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ATEX and IEC Ex Flame-proof Explosion Proof Lighting & Equipment
Explosion Proof Lights
Explosion Proof Motors - Motors for Hazardous Locations
Industrial and Vaporproof Emergency Failsafe Lighting
Industrial Cord Reels and Tool Taps
Industrial Work Area Heaters
Machine Vision Lights
Megatower™
QC Series Industrial Portable Lighting - Quick Change Mount
Rig Lights
Stadium lights
String Lights and Temporary Light Stringers
Tank Cleaning Lights
Three Phase Motor Soft Starters
Vapor Proof LED Lights
Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs)
Vehicle Mounting Plates
Workboat Light Fixtures & Lighting Equipment
Yacht Engine Room Lights
Color Changing LED RGB Lighting
Explosion Proof Cord Reels
GOLIGHT Spotlights
Larson FUTURE - Lease Lighting
Remote Area Lighting and Scene Lights
Utility Bucket Mount, Receiver Hitch & Trailer Mount Lighting
Aevum Control Lighting and Equipment - IIoT
Butane and Solvent Extraction Room Lighting and Equipment
DC to DC Transformers and Power Supplies
Explosion Proof Fans & Blowers
Explosion Proof Paint Spray Booth Approved Lights
Explosion Proof String Lights
Explosion Proof Switchgear & Controls
Fleet Service Lights and Lighting Equipment
Industrial Equipment Trailers
Industrial Handlamps & Droplights
ISO 14644/FS-209E Clean Room Lighting
LED Blasting Lights
Night Time Fishing Lights
Portable AC Power Supply Units
Portable Power Distribution Panels
Power Distribution Panels with KVA Transformers
Self-Contained Lighting
Service Pit Lighting
Solar Generators & Solar Powered Lighting
Agricultural Farm Equipment Lighting & Beacons
Explosion Proof Cameras & Surveillance Systems
Explosion Proof Emergency Lights
Explosion Proof Heaters
Garage & Gas Station Canopy Lights
LED Grow Lights
LED Lights
NDT Ultraviolet Lights
Portable Hazardous Location Lighting
Radio Communication Towers and Equipment
Salt Water Processing Equipment
Shelter & Tent Lighting
Thermal Monitoring Cameras and Systems
48V LED Equipment Lights
ATEX Rated Explosion Proof Lights
Automotive Lighting
Class Rated Signals, Alarms, and Systems
Hazardous Location Area Lights and Portable Lighting
HID Equipment Lights
Hot Work Permit Lighting and Equipment
Hunting Lights
Industrial lasers
Industrial Transformers
Light Towers
Outdoor Lighting
Remote Security and Surveillance Systems
Temporary Construction Lights
Vehicle Mounted Spotlights
Equipment & Heavy Machinery LED Light Package Fitouts
Phase Converters - Single to Three Phase
Marine Shore Power Cords and Equipment
24 Volt Military Lights
Disaster Relief / First Responders / Search & Rescue Lighting
Plastic Handcuff Key
110/120 Volt Flood Lights
Post Mount Spotlights
Magnetic Work Lights
Crank-up Light Masts
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Intrinsically Safe Lights
Military Flashlights
LED Waterproof Lanterns
Work Area Lights
12 Volt Flood Lights
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Boat Spotlights
New Boat Lights
HID Boat Lights
Boat Dock Lights
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Remote Control Lights
Control Lights
Tow Lights
Magnetic Control Lights
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NEW Lights and New Products
Evaporative Coolers
Police Equipment
AC/DC Transformers
Power Supplies
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Military Spotlights 24V
Infrared Filters, Covert Covers, and Blackout IR Lenses
Military Equipment
Ultralife Batteries
Remote Control Pan Tilt Base
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Larson Electronics Spotlights
Larson Electronics Parts
Replacement Lamps
Cords - Brackets
Portable Wheeled Generators
Non-Hazardous Location Extension Cords / Plugs / Outlets
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HID Work Lights
HID Dive Lights
HID Off Road Lights
Acro Lights HID Lights
Halogen Lights
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Acro Light Flashlight
Xenon HID Flashlights
Powerlight Flashlight
HID Flashlights
Xenon Flashlights
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LED Status Lights
Forklift Lights
Tractor Lights
HID Post Mount Lights
Roof Mount Lights
Post Mount Light parts
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Flashlight Holder
Magnet Spotlight Base
Tripods-Magnetic Base
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Recharging Spotlights
Fire Rescue Lights
LED Street Lights
Utility Lights
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Hazard Lights
Strobe Lights - Battery Operated
Strobes & Beacons
Strobe Light Bars
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Headlights - Headlamps - Hard Hat Lights
Flashlights
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Suction Mount Lights
Magnetic Spotlights
12/24 Volt Spotlights
Gifts For Men
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New 12 / 24 Volt Lights
Explosion Proof Accessories and Replacement Parts
Explosion Proof Lighting
Explosion Proof Hand Lamps (Drop Lights)
Explosion Proof Lights - Stand/Dolly
Explosion Proof Tank Lights
Explosion Proof Phones and Intercoms
Explosion Proof Extension Cords
Black Friday & Cyber Monday Specials
Crane Lights
Explosion Proof Light Rentals
General Light Rentals
Light Tower and Light Plant Rentals
Power Distribution Rentals
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Power Plant Lighting
Refinery lights
Environmental Services Lights
Aerospace Lights
Chemical Plant Lights
Food Grade Safe Lights
Film and Entertainment Lights
Handheld Meters and Devices
Waste Water Treatment Lights
Mining Lights
Ship Yard Lights
Work Site Lighting
         

