Energy-efficient lightbulbs, both compact fluorescents and LEDs, have improved tremendously over the last three years. They’ve always used a fraction of the power of incandescents, but now they cost less, dim better, and offer color temperatures that are much more flattering.
That said, the light is still different. Not better, not worse. Just different than what we’ve come to expect.
That’s why if you’re moving into a new place, you should change the lightbulbs immediately. Put in CFLs and LEDs. This way, you won’t have an expectation about how things are “supposed to” look. And given their much longer lifespans, you may not have to change a lightbulb for quite a few years.