The BLF Automotive Car LED headlights, results, opinions and beamshots!

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Texas_Ace
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The BLF Automotive Car LED headlights, results, opinions and beamshots!

Ok, some recent talking in the Q8 thread got me thinking about LED headlights again. I never really paid attention to them before as the first few trys at a new tech like this is usually not that great, better to give it time to mature before buying in.

It has been a few years so my question is what are BLF users opinions on them? Good bad or otherwise.

We don’t really have any car headlight topics that I could find so figured I might as well make one.

The biggest issue I have with them is the designs I have seen just don’t give me a lot of confidence in their ability to shead ~30W of heat without a fan. While a fan is a fine backup, I do not want to have to count on a fan to keep the headlights working long term. Using a fan for say the high beams when more heat is being generated for example I would consider acceptable use of a fan.

So anyone tried any of the LED options on the market? Please post links, pics, videos, comparisons and anything else you may have with your post since this is new ground for many of us and we all need to get aquatinted with the options and tech involved.

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

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I’ve had LED headlights in my car for well over a year now. Heat dissipation is through copper ribbons that draw the heat away from the ‘bulb’. No fans.

The emitter is Philips Luxeon or something. Here’s one on eBay:

https://www.ebay.com/i/like/112185921907?chn=ps&dispItem=1&ul_ref=http%2...

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I have been testing some different ones lately. It’s early days on this for me though. I don’t want to go for fan cooled either. I might go a cryogenic route, before I try to depend on a fan long term. Cool

Like using a Hot Rod Flashlight. I will be the only one operating these headlights I have been testing. Going down the road, with the air moving nicely over everything, really goes a long way to keeping things cool. When I am going slower, or stopped. I click the lights to low beam. Cooling at that level is easier of course, but in stop and go traffic for example. Very little air is moving around.

I have a temperature probe running to one of the lights now. So that I can see in real time, just exactly what is going on. Not that this set is the most incredibly powerful (60w). But that gives me a good look at how these are acting at different times & situations. Giving me a good baseline to work from, when I go up into the next level.

This tech is moving pretty fast to. So I thought I had better get started in giving it a try. There are 100w 14,000lm LED headlamp sets out there now. Steve

I have been using something like this, recently. What I like to call the ‘Heat Sock’ approach >

And it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan Big Smile >

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Enelooper wrote:
I’ve had LED headlights in my car for well over a year now. Heat dissipation is through copper ribbons that draw the heat away from the ‘bulb’. No fans.

The emitter is Philips Luxeon or something. Here’s one on eBay:

https://www.ebay.com/i/like/112185921907?chn=ps&dispItem=1&ul_ref=http%2...

I have sen that heat sinking design, my problem with it is what does it connect to? If it is just the car body the steel is has horrible thermal resistance. Not sure how it would provide much meaningful cooling. Could be wrong though.

Didn’t you say that the bulbs only lasted a year in the Q8 thread? That is a sure sign of way too high temps for the LED.

How was the beam and overall impressions of these?

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

Texas Avenger Driver Series

My LED Test series - XP-L2 V5  - Nichia 219C 90+ CRILatticebright "XM-L"XHP35 & PWM efficiency - XHP50 - XP-L V5 - XM-L2 U2 - XP-G3 S5  - XP-L HI V2 - Oslon Square & direct comparison to Djozz tests - Nichia 319A - Nichia 219B 9080 CRI - Nichia 219C D320 - Nichia 229AT - XHP70.2 P2 - XHP50.2 J4 - Samsung LH351D

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Clever of you, using the “LED headlights” forum. Wink

I’m interested in LED automotive headlights as well. I still have plain old Halogen bulbs in mine. A friend of mine bought some cheap XM-L2 headlight bulbs from eBay, after I told him it wouldn’t be bright enough, and he should buy the MT-G2 ones. Now, he complains that they aren’t bright enough. Facepalm

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SteveMidwest wrote:
I have been testing some different ones lately. It’s early days on this for me though. I don’t want to go for fan cooled either. I might go a cryogenic route, before I try to depend on a fan long term. Cool

Like using a Hot Rod Flashlight. I will be the only one operating these headlights I have been testing. Going down the road, with the air moving nicely over everything, really goes a long way to keeping things cool. When I am going slower, or stopped. I click the lights to low beam. Cooling at that level is easier of course, but in stop and go traffic for example. Very little air is moving around.

