While we are reporting this a few days later, we are happy to see that Cree announced new color options for the XB-D and XM-L series of LEDs on the 50th birthday of the visible light LED. Adding color options to the existing XB-D line-up was not surprising, but the RGBW option for the XM-L was a pleasant surprise.
Continuing to build on their SiC (silicon carbide) platform, the XB-D color options now fill out their portfolio to levels similar to the venerable XP-E, only smaller. Royal blue, blue, green, red-orange, and red are being added, and the output is similar, if not a little higher in some instances than the XP-E equivalents. Thermal resistance comes down to 6.5°C/W over the 9°C/W of the XP-E, but forward voltages and viewing angles are staying about the same.
The heavy hitter here is the royal blue, with available bins up to 575mW @ 350mA. The XP-E tops out at 500mW currently, and the XT-E edges out the XB-D with a 600mW bin. Not bad from an LED package that’s considerably smaller than both options. The remainder of the color options come in about the same as the XP-E, with a few higher and lower bin options.
Another interesting thing to note is that all of the color options for the XB-D are rated at a maximum drive current of 1000mA. Cree has typically lowered the maximum current rating for colors other than white, blue and green to 700mA or 500mA, depending on the color. Seeing 1000mA across the board will make setting up driver topologies a lot easier.
The new XM-L Color on the other hand is more like the SiC based spiritual successor to the MC-E Color. Based on the XM-L EasyWhite, the quad die LED takes the output of the MC-E, and turns it up a bit. Beyond the fact that it’s 60% smaller than the MC-E, the use of the latest generation dies increase the output considerably, at least on the color side.
Not a lot has changed color wise with the XM-L Color over the MC-E Color. Blues still have a 450-465nm range, and the reds and greens are still 630nm and 530nm respectively. For the white die, you have the option for either a cool white (5700K-8000K) or neutral white (3700K-4300K).
Performance really only increased on the color side, where almost a 50% increase in output can be seen on the blue, green and red dies. The white performance stays strangely the same at 100lm @ 350mA. Forward voltages barely budge from the MC-E Color, but, the maximum forward current for the whole package has increased to 1000mA, over 700mA for the MC-E Color. That will allow for higher overall output when pushed hard.
So there you have it. A bunch of new Cree product additions for the birthday of the visible light LED. Datasheets can be found below.