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GE to launch 100-watt equivalent LED replacement bulb

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May 8, 2012

GE has announced the addition of a 100 W incandescent equivalent to its range of LED repla...

GE has announced the addition of a 100 W incandescent equivalent to its range of LED replacement light bulbs

GE Lighting has announced that it is getting in on the 100 W-equivalent LED replacement act. The 27 W Energy Smart LED bulb joins its range of incandescent bulb replacements that already includes 40 W and 60 W equivalents. And like an incandescent bulb, GE claims its LED bulb emits light evenly in all directions. But how does the 100 W equivalent stack up performance-wise?

The key figure is the bulb's lumen output, which is a measure of how much light the bulb emits. Connected to a 120 V supply, a traditional 100 W incandescent light bulb has a lumen output of 1750 lumens (lm), for an efficacy of only 17.5 lm/W. Here's where the term "equivalent" begins to look a little sketchy, as the quoted output of GE's bulb is 1600+ lm. If you ignore the plus (what other option is there?), that's the exact same output as Switch Lighting's 100 W-equivalent LED lightbulb (the world's first) we looked at a year ago, but 150 lumens short of an actual 100 W incandescent's output. Still, it's certainly in the same ballpark.

With a power consumption of 27 W, GE's Energy Smart bulb has an efficacy of about 60 lm/W. Clearly, that is vastly superior to a 100 W incandescent, but it's actually significantly worse than Switch Lighting's equivalent product. The efficacy of 100 lm/W we quoted at the time now seems to be a little high, with Switch Lighting's website now stating an efficacy of over 80 lm/W - still 20 lm/W better than GE's lightbulb, which is significant.

One area GE's product scores over Switch Lighting's is in the bulb's color temperature. The color temperature of a light source describes the warmness or coolness of its appearance. Expressed in Kelvin, a light source's color is compared to the appearance of an ideal black body radiator at certain temperatures. Because black body radiators glow in cooler colors at higher temperatures, a light source that is said to have a higher color temperature signifies a cooler appearance.

Let's again use a 100 W incandescent bulb as our basis for comparison - with its color temperature of 2870 K, which is warm and yellowish in appearance. Switch Lighting's 100 W equivalent has a color temperature of 4100 K, whereas GE's has a color temperature of 3000 K - much closer to the 100 W incandescent original. Since these products are touted as replacements, GE's bulb does a better job in this regard. That said, some may prefer the cooler white of Switch Lighting's bulb (cooler light sources are thought to be preferable in warmer climes, for instance).

Similar to Switch Lighting's product, GE's Energy Smart bulb has a very respectable lifetime of 25,000 hours. Assuming you use one for three hours per day it should last nearly 23 years. Interestingly the lifespan is significantly lower than heavier-duty LED light sources designed for commercial use which are often quoted at 50,000 or even 100,000 hours. In any case, compared to the typical 1000 hour lifespan of a traditional 100 W incandescent, these things last an age.

Thus far there's no word on launch date or price.

Source: GE Lighting

About the Author
James Holloway James lives in East London where he punctuates endless tea drinking with freelance writing and meteorological angst. Unlocking Every Extend Extra Extreme’s “Master of Extreme” achievement was the fourth proudest moment of his life.   All articles by James Holloway
13 Comments

But will it warm my lunch on top of the light fixture?

Slowburn
8th May, 2012 @ 02:14 pm PDT

In 1920 they were selling bulbs that went for 2500 hrs. In the 1940s, back to 1000. In the 80s the Russians had them going for 40,000hr. The 1000 hr is a result of planned obsolescence to drive demand and rip you off.

Adrien
8th May, 2012 @ 03:34 pm PDT

Hmmm I have come to appreciate unshielded or NON diffused light sources - as every step to "diffuse, reflect or redirect" usually chops swathes of light energy out of the initial output.

I use lights to I can see - not so I can waste power on crappy designs that "soften and fuzzyfy" the light.

I make my own LED lights, straight drive, off a DC supply either directly from the AC mains, and I avoid the use of current limiting by simply under driving them.

This means that if their peak voltage is 3.5V, then I run them in strings with enough of them, so that they collectively each get about 85% of the divided voltage - with each running somewhere between 2.8V and 3.2V.

