Source of quality LED's

Hello all,  Thank you for having me. I am a disabled senior from the electrical/HVACR/plumbing trades since 1972. The LED lighting technology has sorta slipped up on me being I have been disabled since 2005 and almost 10 years bedridden so please forgive me for some stupid questions and go gentle on this old man.

I am looking for a source for LED chips preferably the smart ic on board 120v AC type so not to have to deal with drivers. I am retro fitting a couple of old 400 MH utility company main street type lights to LED if I can find some good reasonable high lumen chips or I can install a couple or more of lesser lumen chips, I removed the ballast and cap to reduce the weight and give more room. 

There is enough room for a pee wee football game in there. These lights will light the path of about 200ft to the area where our chickens etc. are kept so my wife can see how to feed and gather eggs in the early night if need be and hopefully to prevent someone from stepping on a snake. I will have them about 20ft in the air and controlled via photo cell and motion detector. 

Can anyone recommend a source for chips and sinks that is not the Chinese crap that is all over the internet? I would like to get at least 20k lumens minimum with CRI of no less than 80 and as close to 5000K as I can get. Thanks in advance for any and all help. And forgive me if this is posted in the wrong forum.


  • You can try Citizen COBs from Japan. They are amazing in quality and also have high powered COBs for your requirement.
  • In reply to clockmaster11:

    For heatsinks and COB Chip holders, you could use A.A.G. Stucchi, Italy.

    Mechatronix, Taiiwan is also known for their heatsinks.
  • In reply to clockmaster11:

    Thanks clockmaster11, I will see if I can find them.
  • Registered Users Member
    Good day Wilber256,

    Just a heads up, but there is a lot more to doing this than simply sourcing a suitable LED module. I say this, as I design retrofit-able LED fixtures for applications that you mention. For example, careful attention has to be made to removing the heat generated by these high lumen LEDs. Although LEDs are very efficient in terms of energy and lumen output, they generate a lot of heat per unit area (heat density) that has to be considered, otherwise the LEDs will fail much earlier than their projected lifeimes. For example high lumen LEDs by Cree are spec'd to generate a case temperature of 85C with a surface temp of 135C! Because of these temps a lot of design effort is done on removing the heat via heatsinks and in some cases with active cooling.

    In addition to the heat, extra, extra attention has to be paid to power supply/driver design of the LED itself. LEDs are very robust, but are very sensitive to overvoltage and other transients. A slight power bump, etc can easily damage the LED and/or reduce its lifetime quite dramatically.

    In one of my designs I spent a ton of time on the heat dissipation issue and as a result I was able to reduce the case and surface temps well below spec and so the LED lifetimes would exceed the manufacutrer's claims by a fair amount. Secondly, because of my design I was able to reduce the power consumption of the 400 MH fixtures substantially... to less than 20W! I was able to have this extreme reduction because the original fixtures had a huge cavity loss. Effectively the 32000 lumen output of the MH was mostly consumed within the fixture cavity. If the cavity loss was not as bad as it was, my LED fixture replacement power consumption would have been closer to about 100W ... so about 75% energy reduction. However, the customer is not upset at the 95% reduction ...

    I would advise that before you commit to your project that you spend some time to analyze the various LEDs, etc to ensure they meet the temperature, voltage protection, and any electrical approvals necessary for your project. Otherwise your project could go sideways pretty fast.


  • I must say that you are my favourite author. You always bring surprised things for me everytime I see your articles. Great efforts!!
  • In reply to s2sam:

    Hi Sam, Thanks for the reply. Sounds like you need to visit my place and do some fishing.
    I have been searching for a surge/spike suppressor to install in line at the light on the net but can't find anything that is not 4-5 times the expense of the LED module.

    I am using a 120v COB smart IC chip so no driver problems there (I hope). I could not find any sink larger than what I already had so I am using it with a 120v muffin fan. I decided to try a chinese special for the first sacrifice, I had it already and thought I should test my fixture with it.

    This light is photo and motion controlled so unless a varmit or the dogs keep it on then it really should not be on but a few minutes at a time. This was done to reduce heat build up and keep 150 watts off as long as not needed and in hopes of extending the life of the LED.

    Thanks so much for your expertise and suggestions I will keep a progress report on how things are going. Problem is I can't get enough time to do much because the grass is keeping me busy with all the rain in dixie.
    Mowing about 4 acres is a big task for a broken down old buzzard but never getting it all mowed is worse.

    My next project is to improve the lighting on my mower.


    Amory, Mississippi
  • Registered Users Member

    In reply to Wilber256:

    Good day Glenn,
    You are most welcome and it would be great to go fishing, as I have never had the pleasure to visit your wonderful area!

    As for your project... The on-board 120V Drivers are certainly the direction that a number of manufacturers are going. I have not fully analyzed these high voltage (HV) designs and so I cannot comment on how well or bad they are or could be. That being said I would be concerned about the actual electrical approvals on these designs. Sadly, there are a number of manufacturers that fraudulently affix or market that their designs/products are UL, CUL, etc approved. Many are not. I was reviewing one design and clearly there was no way it could pass, as the isolation distance between the HV circuits was significantly less than it should be ... about 0.030" when it should have been 0.250" or so. The device failed (surprise) and the "Hot" was shorted against the case. When the building operator touched the light he would get a nasty shock... surprise again. So I would ensure you check with the supplier and obtain their UL registration number to confirm their product/driver has been approved. Remember this is for HV approval and does not necessarily guarantee survival through nasty electrical storms, etc. Here the HV design will need specific and costly circuitry to absorb the energy associated with these transient events.

    Low voltage (LV) designs tend to be easier and in a number of cases provide electrical isolation from the HV input. In virtually all cases they use an isolation transformer between the HV and LV circuits. Transformers may be an old technology, but they work very well and have a very high reliability (MTBF of about 50 years). They are bulky and add to cost, but one cannot argue about their robustness and reliability. In the last 30 years I think I had only 1 transformer that has failed. Even so this design approach also needs transient voltage protection that most manufacturers ignore and provide little design. The reason is cost... and since we live in a time where the desire is to have least cost product, something has to give... and so electrical transient protection is the first to go. Thankfully I have customers that are willing to pay for better quality and so the extra $$ are worth it to them, as my devices just work... and usually for very long periods of time (over 15+ years with 24/7 operation).

    Getting back to your project.. Check the HV approvals and ensure that they are there. Electrical transient protection is up to you. If your project is not mission critical and/or if it is not a big deal to replace a dead device, then you can forgo the enhanced transient protection. Lastly, heat dissipation. The larger the heat sink the better, as this will really extend the life of the LED. Also use the best thermal compound you can between the LED and the heatsink. One of the best compounds is used primarily in the computer industry and is called Artic Silver 5. It is pricey, but has a high thermal conductance which will help a lot. It is conductive and so use it appropriately.

    Anyway, good luck with your project!


  • Registered Users Member

    In reply to s2sam:

    Everyone is just taking the description from google and posting here. Just doing Spammin over here.
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