I have a temperature probe running to one of the lights now. So that I can see in real time, just exactly what is going on. Not that this set is the most incredibly powerful (60w). But that gives me a good look at how these are acting at different times & situations. Giving me a good baseline to work from, when I go up into the next level.

This tech is moving pretty fast to. So I thought I had better get started in giving it a try. There are 100w 14,000lm LED headlamp sets out there now. Steve

I have been using something like this, recently. What I like to call the ‘Heat Sock’ approach >

And it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan Big Smile >

!{width:75%}https://cdn.instructables.com/F6Y/GXC1/GS3BD936/F6YGXC1GS3BD936.RECT2100...!

Wow, a 100W LED headlight, I have no clue how they would cool that short of hooking it up to the radiator cooling loop.

Which would honestly keep the temps as low or lower then most of the setups I have seen. The cooling system on most cars is between 180-210f (about 90-100c), it would easily keep the LED’s at that temp and then it would just be a matter of reducing thermal resistance between the LED and coolant.

Some temps I saw online showed LED temps of 180-220f at room temperature. Figure it would be at least 50-80f hotter under the hood. Hooking them up to the cooling loop quickly starts to look pretty reasonable.

For guys running an A2W intercooler setup, you could easily run that loop to the LED’s and it would work fantastic. Enough to cool 100’s of watts of power easily.

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

Texas Avenger Driver Series

My LED Test series - XP-L2 V5  - Nichia 219C 90+ CRILatticebright "XM-L"XHP35 & PWM efficiency - XHP50 - XP-L V5 - XM-L2 U2 - XP-G3 S5  - XP-L HI V2 - Oslon Square & direct comparison to Djozz tests - Nichia 319A - Nichia 219B 9080 CRI - Nichia 219C D320 - Nichia 229AT - XHP70.2 P2 - XHP50.2 J4 - Samsung LH351D

Easy comparison tool for all my LED tests

Texas_Ace
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DavidEF wrote:
Clever of you, using the “LED headlights” forum. Wink

I’m interested in LED automotive headlights as well. I still have plain old Halogen bulbs in mine. A friend of mine bought some cheap XM-L2 headlight bulbs from eBay, after I told him it wouldn’t be bright enough, and he should buy the MT-G2 ones. Now, he complains that they aren’t bright enough. Facepalm

lol, I wondered how long till someone caught that.

The funny thing is, if the beam could be created equal to the normal bulbs, an XM-L2 is capable of almost double a normal bulb lumens (most normal 60w bulbs are between 700-800 lumens).

The XHP70 is really about perfect for a headlight.

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

Texas Avenger Driver Series

My LED Test series - XP-L2 V5  - Nichia 219C 90+ CRILatticebright "XM-L"XHP35 & PWM efficiency - XHP50 - XP-L V5 - XM-L2 U2 - XP-G3 S5  - XP-L HI V2 - Oslon Square & direct comparison to Djozz tests - Nichia 319A - Nichia 219B 9080 CRI - Nichia 219C D320 - Nichia 229AT - XHP70.2 P2 - XHP50.2 J4 - Samsung LH351D

Easy comparison tool for all my LED tests

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Wellp, both my cars’ headlight assemblies are closed chambers, with dust-caps covering the area where you’d grab the sockets to change the bulbs. I suspect most cars with similar assemblies are the same.

So “heat sock” or not, fan or not, the internal temperature of the chamber would quickly rise, no? Any long trip would have the chamber heating up, not be able to shed heat, then the LED would heat up, too.

I LED-ised pretty much everything else in my car, even all the rear lights (tail, brake, reverse, turn), and some brands (eg, JDM Astar) are fantastic.

Headlights, though? Too high-strung for me to trust them.

Plus, filament placement is critical, and the optics designed specifically for them. Even a high-strung L or L2 are squares set off from the center-axis, not a small coil of wire that’s perfectly placed.

So what good is 2000lm if half of them go, well, other than where they’re supposed to?

Dunno, I’d love LED headlights, but to me the tek is still flawed.

