What’s exciting about Cree’s new LED light bulb? At first glance, not a thing. Which, ironically, is what makes it exciting. Best known for producing the blindingly awesome LED emitters used in high-end flashlights, Durham-based Cree has recently started selling a line of low-cost LED light bulbs that look like, well, light bulbs. Due to the stringent cooling required to keep advanced white-light LEDs shining brightly, most incandescent replacement LED bulbs look like something out of a science fiction movie, with odd arrays of metal fins, lenses, and painfully bright emitters that scream, “Hey, look at me, I’m environmentally friendly!” If you’re after something a little more subtle, Cree’s new bulbs are nearly indistinguishable from a regular incandescent bulb when in the fixture; they even designed a fake filament tower to make it look more like a regular bulb. The bulbs are available in Warm White and Daylight colors at 40W or 60W equivalent light output (yet only use 6 to 9.5W of power), and are compatible with most dimming lamps and switches. With prices starting at around ten bucks, they’re a great way to save money on your power bill without making your home look like a James Cameron movie set.
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