Technology and knowledge
How to choose LED lighting for your needs
Making conscious choices is essential in any decision-making process. In this case, self-awareness and the ability to identify own needs turns out to be very helpful. Any decisions, however, should be based on knowledge about the matter. In this article we will present the most important information about LED lighting, which will certainly help during selection of the most appropriate lighting, especially considering the fact, that a wide range of LED sources, and same as wide range of consumer needs does not allow to develop one universal instruction for lighting selection process.
We are doing very well with the electric light, better than my vivid imagination initially anticipated. How it would end, God only knows!
One of the most important parameters characterizing the LED light source is a light color, expressed in Kelvins (K). There are three degrees of color temperatures:
- Warm white color 2800-3200K
- Neutral white color 4000-4500K
- Cold white color 5500-6500K
This distinction is important in adjusting the lighting to our needs, as each of these colors is used for various purposes. You may consider lighting for home, work, or industrial applications. Therefore appropriate distinction of colors brings us closer to the right choice and satisfaction of used the product.
Warm white is the most similar to traditional light bulbs, formerly used in every household. This color has a slightly warm yellow light, ideal for household use. This light has soothing effect on our mood, and allows to relax and fell comfort in our home after a day of work. This is a good solution for people accustomed to classic light bulbs, and who are often reluctant to exchange lighting for more efficient LEDs.
The neutral white is, in turn, scientifically proved to be the best option for use in the public utility offices, clinics and offices. The more blue light our retina receiving, the lower the production of melatonin is. This means that we do not feel sleepy, and we are better disposed to work.
Cold white is ideal to use as industrial lighting, lighting for warehouses, and for production halls. This color is characterized – in comparison to the two others – by the largest number of lumens (lm – unit describes the amount of light) per 1W (value of lm / W describes the efficiency of the light source) however it has slightly blue tint, and therefore is much less frequently used in domestic use.
Color temperature is not the only parameter specifying LED lighting, you should get to know the other parameters to make decisions fully reflect your needs. So which LED lighting should be chosen? If it is important for us to render color – e.g. we are looking for lighting for a clothing store, art studio, florist or have rich colors of in our home’s decor, it is necessary to pay attention to the ratio RA / CRI (Color Rendering Index). The value of this parameter is expressed on a scale of 0 to 100, wherein actually only a sunlight has a value of 100. It is easy to deduct, that the closer this value will be to 100, the more illuminated colors will be similar to those which are perceived by the human eye in natural light.
Apart from the three primary colors of light, there are also the colors most often used in the food industry – these are the colors by which certain food products well and reliably look. Below is a picture comparing the lighting of meat – on the left side lighting ordinary light source, with the right – a special fluorescent LED light-emitting slightly pink, dedicated to meat. There are also light sources ideal for fish, bread and fruit.
It is interesting to emphasize a single parameter, which in case of traditional light bulbs was crucial for many consumers making the decision on the selection of light sources – power expressed in watts (W). Of course, in the case of selection of LED lighting is not an irrelevant factor, however, times when the number of watts on the packaging was the decisive are long gone. This story has turned around a little bit, because once the more watts the better, and now it is completely differently. The LEDs are unrivaled in the savings category. While using significantly less power, LEDs are able to generate the same light output as classic incandescent bulbs. For example, LED lamp with a power of 12W can replace 100W light bulb. Here you should pay attention to the parameter of the light output in lumens (lm) and luminous efficiency (lm / W) i.e. luminous flux divided by the power. These two parameters provide reliable information about the power of light. It’s simple, the higher these two factors are, the greater the amount of light we get from that source. We cannot ignore these factors in our decision-making process.
Technical parameters are not everything, now a wide range of LED lighting allows you to find a replacement for almost any previously used lighting system. In order to meet our needs connected with good and efficient lighting, we can choose from a wide range of products, including conventional “bulbs” based on the most commonly used E27 socket, E14 (smaller socket) and GU10 (halogen lamps replacement). We can choose from a wide range of industrial lighting, which allows to make substantial savings. Industrial lighting usually is based on sources with E40 socket, or whole lamps designed to be installed on a lighting pole. If you need effective lighting to your shop or gallery, it is hard to find a better solution than the light rail system. It will allow you to ideally highlight elements of our exposure. And still there are many more alternatives, dynamic situation on the LED market makes the offer richer and richer.
One of the most well-known novelty introduced by the LED technology were LED strips. To this day, many customers consider using LED strips as an actual essence of using LED technology in lighting. A wide range of products concerning: type of LEDs, the number of LEDs per 1 meter, type of LEDs (RGB, or single color), voltage (there are tapes with 12V or 230V) makes the number of possibilities huge. Very popular color tapes (RGB) transform our home interiors with a whole palette of intense colors. The use of dedicated controllers allows to gain colors depending on our mood and imagination.
Certainly, according to the old proverb, appetite comes with eating, as well as our needs, however offer of led products certainly does not lags behind.