Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Let there be light!

Here's a nice article about the next wave of indoor lighting, the natural-spectrum LED bulb. These will almost certainly be supplanting even the compact fluorescent bulb within five or ten years. They're available right now in smaller wattages, but a 100W version is coming. (That's wattage equivalency, not actual wattage of the bulb. We should really discuss bulbs in terms of lumens, rather than wattage.)

I switched Casa Jaquandor over to CFLs entirely (except for our dining room light, which is on a dimmer) a few years ago. I've never had a problem with fluorescent light, and I especially prefer the ones that enclose the spiral tube in a bulb that softens the light. I find the light quality indistinguishable from regular incandescents, and I actually like how CFLs start out quite dim before warming up over a minute. Being able to turn on the bathroom lights when I stagger in there at 4:00 am without initially blinding myself? That's a feature, not a bug!

But even so, I wouldn't say I love the CFLs; they get the job done and I'm perfectly happy with them. But I've known all along that CFLs are just going to be around as long as it takes for the LED bulbs to get better and cheaper. That day is coming, and I'm looking forward to light bulbs that will last twenty years.


Roger Owen Green said...

whereas I dislike the CFLs because it takes a while for me to get enough illumination to read, which is usually why I turned on that particular light - usually in the living room or bedroom - in the first place.
delayed gratification? I'm an AMERICAN, dammit!

Roger Owen Green said...

Oh, and Evanier, just this morning, linked to this article; now THOSE light bulbs sound GREAT!

Lynn said...

-- "We should really discuss bulbs in terms of lumens, rather than wattage." --

Yes! I would like to see the wattage equivalent claims disappear. I've seen LED bulbs that claim to be equivalent to a certain incandescent wattage but when you read the fine print you see that it's actually less than half the lumens of the claimed equivalent incandescent bulb. The claims for the CFLs are usually closer to accurate.

Lynn said...

By the way, I'm also skeptical of the "warm white" claim. I've seen LED bulbs that are called "warm white" and they are very definitely (and literally) green.