Luxeon Rebel LEDs - Underrated performers

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rollinstone157
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Luxeon Rebel LEDs - Underrated performers

Hey all!

Thought I’d share my latest project with you guys. I wanted to try and play with some of the Luxeon Rebel color LEDs. Cree makes color LEDs, but Luxeon’s color LED lineup is far more comprehensive than Cree’s lineup.

Parts:
Cyan Light:
Cyan LED
Convoy M1 Host
4× 7135 Driver
20mm Aluminum SinkPAD for Rebel LEDs

Deep Rep Light:
Deep Red LED
Convoy M1 Host
4× 7135 Driver
20mm Aluminum SinkPAD for Rebel LEDs

Now, I consider these to be quintessential ying and yang lights. Our eyes are made of rods [very sensitive to intensity, insensitive to color] and cones [sensitive to intensity and color]. This means that our eyes are most sensitive to a cyan around 500nm, and least sensitive to reds above 600nm. This is why hunters use Red flashlights—it does the least amount of damage to adjusted night vision, and most mammals are insensitive to red light. However, there is an even better solution, and that is a deep red LED. My deep red LED is above 660nm, and my preliminary research would suggest that there are mammals that cannot see this spectrum of light at all, making a silent hunter with a deep red flashlight effectively invisible to his or her prey.

The Cyan LED (range of 490nm-510nm), on the other hand, will absolutely wreck adjusted night vision. If you want to stun an attacker at night, there is nothing better from a biological standpoint than a light around 500nm. I consider this a defensive light. Even with only 1A coming through the LED, it appears extremely bright. Though, when run on the low mode, it will not destroy night vision. In fact, it is almost better than the deep red because your eyes are more sensitive to that range of light, and thus can pick up more detail. But again, that only applies on the low mode.

The M1 hosts are alright—I would have preferred a C8 host, but these work nicely with 20mm stars. Between the SinkPADs and the low current, the light is thermally excellent. Battery life is also great too. I have a little tweaking to do to the host to eliminate some rattles, but it’s very nice aesthetically, and the narrow/deep projector means the light is far more pocketable than a C8 host.

I’ll post up some pictures comparing the deep red LED to a traditional Red LED—the difference really is noticeable. There is truly an absence of orange or yellow in the deep red Luxeon, while it is surprisingly prevalent in the Luminus PT-54 and other red lights. Just need to wait for it to get a little darker.

saypat
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looking forward to your pictures. I had a red LED light built for me (http://budgetlightforum.com/node/29382) by Mountain Electronics. It definitely is red, but NOT the deep red you are talking about. On high mode, my light is bright, but seems bright other than red if that makes any sense.

thanks for your post….

patrick

rollinstone157
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saypat wrote:
looking forward to your pictures. I had a red LED light built for me (http://budgetlightforum.com/node/29382) by Mountain Electronics. It definitely is red, but NOT the deep red you are talking about. On high mode, my light is bright, but seems bright other than red if that makes any sense.

thanks for your post….

patrick

I actually just ordered some more powerful drivers, and I plan to populate each w/ 5× 380mA 7135 chips, to get the lights up to 1.9A.

My time got eaten up last night by another project, so pics will have to be tonight.

musicmagic
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subscribed.

If you can’t blind them with your brilliance, baffle them with your bullcrap.

The real currency in the world is not money, it’s trust.

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I have a few lights with Rebel Neutral white emitters, and they have a really good tint and great output. comparable to XP-Gs or 219s.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

hank
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We use amber evening lights (cured our late evening wakefulness, the “no blue light” approach).
I’ve been looking at the amber Rebels for this purpose, glad you’re doing it and giving guidance.

djozz
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nice project, looking forward to the builds!

I did an output test on a cyan LuxeonZ led here, I would not be surprised if the cyan rebel performes very similar.

Luxeon has recently even added a new colour to their already good range: lime (568nm).

