Earlier today I purchased two Cree “daylight” LED bulbs from the local Home Depot for $14 each. I just finished installing them into my clamp-on light fixtures and couldn’t be happier!
A while back I used daylight CFLs, and while they were pricey, they put out beautiful light.
There were a few things I didn’t like about CFLs, such as the slow warm-up time and breakage hazard, so I eventually swapped them out for Philips LEDs, which cost me $13 each.
These LED bulbs cast faint but noticeable shadows. I didn’t like them. Philips has since come out with improved bulb designs.
But the biggest name in LED bulbs these days is Cree, which earned a solid reputation from their flashlight-suitable LED emitters.
I purchased a Cree soft white LED a while back, and it gave off much better light than the Philips bulb it replaced. I use the LED bulbs in clamp-on light fixtures that have 10″ reflectors, and find that with the Cree bulbs there is somewhat of “hot” center spot, although it’s not prominent enough for me to mind. But what I did mind was how yellow the soft/warm light was. The “soft white” color temperature is 2700K, which matches that of older-style incandescent bulbs.
Finally fed up with my Cree soft white bulbs, I went to the local Home Depot to pick up daylight-colored bulbs. These bulbs are closer to white daylight, which I tend to prefer over yellowish soft/warm white hues.
I believe the daylight bulbs only came out a few months ago, as I first noticed them in the Fall of 2013.
This morning I had one small clamp-on lamp with a Philips bulb, and one with a Cree warm white bulb. Now I have two with Cree daylight bulbs and it’s soooo much better. Well, I’m not exactly ecstatic, but I am happier.
My major complaint is the price. The soft white bulbs just dropped in price to $8 for the 60W equivalent and $6 for the 40W equivalent bulbs, yet the daylight bulbs are still $14 each. Oh well, at least they’ll last me a long time.
The daylight bulbs are 60W equivalent, and like the soft white bulbs they have a rubberized translucent layer outside the glass bulb for improved safety.
Power consumption is said to be 9W, color temperature is 5000K (not quite daylight, but close enough), output is rated at 800 lumens, and they’re dimmable.
There’s no lead or mercury in these bulbs, and they’re also UL-listed.
Lastly, they’re assembled in the USA.
These are the best LED light bulbs I have ever used.
Buy Now(via Home Depot)
More Info(via Cree)
Note: If you’re unsure as to which type of “white” you prefer, a lot of home improvement stores, Home Depot included, have a setup where you can visualize different major bulb color styles side by side. If you plan on swapping out a lot of bulbs, maybe just buy a few individual bulbs to try out before committing to one particular style.
Update: In a comment someone asked whether these bulbs flicker. I cannot see flickering with my naked eyes, but flickering is evident when looking at the light using a digital camera.