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1w vs 3w LED running at 1w

Discussion in 'LEDs and Optoelectronics' started by rzfzr, Sep 14, 2014.

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  1. rzfzr


    Apr 2, 2014
    I am going to be building a led panel and I already decided that 1w is going to be better for me than 3w for a number of reasons, but I also discovered that 3w leds run just fine at 300ma, so how would they compare? 1w and 3w diodes running at 300ma (3w would be 700ma)

    Which would be the difference between brightness, heat and lifespan? Or would they both run exactly the same? I'm guessing the 3watter is physically bigger
  2. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    In general, a 3W LED operating at 1W is likely to last longer because it is running under a proportionately lower power than its maximum.

    You may find that the 3W LED is a little larger, and may be attached to a more substantial heatsink. All of these things will contribute to a lower temperature and hence a longer life.

    At worst, the 3W LED will last the same time as a 1W LED if the heatsinking is such that both would operate at the same temperature.
    rzfzr likes this.
  3. BobK


    Jan 5, 2010
    You might also find that the 3W LED operated at 1W produces more light than the 1W LED. Check the respective datasheets.

  4. rzfzr


    Apr 2, 2014
    Thanks for the reply, I shall get the 3w leds then as the difference is price is almost non existent

    In another note, I was planing in getting constant current drivers for the LEDs and run them in series.

    I have an 600w Corsair PSU (good brand so its reliable and the ripple is minimal at the 12v lane) would it be ok to use a constant voltage instead of constant current if I use parallel series of leds so that the voltage for each one is just right for 300ma? as they are rated at 700+ they shouldnt go into thermal runaway? Would it be reliable and safe in this configuration? I'm planning to run 200w of leds during 12 hours a day for a year.

  5. rzfzr


    Apr 2, 2014
    Hi bob,
    thanks for the reply,
    I did check the data sheets and comparing 1w and 3w diodes from the same company it seems that the 1w @300ma is actually a bit brighter than the 3w one running at the same current, but I still like the idea of going for the 3w as i may give me less problems in the long run, lasting longer because of the underwattage
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