Siskiyou
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Awesome! I look forward to the red beam shots.
Looking for an astronomy flashlight is how I discovered this hobby. Ironically I’ve not bought a single red light because they are all reflectors. My use is primarily for reading star charts without blowing my night vision so have been putting red emitters in zoomies. They all seem to come out a bit orange though… This emitter is new to me, thanks for the link.

Ejected Filament
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Siskiyou wrote:
Awesome! I look forward to the red beam shots.
Looking for an astronomy flashlight is how I discovered this hobby. Ironically I’ve not bought a single red light because they are all reflectors. My use is primarily for reading star charts without blowing my night vision so have been putting red emitters in zoomies. They all seem to come out a bit orange though… This emitter is new to me, thanks for the link.

Lower amps (less chips on the driver) would correct any brightness issues of reflectors I would think. I dont know what amps would be optimum, but less is going to give you a more friendly close range light. Or use a lower setting on a multi mode.

I think…

ImA4Wheelr
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Thank you for the great info on night vision and red and cyan.  Very interesting.  Looking forward to seeing your lights.

Siskiyou
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Ejected Filament wrote:

Lower amps (less chips on the driver) would correct any brightness issues of reflectors I would think. I dont know what amps would be optimum, but less is going to give you a more friendly close range light. Or use a lower setting on a multi mode.

I think…

I believe you are correct. For my application a zoomie in flood mode puts out a light of even brightness with no hotspot which is more comfortable for reading. Rollinstone157 is going to be after that hotspot though if he’s using the light for hunting.

Ejected Filament
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Siskiyou wrote:
Ejected Filament wrote:

Lower amps (less chips on the driver) would correct any brightness issues of reflectors I would think. I dont know what amps would be optimum, but less is going to give you a more friendly close range light. Or use a lower setting on a multi mode.

I think…

I believe you are correct. For my application a zoomie in flood mode puts out a light of even brightness with no hotspot which is more comfortable for reading. Rollinstone157 is going to be after that hotspot though if he’s using the light for hunting.


Orange peel, or stippled reflector will kill any hotspot, and smooth it out nicely. As would an opaque lens.

Or a zoomie I guess. Could do the same with it too, lower the amps if needed. I dont like zoomies. No idea why.

rollinstone157
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I’ll post my beamshots here, in about an hour

Hmm, so I only have my point and shoot camera with me, which offers very limited control of settings. The Cyan shot, however, looks pretty neat.

Cyan:

ImA4Wheelr
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That does look neat.  I take it the camera is auto adjusting the brightness and thus hiding the spill?

rollinstone157
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ImA4Wheelr wrote:

That does look neat.  I take it the camera is auto adjusting the brightness and thus hiding the spill?

You’re correct—I just don’t have access to my DSLR at the moment so of course I’m a little limited. But the light has wonderful spill, a very, very smooth beam indeed.

Fritz t. Cat
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I am thinking that 3 × 7135s is enough for an led rated at 700 ma, even using a large host to take up the heat.
I am putting it in my UniqueFire UF-T20. Had to pry out the star, and melt out the driver. Need to file off 1 mm. from the deep red star. The driver fits fine.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

willie
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What is the best way to deal with the heat the 7135s give off from the low forward voltage of the deep red led? I have used lifepo4 or 2 NiNH 18650s in other applications where lower voltage was helpful.

djozz
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willie wrote:
What is the best way to deal with the heat the 7135s give off from the low forward voltage of the deep red led? I have used lifepo4 or 2 NiNH 18650s in other applications where lower voltage was helpful.

I used a 7135 based driver on a Oslon IR-led with very low Vf. I made some extra heatsinking for the 7135-chips and used a LiFePo battery, but the light also works ok with a normal Li-ion. It has become a bit long thread, sorry about that.

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/25998?page=1

rollinstone157
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willie wrote:
What is the best way to deal with the heat the 7135s give off from the low forward voltage of the deep red led? I have used lifepo4 or 2 NiNH 18650s in other applications where lower voltage was helpful.

I have not yet managed that, but it is on my radar so to speak. I’m thinking I’ll buy some synthetic diamond powder and mix it with some silicone (maybe GE Silicone II) to use for potting.

