Following Gizmag's coverage of GE Lighting's 27 W Energy Smart and Switch Lighting's 100 W-replacement LED light bulbs, Osram Sylvania has been in touch to tell us about its 100 W-replacement LED light bulb, joining its Sylvania Ultra series: a 20 W, 1600 lumen light bulb with a warm, "incandescenty" color appearance of 2700 K. With Philips also to release a 100-W equivalent this means the big three manufacturers of light sources are joining Switch Lighting in offering high-output LED light bulbs for the home, but all things considered, Osram Sylvania's may prove the pick of the bunch.

Though the press release provided to us puts the Ultra's efficacy at 89 lm/W, the math suggests a 1600-lm light source running at 20 W has a slightly lower efficacy of 80 lm/W. Even so, that's right up there with Switch Lighting's latest figures (also 80 lm/W), and superior to GE's (60 lm/W).

The 20-W Ultra fares just as well on color appearance, out-warming both GE's (2870 K) and Switch's (4100 K) offerings with a remarkably toasty color of 2700 K. There's a fuller explanation of color appearance in our report on GE's announcement (linked above), but the upshot is that warmer colors, indicated by lower Kelvin values, tend to be preferable for home use.

We understand Philips is also to put a 100 W-replacement LED light bulb onto the market. Though we've yet to see word directly from source, industry insiders corroborate press coverage that Philips' 23-W AmbientLED emits an impressive 1700 lm, for an efficacy of 74 lm/W - very good for home light sources, but mid-table in respect of the direct competition of 100 W-replacement LED light bulbs. We have not yet seen color appearance figures for Philips' AmbientLED.

Like the competition, Osram Sylvania claims its LED light bulb boasts omni-directional output, though none of the manufacturers has produced data to quantify this to our knowledge (which it is possible to do).

On paper at least, Osram Sylvania's Ultra appears to have the strongest specification, matching or exceeding the best-performing competition in terms of efficacy and color appearance, (even if Philips' light bulb will emit the most light of all). But with prices for most of these light bulbs yet to be announced, the complete picture remains very far from clear.

We understand Osram Sylvania's 20 W Ultra should hit shelves between June and September this year.