As you scan the wide variety of LED products available and have that spec sheet staring at you, just what is it trying to tell you? With all the documented terms, it can be confusing to figure out what everything means and how those measurements will affect your sign. But taking the time to read and learn the basic principles of a spec sheet will arm you with key information that will help you to determine the best LED product to fill your needs.
- When examining your spec sheet, the lumens-per-watt figure is key. Lumens per watt measures the product’s ability to convert energy to light. Basically, this figure tells you the LED’s efficiency. The higher the number, the more efficient the LED.
- Color temperature (measured in Kelvins ) is another important metric. It measures the hue of a specific type of light source. By identifying the color temperature on the spec sheet you will ensure that your LEDs offer the same illumination hue.
- For colored LEDs look for wavelengths listed as nanometers on the spec sheet. To ensure your LEDs are at a matching color temperature or wavelength, look for the product code, which sorts the modules based on those measurements.
- If you are planning on installing a high-rise application, professionals suggest looking for a remote power-supply option on the spec sheet. This allows the LED unit to be mounted separately from its power supply (which may need to be accessed later for maintenance).
- The lumen maintenance figure on the spec sheet tells you how much brightness will be lost after the module’s lifetime expectancy. For example, an L70 lumen maintenance figure means that after the LED’s expectancy lifetime (say 50,000 hours) the LED module will be illuminating at 70 percent of its capacity (30 percent less bright).
- Viewing angle (listed in degrees) is another important spec sheet figure. For example, if you have a viewing angle of 100 degrees, your spacing will measure approximately 3" in between each LED stroke. However, a viewing angle of 155 degrees allows for 7" spacing between those LED strokes.
- In addition to the spec sheet, the density guideline chart is a valuable tool. It tells the installer what color of LED should be used with a specified substrate. It is particularly is handy when working with dark-colored substrates.
By learning to accurately read a spec sheet, you will become an informed buyer and can more readily make educated decisions regarding your LED product.
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