Wednesday, June 30, 2010

LED Light Strips: A Lighting Solution that Sticks


Under railings and shelves, on top of cabinets, above doorways, and under the edge of your swimming pool: the home and business contain many surfaces inaccessible to conventional lighting, denying key spaces proper light and decorative flair. That is, until now. Optima Lighting’s LED lighting strips provide a solution, allowing you to place lights in much-need but hard to reach places for both indoor and outdoor environments. The .472 in height of the strip and its 3M adhesive backing give this LED lighting strip a low profile and make it easily concealable underneath a railing or window sill.

Optima’s LED strip is packed with features. The strip’s RGB color mixing will provide your space with dynamic and attractive lighting. The strip has numerous color modes including seven color flashing, full color fading, looping, and seven primary color holding. This strip’s 30, 60, or 120 LEDs and high lumen count guarantee unmatched brightness, and at only 5.9w per 3.28ft strip, or 1 meter. Optima sells two versions of the strip, one geared for the outdoors which is completely waterproofed with a silicon coating, and the other intended for indoor use.

Optima's strip package promises all of the lighting benefits of the LED strip in addition to an added element of control with a controller and radio frequency remote that works at up to 164 ft, or 50 meters, from the controller. Both the controller and remote can fully control the light modes, the intensity of the light, the speed of the light pattern, and pause the pattern. The Optima package also comes with the option of a wall mounted control panel in place of a remote control. The package also comes with a power supply for your LED strip. The ease of use of the controller and remote control and the LED strip’s numerous features mean that you will be able to fully control your LED strip and maximize your space’s lighting
potential.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Compact Flourescents, LEDs, and the Search for Greener Lighting



Recently great progress has been made in the development of environmentally friendly and efficient light bulbs to replace the traditional incandescent bulb. The compact fluorescent bulb (CFL) and the LED represent two of the most the common green bulbs being used in the home, office, automobile, and airplane, and other areas. Though CFL bulbs are very durable, lasting 8 to 15 times longer than the typical incandescent bulb, they contain mercury and pose a risk to the environment upon their disposal. The LED bulb is therefore a more environmentally friendly alternative to the CFL.

LED bulbs are particularly environmentally friendly because they do not contain any toxic chemicals. The most notable feature of the LED is its long-lasting light. The LED bulb can shine for more than 100,000 hours before its light dims. The outstanding lifespan of the LED is clear in comparison to the 6,000 to 15,000 hour lifespan of the compact fluorescent bulb. In addition to its shine, the LED bulb’s lack of a filament and strong construction guarantee a long life. Furthermore, LEDs produce lots of light using a very little wattage, making them energy efficient while cutting your energy bill. Whereas a 60-100 Watt incandescent bulb produces roughly 15 lumens per Watt, a 5 Watt LED can produce up to 18-22 lumens per Watt. The LED bulb’s capacity to produce large amounts of light by using minimal amounts of electricity is extremely promising.

LED bulbs can be found in nearly all lighting areas. LED par cans such as those by American DJ, Chauvet, and Optima can be found colorfully lighting up theatres and concert venues. The controllability and wide color spectrum possible with LEDs makes them a great choice for DJs and clubs. LED lighting is also common light sources in kitchens, candelabras, and flood lights. LEDs are currently found in most lighting applications and will likely expand into others soon. The only immediate difficulty with LED bulbs is their price. LED candelabra bulbs, for example, range from $18.06 compared to $5.89-$13.22 for CFL candelabra bulbs. Though LED lighting is still early in its development it promises to be a cost effective, environmentally friendly, and efficient lighting option.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Stage in a Whole New Light: LED Par Cans

In a recent interview in Lighting and Sound America, Broadway theatrical lighting expert, Gary Fails remarked that, “LEDs are the future of lighting, they will change our industry.” Indeed, from the home to the airplane LEDs are replacing more traditional light sources. This lighting revolution is no more apparent than in Mr. Fails’ own area of expertise, theatrical lighting. Since there have been electrically illuminated stage performances, parabolic aluminized reflectors (Par cans) have provided the light. Typically par cans have used incandescent or halogen bulbs to light up the stage. Like much of the lighting industry, however, this is quickly changing as consumers demand more environmentally friendly and efficient lighting options.

The energy savings of LED par cans are remarkable. Typical par can bulbs are usually incandescent, halogen or high intensity discharge (HID). These bulbs usually require energy draws of between 500w and 1,000w. LED par cans, such as the Optima Par 64 LED, draw only 12w. As with all LED bulbs, LED par cans match their low wattage with high lumen output. In addition to saving you money and energy consumption, LED par cans generate considerably less heat than traditional par can bulbs do, creating a more comfortable stage for performers. The savings LED par cans provide do not end there, however. With LED par cans, you do not need to bother with gel sheets or gel frames as they are integrated into the LED par can.

The range of color that LED par cans can produce is striking. The Optima Par 64 LED, for example, has a total of 183 LEDs bulbs, of which 61 are red, 61 are green, and 61 are blue. By using DMX controllers and downloadable software, one can quickly customize the color of the light, allowing you color flexibility not previously possible with traditional bulbs. Some par cans also come with built in light effects, something not possible with traditional par cans. The Optima Par 64 Pro features built in variable strobes and multiple color programs, giving your lighting an energy and capacity for creativity to match your performances.

Though LED par cans share the benefits of LED technology at large, they also share its temporary downside, namely the higher cost of LED technology. The cost of LED par cans however is temporary and will likely decrease as the technology matures. Furthermore, LEDs par cans save you money not only in energy expenditures, but also in that you no longer have to purchase gel frames or gels. The performance advantages of LED par cans make them a worthwhile investment and serious consideration for any theatre or concert venue owner.

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Welcome to BulbAmerica’s official blog. Make this blog your number one online source for news and articles on the latest developments in light bulb technology, Stage & Studio Lighting Fixtures, Outdoor Lighting, DMX Controllers, DMX Dimmer Packs, Cables, Lighting Effects, and more. In addition to news on new products, the BulbAmerica blog will feature articles on innovative lighting applications in the stage & studio, churches, production houses, event planning, DJs, Night Clubs, home & garden, airplanes, automobiles and more. Be sure to check the blog regularly for new and featured items and Coupon Codes to save you money on your lighting needs.