   
03/16/11 LED Boat Lights: Power and Performance Changing Perceptions

When it comes to debating the value of LED lights, the boating community can be one of the most informative and critical voices there are. Boat owners tend to be very passionate and unforgiving when it comes to their investment. When you consider that this is more than just a hobby, that large amounts of money and time, not to mention a great deal of safety concerns are involved, it’s no surprise that when it comes to equipping their craft’s, compromise and guesswork get little thrift. Although LEDs have made huge strides in all aspects of the lighting industry, they are still widely considered to be a new and largely unproven technology, which doesn’t bode well among groups as demanding as boaters. While it’s true that LEDs have been around for quite some time and that the last 5 years have seen some amazing improvements, so much so that LEDs now rival or surpass most traditional forms of illumination, safety and practicality have served to keep much of the boating community skeptical.

Part of the problem lies with how quickly LEDs have advanced. While on the surface this would seem a good thing, the drawback is that when technology progresses as rapidly as the light emitting diode has, knowledge of this progress spreads much more slowly. When it comes to safety and finances, most people, let alone boaters, are only willing to give new products one chance. When a new item hits the market, its first impression tends to be a lasting one. With LEDs, many ambitious manufacturers were quick to move their products into the marine industry once it became clear that LEDs held the potential to appeal to such a broad market. So quick perhaps, that they spent little time considering whether or not their products were ready for introduction. The result was a lackluster debut and the beginning of a hit or miss success story as many cheap and underpowered LEDs  ended up on various watercraft only to be pronounced useless and summarily tossed aside and sworn off. Nowadays, if you ask ten boaters their opinions of LED lighting, you’re likely to get ten widely varied opinions, many of which are rooted in the LEDs early poor first impression.

Compounding the LED’s initial problems with power and performance, their cost when first introduced was somewhat prohibitive. When you consider that a typical tried and true marine halogen lamp could set you back a mere $25 to $100 dollars and an LED version over $200, it’s no wonder there’s a lot of skepticism and jaundiced eyes out there. The good news however is that LEDs have really begun to come into their own and as more boaters install and use them, more boaters are reporting above average results that border on demonstrating extreme effectiveness if not downright amazing improvements. Above average luminosity, exceptional light color, extreme ruggedness and above all, vast improvements in power consumption rates are now beginning to become the more commonly heard results from those installing LED lighting on their watercraft. The reason for such a significant swing in perceptions is fairly easy to understand one you realize just how significant the improvements in LED technology have been.

When LEDs where first beginning to flood into the marine markets, they generally tended to produce at best 50 to 70 lumens per watt. While not altogether terrible performance, this low level light production was compounded by wide ranging problems with the quality and color of the light produced and the fact that LEDs tend to produce light that is highly directional in nature. Over time, however, reputable manufacturers were quick to address these shortcomings and now we have LED offerings that produce 90 lumens or more per watt, have higher quality color temperatures than incandescent, and offer exceptional directional control. The factor cementing the real change behind the LEDs improving reputation though has been their extreme efficiency, which by the way is the reason for the initial excitement that led to their introduction before they were truly ready for practical use. Now that they offer the performance to make that efficiency practical, they are finally beginning to earn deserved accolades instead of excited hype simply because they were efficient. In short, LEDs were ahead of their time. Not so anymore.

LEDs have come so far in fact, that not only is the average boater realizing their benefits, but the extremely demanding commercial marine industry is embracing them as well. Commercial lobster and crab fisherman have been reporting great success with using the Larson Electronics LEDLB and LEDLB-E line of LED light bars in their commercial operations. Perhaps the most interesting part of this change is that although in the past it was the extreme efficiency of the LED that was hyped above everything else, it is now their effectiveness that is grabbing the spotlight, with their efficiency serving to underscore the point. Commercial fishermen have stated that using these lights is not only saving them power and reducing the problems of managing dedicated generators and burning fuel to produce that power, but that these lights are proving better suited to their operations than the high pressure sodium lamps they used to use. No longer is it a matter of compromising on power or effectiveness and letting the LEDs efficiency make up the difference. Now it is about getting high power and effectiveness with efficiency thrown in for good measure. When you consider that LEDs can now produce the same amount of light as a high powered halogen, with better light quality, using a quarter the amount of electrical power, even a poor first impression isn’t going to last for very long. Boaters may be critical and demanding, but they also know a good thing when they see it.

Like all new technology that carries with it grand promises, the LED has had its share of fits and starts. Although an early weak showing created something of a jaded view of their potential, the improvements over the last several years are quickly making that initial first impression as obsolete as the lights they are quickly replacing.





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