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New LED Lights from L&M


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#101 Steve Douglas

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Posted 23 May 2008 - 07:38 AM

I just received the new 2000's yesterday, L & M kept my old pods and fit the lights to them. Haven't tried them out as yet. I do look forward to testing them but will have to get those filters. I do appreciate the info that has been passed on in this thread as it gives me a heads up as to what I can expect.
Now I just wish that L & M would start making housings for the higher end of the camcorder lines. My own experiences with L & M have been positive whenever I talk to them either for product review clarification or should I have an equipment problem. I have spoken to Dan Emerson a few times via phone and he has always been very generous with his time. Trish in the service department was also very receptive and helpful.
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Edited by steve, 23 May 2008 - 09:40 AM.

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#102 Frazier Nivens

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Posted 29 May 2008 - 01:12 PM

The new Sunray 2000 lights are the best lights I've had yet. Very happy with them.

Instant on, very bright and built to last and work.

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#103 Frazier Nivens

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 12:41 PM

After shooting with my Sunray 2000's I have nothing but good things to say about them. Instant on and they're really bright.

Best lights that I've owned to date.

Frazier Nivens, Ocean Imaging
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More to follow!

Feel free to email me if you want to know more about these lights.
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#104 HDVdiver

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Posted 16 June 2008 - 05:12 PM

Has anyone used these Sunray 2000 lights as continuous lights...eg for the full duration of night dives, rather than as on/of video lights (say for 5 minutes at a time)?

The reason I'm curious is that there is a direct relationship (according to Cree's technical documents) between thermal stress on the LEDs and performance/reliability (mainly Lumen output decline, color shift and even total failure) ...even if they are being driven at the lowest current (350ma) as the L&M appear to be (18 emitters @ 350ma / 100 Lm per LED = 1900 Lumens).

I've been doing a lot of XLamp XR-E reliability evaluation over the last year under controlled and field conditions, at different driver currents / thermal sink combinations, etc. My conclusion so far is that if driven at a higher (within spec) current the light output for video is absolutely lovely...BUT the 50,000 hour life is a myth...for our applications. The leds are primarily meant to be used in an extremely well ventilated environment with very good heat sinks.

The problem is that thermal stress increases with burntime, particularly in an enclosed aluminium container with good heat sinking...even underwater. I've had Cree's start failing after about 30 burn cycles (1 hour duration each, controlled conditions). Also, the heat stress on the current controller ICs is extreme in an enclosed head assembly...even underwater.

High power LEDs are definitely the way of the future as a superb light source for underwater videography...but the technology is constantly improving in terms of performance and reliability. Its where HID was about 8 years ago. On the other hand, good HID video lights (from most good manufacturers) are wonderfully reliable and time proven technology.

Watt for watt, Lumen equivalent video lights in LED are NOT that much more battery efficient than latest generation HID. Crees driven at a decent (but within spec) current waste more energy on heat than does a well designed HID 50 watt. After one hour use I can touch the reflector assembly of my HID50 (4000 Lumens) ... a 3x Triple Crees in an MR11 base (total 2500 Lumens) with aluminium heatsink substrate @ 1000 ma for one hour is unbelievably HOT...heat means wasted energy. The long battery burn times people throw around are for underpowered low Lumen output LEDs...another myth.

The good news about LEDs for underwater videography is that things are moving fast. Cree have just announced production of a LED (XLamp MC-E LED) that will output 4x the Lumens @ the same current as the ones currently used in the Sunray's. Thus, six of these will put out 2500 Lumens @ 350 ma...an improvement of 400% over current LED technology!

Cheers

#105 videodan

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 08:26 AM

Cree have just announced production of a LED (XLamp MC-E LED) that will output 4x the Lumens @ the same current as the ones currently used in the Sunray's. Thus, six of these will put out 2500 Lumens @ 350 ma...an improvement of 400% over current LED technology!

Not true. If you read the XLamp MC-E LED PDF sheet, it says "4X the flux of XLamp XR-E LEDs, same footprint" but the maximum efficiency is 101 lm/W, vs. 107 lm/W for the single die XLamp XR-E LED. With the unreleased XLamp MC-E LED you will get 4X the light from the same sized LED, but it will require more than 4X the current, which is lower efficiency. You will certainely not get "Thus, six of these will put out 2500 Lumens @ 350 ma...an improvement of 400% over current LED technology!"

Dan
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#106 wolfeeldiver

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 12:28 PM

Finally, I've received my LMI Sunray 1000s. I wish I could have afforded the 2000s but that was beyond my budget, and I'm sure these will work fine for my needs. I hope to have them in the water soon. Initailly, the light appear very even, very little hotspot if any. The color temp is very much on the cooler side (LMI rates its 6500 K) as apposed to a warmer color light. We'll just have to see how this works out....

