stuff. As an area light at home, this is an upgrade over the last generation. Expected life of the LED lantern exceeds that of the old fluorescent job, and claimed battery life is incredible. This will be a great area light at home during power outages, where I do not care about size and weight. If I wanted an electric camping lantern, I'd be looking at something more advanced, like we see in the "Personal Area (lantern)" thread here.

I think we got our twenty bucks worth. I like the handle that opens like a carabiner to let you hang the lantern on a limb, etc. The single button is pretty simple and foolproof. One click turns on High, next click is Medium, next click Low, next click Off. Color coded battery symbols in the battery compartment tell you were to load four D cells if you want to run on four instead of eight. Naturally, I don't store this with its alkaleaks installed, any more than I do the lanterns at work.
 

rtginc

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Just out of curiosity, have you considered other, smaller camping lanterns? They have lower brightness settings that have runtimes that are as long.

It's just that 8 D Cells seems excessive these days. Especially when there are better solutions out there.
 

Hamilton Felix

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Oh I agree, 8 D cells is huge. This is a household item, not something to pack around.

Funny: you mentioned LED camping lanterns. I still have the first LED campinglight that I know of, a Streamlight Syclone. I just grabbed it and went downstairs. The main bulb is krypton, not LED, but it has a little yellow LED secondary, a deeper color than selective yellow fog lights so I'll call it amber. This was at the very beginning of the LED light market, but it worked. The amber LED is enough to read by or go outside your tent for a call of nature, but not much more.

While downstairs I decided to check on a couple of cheap LED mini-lanterns I bought from Sportsman's Guide a few years ago. They run on 4 AA cells. I keep them handy to grab quickly during power outages, before I get around to lighting the kerosene lamps. One lit, the other wouldn't. Both have corrosion on the battery holders. I started to swear at the "alkaleaks," before noticing all 8 cells show no leakage and checking to confirm all are near full voltage. Now I'm wondering if I had corrision from a past event that I didn't fully clean, and it just spread. Or did a tiny leakage current cause some sort of electrolysis? The batteries are not run down, and those mini-lanterns are just 8 little LEDs in a ring around a reflector. Cheapies, but not much to go wrong. I doubt there's any electronics, just a single on/off button.

If I can't salvage the battery holders, I may find myself looking for new LED mini-lanterns. For camping I'd want something small, maybe two to four AA cells, with me keeping some Ni-MH Eneloops handy.
 

Monocrom

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That G.E. lantern is definitely nice-looking. Never understood why so many large lanterns have to be utterly utilitarian in appearance.
 

StarHalo

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+1 on the high aesthetic score, you can set your stainless-esque GE lantern on your stainless GE stove and have a matching set. And lots of big batteries in a lantern is fine so long as there's a low mode to take full advantage of it; more ounces for more hours is a good trade when it comes to emergency lighting that you're not going to be moving around much anyway. Now it just needs a proper warm tint emitter..
 

martinaee

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I LOVE the way it looks, but no less than 8 D cells? Dang... I know you said it can take 4 though. I love the Streamlight Seige because it only takes 3 Ds (or I use 3 D-->AA adaptors).

The run times must be insane on 8 D's though. Fluorescent tube lanterns are still magical to me somehow. I have fond memories of being little and remembering a 3rd grade camping trip outside our school (lived in a rural area then) and seeing a cool fluorescent lantern being used. What is the weight on that GE lantern with 8 Ds installed?
 

BloodLust

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I find the tint not quite neutral but it's still a bit warmer than cool white.

For $20, it's really a steal. Easy to use, stable, light weight for its size but feels more well made than other lanterns I've seen and/or tried. The top part/lid alone is secured with several screws. Not just glued or few screws.
 

BloodLust

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Nice to see you here Poppy.

Single it would seem.
I'm not sure if I read it somewhere that it uses an XP-G or XR-E. I could be mistaken since I can't find an article that says so.
I wouldn't be surprised though if it did as it has a similar tint to my XP-G light.

Worth a try for just $20 at Costco. If you do, be sure to get the 350 lumen GE Enbrighten. I initially picked up the older 300 lumen GE ChromaLit from the shelf but the newer Enbrightens were hidden under and behind the ChromaLit models when I went around the stack again.
 

Poppy

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Nice to see you here Poppy.

