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Lite4
08-23-2012, 09:22 AM
With all the recent activity on this forum and talk of industry contribution I got to thinking in the wee hours of the morning what is something that would help me and possibly others in the industry.
I am a photo buff and moving towards cinematography too. On vimeo, for the past several years they have had segments called the great camera shootout, in which they compare different models of cameras to see how they perform in exactly the same conditions to level the playing field and see how they perform head to head.

I got to thinking that this might be a great way to illustrate the capabilities of the various LEDs from varying manufactures out there on the market. These would be compared to the same halogen lamp as a benchmark, which is what they are mostly trying to emulate anyway. We could see each one go head to head against the halogen on a fixed display and compare the various outcomes on different surfaces ie.. trees, smooth light colored walls, brick, down lighting etc... I would also envision trying to get in some interviews with various contractors and industry professionals about feedback. I am just brainstorming here, but seeing head to head results on a neutral playing field would be something very helpful to me and I'm sure to others also as we navigate through this brave new world of LED's.

Looking for feedback and possibly ideas to go along with this.

RLI Electric
08-23-2012, 08:07 PM
Tim, we do something like that at the AOLP conference. Funny thing is that all halogens are different too. No one ever held halogen to the parameters they hold LED to and when they did they realized, wow all halogens are not created equal. Sounds cool though on the different surfaces.

LLC RI
08-23-2012, 09:43 PM
Tim... you bring up a good point... the LED lamp movement for landscape lighting has been moving so fast, it seems like no one has done the photometrics like we'd always see in every lighting catalog for MR 16s etc.

I was thinking the same thing as I use LED's from 3 manufacturers and would like to have a base of comparison with which to aid in my designing. I was actually thinking of doing my own 'testing' so to speak by setting up each lamp, and taking some light measurements and beam spreads etc.

This way, I'd have the info I need to know who's LED I want to use for a specific application.

George

niteliters
08-24-2012, 12:24 AM
Not a bad idea Tim. Like Bob, I have participated in that session at the AOLP conference in past years. as Bob said we did alot of halogen...amazing how many of those are different manu to manu, the l.e.d. sessions were great as well, especially since a particular lamp from one manu last year was different (usually better) this year. It was educational having all the different designer/contractors/manu's right there to discuss. I think one of the challenges might be that everyones monitors are not the same, what's darker on my screen might be brighter on yours. could make it a little difficult. but probably the next best thing to doing it in person

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
08-24-2012, 08:05 AM
Hi Tim. As the others have stated there is a similar program to the one you are describing at the AOLP convention, known as the LAMP program. I have participated for the past few years. It is really amazing to see the vast differences in beams, intensity, and colour across a spectrum of supposedly 'standard' / similar incandescent lamps, let alone comparing all of the LED offerings.

I can understand why you want to stage such an event, but it will not be an easy undertaking. I would encourage you to join the AOLP and then talk to the conference committee about getting involved in the LAMP program. I know that they would surely accept your help! Expanding on what is in place now is probably the most efficient use of time and resources. They the program could be taped and edited and posted on the website or youtube. (as Chris mentioned, screen / monitor calibration will have a huge impact on what you see in terms of intensity, colour, and contrast. The best is to witness these comparisons live.)

In regards to LED vs Halogen comparisons. One thing I have seen lately is that many of us are moving away from such comparisons. (which is a good thing!) Comparisons are all the rage amongst the un-initiated; until they start to realize that using LED is like using a whole different palette of paint. Talk to those who have made the switch to 100% LED and ask when the last time is they considered halogen equivalents while designing. Once you have 'experimented' and understand the capabilities, output, and applications you will simply soldier forward and leave all of the comparison considerations behind.

Regards

Lite4
08-24-2012, 08:51 AM
Hi Tim. As the others have stated there is a similar program to the one you are describing at the AOLP convention, known as the LAMP program. I have participated for the past few years. It is really amazing to see the vast differences in beams, intensity, and colour across a spectrum of supposedly 'standard' / similar incandescent lamps, let alone comparing all of the LED offerings.

