Sunday, August 14, 2016

Ikea NITTIO LED bulb Impressions: Only 20 lumens?

Accidentally came across this new Ikea NITTIO LED bulb on the American Ikea website while looking up details on the RYET and LEDARE models. Very attractive product that stood out immediately from the other LED bulbs on the page.
A bulb on a table lamp
Disclaimer: I had not had any firsthand experience with any NITTIO products when I wrote this piece. Details were quoted from the Ikea United States website or Canada website in mid August 2016. Details on this page are NOT guaranteed for accuracy.

First Impressions: The Ikea NITTIO LED Bulb
This item was only available on the Ikea United States website and not Canada's when I checked in mid August 2016. Two models were listed under the "LED bulbs" section under "Living room." From what I could tell, the only difference between them was the color of the base above the threads: one was in "copper color," the other in "silver color." Both bulbs were listed at US$ 7.99.

According to the product photos, the NITTIO appeared to be a mostly clear sphere with a colored area above the threads -- product page said it was an E26 bulb. Inside the sphere was what looked to be a rake-shaped antenna with a translucent tube looped around it multiple times and connected to the base at each end.

The major details that got my attention were "Luminous flux: 20 Lumen" and "Power: 1.8 W." Just 20 lumens? If I remember correctly, an old 40 W incandescent was around 400 lumens. A rating of 20 lumens is something I'd expect to see on a compact flashlight powered by a single AA or AAA battery. The NITTIO had a life expectancy of 25,000 hours, according to the product page. These bulbs were more than likely for decorative purposes at just 20 lumens. On that front, I thought they were pretty nice.

My impression was that the translucent tube in the globe was trying to simulate an old incandescent bulb's filament. How it did this, I wasn't sure. Was this a light tube that transmitted light from LED elements embedded in the base? Or did the tube have LEDs embedded inside of it? Going over the product images didn't answer my question.

Because I was LED bulb shopping in the past two weeks, I was aware of a somewhat similar LED bulb from Philips -- I saw brighter bulbs available than the Ikea NITTIO though. They were called "vintage filament" bulbs. From product photos and details that I had seen, they seemed like LEDs with clear domes and opaque tubes in the center. It looked like the tubes were LEDs themselves due to their yellow exteriors -- phosphor coating?

Final Thoughts
Ikea NITTIO LEDs appeared to be decorative bulbs with clear domes and simulated incandescent bulb filaments. I assumed they were decorative due to the low listed 20 lumen ratings. I found them to be interesting and attractive, but I didn't know what I would do with them.

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