Cyber Monday may be over, but great prices are here to stay.

Updated October 2021
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Buying guide for Best LED table lamps

If you’re interested in saving energy (and who isn’t these days?), LED table lamps are a very attractive option. A 6- or 7-watt LED can produce the same amount of light as a 60-watt incandescent bulb. Even if you only have a few lamps around the home or office, it doesn’t take long to see the financial benefits.

In the past, there was some resistance to LED lamps because of their stark light and the fact they couldn’t be dimmed, but those are no longer problems. There are LED bulbs for every mood, and the lamp itself can offer further control. Dimmers are now widely available. As for style, if you can imagine it, it’s probably out there. From traditional Tiffany lamps to industrial designs and sleek modernist models, whatever you’re searching for, there’s an LED table lamp that will do the job.

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LED lamps can be left on as long as you like. They don’t heat up like incandescent bulbs, so the only thing you’ll burn is energy.

Key considerations

Benefits of LED table lamps

Cost savings: What about actual dollars and cents? It depends on what your energy supplier charges, but a recent survey published in the Washington Post suggests you can save as much as $1.25 per bulb per month.

Longevity: Then there’s the extended life expectancy of the bulb. A standard incandescent is estimated to be good for 1,200 hours. If you have it on for 6 hours a day, it should last several months. Most LED bulbs last for 30,000 to 50,000 hours. Some of the newest go for 90,000 hours. Even if we’re being conservative, at 6 hours a day, these bulbs will keep going for around 14 years! That’s another nice chunk of change in your pocket.

Energy: But money isn’t the only reason to change to LED table lamps. Less energy consumption means less impact on climate change. There hasn’t been legislation outlawing old-fashioned incandescent and halogen bulbs, but many are predicting it. Switch now and you’ll avoid the increased prices that typically occur when choice is limited.

Versatility: Another benefit? With so many electrical gadgets in our homes today, wall outlets can be at a premium. Many LED table lamps are cordless, so that means no problem with positioning and no cable to trip over (or be chewed on by your pet). What’s more, if you want to take your table lamp onto the deck for the evening, you can just pick it up and move it. You can even take it RVing or camping

These lamps run on lithium-ion batteries that you can either swap out and recharge in a separate device, or recharge in situ via USB cable. With the latter, if you’ve got the right type of connector (none are very expensive) you can plug them into the DC power socket of your vehicle (the cigarette lighter), a portable power bank, or a generator. No other table lamp gives you more convenience or versatility.

If you want the full energy-saving benefits of LED bulbs, consider changing your existing incandescent or halogens to LEDs as they burn out. However, you should not mix them on the same lighting circuit. The incandescents will hog the power, making the LEDs flicker.



USB ports

Workplace LED table lights don’t just stop at lighting an area. Many have USB ports for charging your devices. Some have wireless charging for smartphones — no cable required. These are features that can be found in household lighting, but much less frequently. However, they are well worth searching for if you want a bedside table lamp that lets you charge your phone overnight as you keep it handy in case you need it.


Timer, snooze button, and multiple brightness or lighting modes are common. More advanced models can automatically adjust brightness levels as the ambient light changes throughout the day, thus reducing eyestrain. Many also remember settings when you turn them off.


The other thing you’ll want to think about with work lighting is flexibility. There are numerous multi-angle models available, some of which can clip onto a shelf or desk edge for great portability (these are also called task lights). Gooseneck designs (a bit like a bendable metal snake) provide just about unlimited flexibility. Cheap LED gooseneck lamps can wear out quickly, so it’s worth checking online user feedback to assess durability.

Smart lamps

You can now get LED table lamps that are compatible with smart home systems, enabling you to control your table lamp with your voice or from an app. This can provide greater control over light intensity, and with several models, you can choose from over 16 million colors. They offer timer settings and sleep modes, all available from wherever you are via your smartphone. We even came across one with a built-in Bluetooth speaker, so your table lamp can also play music.

It’s fair to say that at the moment the choice isn’t particularly extensive, though with the technology now being so affordable, we would expect to see more adventurous designs soon.

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One advantage of a cordless LED table lamp is that if your power goes out, you don’t have to hunt around in the dark for candles and matches. Just turn on the lamp!

LED table lamps prices

Inexpensive: The cheapest LED table lamps we looked at are perhaps better described as desk lamps for the office. They range from around $15 to $40 depending on features.

Mid-range: More decorative LED table lamps for bedroom and other use start at around $25 and go up to $70. You’ll find a huge choice — just about anything you can imagine (and probably some you can’t).

Expensive: The most expensive LED table lamps aren’t necessarily the ones packed with modern features. Lamps from high-end brands and artisan makers can easily top $200, and we’ve seen a few that cost thousands. It’s a lot of money, but you do get some unique and beautiful designs.

Small cordless LED table lamps can be used as room accents. Moving them around gives you the opportunity to easily change the mood.



Lighting is a very personal decision, and we all have different tastes. If you like it, then it’s not “wrong.” However, there are a few useful design principles that will help create the feel you want in your room.

  • Keep it simple. A riot of different styles, sizes, and lampshade colors creates visual havoc and can be surprisingly unsettling. The lamps don’t all have to match, but sticking with one theme or color is good.
  • Balance the lamp with the furniture. Be careful not to use a tall table lamp on a low table or a small lamp on a large table. Look for a balance between the LED lamp and the furniture you put it on.
  • Think about use. Consider the area you want to light and why. Is it a lamp to read or work by or just mood lighting? Your answer will have a big impact on the brightness and light pattern you need. Opaque lampshades direct light up and down, usually creating two cones. Translucent ones tend to add a warm glow, especially if another room lighting is low. Bankers’ lamps and other downlights create localized pools of illumination.
  • Mix it up. Along with table lamps, it’s a good idea to mix in a floor lamp or perhaps sconces. It’s nice to have layers of light in the room.
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Does the LED table lamp you’re considering have a bulb that’s replaceable or integrated? If it’s the latter, it cannot be replaced. End of the lamp. However, life expectancy can be several years depending on usage.


Q. Why are LED bulbs rated in lumens instead of watts?

A. Actually, more and more standard light bulbs are also being measured in lumens. Although it can be a little confusing if you’re used to watts, lumens is the proper measure of brightness. Watts is the energy the bulb consumes, not how bright it is. With watts, you might have two bulbs of the same wattage but quite different apparent brightness. Two 800-lumen bulbs (equivalent to about 60 watts) will always be the same brightness.

Q. Can I use LED bulbs in my existing table lamps?

A. Probably. It’s just a question of whether you can get a bulb that suits the fitting. If that’s a problem because it’s an unusual fitting, you might be able to change it. It’s often quite a straightforward job, but talk to an electrician if you’re not sure.

Q. Why do LED bulbs emit blue light?

A. They don’t, at least not necessarily. Early LED bulbs did, and you can still get those, but you can now get a number of variations. Look for the Kelvin rating (known as the color temperature). For reference, 1,900 Kelvin is comparable to candlelight, 4,500 Kelvin is similar to daylight, 7,500 Kelvin is the cool white that can appear bluish. LED bulbs are available across that range.


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