It means that they all put out slightly less light, but there is also more of them.

QED - while I don't have decades to measure them, with under driven LED's - I think I am looking at about 200,000 - 300,000 hours plus per light.

The REAL idea of LED lights is their LOW power consumption and their extremely long lives.

So GE and their short life light bulbs... you know where the management of GE can insert them don't you.

Mr Stiffy
8th May, 2012 @ 06:17 pm PDT

Long life incandescents still exist, see http://www.lightbulbsdirect.com/page/001/CTGY/ICLL_A19 but I suspect they run at lower temps than regular bulbs and so are even less efficient.

Mr T
8th May, 2012 @ 08:23 pm PDT

100% of my household lighting is LED. Bathroom lighting used to be 240 watts now 20 watts for warm light, living room was 300 watts with halogen spots and floods now 40 watts with LED outside backyard lighting, was 300 watts from two halogen PAR 38 lamps now two PAR 38 7 cree lamps using 40 watts total, energy saving should recoup my investment in 2.5 years,, OH WAIT it already has!

Bill Bennett
8th May, 2012 @ 08:51 pm PDT

@ Bill Bennett

In making the switch from incandescent to LED - I bet a HUGE part of your power bill just "vanished".

Mr Stiffy
9th May, 2012 @ 12:06 am PDT

Long live LED! All of my electricity is solar, so I don't suppose it matters in my case. However, I gladly use LEDs and look forward to the LDD technology. One day, I'm guessing, we'll be able to get our lighting from the sun ...

Jansen Estrup
9th May, 2012 @ 09:31 am PDT

Holly Shit, I didn't think Gizmag readers would fall for this. A 100W Equivalent CFL is only 23W!!!!, better than an LED? and cost $2.75 each over at Home Depot.

Nothing lasts as long as it should. It assumes that you don't have power surges or bad wiring, over several years (20+) you are going to have some power issues and poof there goes your investment.

Let's use Each type of lighting for what it is good for

Incandescent = Heat

CFL = Omni-Directional Lighting

LED = Single-Directional Lighting

abe
9th May, 2012 @ 11:01 am PDT

I bought dimmable Philips EnduraLED bulbs to replace incandescent interior flood lights. I was afraid that they wouldn't be bright enough, but I actually find it better to dim them a little because they're so bright. I think that they are much brighter than a 100W incandescent, but Philips rates them at 610 lumens and 1800 candela. I don't know what that means. Mine are 4200K but they also offer 2700K and 3000K--I see the 4200K as bright white without being blue and are similar in color temperature to my halogen fixtures (maybe a little cooler). They're rated at 40,000 hours.

Anyway, I'm totally happy with them. I think it's important to know that most LED bulbs are not dimmable so it's important to know what you want. My halogen bulbs run very hot, but the fixtures I have couldn't accommodate any LED bulb that I have ever seen (I have those long skinny halogens).

Steven Clifford Cohen
9th May, 2012 @ 12:07 pm PDT

25,000 hours is a real bulb life. The 50,000 to -100,000 hr life quoted, especially by the Chinese, ignores power supply failure in the bulb. As far as comparing Switch Kighting to GE, it's apples to oranges. "Cold" light is a more efficient locus of operation than a warm one. LEDs will outshine (pun intended) CFLs in a couple of years...still early days in terms of the lumens/W you get out of the LEDs themselves.

solutions4circuits
9th May, 2012 @ 01:29 pm PDT

Replacing the lightbulbs in my house with these things would show *LITTLE* savings because really, lights are the least of my power grabbers! If I wanted to save electricity, I would just shut off one of my Dell 2U servers I'm running down in my basement...or one of my 3 kegerators constantly cooling my favorite brews or one or more of the several dozen LCD screens I have posted in my house serving as photo frames...

Ed
9th May, 2012 @ 02:54 pm PDT

Ed, if you filled up some unplugged chest freezers with cold water in your basement,and stored your beer there, that would save money,surely? Regarding lighting, 10 X 100 watt lamps =1kW, so it can easily add up.

windykites1
9th May, 2012 @ 04:43 pm PDT

Until they tell me what it costs I really don't care what they claim or what it looks like.

The Hoff
12th May, 2012 @ 06:13 pm PDT
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