LED neon vs traditional neon

We’ll give you a breakdown of the difference between LED and traditional neon.

We need to admit first that LED neon is not actually neon. It is LED lighting that mimics the look of neon. Simplified, neon is a gas that emits a red/orange light when a voltage is applied to it. Traditional neon lights are glass tubes that contain this gas and other gasses, such as argon, helium and krypton which emit light in different colors.

LED neon is an LED strip that is covered by a silicon tube that emits a bright colored light, since this is flexible you can form it in any shape and create a neon effect.

We think both types of decorative lighting have use cases when we look at the appearance of each.

The first traditional neon light was used over 100 years ago. As a product it has stood the test of time as it is still widely appreciated. We think it has a vintage and classy look and fits better than LED in for instance a hazy bar setting, upscale restaurant or old cinema. The colors are less bright and even which we think gives a more mystical and authentic vibe to it.

LED neon on the other hand is much more versatile, you can go all out on design (check our shop for evidence of this 🥲). It also is more bright which in case you want to use the sign to illuminate a space makes it more useful. Overall it has a more futuristic feel to it. We think it works better in for instance a game room or hobby room. Read more about what LED neon can do for your interior in this blog post.

The advantages of LED neon are particularly evident in cost and sustainability.

We can offer LED neon at a much lower price than traditional neon because the manufacturing process is more simplified. LED energy consumption is lower than neon energy consumption. LED is the most energy efficient light source. So if you are thinking about buying a neon sign or replacing your neon light for LED, you could save money on reduced energy usage and lower purchase price.

Since LEDs are so energy efficient, LED neon lights are often considered sustainable. But this is not necessarily the case. These signs still contain a lot of synthetic materials, we at LICHT/STAD focus on reducing this. We can guarantee you that we offer the most sustainable neon on the market. Our strategy for this is 3-fold, first we reduce the amount of new synthetic materials by using recycled materials and reusing materials where possible, second we extend the usage of our products by offering to repair them, third we take joint responsibility for recycling our products at the end of their life. Learn more about how we do this in this blog post.

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