Sylvania 78823 LED Light Bulb Review

3stars

Sylvania 78823 Ultra LED Light Bulb Review

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The Sylvania 78823 UltraLED 13.5-Watt A19 LED light bulb is designed to replace a dimmable 60 watt A19 incandescent light bulb for use in household lamps.

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The Sylvania 78823 UltraLED 13.5-Watt A19 LED light bulb is designed to replace a dimmable 60 watt A19 incandescent light bulb for use in household lamps and other general domestic lighting applications.  The Sylvania LED light bulb 78823 is mercury free.

CLICK HERE to order the Sylvania 78823 UltraLED on Amazon.com


PACKAGING: 2.5/5

Above: The Sylvania 78823 UltraLED light bulb packaging

The Sylvania 78823 UltraLED light bulb is packaged in a sturdy but thin plastic shell surrounded by a cardboard frame front in back. While the packaging presents the product fairly well, it’s not nearly as robust as the packaging used by Philips and GE for their premium LED light bulb products.

That’s not entirely a bad thing.  LED bulb products are often over packaged with layers of plastic and paper that could have been eliminated, or designed more efficiently.  Even Sylvania’s 78823 packaging uses an excessive amount of plastic and paper.  We would like to see Sylvania, and many other LED light bulb manufacturers, put as much thought and care into their packaging as they do their bulbs.

Opening the Sylvania packaging was a simple process of tearing the folded cardboard frame apart and opening the plastic shell containing the bulb.  No scissors necessary.


PHYSICAL PRODUCT: 2/5

Above: The Sylvania UltraLED 78823 LED light bulb.

The Sylvania 78823 UltraLED light bulb does not feature the most impressive fit and finish.  The first thing we noticed is the plastic lens at the top of the bulb was not square on the bulb and had a skewed lip around the circumference of the product.  The bulb’s body and screw are also slightly skewed from one another, but less so than the top lens.  With competing A19 light bulb products from Philips, GE, and LG offering top notch fit and finish, Sylvania needs to improve their quality.

The Sylvania 78823 UltraLED light bulb features a variation on the ice cream cone design.  In the hand, the bulb presents more fit and finish concerns as the top lens or “ice cream” part of the bulb physically moves separately from the “cone” base.  It does not feel like it will come apart, but there is a considerable amount of play between the two sections of the bulb.  This is in comparison to the A19 bulbs from Philips, GE, and LG that feel like one solid unit.

Finally, and most importantly, the Sylvania 78823 was too large to fit into our test lamp.  The bulb size should really be classified as an A21.  The pictures of the bulb in our light test below were done by removing the test lamp’s internal hardware and using a clear plastic spacer to hold the lamp shade the appropriate distance above the bulb.  This certainly would not be acceptable or safe for anything other than a brief test.  What Sylvania was thinking by releasing a product that did not comply with the standard A19 bulb size is beyond us.  Sylvania, put this bulb on a diet!


LIGHT PATTERN: Omni-Directional

Left to right: Sylvania 78823, 60 watt incandescent, 60 watt CFL

The Sylvania 78823 LED light bulb has an omni-directional light output and would be suitable for table top lamps and other general lighting applications.


QUALITY OF LIGHT: 5/5

Left to right: Sylvania 78823, 60 watt incandescent, 60 watt CFL

After our negative critique of the fit, finish, build quality, and generous size of the Sylvania 78823 light bulb, you may be expecting us to be similarly unimpressed with the quality of light it produced.

Well, that’s where things get interesting.  To cut to the chase, the quality of the light generated by the Sylvania 78823 is a knock out.  It’s not too warm/yellow like the Philips 409904.  It’s not too cool and grey like the G7 900W9W.  The Sylvania is actually just a hair warmer than a standard incandescent, and that’s a really good thing.

What surprised us the most is that we started to prefer the light color of the Sylvania to the reference 60 watt incandescent.  This hasn’t happened to us with any of the other LED brands to date.  Fit, finish, build quality, and over-size issues aside, this bulb is a clear winner in our book. Fix the other issues and the Sylvania would be a five-star shoe in.

UPDATE: We reviewed the Maxxima 380 (380 lumen/180 degree) two weeks after the Sylvania and were amazed at how similar the light qualities are between these two LED bulbs.  This is good news because the Maxxima is one of our current favorite 40 watt equivalents, with a very natural and inviting light quality.  The Sylvania follows suit with similar natural and inviting light quality but with an omni-directional light pattern and significantly more light output (810 lumens).

CLICK HERE to read consumer reviews on the Sylvania 78823 UltraLED light bulb


WARRANTY

The warranty on the Sylvania 78823 light bulb is three years.  This warranty term is below average compared with the 60 watt LED competition.


CONCLUSION: 3.5/5

We are well aware at how frustrating a mixed review can be.  The truth is that this bulb hit it out the park with its light color and output, and was a total gutter ball in the fit, finish, and general build quality categories.  Based on this confluence of good and bad, how should we call this?

Sylvania’s three year warranty does give us some confidence that the 78823 LED bulb will last despite its less than encouraging build quality.  After all, it’s not like you’re going to play catch with the bulb.  Once it’s in a lamp, the 78823 will be there for upwards of two decades, or more.  While we would strongly prefer that Sylvania would match the high level of build quality offered by its direct competitors, it’s not a make or break for us (no pun intended).

If you can live with the fit and finish issues, the light quality of the Sylvania 78823 is a winner.  We love the quality of light it creates and would have no issues replacing all of the 60 watt incandescent applications in our house with the Sylvania 78823.

CLICK HERE to order the Sylvania 78823 on Amazon.com


TEST RESULTS:

LED Light Review independently tested the Sylvania LED Light Bulb 78823 with a Belkin Conserve Insight F7005 energy use monitor to measure the energy use (in watts), monthly and annual operation costs, and the monthly and annual amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) produced by the bulb.  Here are the results of our tests:

Energy Used 14.4 watts
Monthly Operation Cost $1.21/month
Annual Operation Cost $14.77/year
Monthly CO2 produced 12.6 lbs/month
Annual CO2 produced 153 lbs/year


The monthly and annual cost and CO2 data are based on continuous LED bulb use, unspecified power generation sources (coal vs. nuclear vs. renewable, etc.), and unspecified electricity rates.  Please use this information for LED bulb comparison purposes only.


LIGHTING FACTS – PER BULB:

Brightness 810 lumens
Estimated Yearly Energy Cost $1.63
Life 23 years**
Energy Star Compliant No
Light Appearance 2,700 degrees Kelvin (warm white)
Energy Used 13.5 watts

** Based on 3 hours of use per day.

Model No: X20769 – LED13.5A/DIM/0/F/827/HVP
UPC: 0-46135-78837-6
Another Code: 552019
Package: 78823 UltraLED