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#107 videodan

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 03:08 PM

Congratulations Mike, I'm sure they will work well for you. At DEMA, I saw the Sunray 1000 prototype, compared to the Sunray 2000 prototype, compared to the Sunray HID. The 1000 was brighter and whiter than the very good HID light. The 2000's are extremely bright, so I use medium more often than full, and low for closeup. I look forward to hearing how well the 1000's work for you underwater. I'm very happy with mine.

Dan
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#108 HDVdiver

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Posted 18 June 2008 - 06:42 PM

With the unreleased XLamp MC-E LED you will get 4X the light from the same sized LED, but it will require more than 4X the current, which is lower efficiency. You will certainely not get "Thus, six of these will put out 2500 Lumens @ 350 ma...an improvement of 400% over current LED technology!"

Dan


Well...yes and no.

I was referring to the number of individual LEDs required to get a decent Lumen output. What Cree finally come up with remains to be seen. But from the limited information they have released there will be significant advantages.

However, the new LED will NOT "require 4X the current". Current will be a nominal 350 mA per individually addressable emitter component, but the Wattage power (ie battery juice) must obviously be 4 times higher. The advantage ...per LED unit... is that 456 Lm will be produced at a low thermal stress level (the gist of my post) rather than at the moment requiring to drive a R2 Bin LED at 1000 mA to get maximum Lm output possible (say 250 Lm...with reduced Lm per Watt efficiency and thermal energy loss.

Yes...six of these will indeed put out 2500 Lm @ 350 mA....BUT yes Wattage will be higher 4.5W.


Cheers

#109 craig

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 08:26 AM

Yes...six of these will indeed put out 2500 Lm @ 350 mA....BUT yes Wattage will be higher 4.5W.

Who cares what the current draw of an individual LED other than the designers? It's wattage that matters.

Thus, six of these will put out 2500 Lumens @ 350 ma...an improvement of 400% over current LED technology!

An improvement in what way?

Sorry, but lumens/watt is what matters and there is no improvement here whatsoever (much less 400%).
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#110 videodan

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 03:57 PM

Yes...six of these will indeed put out 2500 Lm @ 350 mA....BUT yes Wattage will be higher 4.5W.

No, the wattage will be ~27W. @ ~ 2736 lm.

However, the new LED will NOT "require 4X the current". Current will be a nominal 350 mA per individually addressable emitter component, but the Wattage power (ie battery juice) must obviously be 4 times higher.

Very trivial, as the LED's @ 350ma/emitter run on a constant 3.2v, so an increase in wattage is also an equal increase in current. 4 emitters/LED operating at 350ma/emitter is 1.4A/LED, which is an increase in current and wattage at the same time, while the voltage is constant.
No matter what, there is no "improvement of 400% over current LED technology". Sorry. There is actually an approximate .06% loss of efficiency vs. the XR-E series LED. However the lower thermal resistance (3°C/W vs. 8°C/W), the 110° beam angle, and the four individually addressable emitters per LED should all be a big advantage for future LED lights, but not necessarily for underwater videographers. I can't imagine blinding creatures any worse than I already do, not intentionally of course. The Sunray 2000's are extremely bright, and unless you are cave diving in huge caverns, I don't see why anyone would be needing anything more.

A note on the Sunray 2000's: While writing this reply (~50 min.), I put one of my Sunray 2000 light heads in water in the kitchen sink, cranked up on full. It never got hot, just barely warm. And this was in South Florida tap water, which is not particularly cool. In the air (not recommended) they get very warm, very fast. Conclusion is that the Sunray LED's are very well engineered with a highly effective heat sink, and operate at a very efficient power level. I do believe they will last a lifetime, or at least close to the rated 50,000 hours, whichever comes first.

Dan
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#111 Steve Douglas

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 04:25 PM

I'll be using the 2000s for the first time next week on a trip diving Alaska. I have to write up a full review for Asian Diver Magazine so, when done, I will chime in with my 1.5 cents.
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#112 HDVdiver

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Posted 19 June 2008 - 04:48 PM

[quote name='craig' date='Jun 20 2008, 01:56 AM' post='174211']
Who cares what the current draw of an individual LED other than the designers?



Oh dear....

I guess I'm seeing benefits that some other's don't.

Indeed, I'm looking at it from a designer's perspective. On paper, the new LED is a great balance of Lumens per Watt @ low current, Lumens per single LED, Vf (forward Voltage spec...which has implications for current controller design/battery pack voltage combination and production cost), Temperature characteristics (so Cree claim), physical size and lens characteristics...to name a few.

Sure, Lumens per watt is the Holy Grail...but this will be gained incrementally as semiconductor technology advances.

