Lighting has a major impact on the mood and ambiance of a room. With proper lighting, you can make a room look cosy or bright. Some types of lighting that are suitable for bedrooms may not be the best choice for kitchens. There are factors to consider before settling on a particular choice of lighting. One of these factors is colour rendering index. It is a means of measuring the ability of the light source to show objects realistically, or naturally.

What is Colour Rendering Index?

Colour rendering index or CRI is significant because it is hard to find replacements for incandescent light bulbs with high CRI rating. Those who are looking to save on energy try to find LED lights with CRI rating from 90-100. The higher the rating, the better the ability of the light source to render the object as close to its natural colour as possible. The comparison of this rating is how an object’s colour is rendered with daylight in the middle of the day. This is given a perfect score of 100.

Philips Expert Colour GU10

If you choose light sources with low CRI rating, walls, furniture, and other décor will not appear as they should. This can significantly alter the feel and aesthetic of the room. Good colour display via high CRI rating can reveal subtle variations in the colour spectrum. A CRI from 80-89 is also considered good. However, if you can find lamps or bulbs with 90-100 rating, it would an excellent choice. The Philips Expert Colour GU10 LED shown above has an exceptionally high CRI rating of RA97 which is an alternative way of say CRI97.

Improving the CRI of lighting in your home

One problem encountered by most homeowners is that CRI from different light sources can vary. This means that if you have different light sources for different areas of the home, the ambiance can also change. Nevertheless, this depends on whether you prefer lower CRI for some rooms in your house. Artificial light sources such as lamps, led lights, and fluorescent lights don’t always come close to a good Colour Rendering Index rating of at least 80. Energy-efficient LED lights may score around 80-90 which is pretty good already.

On the other hand, a typical white fluorescent lamp scores around 50-60. There are manufacturers of high-end incandescent and LED bulbs that can sometimes score from 90 to 100. You can find excellent-quality bulbs with high CRI rating from online sources such as Downlights Direct.

Choosing light sources with high CRI rating

When it comes to the subject of improving the CRI of light sources in your home, there are a few options. If you don’t want to replace your lamps or bulbs, you can opt to bring in more natural light by way of skylights. If you want to consider replacing your light sources, there are several high-end lamps available in the market today with the highest CRI rating possible.

The Philips Master Expert Colour range has a CRI rating of 97. This type of bulb is ideal for use in establishments such as galleries and restaurants where it is crucial for objects to appear as realistic as possible. You can also opt for this light source for your home. This can be installed in areas such as the kitchen and living room. Even at night time, these areas of your home will still appear similar to how they normally look during the day.

CRI Examples

Another good example of a bulb with high CRI rating is the Integral LED High GU10 lamp. It has a CRI rating of 95 and has was a finalist for Lux awards in 2016. Since this is a LED bulb, you a guaranteed to save on energy cost. You can also see the difference in how object colours are rendered when you replace light sources in your home. Since most LED lamps don’t even come close to a CRI rating this high, this product is considered to be among the best options available today.

Integral LED High CRI GU10 Lamp

Light sources used for home and other establishments have undergone some major innovations throughout the years. You can truly customise the feel and look of your home through light fixtures that are able to mimic natural light. High CRI rated bulbs are truly the way to go for the best lighting for any home.

Once you've experience the real colour effect of high CRI, you'll notice the difference and won't want to go back to low colour rendering lighting. Consumers are now demanding higher specification lighting products and manufacturers are listening, with the latest installment of integrated LED downlights from Collingwood Lighting now featuring CRI90 with their H2 Lite 400 CSP integrated LED downlight model.

H2 Lite 400 CSP High CRI Downlight