One of the most impressive trends of interior lighting now is using Edison bulbs. These antique filament bulbs look great, but they usually don't produce a bright light, and moreover are using a lot of electric energy. Still, there is an elegant up-to-date solution of this issue - the combination of antique design and modern LED lighting. The filament in such bulbs is made of a light emitting diode, that is a small LED light in a shape of a filament inside the bulb. Thus a consumer gets a fantastic Edison-style replica bulbs that consume 10 times less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs and look as great as the original antique pieces.
Edison bulbs are manufactured to fit the standard sockets and can be easily used in any interior. They usually have a very warm color temperature 2200 Kelvin, while the common incandescent bulbs have 2700K. This warm amber color creates an inimitable vintage ambience in the room. Edison bulbs are usually not too bright, so they are mostly used as a decorative element. However you can hang several pendants with these bulbs thus providing the sufficient amount of light. Such design solution looks terrific and is often used by many interior designers either in common houses or in bars, restaurants, stores and hotels.
Another great feature of Edison bulbs is that they usually have higher CRI (color rendering index) than normal LED lights. CRI of Edison LED bulbs is up to 95, while the normal LED lights usually are about 80. Incandescent bulbs are 100, but this is their main (and, probably, the only) advantage. CRI shows how correct the colors are under the artificial light, to learn more about this characteristic, please read this article. As you can see, CRI of Edison bulbs is close to the ideal and is much higher than the common LEDs.
The real antique bulbs with filament consume a lot of electric energy, and their lifespan is very short. The regular antique filament bulb last maximum 2500 hours after which it will be thrown away as the filament cannot be replaced. It's about a year with typical use, but if you are planning to use such lights in a restaurant or bar, take into consideration that lights will be turned on for a longer period of time than at home, so you'll have to replace the bulbs even more often. This makes no sense when there are LED Edison bulbs on the market, which lifespan is about 15000 hours. Along with the 90% better energy saving ability, LED Edison bulb will be a significantly more economic option. However their lifespan is shorter than the regular LED bulbs that can usually last for about 50000 hours. This happens because the diode itself is made in shape of a filament, which makes it quite fragile and creates the risk of overheating.
The popularity of LED lights is growing every year while their price is progressively decreasing. LED bulbs are the most energy-efficient lighting solution for now, along with many other advantages over other lighting sources. You can save a significant amount of money on electricity bills during the life of a single LED bulb, even if it's a bit more expensive than the incandescent or CFL alternatives. And modern LED technologies combined with a vintage design can form a unique product, which will provide the same warm glow as the antique filament bulbs while being long lasting and energy-saving.
Pay attention to the brightness of an Edison LED bulb before purchase. Remember that brightness is measured in Lumens, not Watts. Wattage means how much energy the light bulb consumes, while Lumens show how much light it creates. As is widely known, LED lights need up to 90% less energy to create the same amount of light as incandescent bulbs, consequently their wattage will be significantly lower. So look for a lumens rating on the packaging of a particular bulb to understand how bright it will be. Usually even if there is no such label on the packaging, it can be found on a manufacturer's web site. Sometimes there is a note on a packaging like "5W = 40W" that means that this particular 5W LED bulb has the same brightness as the 40W incandescent bulb. Anyway, remember these simple numbers: 40W incandescent bulb creates 450 Lm of light, 60W creates 800 Lm and 100W creates 1600 Lm of light. Now you can simply compare the brightness in Lm marked on the packaging of a new LED bulb with these numbers to figure to yourself how much light it will create and how much pieces you'll need to properly illuminate the room.
One of the most amazing and useful features of Edison LED bulbs is that they can be manufactured in loads of different sizes and shapes. This lets us use them in almost any places and situations. Such bulbs can be installed in different light fixtures instead of regular incandescent bulbs, or can be used without any cover in appropriate surroundings. The filament LED bulbs can feature 2200K warm color temperature for amazingly beautiful antique look. In this case they are similar to the classic Edison or Marconi bulbs. These lights are often used in restaurants, bars and retail stores to create the warm inviting ambience. Edison LED bulbs can be also used in home interior design if you like this retro style.
If you are looking for the right bulb for your particular light fixture, but don't like the way common CFLs or LED bulbs look, think about LED filament bulbs. As you can see, they are made in a wide range of styles, sizes and shapes, they look like the old good incandescent bulbs, are energy-efficient and long lasting, and can feature different color temperatures from super warm amber light to cold white. If you prefer the antique-looking pieces, there are a few types of LED filament bulbs, such as Edison, globe, tubular, Victorian, chandelier bulbs and more. Now as you know the benefits and drawbacks (actually, there are none) of LED filament bulbs, you can easily choose the best one for a perfect light scheme in any interior.