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Home » MR11 vs MR16 Light Bulbs: What is the Difference?

MR11 vs MR16 Light Bulbs: What is the Difference?

MR11 vs MR16 Light Bulbs

You aren’t the only person who has bought a light bulb and it either hasn’t fit or the lighting hasn’t been correct. The letters and numbers are enough to confuse most of us. Choosing LED is the smart way to go, but that doesn’t really narrow your options down that much.

Today, we will look at the difference between the MR11 and the MR16 light bulbs. We will cover their uses, brightness, and energy consumption. We will start by looking at some of the average specifications for the two light bulbs. Remember that different brands will have different ratings, so this is a guide.

MR11 vs MR16 Light Bulbs – Side by Side Comparison

ImageMR11 Led BulbMR16 Led Bulb
Height1.4-1.6 inches1.7-2.1 inches
Width1.4 inches1.9inches
Average Brightness100-500lm560-710lm
Average Watts2W5W
Incandescent Equivalent25W40W

The MR stands for a multifaceted reflector. They are commonly used in homes and the workplace, but they can also be used in devices like projectors. The number refers to the size. The MR11 is approximately 1.4 inches in diameter and the MR16 has a 1.9-inch diameter.

The main difference you need to watch out for is the base. These have 2 pin bases compared with the typical E bases that screw in. These are called GU or GX bases. The number refers to the distance between the pins. Most of the MR11 bulbs have a GU4 base, there are 4mm between the pins. Most MR16s have a GU5.3 base, so 5.3mm between the pins. You will also find the MR16 with the GU10 base.

Both the MR11 and the MR16 are low-watt bulbs when looking at the LED versions. The MR11 uses just 2W, which is the equivalent of a 25W incandescent bulb. The average lumen is around 100 to 500lm. The MR16 is a 5W bulb (on average), like a traditional 40W light bulb. The typical brightness is from 560 to 710ml.

MR11s and MR16s on the Market Today

For a closer look at the differences between the MR11 and the MR16, we looked at the brand Simba Lighting.

Simba Lighting MR11

These LED MR11s can be used for track lights, ceiling cans, and outdoors for landscaping. They are 3W bulbs with a 20W equivalent and 240lm. There is a choice of 3000k, 4000k, and 5000k depending on how warm you want the light. The base is GU4. They are of great value at under $3 per bulb in a pack with a lifespan of 30,000 hours. They cost around $0.40 per year to run.

Simba Lighting MR16

The use is the same, the only difference is that they have a GU10 base. The bulbs are 5W (a 50W incandescent replacement) and have 400lm. You can choose the 2700k or 5000k in a pack of 6. The lifespan is also the same, but the bulbs are a little cheaper. You also have the advantage of the CRI 80+ rating, making colors much more vivid.

Read next – Par16 vs MR16 Light Bulbs: What is the Difference?

The Final Verdict

When it comes to the MR11 and the MR16, the first question will be the base and the fittings you have. After that, we would recommend the MR16. They are a little brighter, the quality of colors will be better, and they still only cost around $0.6 a year.