Category Archives: LEDs

Articles specifically about LEDs

All-in-One 12V & 24V LEDs: Making DIY Lighting Easier than Ever

Working with LED lighting does not have to be hard. You have probably thought of a cool lighting idea that you have not attempted to build in the past. Why not? I believe most people, like you, feel they are not educated or skilled enough to create the LED lighting idea on their own.

Well I have news for you… Stop, leave that ‘but I can’t’ thought behind. In this post, I will show you just how easy LED lighting can be to set up with the right products!

What is needed to Create an LED Light

Ever wanted to build an LED lamp? Now you can with just 2 parts!

With the growing popularity of LED lighting, many have researched and contacted me asking how to create small LED lights, LED lamps, LED panel lights, downlights…you name it. This would start a discussion about the different components needed to complete an LED setup:

  • Surface mount device (SMD) LEDs or LED Modules
  • Constant Current Drivers
  • AC/DC Power Supplies
  • Heatsinks

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How Does a 5mm LED Work?

Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) are all around us. They are in our homes, our cars, even our phones. LEDs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, this gives designers the ability to tailor them to their product. Any time something electronic lights up, there’s a good chance that an LED is behind it. Their low power and small sizes make them a great choice for many different products as they can be worked into the design more seamlessly to make it an overall better device.

We have discussed high-brightness LEDs in the past, but throughout this post we will be focusing our attention on 5mm LEDs or through hole LEDs. These are the types of LEDs that are likely to be in your smaller electronics as an indicator light or something of that nature.  5mm LEDs take much less current to run than high brightness LEDs, 20mA compared to a minimum of 350mA for high-power LEDs. If you followed our original Mastering LEDs post, you should know: more current = more light. So obviously these 5mm LEDs are going to be more of an accent light or light for very small spaces. This is exactly the purpose of 5mm LEDs, they can be used together in a large array to create a sign or some sort of matrix, or they can be used on their own to make a small indicator light or one of those tiny key chain flashlights.

5mm LEDs are super helpful as they Continue reading

Cree XLamp Series: Which Cree LED Should You Buy?

The Cree brand develops the highest-quality LED lighting. Being a market leader, Cree LEDs define the metrics by which all other LEDs are measured. When you choose Cree LED luminaires you are getting the innovation and proven technology that makes the industry’s most reliable and best performing LEDs. Cree is constantly improving on their technology, coming out with upgrades and new models. This is great as it keeps the LEDs up to date with the newest technology but it can be confusing when trying to buy a Cree LED and then seeing how many different options there are. Below we will run through each Cree LED we carry and give you a brief overview of the LED and how it stands out from the rest, hopefully aiding you in finding what LED is best for your application. If you want more general information on LEDs and how to understand all the specs and information on them then I suggest you check out our extensive guide to LEDs here first. Continue reading

Series/Parallel Circuits Explained

Wiring LEDs Correctly: Series & Parallel Circuits Explained!

Schematic of Series Parallel CircuitHopefully those looking for practical information on electrical circuits and wiring LED components found this guide first. It’s likely though, you’ve already read the Wikipedia page about Series and parallel circuits here, maybe a few other Google search results on the subject and are still unclear or wanting more specific information as it pertains to LEDs. With years of providing LED education, training and explaining the electronic circuit concept to customers, we have gathered and prepared all the critical information needed to help you understand the concept of electrical circuits and their relationship to LEDs. Continue reading


1-Watt, 3-Watt & High Wattage LEDs: Please Explain!

1-WATT-3-WATT-EXPLAINED_THUMBNAILCoined originally from the Philips LumiLEDs Luxeon I, III & V line of LEDs was the idea and terminology that high-power LEDs are grouped and referred to by a specific wattage. By many, the Luxeon I was called a 1-watt LED, the Luxeon III a 3-watt LED and the Luxeon V a 5-watt LED.

Duh, right…

Well, technically these and most LEDs have a wide current range at which they can be powered, so boxing them into one wattage ‘category’ has proven Continue reading

What is the brightest LED? Lumen Outputs and Comparisons

So you want to know what our brightest LED is? I can tell you first hand that you definitely are not alone on that one. We get that question asked a lot, and to be honest, there is no straight up answer. We have different kinds of LEDs, different color temperatures, and different arrays that make the answer long winded which is why I’m dedicating a whole blog post to answering it as best I can. Continue reading

Cree XP-L versus Cree XM-L2: What’s the Difference?

We get the ‘What is your brightest LED?’ question a lot here at LEDSupply which is usually followed up with more questions about specific LEDs, why they are better, how they are compared to another type of LED…you get the picture. One comparison we get a lot, however, is that between the Cree XP-L and the Cree XM-L2. If you look at both of their spec sheets, you could almost mistake one for the other as they have extremely similar characteristics and even the same specs in a lot of areas. This isn’t much of a surprise as the Cree XP-L actually uses the XM-L2 die, just in a smaller XP sized package. ‘So what’s the deal?’ a lot of customers ask, ‘Is there even a benefit to the XP-L or is this just a minor upgrade that is trying to be passed off as more in order to improve sales?’ The Cree XP-L is, indeed, a breakthrough. In this post I will briefly run through a couple of the differences over the XM-L2 and explain some of the advantages it brings. Continue reading

photo red and far red cree xpe leds

New Cree XP-E Offerings: Photo Red and Far Red (Infrared)


The Cree XLamp XP-E LED used the same proven technology from Cree’s XR-E line. They improved upon the design with an 80% size reduction and providing 69% more luminous flux than the XR-E. Cree was able to increase the performance by reducing the space between the die. At LEDSupply, like all our surface mount LEDs, we reflow these onto a 20mm LuxDrive metal core printed circuit board (MCPCB). This electrically isolated star has four solder pads for easy installation. The hexagonal shape makes it possible to place these very close, increasing the light output per unit area. We offer in 1-up and 3-up options that are compatible with Carclo optics.

The XP-E has since been replaced by the more efficient XP-E2 which we offer in a variety of colors. Why are we talking about the XP-E then? That is because we were able to get our hands on some XP-E options I know our customers will love. Continue reading

The Light Around Us Exhibit: LEDs used for Science

Today I’ve got a little something cool to announce and talk about. The Light Around Us: Color, Reflections, and Invisible Energy is an exhibition that explores both the physics of light and how we see it. I was contacted about this exhibit by a loyal customer of LEDSupply, Tom Nielsen. Tom is a partner in a small company called The Exhibit Guys out of Tucson, Arizona. They specialize in making exhibits for science centers and children’s museums and recently completed this project at the Montshire Museum of Science, right in our backyard in Norwich, VT. They used a lot of our products in completing these exhibits so we thought it would be cool to show what they did, what they aim to teach kids about light, and how LEDs are perfect for these projects. Continue reading

Everything about LEDs: Learn the basics of LED lighting and how to power!

LEDs are appropriate for many lighting applications, they are designed to produce a lot of light from a small form factor while maintaining fantastic efficiency. Here at LEDSupply there are a variety of LEDs for all kinds of different lighting applications, the trick is knowing how to use them. LED technology is a tad different than other lighting that most people are familiar with. This post is here to explain everything you need to know about LED lighting: how to power LEDs safely so you get the most light and the longest lifetime possible.
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