The inherently directional nature of LED light bulbs has long been regarded as the major handicap of energy saving LED technology. Though all LED manufacturers have tried to address this concern, TCP claims to have finally solved the problem with its "BR" line of LED reflector light bulbs. The line, with includes BR40, BR30, and R20 LED bulbs is now available at 1000Bulbs.com, the Internet's largest lighting retailer.
Until recently, the LED reflector light bulb market was populated chiefly by Halogen PAR clones. PAR lamps, which are used as a directional light source anyway, were an obvious format for LED. The PAR format allowed LEDs to show off their energy saving potential while avoiding addressing the uni-directional problem of the technology. As a result, LED bulbs such as the MSi iPAR38 have saturated the commercial sector, but the format was never a hit with homeowners who preferred the more bulbous shape of traditional incandescent BR- and R-type bulbs.
TCP's BR line of LED reflector lamps addresses this problem head-on. The technology is simple: The mechanics of the bulb are the same as an LED PAR lamp, but the face is covered with a round, frosted lens that refracts the light coming from the LEDs. The result is a wider, softer beam spread with "feathered" edges that emulates the effect of an incandescent bulb. The frosted lens is also indistinguishable from incandescent lamps when used in a recessed can light, making the retrofit merge seamlessly with the interior design scheme of even the most discriminating homeowner.
The BR LED line is comparable to incandescent technology in other ways as well. The line has a CRI (Color Rendering Index) of 85, higher than the usual 80-82 of most LED bulbs; only dedicated LED retrofit modules have a higher CRI. Realizing that incandescent bulbs are often used on dimmers, TCP manufactured the bulbs' LED drivers to be dimmable down to 0.5%. Tests at 1000Bulbs.com show the bulbs to be dimmable on both analog and electronic dimmers, including Lutron's Maestro line, a feature virtually unheard of among LED bulbs. Because dimmed incandescent bulbs also have a lower color temperature than full-power bulbs, TCP also offers a 2400K option, which is a much warmer color than the industry standard of 2700K.
"These are the best LED reflector bulbs we carry," says Kim Pedersen, founder and CEO of 1000Bulbs.com. Pedersen uses the TCP LED BR line in the recessed can lights in his home. Ecstatic about the new technology, Pederson says the TCP bulbs "look just like a high-quality incandescent."
The TCP Pro LED BR Series is available and ready to ship at 1000Bulbs.com. The selection includes both the 2400K and 2700K versions of the BR40, BR30, and R20 lamps. The BR40 and BR30 are available in 11 watt and 14 watt versions, which replace 65 watt and 85 watt incandescent bulbs, respectively. The R20 is available in a 9 watt version that replaces a 50 watt LED incandescent. All the bulbs are rated for 25,000 hours and carry a 5-year manufacturer warranty. The mercury-free bulbs save approximately 80% of the energy used by similar Halogen bulbs.
About 1000Bulbs.com: 1000Bulbs.com is an award-winning Internet-based lighting retailer. The company offers everything from simple, household light bulbs to cutting-edge specialty lighting systems. Nationally recognized for growth, innovation, and customer satisfaction, 1000Bulbs.com is an influential force in the lighting industry.
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