Survival-Pax Blog: February 2012

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Simon Says - Get To Know Your Neighbors

In my first video in the Simon Says series, I wanted to mention something that is often overlooked when preparing for emergencies. This piece of advise is something that you can do that doesn't even have to cost anything.

In today's difficult economy, as people who care about being prepared, we should make use of any inexpensive preps that we can do for ourselves. There really isn't anything cheaper than getting to know the people that live around you. All it takes is a handwave as you drive by, perhaps shoveling their sidewalks when theres a larger snowfall or raking their leaves when you see they are having difficulty doing so.

The advantages to getting on good terms with your neighbors are numerous. Friendly neighbors will be there to help you when you need it. They can watch your house for you when you're not home. If there's a job too large for one person to do, a helpful neighbor is a great thing to have.

So that's my tip for now. Get to know your neighbors. It doesn't cost you much, but the advantages are priceless. Not to mention, you may make some lasting friendships while you're at it.

Take care!

Simon - Survival-Pax Team Member

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Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Color Temperature - High CRI (85+) & Neutral White LEDs

Many of you are probably wondering about the new 4Sevens High CRI (85+) and Neutral White LED flashlights that recently came out. I'm sure with all of these names and numbers, figuring out which flashlight to get can be quite confusing.

Well, I'm hear to help enlighten you guys. (Oh, I couldn't resist a cheesy pun.)

These two LEDs, the High CRI (Color Rendering Index) (85+) and Neutral White are offerings of the CREE XP-G series of LEDs. There are many LED's in this series with varying CCT's (Color Correlated Temperatures).

Before I continue, let me explain what CCT means. Color Correlated Temperature relates to the color of a light source and is measured in kelvin with the symbol K being used. Now it may seem odd, because Kelvin is actually a unit of temperature. A unit of temperature is used to measure color because color temperature really means the temperature of an ideal black-body radiator that emits light at that specific color. Think of a piece of metal glowing as it's being heated up.

Basically, 2,000 K is an orange light; 3,000 - 4,000 K is yellow; 5,000 - 6,000 K is white; 6,500 K + is blue-white.

Now back to LEDs. The various XP-G LEDs made by CREE have varying color temperatures. The standard XP-G LED that 4Sevens uses is called the R5. This LED has a cool white color in the 5,000-6,500 K range. It's a white light, but can seem to make certain colors look a bit gray. We are used to seeing things in the sunlight, so when we use a cool white LED to visualize something, the colors can look pale.

Comparing the XP-G R5, Neutral White and High CRI (85+) LEDs.
Looking at the High CRI (85+) and Neutral White LEDs, we see the difference in color when compared to the standard R5 LED. This difference corresponds to a shift in color temperature towards the lower values of the scale. The Neutral White LED would have a color temperature of around 4,000 K while the High CRI (85+) LED would have a temperature closer to 3,000 K.

These softer temperatures give a warmer color rendition, something closer to sunlight or the incandescent light bulbs that we are used to using indoors. This lighting can be easier on the eyes and may also help bring out certain colors that would otherwise be washed out with the standard R5 LED.

In the end, it's a matter of personal preference but if you haven't yet seen these new LEDs, I would suggest checking them out. A new High CRI (85+) or Neutral White flashlight may become your favorite.

Take care!

Simon - Survival-Pax Team Member

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