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View Full Version : USHIO LED vs. Kumho LED vs. Ushio BAB


JoeyD
06-10-2008, 06:03 PM
So I finally got some of the Kumho LED lamps so I figured this would be a good time to do a side by side comparison. I have seen the Ushio LED in action at Light Fair, in all fairness the one I saw at LFI is a warmer LED vs. the one they gave me which is much cooler in temp. I believe the one I have is 4500K or what USHIO calls their Neutral White. They make a few in 3200K which is what I saw at the show and was really nice and close to the BAB they had next to it.

I am not sure what the Kelvin temp is on the Kumho the BAB has a Kelvin temp of 2950.

Here is a side by side of all 3. They were placed in Nova fixtures, the Kumho has the angle shroud on it. In this picture they are shining on a TAN painted wall. Left To Right: USHIo LED, KUMHO, USHIO BAB.
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0405.jpg


USHIO LED on White background
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0400.jpg

KUMHO LED on White background
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0399.jpg

USHIO BAB Halogen on White background
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0398.jpg

USHIO LED on Tan background
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0401.jpg

KUMHO LED on Tan background
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0402.jpg

USHIO BAB Halogen on Tan background
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0403.jpg

These next pictures I took to show the output as best as I could.

USHIO LED
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0407.jpg

KUMHO LED
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0406.jpg

USHIO 20w BAB Halogen
http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0408.jpg

IMHO neither the Kumho or Ushio LED's come close in color or output. They are good but not even close. The camera really doesnt show how much brighter the 20w BAB really is. I will say the Kumho is really nice in terms of beam pattern. The other 2 lamps both have a lot of stirations in the beam.

I will leave the rest up to you guys to decide.

Pro-Scapes
06-10-2008, 11:08 PM
one thing I imediatly notice is the cleaner output. Sometimes I wonder WHY we are all so set on EXACTLY recreating the halogen color. A full matching job done in something a little bit different in color could look pretty nice in my opinion.

Thanks for the comparison Joey.

Also didnt ushio have 2 different led's on display ? I think the warmer one we are thinking about was all the was down to the left of thier wall wasnt it ? Which model Kumho is this ?

Lite4
06-10-2008, 11:39 PM
Thanks for the demonstration Joey. I won't be running out and buying LEDs any time soon. An extra 5-10 bucks a month for my customers power bill isn't going to break their bank by using the better looking and more powerful halogens.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
06-10-2008, 11:56 PM
I just completed an addition to a system that I originally installed in 2006. I added a comprenensive zone of tree mounted downlights over granite flagstone paths and patios. This time around I used 100% LED MR16s, 4.3W, 60 Deg, Warm White (3100K).

I was out last night to aim the system. We had trouble identifying the difference between the zone that was installed with GE BABs + Optical Spread Lenses (I had been lensing almost 100% of my downlights in the past couple of years as I find the BAB to be just too bright in most applications) and the zone that used the Kumho LED Lamps. I kid you not... the only difference was there were no visible abberations in the light pattern from the LEDs.

Shining the beams up against a wall might not be the best way to compare the effectiveness of their output, but I appreciate all of the effort and time Joey.

Have a great day.

NightScenes
06-11-2008, 07:47 AM
I also notice quite a difference in the lumens output between the LED MR16s and the halogens. I am putting together the same type of experiment with the Kichler LED lights and will be sure to post pics of that.

Thanks Joey!

JoeyD
06-11-2008, 09:53 AM
Billy, This LED I used is not the warm white 3200K that was on the far left of Ushios booth. That lamp was much nicer in color rendition then the sample I had to use in this test. That one was much better than the Neutral WHite 4500K I demonstrated. Both say they are equivelant in output to a 20w BAB. This lamp is 34deg where the BAB is a 36deg. The Kumho I used here is the Warm White 3w which says on the box is equivelant to the MR16 20w MAX 240Lm.

http://i207.photobucket.com/albums/bb97/ulsjoeyd/lighting/DSCN0397.jpg

Again photos rarely do lighting justice but as for the color rendition. The BAB is theonly lamp that showed the true color of the wall. The others changd the color of the wall and ceiling quite a bit. We shined some onto a wood surface and you could really see how the LED's turned it grey almost in color vs. the BAB which showed its true color.

