Replacing Halogen with LED Bulbs


I am looking at replacing the halogen bulbs in my downlights with LED.

They are 12 volt MR16 bulbs with these transformers

It appears that there are compatibility and flickering issues with certain transformer / LED bulb combinations.

Was looking at these

Can anyone offer advice?



  • The downlights you pictured are about 1/2 the brightness of 50w halogen globes. In approx. terms 50w halogen = 750 lumen, and it is difficult to find this brightness in LED's.

  • I googled and found this page where one of the quotes/reviews says:

    "I have tried some other LED bulbs from Bunnings, Masters and Kogan and had trouble with flickering etc. The Philips bulbs you supplied me are great: no flicker, bright light better than the halogens they replaced. Thanks."

    The label on your transformer doesn't specify a minimum load. This seems to be what causes flickering - the transformed turns off because there's not enough load.

    I don't think you can be sure you'll be happy until you try one in your fittings. It's only $10

    • jackofspade is right, your transformer has a minimum load of 20 watts. I don't know why I couldn't see that before.

  • I don't have that brand transformer, but +1 for Philips.
    They are the only brand to not reliably not flicker for me. Lights with dimmer switches I have to put to about 3/4 to not have it flicker (non-dimmer bulbs so still "full") but other than that no issues. My ones are about 5W too. Due to price I have two models in my house like obviously different design/emitter layout, but neither flicker compared to other brands.

    Hold out for a special for those 4pks from Bunnings and the like if you can, then just buy up then.

  • Your transformer requires minimum 20W.
    You need to get the retrofit ones like the Philips Master. It has built-in electronics to create the minimum load.

  • i have mix of Philips and Osram MR16 and they work perfectly. Always choose Philips or Osram

  • I caution extremely against the lucce Bella from Bunnings. They are a piece of shit. From flickering to just ouright dying. Replaced all with … Osram from Bunnings and all perfect and zero problem.

  • The transformer will have issues with most LEDs. In Vic, the replacement program used primsal LEDs as these were great for compatibility with existing mr16 halogen downlights.

  • Thanks for all the comments.

    I think I'll just replace the complete downlights & transformers with something like this

    They are about the same price as the replacement 12v LED bulbs and have a 5 year warranty and no compatibility issues.

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