Incandescent lamps: what to choose

The incandescent lamps familiar to us in their present form appeared in 1879. The name of the inventor is well known – Thomas Edison. And although the Englishman Joseph Swan (Swan) made the first sample a year earlier, the laurels belong to Edison deservedly. He not only improved the design (replaced the carbon filament with tungsten, twisting it into a spiral), but also developed the rest of the lighting system, bringing it to practical use. By the way, the screw base, which greatly simplifies the procedure for replacing lamps, was also invented by Edison (and in English-speaking countries it bears his name).

DESIGN

There are different types of incandescent lamps on the market, but they have the same principle – a tungsten filament in a glass bulb filled with an inert gas is heated by passing electric current to “white heat”, emitting electromagnetic waves, including those of the visible range. And although her efficiency is “like a steam locomotive”, she continues to serve humanity to this day, despite the abundance of alternative light sources. The reason is simplicity and cheapness (though simple calculations show that the savings are illusory – they do not last long, and they consume a lot of energy).

TESTING

We all want excellent quality of purchased incandescent lamps and their long service life. To help the consumer navigate correctly in this market sector, we have tested products of ten brands for compliance with the standards GOST R IEC 60432-1-99 (“Safety requirements for incandescent lamps”) and 60064-99 (“Tungsten incandescent lamps for household and similar general lighting “).

From the many points of the standards, we have selected several that are of the greatest practical interest to the consumer, and supplemented with measurements that are not mentioned in GOST.

1. Safety on failure. Burnout of the lamp should not be accompanied by the destruction of the bulb or its separation from the base. Three samples of each brand were “forcibly” put out of action by a high voltage pulse of 3 kV with a duration of 8–20 μs. If a single “blow” did not burn through the thread, the “torture” was repeated until the “victorious” end.

All products behaved with dignity. None of them “exploded” or split into pieces.

2. Resistance to torque. Checked at a special stand. The bulb of the lamp, screwed into the socket, was rotated with a torque of 3 N * m (so as not to injure the hand, they used a rubber glove).

We tested 10 lamps from each company. All passed the test, only three General Electric lamps had the bulb separated from the base. We “couldn’t believe our eyes” and repeated the test on ten other samples. They endured the “torture” that partially rehabilitated this well-known and respected brand..

3. Initial luminous flux. The measurements were carried out in a light-measuring ball summing the flux in all directions.

For testing, 60-watt lamps were selected, but with different calculated voltages. Here we are faced with a situation that GOST R IEC 60064-99 mentions lamps with normal and increased flux and the requirements for them are different. For a voltage of 230 V, for example, for the first, its initial value should exceed 620 lm, and for the second – 710 lm. Most foreign companies give on the packaging a minimum luminous flux of 710 lm. One would assume that domestic manufacturers are guided by the same GOST when evaluating light parameters. However, it turns out that they use another document from 24 years ago – GOST 2239-79, which gives completely different numbers.

By and large, we, consumers, do not care what standard lamps are produced by. The main thing is that they shine brightly and serve for a long time.

We measured the luminous flux from ten samples from each firm, as expected, at the calculated voltage indicated on the bulb (when the range is given, tested at the average value). Interestingly, almost half of the manufacturers can be weeded out by this parameter. But this is what we buy in stores. And I wanted to find out to the end all the characteristics, no matter how disappointing they are.

Since school times, it has been known that the apartment network has 220 V. Why then 240 V lamps? One explanation is that they are more resistant to the increased stress that sometimes “happens” in our homes. Another is the crafty of the manufacturer, who decided with this product to reduce the number of complaints for a short service life. We buy such a lamp and are glad that it lives for a long time. Indeed, our 220 V is a gentle mode for her. But there is one catch: how bright does it shine? (This reasoning does not apply to imports calculated for their mains standard – 230 V.)

We approached testing in an everyday way and also checked the flow at 220 V (which GOST does not require from us). Of course, it is much lower than that stated for the design voltage..

4. Stability of luminous flux. After 750 hours of operation, the luminous flux should not fall below 85% of the original.

According to this parameter, almost all samples meet the requirements of the standard, although they demonstrated a different degree of degradation: the proportion of the initial luminous flux ranged from 87 to 96% (only “Lisma” dimmed more than acceptable).

5. Duration of burning. Measured the average life of ten lamps from each company. In accordance with the standard, at the specified voltage for them, they must serve at least 700 hours. And if the sample “stands” for more than 1250 hours, it is “removed from the competition”, taking into account exactly this value.

We ran accelerated tests when the supply voltage was 10% higher than the design voltage. A certain formula is used to calculate the coefficient that “squeezes” the lifetime of the samples. But, to make the numbers clearer, we operated on data converted to normal conditions.

