We’ve tested a few of the Philips LED 100w A19 daylight white light bulbs in our apartment bedroom bedside lamps, and if they last as long as CREE predicts that we’ve used for several years now, they’ll pay for themselves at least ten times over by the time they reach end-of-life. We’ve run these five for sixteen hours each day for a couple weeks now. This Philips bulb has run throughout much of the day, with neither flicker nor failure, and cost us only $12 for a 2-pack at Home Depot. Not the cheapest LED bulbs we’ve purchased, but still monetarily manageable given their long service life.
This common A19 form factor allows these bulbs to fit in virtually any light fixture that supports a standard incandescent bulb. A19 lights resemble the traditional Edison-style incandescent bulb in size and shape. This bulb also about mirrors an incandescent in its low weight. Gone are those heavy metal heat sinks at the base of many older 100w LED light bulbs, that not only contributed to a significantly heavier, hotter unit, but also raised the transport costs of the bulbs, due to the extra weight. These units are quite light. So, they’re cheaper to ship. This, among other factors, results in inexpensive, state-of-the-art lighting for the consumer. Bravo Philips! Philips has made these LED bulbs significantly more affordable than the CREE models of past years that we’ve sampled; currently about half the price per bulb.
These LED bulbs operate with SOME heating. But they don’t become nearly as hot as their 100 watt incandescent counterparts, and not very much warmer than the 60 and 75-watt LED bulbs we’ve examined. They run way cooler than compact fluorescent lamps with similar brightness.
Plus, they operate silently, with neither buzzing, humming, hissing, nor whistling. On radios, they’re also quite mum; generating no detectable RF or EM interference on those most likely medium wave AM frequencies.
Benefits, Features, Advantages, and Pros
- Among the popular power size, 100 watt. These bulbs come in 100w incandescent equivalent output. Note that this rating IS NOT the amount of power that this LED bulb actually consumes. Rather, it’s the amount of equivalent incandescent lamp light output that you get with this bulb. At 1500 lumens light output, this bulb, though producing 100 watts of equivalent incandescent light, actually only draws 14 watts. So, operating costs are much cheaper than similar 100 watt incandescents.
- Frosted exterior. Softens shadows and helps spread the light more evenly. The bulb itself lights very uniformly; no dark or bright spots on the lighted globe surface.
- Omnidirectional. The radiation characteristic is very much like traditional incandescent lighting. These LED lamps spread light around in nearly equal amounts in all directions except for directly underneath the bulb, toward the socket.
- Way more light per watt than incandescent bulbs. For this 14-watt LED bulb (1500 lumens), you get about the same amount of light that you’d see from a 100-watt incandescent light bulb (1530 lumens). Yet you only pay for 14 watts draw!
- Cooler operation. With so much more of the consumed power going into actually producing actual light, and less to wasteful heat, LED bulbs radiate far less warmth. These solid state bulbs can be up to 83 percent more efficient than incandescent bulbs.
- Longer life. At a suggested rating of approximately 11,000 hours average life expectancy, and then if operated for three hours each day, their projected useable lifespan is 10 years.
- No external heat sink. Less metal in these units, owing to the greater efficiency electronics and LEDs themselves. This also makes handling them while hot much safer. No surface on this Philips LED bulb ever gets so hot that it produces burns when briefly touched.
- Durable construction. Stands up well to shocks and drops.
- No warm-up time. You get full brightness almost instantly upon LED turn-on. Instant on, Instant off.
- Suitable for damp locations. Humidity will not harm these bulbs. However, we suggest not getting them wet. Do not install where the bulb can be hit with rainfall.
- Near flicker-free light. We detect no flickers, no matter the ambient room temperature. There are no reduced brightness fluctuations from things like air conditioners starting up. The light output here remains constant through a wide range of input voltages.
- Full brightness, even in the cold. Like incandescent lighting, but not like compact fluorescent lamps, Philips LED bulbs operate efficiently even in very cold temperatures. You get full luminosity even when the area being lit is freezing cold, all the way down to -4 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Less light output reduction over time. As incandescent and CFL bulbs accrue more hours of operation, the internal filament evaporates over that time, and the metal deposits itself on the inside of their glass envelopes; darkening them significantly. So, by the time the bulb burns out, its light output has significantly decreased due to the darkened glass. However, Philips LEDs do not exhibit this source of light output reduction. They retain most of their new-state brightness, even when approaching end of life.
- Decent color rendition index (CRI). They offer a CRI of 80. So, particularly the “daylight” models serve as acceptable photography lighting.
- Less dust accumulation. With the lower heat output of LEDs, these bulbs draw less dust and dirt, the fine dust particles do not stick as much to these, as they did to incandescent bulbs.
- No detectable radio interference. We can find no carrier waves from these bulbs on the AM radio or other shortwave, medium- and long-wave radio bands.
- Affordable, though not the cheapest bulbs. These are by no means bargain basement LEDs. Though Philips LED bulbs usually pay for themselves many times over throughout their lives, their initial cost of about $6 per bulb. This makes the initial investment in them slightly greater than that of compact fluorescent lamps. But, prices have fallen, and as LEDs become more mainstream, we expect Philips prices to fall more. Gone are the $12 to $20 single-unit prices.
- Three year warranty. This is shorter than the Ecosmart™ brand, which offers a ten year warranty. But still…, not too shabby for a light bulb.
Disadvantages, Cons, Problems, Limitations
- Slightly green cast in the light. The color of this lamp light is definitely a bluish sort of white. But it has a hint of green or yellow-green light mixed in. Perhaps Philips was trying to simulate the afternoon light in the sky on a mostly cloudy day, when a bit of yellow sun is shining and reflecting off of the clouds, and mixing with the bits of blue sky showing through. If that was the objective, they met it. However, we prefer more of the blue-sky color or the deep gray overcast day hue above our kitchen table; like you’d get through a skylight.
- Should be recycled. These bulbs, due to the electronics they contain, should be properly recycled. Dispose of these just as you would any other electronic device. Do not just throw them out in the regular trash.
- Heavier than “Edison” light bulbs. Due to the internal support electronics, these bulbs might weight a little more than a traditional incandescent bulb. However, with the minimal heat sinking, the Philips 100w bulbs are not much heavier at all.
- Not Dimmable. This line of bulbs is not compatible with any light dimmers.
- A little more expensive than other bulbs we’ve seen lately.
We’re pleased that Philips has created a reasonably affordable yet highly energy efficient LED product. It’s now practical for the average consumer to realize big savings on his electric bill, without spending so much initially to do it. With the three year warranty, sub $6 price tag per unit, and shock-resistant construction, we’ve found this 100 watt LED bulb highly durable, and bright. Anyone who says that LEDs aren’t as bright these days as traditional light bulbs, has never experienced a room lit with these Philips bulbs.
Given the multiyear warranty, we fear little over accidental failure due to excessive vibration, drops, and shocks. It’s wonderful to see LEDs finally reaching mainstream lighting markets (they sure took their time getting there). We’d therefore, rate the Philips LED 100w A19 Daylight White Light Bulb at 96 out of 100. Lower the price a bit more, Philips, and you’ll get a perfect 100 from us. Awesome product!
- CREE LED Bulb Review
- Ecosmart™ LED 60w A19 Daylight White Light Bulb Review
- GE Bright Stik™ LED Light Bulbs Review
- LED Light Bulb Picture Gallery
- Philips LED A19 75 Watt Daylight White Light Bulb Review
- 2017-02-13: Originally published.