Although they are getting better and closer, for the cost of these lamps (LED) I am not sure they are worth it at this point. But like I said I was very impressed with the smoothness of the LED vs. the BAB when it came to beam pattern and spread.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
06-11-2008, 10:13 PM
If you really want to test these lamps out then you have to install them in a system and look for yourself. Here at my home my wife cannot see a difference, at a very large jobsite the client cannot see the difference and 1/2 of his property is Halogen and 1/2 LED and he is a very discriminating and particular person.

Testing them up against a wall or door with the object located only a couple of feet away from the source doesn't really tell the whole story.

Also, very subtle differences in colour temperature, beam spread and even intensity are lost in most outdoor applications. When an entire project is lit with the same lamp, there is going to be no comparisons made.

Pick up some of the Kumho, Ushio, and Lamina LED MR16s for yourself and install them in your own lighting system as a test. Then you will see first hand what I am talking about.

Next... the arrival of the 35W equivalent from Canadian manufacturer CRS Electronics...

"Time keeps on spinning ...... into the future...."

Chris J
06-12-2008, 12:03 AM
Also, very subtle differences in colour temperature, beam spread and even intensity are lost in most outdoor applications. .."

Yet some of us strive to eliminate these differences. Against a tree, or coming down out of a tree, this might not be an issue. Against the columns of a grand entrance to a 12 million dollar home these color differences are crucial. It's the difference in being "remarkable" or just settling for what will work for your own personal gain. :hammerhead:

David Gretzmier
06-12-2008, 01:18 AM
Sorry- but you guys are installing lights every day with different color light and different color rendition. a 20 watt halogen mr-16 at 10.5 volts has a way different color and relative brightness than a 20 watt one at 11.5. were you to hold them each up to a tan or white wall the difference would be obvious.

With LED, it is my understanding they are a constant color and brightness whether at 10 or 13 volts. The very discerning eye may not like that color, and I'll accept that, but to my eye above the LED's look to wash the wall better and not have a hotspot. I like the color and lumens better on the halogen, but the LED's are close, much closer than they were just 18 months ago.

Chris J
06-12-2008, 01:35 AM
a 20 watt halogen mr-16 at 10.5 volts has a way different color and relative brightness than a 20 watt one at 11.5.

You are correct, but you won't find that kind of difference in voltage drop in one of my systems. Especially when it comes to columns.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
06-12-2008, 08:41 AM
Chris, once again..... "So what"? Use the Halogens that you like when doing architectural lighting, wall washing, columns, etc and use the LEDs everywhere else like up and downlighting on foliage. I have been doing this for over a year. Just as one lamp will not solve every application, nor will one or two LED lamps. You mix and match halogens all the time.... now you have another tool at your disposal, one that uses 66 to 75% less power, has a constant colour no matter what power you supply to it, and will last upwards of 40 to 50 thousand hours.

JoeyD
06-12-2008, 09:25 AM
Sorry- but you guys are installing lights every day with different color light and different color rendition. a 20 watt halogen mr-16 at 10.5 volts has a way different color and relative brightness than a 20 watt one at 11.5. were you to hold them each up to a tan or white wall the difference would be obvious.

With LED, it is my understanding they are a constant color and brightness whether at 10 or 13 volts. The very discerning eye may not like that color, and I'll accept that, but to my eye above the LED's look to wash the wall better and not have a hotspot. I like the color and lumens better on the halogen, but the LED's are close, much closer than they were just 18 months ago.


Dave anyone putting 10.5v to a halogen doesnt care about color anyway. That would be under volted. And for the beam spread, I didnt show pictures but if I throw a frosted lens over that BAB it is over. The LED's dont come close. Again the pictures dont do it justice but when I lit the wood beam up the LED's looked terrible and do not enhance the true color of the surface you are lighting, they change the color of the surface you are lighting.