Among the brands tested there are those that have held out perfectly for the entire specified period and are ready to shine for more than 1250 hours. Many lamps did not even reach 750 hours…

Comtech Standard SA Cl 60
Price: average retail – 6 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Denmark-Ukraine)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 230 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (rated / at 230 V / at 220 V): 710/649/551 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 93%.
BURNING DURATION: 841 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 55 mm; 1 safety jumper in the thread holder; packing – individual box.

TEST RESULTS

There are no complaints about the safety of the lamp, but the result of the durability test turned out to be low. Only four samples survived for more than 750 hours, but two of them did not “make it” for 1000 hours. There was, however, only one “hero” who defended 1300 hours and is able to continue to serve.

The luminous flux at the rated voltage turned out to be one of the lowest among the measured. In fairness, we note that at 220 V it is still higher than that of the products of most post-Soviet enterprises.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

The Comtech brand is Danish and cannot yet boast of an ancient pedigree. She is only 11 years old, but there are already more than three thousand items in the list of products she produces. The company specializes in supplying luminaires for sales areas, offices, residential and public spaces, as well as standard and decorative light sources..

In the Russian market, there are Comtech incandescent lamps with a transparent and frosted bulb, manufactured in Lviv. Power range from 25 to 200 W.

SUMMARY: the obtained results give reason to consider Comtech as “average” in the company tested.

General electric classic
Price: average retail – 14 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Hungary)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 230 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (rated / at 230 V / at 220 V): 710/717/612 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 92%.
BURNING DURATION: 1065 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 60 mm (in the new modification – 50 mm); 2 safety jumpers in the thread holders; packing – individual box.

TEST RESULTS

Among other tested, GE bulbs were the only ones with insufficient torque resistance. Three out of ten samples collapsed. The result seemed incredible. We took another 10 pieces (we were provided with a novelty – with a flask with a diameter of only 50 mm). They passed the test successfully, restoring the shaken reputation.

GE’s credibility rose in our eyes when we saw that of all 230-volt lamps, only its products had a luminous flux exceeding the level of 710 lumens, although everyone claims this value as guaranteed.

Products serve for a long time – only two samples have not crossed the line of 750 hours, while the majority “lived” more than 1000.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

GE has many years of experience in manufacturing light sources. While releasing sophisticated and expensive devices, it nevertheless does not neglect the market segment of incandescent lamps. The factories producing them are located in different parts of the world. They come to us from Hungary.

It would seem that the usual “pear” is as old as the world – nothing new can be invented. But quite recently, a model appeared on sale, repeating in all respects the one we tested, but with a smaller bulb diameter – only 50 mm (not to be confused with “fungus”).

SUMMARY: testing confirmed the prevailing opinion that General Electric is one of the leading brands in lighting technology along with Osram, Philips and Pila.

Osram clas A Cl 60
Price: average retail – 12 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (France)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 230 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (rated / at 230 V / at 220 V): 710/692/596 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 96%.
BURNING DURATION: 1250 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 55 mm; 2 safety jumpers in the thread holders; packing – individual box.

TEST RESULTS

First of all, it should be noted that the lamp among the tested took the first place in terms of service life. To be honest, we don’t know exactly how much it shines. According to the standard, it is supposed to interrupt the tests upon reaching 1250 hours. Our batch of 10 samples “lasted” 1400 hours. How long they will last is unknown.

In terms of luminous flux, clas A Cl 60 is at the level of other imported products – at 230 V, slightly lower than what is indicated on the package, but significantly lower at 220 V. The drop in brightness over time is insignificant.

The lamp is safe both when screwing in (the bulb is firmly connected to the base) and when it burns out (does not collapse).

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

Osram is one of three global lighting giants. It employs over 30,000 employees. The company’s enterprises are located all over the world, and in the fall of 2003, production was acquired in Russia – a plant of fluorescent lamps in Smolensk. Clas A Cl 60 has a regular pear-shaped bulb with a slightly reduced diameter.

Products are placed in individual boxes with clear markings in several languages, including Russian.

SUMMARY: Osram clas A Cl 60 stands out for its exceptional durability. The luminous flux is also high, although it does not reach the value given on the package.

Philips А55Cl
Price: average retail – 12 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Poland)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 230 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (rated / at 230 V / at 220 V): 710/691/592 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 95%.
BURNING DURATION: 1222 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 55 mm; 2 safety jumpers in the thread holders; packing – individual box.

TEST RESULTS

Lamps are safe – they do not collapse at high torques and “violent” disabling by high voltage pulses.

The initial luminous flux of А55Cl does not reach the prescribed 710 lm. However, all imported products sin this..

Interestingly, although the calculated voltage is only 10 V higher than the mains voltage, at 220 V the flow is a whole hundred lumens less. It is comforting that during operation it decreases slightly.