Improvement? 400%...50%...pick a number according to your perspective...who cares. However, it will be a significant enough improvement for manufacturers... that will carry through to the end user underwater videographer.


Thanks to the new LED we will eventually start seeing affordable, lightweight underwater LED video lights that can finally match the light output of a high quality third generation 50 watt HID ( which, by the way, is being claimed by the best ballast/bulb manufacturers to deliver over a 100 Lumens per watt, attain full brightness in less than 10 secs and have no problems with constant re-start...).


Cheers

#113 videodan

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 01:54 AM

Thanks to the new LED we will eventually start seeing affordable, lightweight underwater LED video lights that can finally match the light output of a high quality third generation 50 watt HID ( which, by the way, is being claimed by the best ballast/bulb manufacturers to deliver over a 100 Lumens per watt, attain full brightness in less than 10 secs and have no problems with constant re-start...).

Again, you're spewing more deception. The "new LED" is less efficient than the current LED, no matter how you look at it. L&M currently make an "affordable, lightweight underwater LED video light" that surpasses the" light output of a high quality third generation 50 watt HID", without any of the cons of HID systems. Now, who makes this oh-so-wonderful "high quality third generation 50 watt HID ( which, by the way, is being claimed by the best ballast/bulb manufacturers to deliver over a 100 Lumens per watt, attain full brightness in less than 10 secs and have no problems with constant re-start..." for underwater videography? Don't forget to include the power loss from the ballast in your lm/w rating. How long does that fragile filament last? How easily does that fragile filament break? How expensive is a replacement bulb? Don't forget that 10 seconds is an eternity when you're missing your shot. Please produce facts, not fiction.

Dan
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#114 NWDiver

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 06:20 AM

Used the 2000s in Canada. Conditions were "bright" mid-day sun, viz around 20-30ft. On full power they did an excellent job of providing fill light up to 4'-6' away. Just set the HD7 to auto WB and worked fine. Then one light head flooded. Shooting Macro full power was way to much. On the lowest setting white subjects, like nudibranchs, were still a little hot. WA with one light was ok but of course it was not enough to fill from side to side. Will try to get some edited and posted to Viemo.

Edited by NWDiver, 20 June 2008 - 06:26 AM.


#115 wolfeeldiver

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 07:53 AM

Used the 2000s in Canada.... Then one light head flooded. ...?


One light head flooded? Wow.. thats no fun. Those heads are factory sealed, right?
Interesting...

#116 craig

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 08:14 AM

Indeed, I'm looking at it from a designer's perspective. On paper, the new LED is a great balance of Lumens per Watt @ low current, Lumens per single LED, Vf (forward Voltage spec...which has implications for current controller design/battery pack voltage combination and production cost), Temperature characteristics (so Cree claim), physical size and lens characteristics...to name a few.

It is an arbitrary balance and only a "great" one if that's the one that you want as an engineer. It's not a breakthrough, it's just packaging.

Sure, Lumens per watt is the Holy Grail...but this will be gained incrementally as semiconductor technology advances.

Lumens per watt is precisely what matters, and this product offers no improvement over the current state of the art.

Improvement? 400%...50%...pick a number according to your perspective...who cares.

Thanks for recognizing that your 400% claim was simply personal "perspective" and not defendable technically in any way.

However, it will be a significant enough improvement for manufacturers... that will carry through to the end user underwater videographer.

Thanks to the new LED we will eventually start seeing affordable, lightweight underwater LED video lights that can finally match the light output of a high quality third generation 50 watt HID ( which, by the way, is being claimed by the best ballast/bulb manufacturers to deliver over a 100 Lumens per watt, attain full brightness in less than 10 secs and have no problems with constant re-start...).

It does little in that regard.

LED light manufacturers run emitters in series as a matter of course. This product locks that design decision into multiples of four, that's all. What it offers is a more compact light head but that is not likely a benefit in an underwater video light. It may be for a modeling light.
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#117 videodan

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 08:27 AM

Steve, I look forward to your review. What will you be shooting in Alaska?

NWDiver, sorry to hear about the flood, and I hope they replace it quickly. I agree the 2000's on low are still pretty bright for macro. I wonder if a screw in ND Filter would work, otherwise make some type of diffuser. Wagsy uses yogurt containers as diffusers, or maybe there is a screw in one available somewhere. Have you used yours on a night dive yet? They are pretty impressive, and you'll be glad there are three power levels.

wolfeeldiver, the Sunray 2000 lightheads screw together with an o-ring seal, as I'm sure your 1000's do also. Extra care is needed, because the o-ring can easily pop out when re-assembling the head.

