The basic package came with 4 white lamp units and a base that is also the charger. Vessel also now make the lamps in other colors. The lamps are about 6" and are made of polycarbonate, so they should be quite durable. Both the bulb and the ni-cad batteries are replaceable.
The first thing we noticed was there were no metal contacts on the base charger. The lamps will automatically charge when placed in the wells. The rechargeable batteries needed to be "cycled" a few times to make sure they are properly conditioned to hold their maximum charge.
After the first charge cycle (about 16 hrs), they were ready for use. At the bottom of the Candela unit is a power button so you can turn the lamp on or off to conserve the charge. If you leave the power button in the on position, they automatically turn off when place on the charge and turn on when removed.
One of the lamp didn't turn on. After a little investigation, we realized the unit came apart at the bottom with just a twist. The problem was the battery unit must have unsnapped from the base during shipping. A little push to click it back in place and the light came on. Apparently the battery charged, but the contact to the bulb was not being made properly. The instruction said to let the lamp completely discharge after the first charge.
The specs from Vessel indicated the lamps should "burn" for about 5 hours. We used the lamps during a small dinner party that night. They lasted all through the dinner. After 5 hours, they were still lit, but we had to go to sleep. They were completely discharged by the next morning. So we know they lasted at least 5 hours, but not more than 13 hours :-)
We really liked these Candela lamps. They would work great as a bed side lamp in a child's room. Even a small child can turn them on just by grabbing one. There is also no fear of them accidentally touching any exposed electrical contacts.
One future "feature" we would love to see is a flickering effect...like some of the other LED votive candles we have seen in the restaurants. The flickering may not be suitable as a bedside reading light, but it would really set the mood for dinner and parties!