While setting up a kitchen or an office lighting project, color temperature becomes an issue of taste. LED light colors have more implications other than just aesthetics. The color preference changes according to your application. LEDs come with kelvin numbers, such as 4000K, where the higher the number, the brighter and white the light becomes.
You might be inclined to pick a milder LED light color for your kitchen or living room and bright white color that mimics daylight in your study. At first glance, someone may fail to take notice of the difference between a 4000K light and a 5000K light . Nevertheless, it all comes down to your own taste. But you also have to take into account a set of variables that come to play when you are choosing your LED.
4000K vs 5000K LED Light Bulb
A light bulb with a 4000K rating will give you a cool and bright color with an effect of warmth as well as you will be able to work beneath that light. 5000K lights are bright and white, which feels like daylight, and you can put them in your study, washrooms, and even in the kitchen if needed. Let us see what we can find from a test conducted to see the difference between 4000K and 5000K LED light bulbs.
While testing with a 60-watt, 750 lumens 4000K bulb, we saw that the objects around the light are less prominent. In addition, a 4000K LED light color is universal since it is not too warm or too cool.
A 5000K LED light with the same lumen and watt rating had a whiter and cooler color temperature on the surrounding objects. This made us feel that you can easily use this light for kitchen applications or where you’ll be working or studying. The difference between 4000K and 5000K is nuanced but not entirely unnoticeable.
Is There a Difference Between 4000K and 5000K Lighting?
You cannot differentiate between LED light colors of 4000K and 5000K bulbs at first glance. No one should expect to bring a photometer to test the exact value of the Kelvin scale in the store. That is where we come in. We can tell you that if you are exposed to these lights for a while, you will start to notice the little differences that make a choice between these two bulbs crucial.
When you observe the light of a 4000K light without ever knowing about the 5000k one, it would seem to you that 4000K is the whitest light on the market. But this light has a slight touch of yellow that makes it mellow on the eyes. So, you can use this light for general purpose applications.
After being in 4000K lights, when you will observe 5000K ones, you will find out that it has no trace of yellow light and will seem like an absolute white light. This light will help you to see the real color of objects. They are mostly found in art museums, galleries, studios, and in some study or work areas.
Is 5000K Better Than 4000K In Terms of Brightness?
If we consider only the Kelvin scale, it cannot be said that 4000K lights are too bright or vice versa. LED light color and temperature are not analogous terms. We use lumen as an indicator of brightness which is dependent on wattage. Both 5000K and 4000K lights can come in a diverse range of wattage.
Now, a 5000K bulb with 60-watt can have 750 lumens, while another 4000K bulb can have the same brightness ratings. It is now clear that a 4000K bulb and a 5000K bulb with the same lumen rating can cover a particular area equally in terms of brightness. So, we cannot say 5000K lights are brighter than 4000K ones. The difference comes from the presence of a tinge of yellow in 4000K bulbs.
4000K LED Light Bulb
4000K bulbs fall in-between “warm white” light of 2700K to 3000K bulbs and “daylight white” of 5000K bulbs. When you compare it with warm white lights, it will appear to be cool, but not as cool as 5000K ones.
These lights are widely used in retail shops, markets, and office spaces as it replicates the sunlight of morning or afternoon hours. Office workers feel energized and at the same time, their eyesights are protected from too much exposure to intense light.
5000K LED Light Bulb
While 4000K lights bring a morning or afternoon vibe, 5000K is that of a mid-day light with a clear sky. This light is devoid of any yellowish tinge and gives a clear view of everything in its range. As a result, you will see them used in art galleries, task-specific workstations, and study areas. Some tasks will require you to have tight focus, and these lights will not let you get dizzy. An excellent feature of 5000K light is that it provides a compromise between losing color acuity at lower temperature lights (2700K) and high intensity of blue hint present in higher temperature ones (6500K).
Where To Use 4000K
Light and circadian rhythm that governs human bodies go hand in hand. The intensity and color temperature of indoor lighting effects our brains. 4000K lights provide the sweet spot for us to gain optimum performance in our work. For this reason, the lighting of places where people spend a lot of time is on the warmer side (4000K).
Office spaces utilize this circadian lighting style and use 4000K lighting so that employees stay on full alert the entire day. At the same time, the 4000K LED color temperature is warmer, so they don’t feel stressed out from the continuous exposure.
4000K lights are widely used in retail since they don’t seem too sterile in low-sunlight hours. The color clarity that comes with these lights make products seem more lively and real to the audience.
You will need crisp and fresh lighting in the garage or workshop to see the tools clearly and avoid mishaps. A clean light such as the 4000K will make your life easier without overstraining your eyes.
Where To Use 5000K
5000K lights are used where color correctness is of utmost importance. In addition, professional workspaces that are sophisticated in nature always use 5000K bulbs.
The regulatory bodies have mandated the use of 5000K lights in warehouses since the workers need to be in their highest alert state. Also, this light provides proper visibility so that workers can avoid accidents and do their jobs properly. It is crucial to have adequate and crisp lighting in warehouses, and that is where 5000K lights come in.
Stadiums use 5000K lights for correct lighting for high-resolution broadcasting. High-definition cameras can capture split-second moments in such LED lighting.
5000K lights are widely used in hospitals for check-ups and surgery purposes since the doctors need to see their apparatus and patients as clearly as possible to perform their duties accurately.
Galleries that are displaying artworks or artifacts utilize 5000K lights so that the object of attention can convey its full details to the viewer. Moreover, stage theaters also use these lights to provide clear visibility to the audience.
4000K vs 5000K LED for Kitchen
The architecture and interior of your kitchen play a vital role in the selection between 4000K and 5000K. If you are using white cabinets and modern interior design, we suggest going with 5000K. 4000K lights can give an unwanted pink shade to white furniture for its warmth.
Kitchens with traditional wood color furniture are ideal for 4000K lights. It will complement the overall tone of the kitchen.
Both 4000K and 5000K lights will give enough brightness for you to do culinary work. It all comes down to how your LED light color preference and what you perceive to be soothing to your eyes.
Choosing the right LED light color for your kitchen, office, or workspace is crucial for aesthetics and overall productivity. 4000K and 5000K lights do not differ significantly in brightness; rather, it is a matter of color toning. You might not even notice the difference at first.
As 5000K is higher on the Kelvin scale, it is whiter and sharper compared to the mild, slight yellowish 4000K. Both have their places and make sure you use the right one for your desired application.
I am a fellow LED light enthusiast who has completed his Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering and now has been doing my Master’s on the same subject. Born in 1994, I am a big fan of shiny things since I was just four years old!