I’m an avid collector of LED for 28 years and I was impressed how fast the technology grows in a very surprising rate. Take for example those 5 mm white LED that you can see from bargain key chain lights and small flashlights to a very bright signal lights on pedestrian lanes, traffic stop lights and most recently from residential and commercial setting as well.
A month ago, I came across a site called DX deal extreme and by navigating through their hobby/DIY section I noticed that they are already selling the most powerful white LED emitter that I’ve been so eager to buy. As a member of candlepower forum this white LED is always on top of the wish list by most of us. MCE means “multi chip emiter” as opposed to single chip that I have in my possession.
Picture of Cree MCE White LEDs
My plan is to change the two head light bulbs of my motorcycle with these beasts and sure this will give a very bright white light shining along my path at night. My only concern is how to figure out in mounting appropriate heat sink at the back of the reflector (yes, this little boy generate heat when driven higher than its specs). Another thing of more concern is how to mount a dome cap to create a shadow on top of the beam for dimming purposes otherwise; this may affect the sight of a fellow motorist.
Close-up of the Cree LED
The single chip LED on the left for size comparison
By zooming-in reveals the quad chip with 4 independent bonding wires for configuring either parallel or in series connection mode. For automotive lighting apps, then series connection is the correct choice because each chip requires above 3 volts supply at 350ma of current. Most LED enthusiast I know from CPF usually drive them up to 1 amp without complain and of course the brightness is astounding indeed. I’m not yet prepared to do these overdriving schemes because if I encounter a bad egg from the group, I will wait for a couple of weeks for a replacement and each cost me 17.50 US$ each. Well, I love this stuff so this is not expensive to me. My only gripe is waiting for door to door delivery is a real “killing me softly” scenario and it took me to wait for 2 months due to out of stock from the supplier.