Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

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Bluto
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Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Bluto » Thu Jul 25, 2013 8:30 pm

Having just returned from a fairly long spell in Tokyo , I was slightly appalled (I think I can safely say) , and surprised , as I drove through Derby City centre at around 3 oclock the other morning. (I had been away for some time and before I went , St Alkmunds Way - the main stretch of dual carriageway through Derby - was undergoing major roadworks / updating and had been down to one coned-off lane and full of trucks and diggers , etc) .
Hitting this stretch of road at 3.00 that morning , which was empty apart from me , I wasnt quite sure what I was seeing at first, Down the centre , mounted on top of a high , new concrete "barrier" wall are tall (10/12m) thin looking double-arm columns that werent there before carrying , well , - LEDS!!! :vomit

Dont get me wrong , I LOVE LEDs , and Ive got 5 big biscuit tins full of thousands of them - some very old and rare(now) ,that I had as a child. But , like any light sources or lamps , I think they have their place! I grew up with the 3 and 5 mm red , green and yellow LEDs we all know well . Call me old fashioned , but I still think of blue and white LEDs as something a bit new-fangled , (Im a grandad Im allowed - no , expected! - to use that expression!) so I think I should be forgiven for my feelings towards these almost alien street lights. :vomit
ALSO there is another factor concerning this stretch of road for me. I have been travelling back and forth along this stretch of road since I was around 3 or 4 - from before I started school . It was opened and built around 1971 , and for years as a child I knew it with double-lamp Alpha 8s down the middle (with a 250 and a 400 watt mercury in each one) , Alpha3s with 400 watt mercuries along the sides , 1000 watt mercuries in the high masts and 8ft 85 watt fluorescents under the bridges in 4-tube fittings.
As a child on the way home from visiting my Grans on a Sunday night I would lie down in the back of the car and look at those mercury lamps as we drove along there. I actually have a good number of those very mercury lamps that I was given , as a very young lad , by an old street lighting guy whom I used to visit at the depot with my Dad. They are mainly Atlas and Mazda Kolourluxes , Philips Powerwhites and a few Truelites.
In later life I actually worked on these lights during my time with the street lighting department (although by then the mercuries were long gone , having been replaced with HPS in the early 80s).

SO - returning to find this stretch lit with these LED things was a bit of a shock! Like a slap in the face is a bit of a shock!

The lanterns in question - if they can even be called lanterns - are little rectangular things with what appears to be six square "patches" of very intense white LED light . They seem to have aerials or nodes of some kind on the top (a first for round here). I know progress is progress and all that , BUT I AM NOT IMPRESSED!! :crying
I guess Ive come on here to have a bit of a rant and vent my disgust if Im honest !! Sorry !!

One thing that struck was that these lights are similar to the old mercuries in some ways . The light colour and quality is very similar to mercuries , especially at ground level if you dont look up at the lanterns , something like a daylight or cool white tube (a bit cooler than 3500k) AND , Im no expert on these new LED things , but Id like to bet theyre not that much more efficient than the old mercs either??? Wonder what wattage they are??

Anyway , rant over!! Ill be back off to a land where there are still plenty of mercuries in a week or so , (ok , lots of LEDs too , but still loads of mercs!!) Maybe I will have to think about staying there permanently!!!

Jeremy

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by MetalHalideHater » Thu Jul 25, 2013 10:06 pm

IMG_0799.JPG
Are they like these. I've seen these on some motorways around here

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Kev » Thu Jul 25, 2013 10:47 pm

Hi Jeremy good to see you back again! Yes the led led lanterns are not as efficient as son by quite a way yet. I would of thought there would of been a lot less light than when the road was lit with son. The benifit of led is that because it is so directional there is no spill so just the road is lit. There will be far far less light than there was with the sons probably over half! Sound like they have used some kind of urbis jobbie probably 100-150W LEDs!

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Paul » Fri Jul 26, 2013 9:29 pm

The ones on the A34 at Oxford are like the ones in your pic MHH. Glare bombs!! :( :(

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Kev » Fri Jul 26, 2013 9:45 pm

@mhh/MHL look how close they are together to get the light levels correct! More columns more lanterns more money everyone is a winner apart from the tax payer! Less efficient than son!

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Bluto » Sat Jul 27, 2013 4:27 pm

Hi Guys , no the Derby LED lanterns are much shorter and wider than those . Not sure what they are .I suspect they are dimmed in the early hours / after midnight. Last night I got to drive along that stretch of road around 22.00 ish and I thought they seemed a lot brighter (and lots of dazzling glare) than before , so I suspect when I returned that night and came along there at 3.00 am they may have been dimmed down then.
Actually Kev , there is quite a bit of light-spill onto the houses and footpath along one side of the dual carriageway , so these things arent as directional as I thought theyd be!

I think (I know) , my dislike of this particular installation is because of my personal "history" with the lights along this stretch of road. As I said , I still have fond , clear memories of the mercuries , so seeing it now with LEDs is still hard to get my head around!!

I think that many authorities are choosing LEDs like this , despite the fact that they are VERY expensive and not that efficient , purely because LEDs are the "latest thing" - its a kind of like a "fashion" thing , efficiency and life expectancy and all that doesnt come into it much. All they care about is that they appear to be using the latest state of the art technology. The vast , uninformed majority just assume that because its LED it just must be environmentally friendly and a good "thing to have"!

