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BR vs. PAR vs. MR Light Bulbs Comparisons

What Does BR, PAR & MR Stand For?

With many types of LED light bulbs, it can be confusing to tell the different kinds apart. The type of LED light bulb you need depends on what kind of look you want in the room or area you're illuminating. 

BR, PAR and MR are all different kinds of LED light bulbs commonly found in recessed lighting. But what do the letters stand for? They may seem confusing if you're new to LED lighting, but don't fret. We've got you covered. 

  • BR: Bulged Reflector. The flow of light is less narrow, and they are usually used for floodlights and general ambient lighting. These are ideal for rooms with high ceilings or places where you require a lot of light, such as staircases. The beam angle is 90 degrees and above.
  • PAR: Stands for parabolic aluminized reflector. These emit a focused, narrow beam of light and are often used on spotlights or accent lighting. The beam angle is 45 degrees and over.
  • MR: Stands for multi-faceted reflector. They emit a narrow light beam and are similar to the PAR light bulbs but more focused. As a result, the beam angle is between 15 and 45 degrees.

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What are the Differences Between PAR and BR Bulbs?

PAR and BR LED bulbs have certain similarities, such as that they're both popular in recessed lighting. However, they have some key differences too. BR lights emit a wide range of light, so they are considered floodlights. By contrast, PAR bulbs produce a much narrower beam of light, making them spotlights. BR bulbs are cheaper but don't last as long as PAR lamps.

BR vs. PAR Size Comparison

BR and PAR bulbs are relatively close together in diameter. PAR20 bulbs are about 2.48 inches in diameter, whereas a BR20 is about 2.5. APAR 30 measures 3.74 inches in diameter, which is the same as a BR30. PAR38 and BR40's also have the same diameter, 4.72 inches. The BR lights tend to be taller due to the bulged reflector. However, both should be able to fit your recessed lighting can without much trouble. 

What Are the Color Differences?

There are no fundamental color differences between BR and PAR light bulbs. Both types of bulbs can produce the same color light, but you have to check the color temperature on each bulb to make sure it's delivering the color you want. Different bulbs have different color temperatures. You can opt for warm light or cool light. The lighting label on the light bulb box should tell you what kind of light you'll be getting, so be sure to double-check before making a purchase. The advantage of buying a BAZZ Smart BR LED bulb is that you can adjust the color temperature at will! 

Where & When Do We Use BR & PAR Light Bulbs?

BR LED light bulbs are what you'd use for general ambient lighting in your home or office. In addition, you'd use them in your living room and kitchen. By contrast, a PAR light bulb, with its narrow beam of light, is used for security lighting, accent lights and task-based lighting. 

BR / PAR (LED VS. CFL & Incandescent) 

BR and PAR LED lighting is far superior to traditional CFL or incandescent lighting. You get the same brightness at a fraction of the wattage, and they're safer too. LED lights don't get hot, unlike traditional light bulbs. Regardless of what kind of LED light bulb you use, you're making the best choice for various reasons. 

Energy Savings & Average Bulb Lifetime

While both BR and PAR LED light bulbs are significantly more energy-efficient than incandescent bulbs and last longer, there is a difference between the two bulbs. BR bulbs are cheaper than PAR LED bulbs, but the average lifetime is about 25,000 hours. PAR lamps last up to 70,000 hours. However, even the BR lightbulb's lifespan is significantly longer than an incandescent, which only lasts (on average) 1200 hours. So whatever way you go, BR or PAR, you're getting a long-lasting light bulb.

Why Choose BAZZ Smart Homes' Smart Light Bulbs?

BAZZ has a wide variety of smart BR LED light bulbs. They're plug and play, meaning you don't need a smart home fixture to take advantage of all the features they come with. They connect via your existing WIFI connection. With a BAZZ BR Smart LED Bulb, you can adjust the color temperature at will from soft (2700K) to cool (4700K). In addition, you can set dynamic lighting schedules, control the lighting remotely via your smartphone and download whatever color you want. Plus, the BAZZ Smart WIFI LED bulbs have a lifespan of 25,000 hours and are fully compatible with smart home devices like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. Buy your BR 30 smart bulbs in singles, doubles or a four-pack!

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