I am pretty comfortable with this level of current (and subsequent heat) because the Rebels are on Al SinkPads. The heat transferring qualities are excellent on these, and I saw no detrimental effects to running the lights on high for an hour (other than a manageable level of heat)

But to be honest, I think the max drive currents on Rebels are extremely underrated (700mA-1A, depending on whether it’s an ES or regular Rebel). Both lights performed like champs when running on high for an hour, with no recognizable negative effects. I mean come on, the XP-G2’s maximum drive current is 1500mA, and it can do a little bit more than that Wink

djozz
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rollinstone157 wrote:
willie wrote:
What is the best way to deal with the heat the 7135s give off from the low forward voltage of the deep red led? I have used lifepo4 or 2 NiNH 18650s in other applications where lower voltage was helpful.
I have not yet managed that, but it is on my radar so to speak. I'm thinking I'll buy some synthetic diamond powder and mix it with some silicone (maybe GE Silicone II) to use for potting. I am pretty comfortable with this level of current (and subsequent heat) because the Rebels are on Al SinkPads. The heat transferring qualities are excellent on these, and I saw no detrimental effects to running the lights on high for an hour (other than a manageable level of heat) But to be honest, I think the max drive currents on Rebels are extremely underrated (700mA-1A, depending on whether it's an ES or regular Rebel). Both lights performed like champs when running on high for an hour, with no recognizable negative effects. I mean come on, the XP-G2's maximum drive current is 1500mA, and it can do a little bit more than that ;)

I tested a few other modern Luxeons (Q and Z) for output, voltage and current, and they go way over specs. I expect the newest Rebels have the exact same die as the Luxeon Z and Q, so the behaviour would be similar.

Fritz t. Cat
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I have already finished it with 7135 × 3. The lower forward voltage increases the heat generated in the 7135s, but I read they can even handle 2 x Li ion. The driver board won’t get hot because it was designed to handle 7135 × 8, and it is soldered to the brass pill. So I think I am quite safe about heat.
My red XP-E looks somewhat orange next to it, but when I took a picture the Luxeon looks pink. It is brighter than I expected.
My DX lens is weak around the edges, but the effect is a nice halo around the spot.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

hank
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Does anyone know about the “Rebel Amber PC” emitter?
It was news a few years ago. Maybe I’m too late (grin).

I found this mentioned at: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2014/4/lighting
“ the spectrum of PC Amber is virtually the same as with Neutral-White, except for the lack of the blue spike.”

Thta’s what I want (a no-blue emitter, for nighttime use).
They show the spectra in that page, with the above description

It’s for sale as a little square surface mount device, and I’d hope to find it on a star, or some help making one!

‘oogle finds this UK supplier: http://uk.rs-online.com/web/p/visible-leds/7393554/

Digi-Key says “Most lumens per package in PC amber color, typically 70 lumens at 350 mA.” and
has it here: http://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en/LXM2-PL01-0000/1416-1027-1-ND/3...

Voltage – Forward (Vf) (Typ) 3.05V
Current – Max 700mA
Lumens @ Current – Max 123 lm ~ 193 lm

Voltage – Forward @ Max Current 3.6V

Phillips has specs for it on this PDF: http://www.philipslumileds.com/uploads/265/DS68-pdf

Am I right that the ‘usual’ drivers for white LEDs would be OK, since this doesn’t need the lower voltage used with ordinary red and amber LEDs?

And does a driver have to deliver no more than 700ma, given the “current – Max 700mA” spec?
(and where can I find the driver ….)

rollinstone157
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djozz wrote:
I tested a few other modern Luxeons (Q and Z) for output, voltage and current, and they go way over specs. I expect the newest Rebels have the exact same die as the Luxeon Z and Q, so the behaviour would be similar.

So you think I should increase the drive current to 3A? Great, I do too Wink

We’ll have to wait and see about that, but maybe I’ll fill the rest of the spots on the board and see what happens. If I don’t like it, I can always drop it down. Not difficult at all.

