Mid Power LEDs it test: Nichia 757G is the leader

As a manufacturer, we want to use the most powerful LEDs in our LED strips and modules. We focus especially on mid-power LEDs that typically consume less than 0.3 watts of power, are fairly small, and require minimal or no cooling. A large part of our products use these LEDs.

Before selecting the most powerful LED for our products, we compared more than a dozen models from leading LED manufacturers: Nichia, Osram Opto Semiconductors, Samsung, Philips Lumileds, LG Innotek, Seoul Semiconductor, Cree, Everlight.

For a meaningful comparison, we have selected LEDs that operate at 65 mA with a voltage between 2.75 and 3.2 V, divided into three groups:

Cold white (5000-6500K), CRI 80+, for linear fluorescent lamp replacement (LED tubes) or luminaires for office or industry.
Warm white (2700K-3900K), CRI 80+, is normally used in LED lamps, linear luminaires, cove lamps, desk lamps, normally for residential and catering applications.
Warm white (2700K-3900K), CRI 90+, with applications in luxury lighting, professional linear luminaires, cove luminaires for the commercial and gastronomic sector.
For each category, we compare luminous flux and luminous efficacy at the usual "laboratory temperature" barrier of 25ºC and more realistic 100ºC. The comparative data are those from the manufacturer's data sheet.

We have also added the performance data of average 5050 and 3528 LED packages, as such LEDs are still used today by many lighting manufacturers, including linear LED modules, fluorescent tubes, lamps, panels or even luxury lights.

Cold White (5000-6500K), CRI 80+, for LED strips and modules for the office or industry.

Nichia 757G LEDs have the highest power and efficiency at 25ºC and 100ºC, with 37.5 lumens and 210 lumens / watt and 33.75 lm and 189 lumens / watt. They also have the smallest performance difference between the operating temperatures "laboratory" and "reality" with only 10%.

Lumileds have the second highest performance and efficacy at 25ºC and 100ºC, with 34.5 lumens and 187 lumens / watt and 29.5 lm and 163 lumens / watt respectively. Nearby follows Seoul Semiconductor with 32.9 lumens and 181 lumens / watt and 28.62 lm and 157 lumens / watt.

Samsung and LG LEDs have the same good performance at 25ºC, but cannot be included in the peak, as the data for the ratio between temperature and luminous flux are not available above 85ºC. If this temperature is a mechanical limit, it can be problematic to use the LEDs at the specified current of 65 mA.

Some distance behind Osram are Everlight and Cree.

Most noticeable is the difference between all the latest generation LEDs and the 5050 and 3528. The difference in performance is so great that we can wonder why anyone would still use these LEDs for lighting applications. A luminaire with these LEDs will have such a low output that integration into a project makes little or no sense. It may have been okay a decade ago, but today it seems to be just a waste of resources.

Warm White (2700K-3900K), CRI 80+, for LED lamps and modules for residential, commercial and hospitality applications.

Besides the expected lower luminous flux for all warm white LEDs compared to cold white the situation is the same as 6500K. The Nichia 757G LED has the highest performance, followed by Lumileds and Seoul Semiconductor, with Osram, Everlight and Cree at some distance behind. LG and Samsung could not be included at the 100ºC comparison. 5050 and 3528 LEDs are as inferior at 2700K as they are at 6500K.

Warm White (2700K-3900K), CRI 90+, for LED modules and strips recommended for luxury lighting, professional linear lighting fixtures, cove lights.

To obtain high light quality is technologically challenging and it also impacts LEDs performance. Not all the manufacturers seem to be able to offer CRI 90+ versions of the middle power LEDs we compared. The performance picture is also different from CRI 80+. The performance difference between Nichia and Lumileds is slightly bigger, 19% at 100ºC, and almost 35% from the third in line, Osram.

As you can see Nichia 757G is the performance leader across the board and that is the reason we use these LEDs in our Lumiflex Strips, Multibar modules and more. 

LumiFlex Flexible LED Strips

Multibar Plug & Play Modules


MaxLine LED modules