Dan
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#118 Steve Douglas

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 09:34 AM

Since the color temp is the same, I am wondering if one should WB again for each change in power.
Would love to learn the reason the one light flooded, when you find out I hope you let us know what to look for.
This is my first shoot in Alaska as I have been asked to make a promo film for the boat...not really sure what I will encounter but I am hoping for some good giant octopus, wolf eel, orca and leopard seals attacking any other diver but me. The water will probably be green with about 25 ft vis, strong currents....who knows. I leave on Monday and will be out of touch until my return on July 6th
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#119 HDVdiver

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 04:47 PM

Again, you're spewing more deception. The "new LED" is less efficient than the current LED, no matter how you look at it. L&M currently make an "affordable, lightweight underwater LED video light" that surpasses the" light output of a high quality third generation 50 watt HID", without any of the cons of HID systems. Now, who makes this oh-so-wonderful "high quality third generation 50 watt HID ( which, by the way, is being claimed by the best ballast/bulb manufacturers to deliver over a 100 Lumens per watt, attain full brightness in less than 10 secs and have no problems with constant re-start..." for underwater videography? Don't forget to include the power loss from the ballast in your lm/w rating. How long does that fragile filament last? How easily does that fragile filament break? How expensive is a replacement bulb? Don't forget that 10 seconds is an eternity when you're missing your shot. Please produce facts, not fiction.

Dan



Why don't you read a few technical papers...

"Energy Efficient Lighting: Current Technology and Challenges for the Future"
OSRAM SYLVANIA, Central Research and Services Laboratory

Walter P. Lapatovich,PhD

"High intensity discharge (HID) lamps are low temperature, weakly-ionized plasmas sustained in a refractory, light transmissive envelope through dissipation of electric power. Commercial applications require this conversion of electrical power into visible light (380-780nm) to occur with good efficiency and with sufficient spectral content to permit the light to render colors in a fashion comparable to natural sunlight. Modern ceramic metal halide lamps operate in the regime of 100-110 lumens per system watt, with a general color-rendering index of about 85-90. Efficacy improvements are possible, but are bounded by a theoretical limit of approximately 450 lumens per radiated watt for a €œwhite light source€ suitable for general illumination. Thermodynamics further limits the approach to this global ceiling to a value of about 230 lumens per system watt- about twice higher than what is realizable today."

Also...

http://www.aerovisio...d_products.html


"We offer 35 watt systems as well as 50 watt systems. Our 35 Watt systems produce 3200 lumens and our 50 watt systems 65% more with 5300 lumens.".



Even at the conservative 80 Lumens per Watt rating the I use...how does the 2000 Lumens of the current best LED light that you quote "surpasses" 4000 Lumens of a 50w HID?

What fragile filament...the whole point of HID is that there is NO FILAMENT. Bulb life is rated at 3000 hours...5 minutes to replace @ a cost of US$130. The specs I referred to apply to the lights I make...they are "not fiction". I've done hundreds of dives with them (as have other users) ...re-strike at least 20-30 times per dive...never heard of a failed bulb yet (...or a flood for that matter...).

I really don't have a personal agenda to "spew deception"...I have my opinion...other people have theirs.

The sort of video I do requires a lot of lighting...caves, wrecks, night...an I love to use HID50s for that.

At the same time I absolutely love the the performance and results I've been getting (particularly recently at Sipadan) with the prototype LED 1500 lumen video light I've been field testing... As I've said before LED is definitely the way of the future, and will eventually replace HID...the way HID largely replaced Halogen. Certainly, for close range work, I personally prefer using LEDs.

The only real point I've wanted to make is that the new LEDs from Cree appear to be worthy step forward...particularly for designers/manufacturers.


Cheers

#120 craig

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Posted 20 June 2008 - 05:15 PM

I would love to see an HID system that produces 5000 lumens while consuming only 50 watts measured at the battery. Halogen and LED systems don't have electronics comparable to HID that sap substantial battery power. Ballasts have significant power consumption.

Furthermore, there is a weight limit for how much we can travel with and dive with so lumens per pound (kg) is an important measure. lumens/pound/minute of burn is also critical and restrike enters into this. In these measures HID is at a substantial disadvantage to both halogen and LED. In fact, I remain unconvinced that HID is better than halogen in this regard though doubling the efficiency of a real HID system (and fixing it's CRI at the same time) could persuade me.

LED systems are easily dimmable. Halogens perhaps not, but halogen systems are easily designed to support a range of wattages through inexpensive bulb changes. HID offers neither of these valuable features.

Then there's the matter of the extreme high voltages that make HID hazardous underwater, there's the restrike issue that substantially harms the lm/kg/min capability, and there's the cost and fragility of the HID bulbs. It doesn't matter than Dan mistakenly used the term "filament", HID bulbs are fragile and expensive.

Let's see an underwater HID system that produces 100 lm/watt including ballast consumption. Aircraft landing light parts in a marketing speeds n feeds sheet are hardly relevant.
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