Not being aligned with any particular LED manufacturer certainly has its benefits. As such, Cireon continually evaluates manufacturers products to insure our product lines carry the best components available. The ongoing effort carries through evaluation of published data and to building and testing luminaires with various manufacturers componentry.
One of the most important aspects of LED quality is in the bonding of the "wafer" to the anode and cathode. The Luxeon line utilizes a patented process referred to as "wafer bonding". As illustrated left, wafer-bonding provides an inherently greater contact area with a higher reliability of the bond. The "wire-bonding" process used by all other leading manufacturers is inherently a weak link in reliability.
An additional benefit of the wafer-bonding process is the typical failure mode being "closed". This means that only the individual LED will have failed and the remainder continue to receive power. Conversely, the typical failure mode of the wire-bond is "open", meaning all LEDs in the string will be taken out.
In the most recent test, (September, 2011), Cireon built luminaires using the two different models of flagship LEDs as recommended by Cree. The results, as measured by Cree to LM-79 standards in Cree's laboratory (and published by Cree accordingly) confirmed the efficacy of the two Cree-configured luminaires provided 79% and 82% of the efficacy (lumens per watt) of the equivalent Luxeon-configured luminaire (pulled randomly from Cireon production).
Also, LM-80 data provided by each manufacturer confirms a slight edge in lumen maintenance and a significant edge in color shift for the Luxeon LED. The present Luxeon line clearly outperforms in efficacy, lumen maintenance, and color shift and provides a more robust manufacture (though we'll continue to evaluate and keep an open mind).
The other critical aspect of component quality is the power supply.
In order to match the projected longevity of the Luxeon LEDs with Cireons thermal management, the power supply becomes the next most important component. While there are many quality manufacturers in this space, Philips Advance provides what we believe to be the most rugged.
Heat is as much the enemy of the power supply as the LED, and robust design begins with sub-components specified to be well beyond the operating parameters found in the SSLs worst case field applications. Going even further, Advance incorporates a protection that, should operating temperature exceed a safe threshold, the specific models Cireon uses reduce power to maintain an acceptable maximum operating temperature.
Safety and reliability are certainly important, but product features are a must and Advance offers controllability that is outstanding. Specifically, as Cireon incorporates linear dimming controls, being smooth and responsive to these is a feature very important to us and one in which Advance excels.
While Cireon continues to evaluate competitive products, the Advance line is well-designed and built, reliable, and full-featured.