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DavidEF
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Lightbringer wrote:
Wellp, both my cars’ headlight assemblies are closed chambers, with dust-caps covering the area where you’d grab the sockets to change the bulbs. I suspect most cars with similar assemblies are the same.

So “heat sock” or not, fan or not, the internal temperature of the chamber would quickly rise, no? Any long trip would have the chamber heating up, not be able to shed heat, then the LED would heat up, too.

I LED-ised pretty much everything else in my car, even all the rear lights (tail, brake, reverse, turn), and some brands (eg, JDM Astar) are fantastic.

Headlights, though? Too high-strung for me to trust them.

Plus, filament placement is critical, and the optics designed specifically for them. Even a high-strung L or L2 are squares set off from the center-axis, not a small coil of wire that’s perfectly placed.

So what good is 2000lm if half of them go, well, other than where they’re supposed to?

Dunno, I’d love LED headlights, but to me the tek is still flawed.


Yeah, that’s the problem with most LED retrofit bulbs, including the ones my friend bought. To get the most out of the emitters, they need to be matched to a reflector (or projector lens) made for LEDs, not made for a hot wire.

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Texas_Ace
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Pretty much all the heat from an LED goes out the base and into the mcpcb. The inside of the light would heat up but should cool off fairly quick due to airflow. The real heat issue are the 150+ degrees temps in the engine bay.

I also swapped out all my other lights to LED’s many years ago, so far they have worked great and no complaints. I am sure they have improved a lot though since then (around 2008-9 I would guess).

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

Texas Avenger Driver Series

My LED Test series - XP-L2 V5  - Nichia 219C 90+ CRILatticebright "XM-L"XHP35 & PWM efficiency - XHP50 - XP-L V5 - XM-L2 U2 - XP-G3 S5  - XP-L HI V2 - Oslon Square & direct comparison to Djozz tests - Nichia 319A - Nichia 219B 9080 CRI - Nichia 219C D320 - Nichia 229AT - XHP70.2 P2 - XHP50.2 J4 - Samsung LH351D

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Texas_Ace wrote:
I also swapped out all my other lights to LED’s many years ago, so far they have worked great and no complaints. I am sure they have improved a lot though since then (around 2008-9 I would guess).

Some lights kick ass. Those JDMs in back (red tail/brake/turn) are even brighter than the 40W (vs usual 32W) 3357s I was running in back.

The yellow turns in my other car are about as bright, but are more saturated vs NA (natural amber) bulbs. It’s a more “pure” light.

I ain’t ever going back…

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Texas_Ace wrote:
Enelooper wrote:
I’ve had LED headlights in my car for well over a year now. Heat dissipation is through copper ribbons that draw the heat away from the ‘bulb’. No fans.

The emitter is Philips Luxeon or something. Here’s one on eBay:

https://www.ebay.com/i/like/112185921907?chn=ps&dispItem=1&ul_ref=http%2...

I have sen that heat sinking design, my problem with it is what does it connect to? If it is just the car body the steel is has horrible thermal resistance. Not sure how it would provide much meaningful cooling. Could be wrong though.

Didn’t you say that the bulbs only lasted a year in the Q8 thread? That is a sure sign of way too high temps for the LED.

How was the beam and overall impressions of these?

I’ve owned my car for 3 years. I put in those LED lights months into ownership, so actually those LED lights have been in my car for at least 2 years. There’s 3 cars in the family, and they all use the same design LED lights. None has failed. They work as they did since day one, day in day out, summer and winter.

We took a 3000 mile road trip recently and the lights stood up to long stretches of driving. Heat generated by the LEDs are transferred via the metal tube they sit on to the back of the ‘bulb’, where it’s transferred to the 4 copper ribbons for dissipation.

Despite everyone’s concern about heat, all I can tell you is that it works fine, for months or years now, in multiple cars, in all seasons. Either this design is great, or Philips makes some tough, tough LEDs.

Lights are no brighter than factory halogen but acceptable. They look cool, and make my cars look cool. Let me know if I miss anything.

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Enelooper wrote:
Lights are no brighter than factory halogen but acceptable. They look cool, and make my cars look cool. Let me know if I miss anything.

