Cree gets smart with $15 connected LED bulb

By Shawn Knight
Jan 15, 2015
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  1. Cree has unleashed a line of connected LED light bulbs that aim to put the squeeze on the competition in terms of compatibility and cost.

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  2. fimbles

    fimbles TS Evangelist Posts: 1,159   +198

    Heard nothing but fantastic things about cree led bulbs. Very reasonable price too.
  3. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    My confidence in LED's have not risen to a level where I feel I can trust paying $15 per bulb. When you have over 100 bulbs in your home that is a large expense to consider. With that said I am starting to confide more in them, but only if the price is less than $10.
  4. It doesn't seem clear if the cree bulbs will work with an existing phillips hue hub? Does anyone know?
  5. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 1,527   +688

    Hopefully the bulbs will get in line as the LED 2x4 and 2x2 box fixtures have. The last building I put up, we were able to obtain these fixtures as the same price of their florescence tube units. Strangely, the new fixtures carried a 5 year, 100% replacement warranty (no questions asked), which was VERY attractive. The only unanswered question that caused some hesitation was the Mfg. could not tell us how replacements would be handled AFTER the 5 year period. We disassembled one and found the components were basic enough they could sell parts ... but time will tell if parts will be available or if they will expect the end user to replace the whole bloody unit!
  6. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,383   +105

    Got LED back 2012 from Amazon for less than $10 (range $6.xx to $9.xx) Got 1x out in the front outdoor lantern, 3x in Living, 3x in Dinning Room, 2x each 3x bedroom, 2x Bath rooms (5x total) I think I had got around 40x of them in case something had gone dead. When the had arrived a few where damage. But Amazon acting quick in replacing fast. Same 60w uses less energy than my old CLF ones did.

    I use Z-wave to control these light indoors.
  7. Gotta sell my soul to Madison Ave. Mad Men stalkers just to use the thing and at $50 bucks?

    No Thanks.
  8. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,349   +1,945

    Nah. 15 bucks for a light bulb is $14.50 too much. I'll make the switch when prices drop to saner levels.
  9. I think the currently more cost effective approach to connected lights, is to instead get connected Z-Wave or ZigBee light switches, which run about $40 on Amazon (still requires a hub like these bulbs). Then the switch can control multiple bulbs for the same effect.
  10. Because wifi/Bluetooth controlled light bulbs that cost hundreds of dollars(collectively) are not a gimmick right? I understand programmable or learnable thermostats that warm the house before you come home or even app controlled door locks but seriously? Is it that hard to flip the light switch before leave?

    Can we please get these LED bulbs down to a reasonable price compared to incandescent bulbs before we get into all this other nonsense?
  11. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,114   +1,379

    Reads - the competition gets stupid, ok....
  12. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 8,430   +2,822

    Fixed that for you.
    VitalyT likes this.
  13. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,467   +1,760

    As someone who actually owns and uses Cree bulbs, I think they're crap from the jump.

    The transformers in the standard 40/60 watt replacement series howl like banshees, and it gets worse when you dim them.

    I bought two PAR38 90watt equivalent bulbs last June or July> One failed in December. They were 25 bucks a pop.

    Close to 17 years ago, I was walking through Lowe's in Wilmington Delaware. As it happens, they were changing bulb suppliers while I was there. I bought as many 90watt PAR38 floods as my motorcycle's tiny saddle bags would hold @ 25 cents a pop. Many of those bulbs are still working today. I dim these bulbs up to 90%, which explains the longevity..

    Now Cree bulbs do indeed display the color temperature as stated when at full brilliance. However, when you dim them, they have an ugly shift toward blue. So, nice and warm at full power, and then sickly looking pale moonlight when dimmed.

    Plus, because of the dimmers employed, my electric bill was indistinguishable between LED lighting, and incandescent.

    I just popped one of my 16 YO incandescent bulbs. I think there's more around somewhere. If not, I'll buy a set of new halogen floods, certainly nothing LED as a replacement..

    If anybody suggests that I need to hook them up to the internet, they can expect a pair of Cree floods, and a CAT-6 cable, stuffed up their a**!:mad:
  14. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,293   +55

    I could buy twenty light bulbs at walmart for fifteen dollars.
  15. Yeah cranky-Crees are known for coil whine.
    Try some Philips-I have some 9 watt 806 lm-cool daylight 6500 K.
    Silent as-Thro NOT dimable.................................
  16. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,467   +1,760

    Well, when I've already stated I dim all my lights, and LEDs get too "cold" when dimmed, (in other words bluer or a "higher color temperature"), why on earth would I want any type "of "daylight" bulb, (which are bluer to start with), that couldn't be dimmed?

    FWIW, Halogen floods (or spots), are 3200 degrees Kelvin, @90 watts, which is much "redder light", than the very blue daylight balance.

    The tungsten filament acts as a, "black body mass", and as the heat, or electric flow through it is reduced, it shifts further toward RED, or lower Kelvin numbers.
  17. tipstir

    tipstir TS Ambassador Posts: 2,383   +105

    The work for me the off brand LED which now comes in box. My electric bill is a lot lower with LED than with all CFL. Bluetooth uses PAN (personal area networks) that has a limited range. Z-wave range is larger goes right through drywall even with metal frames in my walls. Bluetooth better for right in your face coverage.

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