To a degree James is correct that in the landscape it will be tuffer to notice the difference. But him using an example of his wife and homeowner dont know the difference doesnt mean much to me. I have been to projects where majority of the lights are under volted and over volted in areas and the homeowner couldnt tell the difference. Some had incandescent par lamps and thought they looked wonderfull. Lighting profesionals can tell. For example we had to come out with color corrective lenses for our Starburst and Stellar because the warmer color of the XELOGEN lamps were upsetting lighting designers eyes when they were placed next to an MR16 which had a slightly cooler color rendition.

Although LED is getting closer at $40-60 per LED lamp I do not see these as being a usefull option for some time to come. I too encourage everyone to try it out for yourselves, you know what they say about opinions! I shared mine.

steveparrott
06-12-2008, 09:40 AM
While you guys are testing units in the field, I suggest you consider evaluating three other factors in addition to the factors you've already mentioned (initial brightness, color rendition and beam characteristics).

1. Lumen maintenance (lamp life). LED lamp life has been estimated as the time to diminish to 70% initial lumens. This is a key factor since you will be hanging your hat on extended lamp life. As a reasonable test, I suggest conducting rough footcandle measurements to estimate lumen deprication for fixtures in the field. No time for me to go into the details but it would involve getting a good footcandle meter and a procedure for an accurate and replicable test. Initial measurement should be made after 500 hours of use, then after another 1000 hours. By graphing out these two measurements a line is drawn to extrapolate to the point in time when the 70% level is reached.

2. Color shift. LED's can significantly shift in chromaticity over time. Either a color temperature meter or spectrophotometercoule be used to evaluate shifts.

3. Fogging and discoloring of lens and phosphor coating. These are both significant issues that can reduce light output and shift temperature.

Keep in mind that since heat is the primary culprit in failure. Fixtures in various locations may vary in lamp life.

Also, don't be fooled by claims that 9 volts to 15 volts is an acceptable range for LED's. Depending on driver configuration and construction, excess voltage can be converted to heat. . .

JoeyD
06-12-2008, 09:45 AM
yeah, what Steve said!:laugh:

Pro-Scapes
06-13-2008, 01:01 AM
I got the Lamina SoL mr16 today. WOW what a great color output. To bad its not rated for enclosed fixtures. I am going to light it up again tmrw and leave it burning as long as I can in an enclosed area to see whats what and will report on temps and show some pics.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
06-13-2008, 01:51 AM
Billy, I stuck that lamp into a Lumier 203 Bullet (could not put the shroud on because the Lamina Lamp is not the same size as a MR16,) and burned it for 100 hours. When I took my heat test it was reading 176 Degrees Celcius on the board!

That lamp is pretty, but the heat it produces is just insane, and with the shape of the lamp it cannot be installed in very many fixtures.

Just lit up another LED installation using the Kumho Lamps.... looks f-ing awesome. My installer and the clients think so too.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
06-14-2008, 12:52 AM
Hey Joey... I just thought of something...

Did you happen to peel the clear plastic protective film from the lens of the Kumho LED MR16 lamp before you tested it?

It is an easy thing to miss or forget to do, and I would syspect that film might change the colour and intensity of the lamp a bit.

Have a good weekend.... I off boating!

David Gretzmier
06-14-2008, 05:42 PM
10.5 volts is no longer acceptable around here? when did that happen ? on other threads, 10.5 to 11.5 is quoted as the optimal range by more than a few folks...

I like 11-11.5 as much as anyone, but a reading of 10.5 typically won't sent me to a higher tap, unless the highest one on that run is 10.8 or less.

Mike M
06-14-2008, 09:14 PM
I think Joey means 10.5 on a left side column or pillar, and like 11.5 on the other. Not sure.

I like Steve's ideas of testing stuff out ourselves, for now. I have a dozen led fixtures I got from Sherman this past year, I'm going to chain a set, compare first lamp with last, and then compare output with my camera and eyeball it (manual override locked exposure), then compare a range of voltage taps.

If I can get off my arse, I'll start tonight.

Pro-Scapes
06-15-2008, 10:37 AM
I thought you had a job for thoes LED's mike.

JoeyD
06-16-2008, 11:31 AM
technically a Halogen lamps needs to receive a minimum of 10.8v to regenerate the tungsten gas. So 10.5 would be indervolting the lamp.

James, we did peel the plastic cover off. But Kumho should make a note on that plastic film otherwise you wouldn't even notice it.