The aspects of your recessed lighting light is determined by the bulb, not the fixture.
To make parts of the article below clearer, I will provide two definitions now:
Lumens is a measure of light intensity.
Watts is a measure of power consumption.
There are various bulb types commonly used in recessed lighting:
This is the original style of light bulb as invented by Edison General Electric (which was their name back then).
A filiment is heated to white hot when it starts to glow.
Incandescent bulbs get very hot and provide relatively few lumens per watt.
They run very hot.
Light quality varies considerably from bulb to bulb – some produce a very poor quality yellow light while others produce a light that simulates natural sunlight.
These are fluorescent tube lines in the form factor of an incandescent bulb.
They screw into a standard light socket.
They run very cool and produce a fair high number of lumens per watt.
Some people hate the light quality and claim they can see them flicker, but others (such as myself) do not see the flicker.
Again, light quality varies greatly between different types of compact fluorescent bulbs.
These are similar in concept to the compact fluorescent, but they do not screw into a standard light socket.
As you can see in the picture, they fit into fixtures specifically made for them.
Halogen is generally used in small fixtures such as accent lighting.
They burn very hot, yet still produce a large number of lumens per watt.
Halogen light tends to be very bright.
LED lighting has come a long way, and for many reasons is probably the future of lighting:
- They burn very cool.
- They produce a lot of lumens per watt.
- They last years and years.
But… for the most part, the light quality available from LED lights today is not very good.
Some are bluish, some are brownish, some are just plain bla!
Having said that, great progress has been made and continues to be made in LED lighting, and there are now even LED grow lights (which simulate natural sunlight), and that says a lot about LED lighting technology.
I hope you find this information to be informative and useful to help you in making your recessed lighting decisions.
And speaking of recessed lighting for your home ….. we would love to install some for you when you live in or near Portola Valley.