Single it would seem.
I'm not sure if I read it somewhere that it uses an XP-G or XR-E. I could be mistaken since I can't find an article that says so.
Thanks BloodLust :thumbsup: It's good to be here! :)

Those lanterns are $40 everywhere else, so @ $20 they are a good deal. I personally do not have a membership at any "pay to shop" places like Costco. At any rate I was more curious to know if ONE Cree is more efficient than multiple 5mm leds.

I have two 6V florescent lanterns, and six 6v SLAs, and a few of those flying saucer 24 5mm led tent lanterns. If I were to get another lantern, I'd look for one that takes 4.5 volts rather than 6 volts, so that I can substitute 18650's.

For indoors, I think ceiling bounced lights give a more uniform light, without the glare associated with most lanterns. For outdoors, that's a different story. I have a couple oil lamps that I have filled with citronella oil to ward off mosquitos, and I enjoy the flickering flame. So I imagine that my lanterns for the most part will get loaned out during power outages. I haven't gifted them, because you have to periodically charge the SLAs. and if you don't maintain them they won't hold a charge.
 

Richwouldnt

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I believe the Enbrighten LED technology is similar to the "remote phosphor" technology used on the older 300 Lumen version which means, from my understanding, that the actual led is surrounded by a Phosphor coated outer cover that the LED excites the phosphor on to provide the visible light. The new 1000 Lumen Coleman is using similar technology for it's emitter. Supposedly greatly reduces glare compared to naked LEDs. The actual LED used is probably a short wave blue or violet light output LED without a phosphor coating.
 

Poppy

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I believe the Enbrighten LED technology is similar to the "remote phosphor" technology used on the older 300 Lumen version which means, from my understanding, that the actual led is surrounded by a Phosphor coated outer cover that the LED excites the phosphor on to provide the visible light. The new 1000 Lumen Coleman is using similar technology for it's emitter. Supposedly greatly reduces glare compared to naked LEDs. The actual LED used is probably a short wave blue or violet light output LED without a phosphor coating.

I just bought a 350 lumen 4 D Cell GE lantern with "Enbrighten LED Technology", and of course, I had to take it apart! :) It looks similar to its predecessors, but the base is a rounded cornered rectangle, rather than circular.

Some of the screws that held the lantern together are some kind of triangular security screws :( I ground down the tip of a small bolt into a triangle that fit :rolleyes:

So I got it apart, and took some pictures, but don't have a way to share them at the moment. But Richwouldnt is right. I don't know what brand of emitter it is, but it is a single, small die emitter, and it emits light in the blue spectrum that looks something like this.
http://www.color-hex.com/color/6fc0ff

THIS COLOR

It rests atop a pretty decent heat-sink, and is surrounded by a yellow plastic cone shaped dome, that appears white when hit with the blue light. That sits inside a small bulb shaped opaque diffuser. The diffused light projects upward, through another diffuser (not much of one) and onto/into a highly reflective concave reflector.

The switch is mounted to a circuit board that has some electronic components, I don't know what they are, but they are not just resistors. I hooked the lantern up to a 6.23V SLA and got 880ma, 250ma, and 90ma readings on its three settings.
 
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RedLED

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+1 on the high aesthetic score, you can set your stainless-esque GE lantern on your stainless GE stove and have a matching set. And lots of big batteries in a lantern is fine so long as there's a low mode to take full advantage of it; more ounces for more hours is a good trade when it comes to emergency lighting that you're not going to be moving around much anyway. Now it just needs a proper warm tint emitter..
Star,

Old thread, I know but, where do you get the GE Lanterns? And are they still made nice like that. I seek your advice because you seem to be up on the latest things in retail.

Thank you,

RL
 

BloodLust

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Star,

Old thread, I know but, where do you get the GE Lanterns? And are they still made nice like that. I seek your advice because you seem to be up on the latest things in retail.

Thank you,

RL

Yes, they are still made pretty well. I've seen them in Costco again.
The new ones are advertised as 500 lumens. Almost exactly the same design.
Sometimes Walmart has the smaller 4 D-cell version.
These ones are 8 D-cell but can run on a set of 4.
 

chaosdsm

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Amazon has them, just search for GE Enbrighten, there's a couple different styles, colors, & Lumen options including the one pictured in post #2.
 

Poppy

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