LED is fast becoming the standard light source in the home. Knowing which one to buy can be very overwhelming in this competitive market. So what key information should you look out for?


Colour Temperature – How warm is your light

The colour temperature, measured in Kelvins, determines how cool or warm the white light is. LEDs can range from 1800K (orange/red light like glowing embers) to 6500K (cold blue/white light like daylight). Generally, for a home, a 2700K light source is best, giving the warm light like old incandescent lamps. If going with cool colour schemes, such as blues and greys, 3000K can bring the colour out better, though this should be tested.

Lumen Output – How bright is your light

We have been so used to the old incandescent lamps, and using the wattage, which is a measure of power used, as a guide of brightness, that it has now become very confusing. The luminous flux, measured in lumens, is the information that you should be looking for. This will tell you how bright a lamp is, and allow you to compare between different brands. As a reference, a 60W incandescent lamp had an output of around 600 lumens (lm).

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General Tips

  • Don’t assume an LED is dimmable, check with the supplier to make sure it works properly

  • If lighting artwork, try to find LEDs with a colour rendering index (CRI) of 90+

  • Cheap LEDs will have poor colour matching, meaning they will be different shades of white. Look for manufacturers who offer good colour matching.


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