The false economy of in home LED lighting

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ControlTheController's picture
Last seen: 1 day 6 hours ago
Joined: 02/15/2018 - 12:31
Posts: 66
Location: Under a layer of phosphor

Over recent years I see more and more places, like restaurants and stores (especially newly renovated ones) turning to LED. Interestingly the underground train stations in my place (these stations have a heck lot of lights!) Still use what seem to be warm white T8 tubes. They are either Osram or Philips. I believe those tubes emit a nasty amount of UVs, as the paint that is above those lamps have faded out to a white color. Fortunately LEDs are used in the trains.

Decent LED bulbs are not hard to get these days, but good and high CRI ones are not as common. I’ve came upon these Yuji high CRI bulbs, but they are far too costly.
Product link here

I’ve been using a few Opple LED bulbs (Opple is a large Chinese brand, I think they mainly target domestic users) that costed me around $3 USD (12W 6000K 1100lm 80 CRI ). It’s more than a year now and they are still running fine. Chineses are able to make quality stuff but they tend to end up in the low cost range.

But I’m not satisfied with them. Meanwhile high CRI bulbs are not that accessible for me (except for those 90+ CRI GU 10 Philips that I got by chance They are too narrow for me). I decided to make one myself. I sourced some E27 LED bulb casings and some 5630 aluminum boards(12S 2P). I chose 5630s because they have a relatively low cost compared to high power 3535/5050s and is less intense, which is more ideal for home lighting.

I chose a frosted cover so it won’t change the tint too much like the milky white ones do, while also reducing glare.

I reflowed 24 SSC 9Q14B 5630s on the board. That took quite some time and heat!

The driver I use is a cheap one (well it’s cheap compared to the LEDs) (8-12W 280-300mA), I believe it is a constant current driver, no flicker is observed by my eyes or my phone camera.

All components for the light costed less than $6 USD excluding shipping.
I wonder if it is safe to use with that non-enclosed aluminum body in my bathroom. But it has been up for a few days already, and everything seems to be alright.

These SSC 5630s are 5000K Ra90-100, I believe SSC also makes some with guaranteed R9 values. Compared to my original 6000K 80 CRI Opple LED bulb, this one obvious has better color rending abilities, especially for woods (I’m prettu sure that it has better R9 than the original one). The wooden door and the reddish brown + black marble surfaces in the bathroom looks so much better now! I was astonished by the difference!

I have to state that I did this mainly as a prototyping, the driver’s efficiency (and the light’s safety) is not measured nor guaranteed as I don’t have any suitable tools yet. I can probably yield better efficacy if I use a better driver. It’s a good start though.

The person who always struggles between practicality and lumens.

Jerommel's picture
Last seen: 3 days 20 hours ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 5724
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

^ Looks like a very decent driver to me.


Geuzzz's picture
Last seen: 14 hours 14 min ago
Joined: 10/25/2015 - 10:27
Posts: 728
Location: Netherlands
djozz wrote:
I’d love some 4000K ones in a few corners of the house but my girlfriend refuses 4000K, makes her feel like she’s in hospital Sad

Same here. Even 2700k is to cold for her. But it gave me the chance to go mental on Philips Hue. Whole ground floor, front yard and back yard are now cct adjustable and dimmable Smile