One thing that I’ve found confusing about the Luxeon Z Line of LEDs is that the pad layout. On the Luxeon Rebel and Luxeon Rebel ES, the pad layout is identical. However, the pad Layout for the Luxeon Z and Luxeon Z ES is entirely different—the “standard” Z doesn’t have a dedicated thermal pad. Just something weird I noticed when browsing Mouser, Phillips, and SinkPad’s website.

hank wrote:
Does anyone know about the “Rebel Amber PC” emitter? It was news a few years ago. Maybe I’m too late (grin). … Voltage – Forward (Vf) (Typ) 3.05V Current – Max 700mA Lumens @ Current – Max 123 lm ~ 193 lm …

Hank, That’s sort of what I’m discussing with DJozz! The simple stuff first: you can use any 7135-based driver you would like to power these LEDs—like this one.

Now for the maximum drive current…that’s what we’re pondering. My first build ran these both at 1.4A (4× 7135-based driver), and they hardly broke a sweat. I have pushed them up to 2.1A, and they feel like they have a lot more to give. DJozz’s studies of the Luxeon Q and Luxeon Z suggest that they can perform at 3-4x their rated current ceiling and be quite happy doing so with the proper thermal precautions.

I think it is safe to say the 700mA is EXTREMELY conservative though, and I wouldn’t hesitate to go above & beyond that number.

hank
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Thank you for letting me butt in here — I wanted to see if I understood and yes, this is what I need to learn.

Ah, and LuxeonStar has thermal adhesive pads to match. Until I’m confident enough for permanent glue.

badta00
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Do you have any pictures of the red light and the assembly?

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rollinstone157
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badta00 wrote:
Do you have any pictures of the red light and the assembly?

It’s not super-special, it’s just a standard M1 pill, I chose the M1 b/c it works with 20mm stars. If that’s not helpful, I’ll certainly take pictures…just not quite sure what you’re looking for!


badta00
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I’d like to see how you put it together as well as how the light looks. I plan on doing a similar light and maybe building a bigger light from an old 3D cell 21LED light that the LEDs no longer work on.

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rollinstone157
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As you can see, the pill is pretty basic—screwed down emitter. I just used AS5 underneath. It’s a shame that this star isn’t offered in Cu (though demand certainly isn’t high enough for SinkPAD to justify the cost of tooling) so soldering the star to the pill wasn’t really an option. But I think a thin layer of AS5 on a lapped star that is tightly screwed to a brass pill is doing the job just fine.


I put kapton tape on the reflector because there isn’t an emitter spacer for the rebel.


The whole thing put together.

badta00
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Thank you for the help.

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hank
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I’m not equipped to reflow LEDs onto stars yet (maybe never) but have used Luxeon PC Rebels premade like this: http://www.luxeonstar.com/amber-10mm-rebel-square-coolbase-leds
They drop into the (rare) SK68s with solid pills just fine.
and the 20mm boards also have done fine in a generic 3xAAA light with a solid back to stick the board to.
Drilling and tapping for screws will probably be next for those.

They do get warm — and they’re astonishingly brighter than the old non-PC rebels.

Just learned that they will be available within a few weeks on SinkPAD II boards.
I’m waiting on those for my next experiments.

In email I mentioned and pointed to BLF and CPF and urged Luxeonstar to offer some kind of discount code, since their free shipping cutoff is high. Here’s hoping.

(By the way, the packing is astonishingly high end — mounted LEDs came stacked in little snapcap black plastic cases, labeled, and separated by rounds of antistatic foam. Impressive, since I’ve understood how semiconductors get slowly wounded, accumulating damage over time by static carelessness)

Seems that expressions of interest (and suggestions for improvement) are welcome:
http://www.luxeonstar.com
service@luxeonstar.com
in case anyone else wants to ask about those

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Would an OSHPark board 20mm w/ vias for direct heat path be a good idea or do we have dedicated copper sinkpads/noctigons yet?

I think someone here already did a Luxeon_T on 16mm
https://oshpark.com/shared_projects/Ss2qkDsS

And with a stinkpad mod it might be able to wick away enough heat

I just downloaded the phillips lumiled Eagle library files as well

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