In Japan mercury is still being used on a large scale BECAUSE ITS GOOD . They still appreciate its true qualities , especially the life expectancy issue. LEDs are used on a huge scale too , THEYRE EVERYWHERE ! , But not so much for general lighting as such like this. They tend to be colour-changing installations and the like and are more for appearance / decorative value. Where they are used, they arent treated as "serious" light sources so much , more used for fun / colour effects , etc. And thats what LEDs are good for in my opinion. They arent ready for proper "general lighting" use (my opinion) , at least not yet. They are great for colour effects , torches and cycle / vehicle lights ,toys ,night lights and indicators , etc , as they always have been . After all , 250 watt mercs wouldnt be very suitable as the indicator lights on your laptop !!!! Imagine half a dozen porcelain GES lampholders sprouting from various places on laptops !! :lol: OK Im being silly , but my point is different light sources all have their "place" , and street lighting isnt the place for LEDs!!

Jeremy

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Tom » Sat Jul 27, 2013 4:46 pm

You've echoed my thoughts on LED exactly there Jeremy! About 3 quarters of my disco lighting is LED based now, even though I had to repair one of my units last week because a resistor had smoked out on the main board! And this is something that does a few hours a night at the weekend! Cheap and easy fix though! Although I know it would go down a storm on here, I somehow doubt that a mobile disco rig kitted out with MBFs and SONs would go down well at a wedding! :lol:
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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Kev » Sat Jul 27, 2013 7:05 pm

Well I dunno about that tom, I quite like son lol!

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Tom » Sat Jul 27, 2013 7:26 pm

Well should you and Nadine tie the knot Kev, we'll put together a special ATL themed lighting rig especially for you using the best of our collections lol! And I'll even get the laser to do a running horse animation to keep her happy!
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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Paul » Sat Jul 27, 2013 7:37 pm

I don't understand your comment Tom - it's not as if discharge lamps were EVER used on discos! :-?
MBF, SON, SOX were used widely and did a damn good job of it! Now being replaced a fad for LED! :x

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Dave » Mon Jul 29, 2013 11:47 pm

Tenbys recently downgraded all the side roads from SOX/SON to rubbish 18 LED Stella's, removing SOX gamma 6's, the final mercury lantern in the town, MI36's, Sapphires and a few more lanterns... Not happy at all :crying :x

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by MetalHalideHater » Tue Aug 13, 2013 11:12 am

The rollouts don;t seem to be ceasing (around here at least).

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by peterhoult » Thu Nov 14, 2013 6:47 am

Does anyone hate the WRTL Stela as much as me?

They were alright as a "concept lantern" but in my opinion they are much too glary and much too awkward looking (Not sure why residents in some areas like them?)

Don't get me wrong I like the other WRTL LED products like the RETROLED for retrofitting the Arc & Libra lanterns. The Luma aren't bad that are being installed in Sheffield.

Why do they insist on using the Cool White or Natural White option instead of Warm White which I would imagine would be better for the eyes?

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by versalift09 » Fri Nov 15, 2013 8:37 pm

I agree that Stelas are pretty awful looking things. The reason they use cool white over warm white is that it has higher efficacy. But I do think the warm colour does look better.

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by peterhoult » Fri Nov 15, 2013 11:09 pm

I reckon people might like LED more if they use the Warm White option. It doesn't have to be as powerful either to compare with SOX and SON - Stuff efficiacy I say! Bl**dy councils they want to go for the option that saves the most energy, why can't they strike a balance between what looks good and saving SOME energy?

Is anyone brave enough in here to set up a "HATE LED STELA" page on Facebook?

It's not that we're against WRTL or LED, it's just that we think there are nicer looking lanterns available!

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by LinearSLI-H » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:23 pm

We have some LED floods at work, and where as they are quite bright for the size, that awfull blue/white colour spoils them completely!
Its a colour closely resembling a dying halide lamp, so yes I agree, the road lighting colour should be WW or a neutral light matching the colour of Cosmo lamps.
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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by peterhoult » Fri Feb 07, 2014 9:51 pm

I always thought Cosmo lamps gave off a Warm White (slightly cooler than Warm White) colour?

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by peterhoult » Fri Feb 07, 2014 9:55 pm

Paul wrote:I don't understand your comment Tom - it's not as if discharge lamps were EVER used on discos! :-?
MBF, SON, SOX were used widely and did a damn good job of it! Now being replaced a fad for LED! :x
There was a discharge option on many DMX disco lights Paul they use MSD250 bulbs, and last a lot longer than ELC lamps of the same wattage. The cost of both the fixtures and the bulbs and their fragileness probably resulted in them not being that popular.

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by Paul » Sat Feb 08, 2014 1:55 pm

You're quite right - I was not specific in my comment. I meant main stream streetlight discharge lamps, not metal halide lamps used in the scanners etc. I had a picture in my head of a disco panel with MBF lamps in LOL

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Re: Greeted by LED main road street lights! NOT IMPRESSED!!

Post by peterhoult » Sun Feb 16, 2014 4:19 am

Now that is funny Paul! I would imagine MBF lamps can't be flashed on and off anyway? I did think for a moment that they might have had an application in disco strobes, but on consideration I would think that the "gear" to make that possible just doesn't exist (Either due to the fragile nature of the bulbs, or the cost in producing specialist "flashable" gear).

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