That explains things. If they are only putting out say ~1000 lumens then that is only around ~10W worth of power. That should be easily manageable with the setup you showed. A lot of the lights I have looked at say they are ~4000 lumens and ~30w (which is about right and what I would expect.). That is another ballgame and much harder to cool down.

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

Texas Avenger Driver Series

My LED Test series - XP-L2 V5  - Nichia 219C 90+ CRILatticebright "XM-L"XHP35 & PWM efficiency - XHP50 - XP-L V5 - XM-L2 U2 - XP-G3 S5  - XP-L HI V2 - Oslon Square & direct comparison to Djozz tests - Nichia 319A - Nichia 219B 9080 CRI - Nichia 219C D320 - Nichia 229AT - XHP70.2 P2 - XHP50.2 J4 - Samsung LH351D

Easy comparison tool for all my LED tests

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Enelooper wrote:
Lights are no brighter than factory halogen but acceptable. They look cool, and make my cars look cool. Let me know if I miss anything.

Honestly? Do an H11 to H9 conversion, and be happy. 55W goes up to 65W, and you get almost double the lumenage, with whiter light.

 

Oh, and 100CRI.

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Enelooper
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Lightbringer wrote:
Enelooper wrote:
Lights are no brighter than factory halogen but acceptable. They look cool, and make my cars look cool. Let me know if I miss anything.

Honestly? Do an H11 to H9 conversion, and be happy. 55W goes up to 65W, and you get almost double the lumenage, with whiter light.

 

Oh, and 100CRI.

Whiter but still no match for the 6000-6500K of LED. If I care for night stadium level of lighting, I would go with HID. I’m perfectly contented with my setup and if this set ever fails, I’d go with the same lights again.

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Enelooper wrote:
Whiter but still no match for the 6000-6500K of LED.

Ewww.

Umm, sorry. But I’m hard-pressed to do CW in a flashlight, nfw would I get CW headlights if I had any choice in the matter.

4000K-4500K would be about my limit for headlights.

I’ve seen those “bug-eye” LED headlights in some newer cars. Ugh.

“C’mon, man, look how white they are!!”

“Umm, ya mean how blue they are??”

Naw, no thanks.

Maybe if they at least come out with high-CRI lights, or better yet, run 219Bs or something…

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Lightbringer wrote:
Enelooper wrote:
Whiter but still no match for the 6000-6500K of LED.

Ewww.

Umm, sorry. But I’m hard-pressed to do CW in a flashlight, nfw would I get CW headlights if I had any choice in the matter.

4000K-4500K would be about my limit for headlights.

I’ve seen those “bug-eye” LED headlights in some newer cars. Ugh.

“C’mon, man, look how white they are!!”

“Umm, ya mean how blue they are??”

Naw, no thanks.

Maybe if they at least come out with high-CRI lights, or better yet, run 219Bs or something…

Do you think sunlight is blue as well?

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Enderman wrote:
Do you think sunlight is blue as well?

In daytime, yeah, kinda. It’s noticeable on white objects that are indirectly lit (eg, in shade).

At night, 6500K is kinda hideous. Browns and reds are muted, take on a dull grayish quality. So out in the sticks, watching for brown things like trees, deer, etc, they’ll look muted. Red stop-signs will also look dull.

Warmer lights bring out those colors and make them “pop”. They’re just more vivid.

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Can someone help me out here? Before anyone sends me hate mail, know that I love LED as much as everybody else here. My whole house is converted, and has been for 3 years or so. I surely believe in the merits of LED’s. But what would one gain by converting automotive headlights to LED?

Halogen last quite some time during normal usage.

The decreased power consumption of LED is really a non-issue in an automotive application.

The negatives really seem to outweigh the positives here. Such as:

Heat dissipation
Cost
Reflector placement/design issues

Again don’t kill me for asking, but I’ve been curious about this for quite some time.

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Basically they would have more light output and a better color temp then Halogen.

Take for example proper HID’s vs Halogen. There is no comparison in the beam. It is soooo much nicer to drive with good HID’s over normal Halogen, there is simply 4-5x as much light on the road and a better beam as well.

LED’s are simply the next step, they do reduce the power consumption, although this is not a big deal in this case.

They have better CRI in most cases then HID but the real benefit is the instant on of the LED’s compared to the HID and (assuming you can keep the heat in check) the much longer lifespan.