The lamp life is high. Out of 10 pieces, only one lasted 970 hours. The rest lived for 1400 hours (although we took the number 1250 into account), and it is not known how much more they could shine.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

Philips is one of the leading manufacturers of lighting equipment. Suffice it to say that London’s Big Ben and the Palace at Versailles appear in all their splendor thanks to Philips products. Of course, there are special lamps for such places, but the simplest household incandescent lamps are also present in the company’s range. They are produced by several factories located in Poland, Hungary and Slovakia..

The lamp tested has the familiar pear-shaped shape with a clear brand name. The design feature is a fuse in each holder of the thread, which increases the safety of operation.

Lamps are packed in cardboard boxes one or two pieces.

SUMMARY: A55Cl lamp that has demonstrated a long service life is a worthy representative of Philips.

Pila
Price: average retail – 8 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Poland)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 230 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (rated / at 230 V / at 220 V): 710/703/597 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 96%.
BURNING DURATION: 1190 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 55 mm; 2 safety jumpers in the thread holders; packing – individual box.

TEST RESULTS

Like other European products, Pila falls slightly short of the set brightness value at 230 V. The flux of 597 lm at 220 V is also slightly lower than the value of 608 lm (extracted for reference from the national GOST 1979) for 230 V lamps connected to the network 220 V.

In terms of durability, Pila comes right behind Osram and Philips. One sample of this brand served 750 hours, another – 1150, and the rest lasted up to 1400 hours. Could have been more, but we turned off the test bench, since it is supposed to stop testing at 1250 hours.

Lamps are safe to burn out and will not shatter when tightly twisted.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

Products with the Pila trademark are produced in Poland at the same plant as indicated on the packaging of Philips products.

There are no Russian inscriptions on the boxes, but all the parameters of the products are absolutely clear.

SUMMARY: Pila incandescent lamps in their characteristics are close to the samples of world “masters” in the field of lighting.

B220-230-60 (Lisma)
Price: average retail – 6 rubles. (January 2003).

Incandescent lamp (“Lisma”, Saransk Electric Lamp Plant, Russia)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 225 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (calculated / at 225 V / at 220 V): 665/737/675 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 90%.
BURNING DURATION: 529 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 60 mm; 1 safety jumper in the thread holder; packing – protective cuff made of double-layer corrugated cardboard.

TEST RESULTS

The lamp is durable – does not collapse when forced to “burn” and screwed too hard.
It takes the first place in terms of brightness. A record value not only at the calculated voltage (here Lisma shares laurels with Cosmos), but also at 220 V.
However, such a result is not given for nothing – out of 10 samples, only one “lived” up to 750 hours. And the drop in luminous flux measured on it had to be extended to the entire batch – you can no longer call this statistics.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

Lisma, the largest lighting company in Russia and the CIS, holds 77% of the Russian market. Produces incandescent, luminescent, decorative, subminiature lamps for transport … – in short, there are more than 700 items in the assortment.

The tested lamps are the most common ones, familiar to everyone. And packaging in the form of a corrugated cardboard cuff is also well known from a past life..

SUMMARY: well-deserved epitaph: “Their life was bright, but short”.

B230-240-60 (Kalashnikov)
Price: average retail – 6 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Kalashnikovskiy electric lamp plant, Russia)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 235 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (calculated / at 235 V / at 220 V): 655/664/513 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 84%.
BURNING DURATION: 892h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 60 mm; 1 safety jumper in the thread holder; packing – protective cuff made of double-layer corrugated cardboard.

TEST RESULTS

The lamp passed the high voltage impulse test and the “hosted” torque test without any remarks.

Its luminous flux is low – and at 220 V it occupies the third position from the end. However, the brightness drops sharply over time (according to this parameter, the products of the Kalashnikov plant “do not pass” according to GOST), and after 750 hours the lamp is in last place, in the company with the Mailuu-Suu product.

Four leaders were identified in terms of service life in testing (Osram, Philips, Pila, GE). The rest of the participants (with the exception of some) showed approximately the same results. Against their background, the KELZ lamp could be considered quite tenacious, only according to the standard we must admit it did not pass the durability test due to an excessive drop in the luminous flux.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

The Kalashnikov plant has existed since the middle of the last century. The range of its products is quite wide – from standard incandescent general-purpose lamps of any power and voltage to special products. Every tenth light bulb produced in Russia is from Kalashnikovo.

The products do not stand out in anything special. The tested samples have a standard shape and a corrugated cardboard packaging usual for domestic lamps..

SUMMARY: an ordinary product of the domestic industry. Showed a low brightness, which also quickly decreases over time.

