How bright is 400 lumens? Just what is that level of light good for? We give you real life applications and comparisons to help you understand what levels of brightness certain quantities of lumens will deliver.
Table of Contents
A Lumen is a measure of the total amount of light emitted from a source.
400 lumens means the light has the intensity of 400 lumens of light.
When you are looking for how bright a certain light bulb will be, whether it is LED, CFL or incandescent – the number of lumens is what you need to use as your comparison.
Lumens is the unit measurement of brightness, with 1 lumen equalling the brightness of 1 candle, so 400 lumens has the brightness of 400 candles.
400 Lumens is a good level of light for LED, CFL or incandescent lighting. It’s suitable for recessed lighting, downlighting, up lighting and within pendants.
The brightness of an 400 lumen LED bulb is a common and standard output for the majority of GU10 LED lamps. It provides a bright light and can be used for most general lighting needs around the home.
The brightness of an 400 lumen flashlight is good for close up work either indoors or outdoors and often seen mounted as a head torch. The wider the beam of a flashlight the less intense the light will be and therefore feel less bright. The narrower the beam the more concentrated the light will be.
The brightness of an 400 lumen torch (UK for flashlight) is the power of light of 400 candles. This level is regarded as a low to medium level of torch suitable for more close up outdoor tasks and typically found in a penlight style.
The brightness of a 400 lumen bike light is an adequate level for a cycle headlight akin to a head torch. You will see where you are going with that amount of light but it’s penetration into the darkness will be inferior to other brighter models.
To compare how much light you get with different lumens levels, imagine a one by one meter room. If the room has an incandescent bulb which emits 400 lumens then it can illuminate that area to roughly 40 lux (depending on the reflectivity of surfaces in the room).
LED light is directional and very efficiently delivers light compared to other lighting sources. This amount of light is distributed with minimal wastage and creates a brighter intensity on a surface than 400 lumens from other technologies.
LED light when a cool white color temperatures of 4000K to 6500K will feel brighter with the same amount of light when compared to the warmer yellowish tones of warm white.
For reading purposes a light of around 400 lumens directly onto a page is bright but ideal for anyone requiring reading glasses or are visually impaired in any way. However this will depend on how far away the light source is from the book.
The average light level in a bedroom is around 200 lumens. However this will depend on the size of room, ceiling height and how bright you like your environment. If you are looking for an ambient lighting level with no main source of light then anything up to 400 lumens would be acceptable.
We have more on How Much Lighting Do I Need for A Room? https://quickandeasylighting.com/how-much-lighting-for-a-room/
A 400 lumen head torch is adecent brightness for outdoor activities such as camping and hiking. This level of output provides a longer lasting battery life when compared to other other models with higher outputs.
An 400 lumen security light is bright in the middle of its beam and will easily illuminate the areas around your home. However, we recommend using Twin versions to double up the output and space them apart approximately 15 ft apart.
The brightness of a 400 lumen camping lantern is perfect for providing light around the campsite or in your tent. It’s not too bright that it will disturb others but still provides enough illumination to see clearly what you are doing.
A 400 lumen LED strip is around a 5W/m 60 LED strip on a reel of 5 metres. Suitable for accent lighting in shelving and anywhere a gentle wash of light will contribute to creating a relaxed mood.
An 400 lumen LED downlight is bright enough for most homes and regarded as an average recessed light output providing a good general beam of light. This level of output is recommended up to ceiling heights of 9ft high. Any higher then the light is spread too thinly to be more than a wash of light.
When considering the conversion of lumens to watts you need to consider the type of bulb or light source you are using. The greater the efficiency of energy spent (Watts) to create the light (lumens) the less power will be used and therefore a lower wattage as the result.
Useful comparative measurements often asked:
Lux can only be measured by knowing the distance and the area the lumens have to travel to.
400 lumens is 400 candles.
A degree of kelvin is the unit of measurement for color temperature, therefore there is no direct comparison with kelvin to lumen. However, an impression of brightness will increase with a high degree of kelvin as the light seems colder and brighter to the viewer.
Lumens and Candela. Lumens is the total amount of light from a fixture. Candela is how much of that light from a fixture shines in one direction. So 400 lm would be less than 400 candela with the candela only quantified if the angle of beam width is known.
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