I can understand why you want to stage such an event, but it will not be an easy undertaking. I would encourage you to join the AOLP and then talk to the conference committee about getting involved in the LAMP program. I know that they would surely accept your help! Expanding on what is in place now is probably the most efficient use of time and resources. They the program could be taped and edited and posted on the website or youtube. (as Chris mentioned, screen / monitor calibration will have a huge impact on what you see in terms of intensity, colour, and contrast. The best is to witness these comparisons live.)

In regards to LED vs Halogen comparisons. One thing I have seen lately is that many of us are moving away from such comparisons. (which is a good thing!) Comparisons are all the rage amongst the un-initiated; until they start to realize that using LED is like using a whole different palette of paint. Talk to those who have made the switch to 100% LED and ask when the last time is they considered halogen equivalents while designing. Once you have 'experimented' and understand the capabilities, output, and applications you will simply soldier forward and leave all of the comparison considerations behind.

Regards

Thanks James, I have heard of the LAMP program but was not entirely sure what it was (guess that's why I am joining the AOLP) so I can stay in the loop. Your probably right on the comparison to Halogen. It just seems I keep hearing that from manufacturers and vendors alike.

I was just thinking it would be a good idea to put out a really first class production that really illustrates the differences in color, beam spread and lumen output with all of the leading brands going head to head in differing classes (integrated and retrofit classifications.) This would give the non-member a source of information they could use to see what is best for them. These would be visible tests certainly against varying back drops, but I could also see using digital light meters to record output and color temp between all of them. A random sample of 5 from each manufacturer would also be good to match consistency and the batch/ bin process. Just thinking out some ideas out loud. I am not thinking some lame video here, I am thinking something that could be linked from youtube or Vimeo right to the AOLP website to help bring their search rankings up on the google crawl also.

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
08-24-2012, 09:22 AM
I am with you Tim, it would be a good program. Get er done and I will support you where I can.
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Lite4
08-28-2012, 07:53 AM
What are the top 5 integrated And drop in LEDs you would like to see go head to head?
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LLC RI
08-28-2012, 07:51 PM
Drop Ins Illumicare, Brilliance, Dauer

Integrated : CAST, Aurora, Kichler ( I wanted to include Hadco in there but many of their Integrated LED's are housed in their composite fixtures and that's a tough sell).


Color, lumens per watt, cost/lumen, warranty, changeability- if integrated module fails, is it field replaceable?

my 2 cents

George

Illumicare
08-29-2012, 02:15 AM
Tim... you bring up a good point... the LED lamp movement for landscape lighting has been moving so fast, it seems like no one has done the photometrics like we'd always see in every lighting catalog for MR 16s etc.

I was thinking the same thing as I use LED's from 3 manufacturers and would like to have a base of comparison with which to aid in my designing. I was actually thinking of doing my own 'testing' so to speak by setting up each lamp, and taking some light measurements and beam spreads etc.

This way, I'd have the info I need to know who's LED I want to use for a specific application.

George

Hi George,
Just as an FYI, Illumicare Group publishes the standard "V" type photometric charts on all of our spec sheets. We find these are a much more useful comparison than lumens, which although are an important matric, are somewhat irrelevant to our daily use of lamps.
Agree with James and Bob, the AOLP COLD lamps session was most illuminating. Sorry, couldn't resist!
John Higo

Lite4
08-29-2012, 08:42 AM
Drop Ins Illumicare, Brilliance, Dauer

Integrated : CAST, Aurora, Kichler ( I wanted to include Hadco in there but many of their Integrated LED's are housed in their composite fixtures and that's a tough sell).


Color, lumens per watt, cost/lumen, warranty, changeability- if integrated module fails, is it field replaceable?

my 2 cents

George

Ok, thanks for the input on selections.

I am so far leaning toward the integrated fixtures from CAST, FX, Vista, Kichler, Volt, and possibly a couple others. Aurora might be an interesting choice also to include.

