The schools down here require each kid to participate in science fair from 3rd grade on. This is not necessarily a bad thing in our house as I am an engineer and everyone in the house has similar interests. This year my son decided to do his project on light bulbs. Specifically he wanted to compare the brightness and power consumption of the different types of light bulbs. We narrowed our sample set down to 3 different kinds of light bulbs: the Edison style incandescent, the compact fluorescent (CFL), and the LED. What he found out was surprising.
He settled on 6o watt equivalent bulbs or the equivalent. He one-by-one put the bulbs into a table lamp connected to a watt meter. He then used a light meter app on the iPhone to measure the brightness of each after a 5 minute warm-up period. The first thing he discovered was the CFL people are liars. They advertised on the packaging that the CFL would put out the same light as a 60 watt incandescent for 15 watts. Not only was the incandescent noticeably brighter than the CFL, the CFL pulled a full 38 watts! The incandescent only pulled 58 watts and was considerably brighter. And the CFL cost more than 8X the incandescent. The LED only pulled 14 watts and was considerably brighter than the incandescent but it cost 80X more than the incandescent. In fact, the cost analysis to determine how long it would take to make your money back in saved electricity indicated it would take about 24 years to get your money back based on 2011 electricity rates. And that assumes you only have to buy 1 bulb in that time. Stick with Edison!