B235-245-60 (Brest)
Price: average retail – 6 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Brest Electric Lamp Plant, Belarus)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 240V / 60W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (calculated / at 240 V / at 220 V): 650/698/509 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 87%.
BURNING DURATION: 777 h.
FEATURES: mushroom-shaped flask; flask diameter – 50 mm; 1 safety jumper in the thread holder; packing – protective cuff made of double-layer corrugated cardboard.

TEST RESULTS

The calculated lamp voltage is significantly higher than the mains voltage. And if at 240 V in terms of luminous flux it is at the level of the leaders of our test, then at 220 V (which interests us much more) in terms of its “smallness” it is second only to Kyrgyz products. And after 750 hours, there is no difference.

The average service life of ten samples is 777 hours. The number looks attractive, but this is not a lucky win, but the third place from the bottom in our test.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

Brest Plant is one of the largest manufacturers of special and general-purpose incandescent lamps. They are used to illuminate residential, public and industrial buildings, as well as in transport.

Since 1998, the enterprise has been operating in accordance with the International Quality System ISO 9001, but the introduction to the world standards did not affect the packaging – the same cardboard sleeve from the Soviet era.

SUMMARY: it makes sense to use these lamps where the supply voltage is increased or where you can put up with their insufficient brightness at 220 V.

B235-245-60 (Mailuu-Suuisk)
Price: average retail – 6 rubles. (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Mailuu-Suu electric lamp plant, Kyrgyzstan)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 240V / 60W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (calculated / at 240 V / at 220 V): 650/644/462 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 96%.
BURNING DURATION: 894 h.
FEATURES: mushroom-shaped flask; flask diameter – 50 mm; 1 safety jumper in the thread holder; packing – protective cuff made of double-layer corrugated cardboard.

TEST RESULTS

In terms of mechanical characteristics, the products are “at the level”, but in terms of lighting, MSEZ took the last place. The luminous flux of the lamp is low at the rated voltage and even more so at 220 V. Suffice it to say that values ​​of about 400 lm are what is required from 40-watt lamps..

The durability of the product also does not differ. Only three samples slightly exceeded the 1000-hour mark.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

The electric lamp plant in Mailuu-Suu, Kyrgyzstan, is the largest in the Central Asian region. Produces over 100 types of electric incandescent lamps for lamps, refrigerators, sewing machines, vehicles, night advertising, illumination.

The products presented for testing differ from others with a mushroom-shaped flask..

SUMMARY: in a word, they are “dull”.

Space
Price: average retail – 6 rubles. 50 kopecks (January 2004).

Incandescent lamp (Ukraine)

TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS

RATED VOLTAGE / POWER: 230 V / 60 W.
LUMINOUS FLUX (rated / at 230 V / at 220 V): 665/737/637 lm.
SHARE FROM INITIAL LUMINOUS FLOW AFTER 750 HOURS: 91%.
BURNING DURATION: 724 h.
FEATURES: pear-shaped flask; flask diameter – 60 mm; 2 safety jumpers in the thread holders; aluminum base; packing – individual box.

TEST RESULTS

There are no complaints about the safety of the lamp.

The initial luminous flux at 230 V exceeded the value required by the standard, and even turned out to be more than 710 lumens indicated on imported products, but they were never achieved. However, at 220 V, it dropped below 660 lm, given in the reference table of GOST 2239-79 for lamps with a design voltage of 220-230 V, connected to a 220-volt network. But still, with its 637 lm, “Cosmos” shines brighter than almost all competitors participating in testing..

Only three samples survived to the 750 hour checkpoint, when it is supposed to measure the luminous flux. They showed that it is only 91% of the original – a low value, although it exceeds the limit 85%.

CONSUMER ANALYSIS

Electric lamps, batteries, rechargeable batteries, chargers, flashlights are presented on the Russian market under the Cosmos trademark. Brand holders, filling the niche of economy-class goods, select manufacturers working with world leaders in the lighting industry. Usually these are factories in Southeast Asia, but also in the immediate vicinity there are enterprises ready to supply products with the Kosmos brand.

This time we tested incandescent lamps produced in Ukraine according to the Soviet-era standard, GOST 2239-79 (however, other manufacturers in Russia and neighboring countries are also guided by it). Although this document does not indicate the rated voltage of 230 V, keeping pace with the times and imitating the manufacturers of “IEC” (that is, according to the international IEC standard) products, it is this value that the manufacturer printed on the packaging.

It should be noted that the approach to the European level is not only formal. Unlike domestic light sources, Cosmos has two safety jumpers in the filament holders, which increases safety. And its base, like most imported products, is aluminum – not sticking to the cartridge and not rusting.

SUMMARY: lamps “Cosmos” – a step towards European technologies. They are bright but shorter than standard life.

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