Product Review

Cost-Competitive LED Outdoor Area Lighting Is Here

Cree’s high-performing LED technology plus an improved manufacturing process create the low-cost OSQ Area LED for parking, roads, and other uses.

When first introduced in the late 1990s, LED area lighting—for parking lots, office complexes, some roadways, and other uses—was expensive and out of reach for many, but over the past few years, the costs have continued to drop while efficacy has improved. We have previously highlighted top-performing outdoor lighting from Cree, typically with a focus on performance, but the company is now putting a big emphasis on lowering costs as well with the introduction of OSQ Area LED luminaires.

Outdoor LED area lighting typically comes at a first cost of about twice that of standard HID products, but because of greater energy efficiency and reduced maintenance from the long-lived LEDs, LED luminaires have paid for themselves in three to four years. Cree has lowered the first costs of its OSQ series of area LED luminaires and claims this new model costs 40% less than competitors’ models, with cost now approaching the cost of high-end HID lighting. The OSQ offers efficacies of up to 100 lumens per watt and is designed to place the light only where directed—known as target efficacy—using the company’s “NanoOptics.” This improves overall performance and minimizes glare and light intrusion on neighboring properties.

Published June 29, 2014

Ehrlich, B. (2014, June 29). Cost-Competitive LED Outdoor Area Lighting Is Here. Retrieved from