Cree bins individual models of LED on the basis of total flux or light output. Individual flux bins are about 7% apart taken at some reference current like 350mA or 750mA, but at higher currents the output goes up, up to some maximum current. Cree measures output at a reference temperature 85° Celsius, which is a more realistic operating temperature, but in the past they measured at 25°. Output is typically higher at a lower temperature.
Cree classifies tints of white LEDs as being warm, neutral, and cool, but also "outdoor white" in between and overlapping neutral and cool (4000-5300K). Tints are binned using a system based on the ANSI_White standard. Cree's tints subdivide and expand on the ANSI regions giving bins such as cool 1B, neutral 5B1, and warm 7D2, though many other tints and subdivisions are available. Click on the graphic at right to see all of the bins, though not all bins are available.
In addition, Cree produces High CRI LEDs, with CRI values of 80, 85, and 90 represented by bins H1, P1, and U1 respectively (separately, L1 represents normal CRI white LEDs, and O1 is outdoor white).
Below are output numbers for different currents for the various brightness bins of more current LED models. There is more information available with the Cree Product Characterization Tool, an online calculator that allows you to look up output based on more factors. The numbers on this page, like those given by the PCT, are based on charts in the LED datasheets.
Large die high power LED has versions that run at 6, 9, or 36 volts with maximum power of 18 watts, first available around November 2012. The LED is 8.9mm x 8.9mm and the light will be floody compared to the smaller XM-L. The first production lights to use this LED were the Crelant 7G10 and Solarforce S200, introduced in May 2013. The LED is binned at 85°C. The bins shown below have been increased by 15% to give output at 25°C for easier comparison to other LEDs.
A large multi-die emitter available in 6-volt and 12-volt versions. Available in a number of big lights by Nitecore and others.
|Bin|| 2100mA (6V)
| 3200mA (6V)
| 4800mA (6V)|
Same 5mm x 5mm size as the original XM-L but with up to 20% more output. Introduced in December 2012. Like the XP-G2, the XM-L2 is silver on top, has two bonding wires, and the die has dots instead of lines. The XM-L2 is significantly larger than the XP-G2 and has a round hole at the upper left as opposed to the XP-G2's square hole. The first production lights to feature the XM-L2 were the ThruNite Catapult V3 and TN31 in January 2013, followed by a number of Xeno lights which also had options for neutral tints in Feburary. Press release.
Introduced in September 2012, this redesign is similar to the XP-G2. Cree claims up to 20% more output than the original XP-E at half the cost in terms of lumens per dollar. Given the small die size, this LED throws well for the amount of output. It was used in some smaller Fenix flashlights. Press realease, datasheet.
Introduced in July 2012, the XP-G2 is an all new design with the same size as the earlier XP-G. In August 2012, Foursevens was the first company to adopt this LED, claiming up to 20% more output and a 5% smaller hotspot for greater throw compared to the same models using a XP-G. Press release, Datasheet
Announced in April 2016, the XP-G3 is completely covered in yellow phosphor and can be driven to higher currents than the XP-G2, with a maximum current of 2 amps instead of 1.5. High CRI versions of the LED appear to be available in all tints, even cool tints. Press release, Datasheet
XP-Lhigh intensity" or "HI" version of the LED with a flat coating instead of a dome that could offer the throw of a de-domed LED without the trouble. The original domed version is referred to as "high density" or "HD." The brightness bins for both are the same, but the highest bin on the HI is about V3.