Integrated lamps: Illumicare, brilliance, Hadco, Uniques lamp, (Im not real familiar with Dauer but will look into them also).

Keep the input coming

starry night
08-29-2012, 09:48 AM
I have been wondering about Unique's drop-in LED. The print ads are very slick.
But I haven't heard any feedback on actual use

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
08-29-2012, 06:09 PM
Comparisons between LED lamps are surely going to be easier to compile and categorize than comparisons between LED fixtures. But even withing the LED lamp sector you have companies that offer a full range of fitments and outputs and others that offer a limited range of products. Also, it is so important to understand the features and qualities of LED lamps that are not immediately visible in the light output alone. So many LED lamps on the market today have not been designed for use in outdoor low voltage lighting systems.

With fixtures it is more challenging. First of all you will have many categories of LED fixtures to compare. Bullets, Downlights, Path Lights, Step / Niche lights, etc... and even within those categories you will have trouble accurately comparing products from different manufacturers. Then there is the question of what exactly is an integrated LED fixture? Many "LED Fixtures" on the market (some have already been mentioned here) are not truly integrated at all, but reply on an LED Module (a lamp by any other name...) that is not manufactured by the fixture company. Should these be considered as integrated fixtures? I dont think so.

LED Lamp comparisons - Slate: Illumicare, Halco, Brilliance,

LED Fixture (Bullet Style) comparisons - Kichler, Vista, F/X, HK, BK, Auroralight

indylights
08-29-2012, 08:35 PM
James,

Just curious. Are the LED elements in the integrated fixtures you list above made by the fixture manufacturer? For that matter, how many of the LED lamps are actually made by the "manufacturer", or are they just importers? Would love to hear your thoughts.

Scott Maloney
Sunflower Landscapes

INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting
08-30-2012, 10:11 AM
James,

Just curious. Are the LED elements in the integrated fixtures you list above made by the fixture manufacturer? For that matter, how many of the LED lamps are actually made by the "manufacturer", or are they just importers? Would love to hear your thoughts.

Scott Maloney
Sunflower Landscapes

No, the LEDs used in integrated fixtures are not made by the fixture manufacturers. I would suspect that very few of the LED lamps on the market today are made by the "manufacturer". Which leads us to the need for some clarifications.

What is a manufacturer? If company "A" attends a big Asian trade show, finds some suitable LED lamps, signs a purchase agreement with some unknown vendor at that trade show, and then imports those lamps into their warehouse (branded or not) are they considered a manufacturer, a distributor, importer, or ???.

How about this scenario: Company "I" researches, develops, adapts, engineers, and sources unique components to build a line of LED lamps. They then contract out the manufacture and assembly of those lamps to a single facility. They have full time, salaried employees on the ground to conduct QC and administrative functions at the manufacturing facility. The product is then shipped to N. America for distribution. Are they considered a manufacturer?

My point in the post above yours Scott was to highlight the differences between LED integrated fixtures and those that claim to be but are just using a pre-fab LED module from a 3rd party. If it plugs in like a lamp, replaces like a lamp, works like a lamp, then it should be considered a lamp, not a fixture.

indylights
08-30-2012, 10:44 AM
James,

To answer the question in your third paragraph, if the company isn't actually physically making anything themselves and is just QC-ing the assembly, I would struggle to call them a manufacturer. I would list them more as a consultant, but you could nit pick that all day, and I don't care about doing that. And no, I really don't care if they are or not, it's just that sometimes your bias comes through so pure about other products it's kind of funny. Tim, not to hijack this thread and I'm sorry for that, but I would include all the manufacturers James states and include Cast in whatever category you want to.

Scott Maloney
Sunflower Landscapes

Lite4
08-31-2012, 08:07 AM
James and Scott, thanks for the dialogue. Those are good points, but for the testing I would classify them by whatever brand they are packaged in regardless of the semantics of being a "manufacturer" or "importer". If is bears their company name it belongs to them, so to speak. I am sure many companies use a lot of the same tech across the board.