OLED lighting hits mainstream America

If you were earlier undecided about choosing between LED and CLF lighting, the market is about to add to your confusion as it starts flooding with the new OLED light systems.

Where LED (light-emitting diode) lighting uses small, intensely bright sources of light, which are typically made to look like traditional light bulbs, OLED (organic light-emitting diode) lighting uses flat, dimmer sources of light, essentially resulting in a glowing square or rectangle. Steady advances in manufacturing technology have made OLEDs bright and long-lived enough to use, and now they’re going mainstream: Acuity Brands whose $2 billion in annual sales make it the largest lighting company in North America, is now selling OLED light fixtures in Home Depot.

Because OLED panels are not piercingly bright, they can be mounted in fixtures seen directly by the eye; there’s no need for reflectors or diffusers to cut the glare. The approach also opens new options for lighting designs.

At Home Depot, Acuity is selling two fixtures, each in configurations that can be suspended or that can be mounted directly to a wall or ceiling. The $300 Chalina is like a four-petal flower, with four square OLED panels arranged around a central one. The Aedan uses two elongated panels facing opposite directions and costs $200. The company also offers a variety of OLED fixtures for commercial customers.

OLED is seen by many as a premium in comparison to conventional lighting, even LED. The technology itself is more sophisticated; however the only concern is its pricing. And OLED unit can cost about 50 percent more than an LED. If that suits your budget in exchange for superior quality and reduced electricity bills, then you might as well should add it to your holiday bucket.






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