Let's face it...CFLs, to an ecogeek, are old news. My entire house was converted more than three years ago. I don't even think about them anymore. Frankly, I can't believe incandescents are still on sale!
There just hasn't been very much excitement in the consumer space in lighting. Some fantastic research, sure, but nothing I can buy. Well, one of the few companies who make LED light bulbs has changed that. It may be silly of me to get excited about a light bulb, but I can't help it.
EarthLED already has a few amazing products. The CL line is my personal favorite, I have two of them in my house already. But while they work for my house, with its low ceilings and cave-dwelling inhabitants, folks were previously disappointed by the lack of any 100 W equivalents at EarthLED.
Well, that's changed. The new Evolux line at EarthLED puts off just as much light as a 100 W incandescent but consumes only 13 W. A 13 W CFL, on the other hand, puts out about as much light as an 80 W incandescent would.
And yet, that's not its sole claim to superiority. The new line also promises to be cheaper than CFLs over the life of the bulb, not so much because of energy savings (though that helps) but because of the bulb's lifetime. CREE's LEDs are rated at over 50,000 hours, which is more than a decade of use...and 5X longer than CFLs.
Of course, no one's actually tested these bulbs for all 50,000 of those hours. And as the bulb actually has a moving part (a small, silent fan to keep the circuit board cool) the life of the fan might be more important than the life of the LEDs.
Besides being more efficient and longer lasting than CFLs, the bulbs also contain no mercury, are significantly more durable and won't shatter if dropped, and never get too hot to touch. They're about to release another version of the bulb that will turn any lamp into a dimmable lamp. Simply by turning the lamp on and off quickly, you can select 150 lumen, 750 lumen, or 950 lumen settings.
Of course, there has to be bad news, doesn't there. Though the total cost of ownership will be lower, because you'll only have to buy one every 15 years or so, the initial investment of $80 might come as a shock. But, really, is it that much of a price to pay to be the only person on your block with "The World's Most Advanced Light Bulb"?
From my perspective, I see it as both being a cool thing to have in the house and a way to encourage companies like EarthLED and CREE to continue working their fingers to the bone creating these amazing new products.
written by Cristina F., April 11, 2008
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