A well designed LED should last the life of the car.

I don’t mind HID but the warm up time and inability to “flash” them is rather annoying.

Stock Halogen is around ~700-800 lumens compared to an HID of around 3000 lumens and LED of 4000. Pretty easy to see why they would be better for driving at 60mph+.

Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools. --Herbert Spencer , English Philosopher (1820-1903)

Texas Avenger Driver Series

My LED Test series - XP-L2 V5  - Nichia 219C 90+ CRILatticebright "XM-L"XHP35 & PWM efficiency - XHP50 - XP-L V5 - XM-L2 U2 - XP-G3 S5  - XP-L HI V2 - Oslon Square & direct comparison to Djozz tests - Nichia 319A - Nichia 219B 9080 CRI - Nichia 219C D320 - Nichia 229AT - XHP70.2 P2 - XHP50.2 J4 - Samsung LH351D

Easy comparison tool for all my LED tests

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scotlarock wrote:
Can someone help me out here? Before anyone sends me hate mail, know that I love LED as much as everybody else here. My whole house is converted, and has been for 3 years or so. I surely believe in the merits of LED’s. But what would one gain by converting automotive headlights to LED?

Halogen last quite some time during normal usage.

The decreased power consumption of LED is really a non-issue in an automotive application.

The negatives really seem to outweigh the positives here. Such as:

Heat dissipation
Cost
Reflector placement/design issues

Again don’t kill me for asking, but I’ve been curious about this for quite some time.

Oh, no hate coming your way scotlarock. You BLF Michigan high powered flashlight toting human! Cool That is a good question. I scratch my head a little, but that’s ok.

You have been to, or seen pictures of a race track, correct? It’s there that humans take things several step further, than the desk sitting accountants, insurance executives, and corporate leaders. It is there that HP and performance are taken to the edge, to see just where that edge is.

This ‘edge’ can be found in countless fields of endeavor. Whether it be Guns, Slingshots >

Race cars, Flashlights, Knives, Chainsaws, Lawnmowers, Tractors, etc. The sky is the limit, if you have to passion for it.

“But what would one gain by converting automotive headlights to LED?”

Just one example could be, that some people drive in Iowa, where the Deer seemingly come out of nowhere, in the dark of the evening. Wink
If one does not drive at this time of the day, for instance. Then I can see why they would not imagine needing anything with more performance.

Some people never leave the city, and cannot even remember when the last time was, that they had their headlights on high beam. Different strokes, for different folks, in different locations and circumstances.

Then there is a group of people who like to keep up, or live on or near, the cutting edge of Tech. Whether it be the latest and greatest in Flashlights, Smartphones, LED Headlights, Batteries, Electric Cars, Cameras, etc. It’s just a matter of, what’s next?

At one point in time. Many people were perfectly happy with sealed beam headlights too. Now we can simply twist out a Halogen or LED light, quickly and effortlessly. Changing out for Color, CRI, Lumen Count, Burnt Out, etc.

What’s next? Some people are part of ‘What’s next’. Some people find out that same day, or the following day. While other people find out months or years later.

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A detailed look at the performance of the 2017 Cadillac XT5’s LED headlight system.
Published on Aug 17, 2016
03:45 minutes

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- “Can we just get vehicles with decent headlights?“

Only one out of 31 midsize cars studied by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, had headlights it considered “good,” according to its study recently released.

“Contrary to what people might think, poor headlight performance is not exclusive to cheaper cars. IIHS found that many of the industry’s luxury midsize cars perform just as poorly as mainstream models, or even worse, with a luxury BMW model posting the lowest score.”

It’s more than a convenience problem, writes Nathan Bomey, of USA Today. Visibility issues create a safety hazard, ranging from excessive glare to insufficient illumination.

Taken directly from the USA Today article >

“With about half of traffic deaths occurring either in the dark or in dawn or dusk conditions, improved headlights have the potential to bring about substantial reductions in fatalities,” IIHS said.

John Whiteside, 54, of Rock Hill, Calif., said excessive glare from oncoming vehicles is a big problem when he drives his 2002 Toyota Camry. “I have to literally turn my head a little bit to look away,” Whiteside said. “It can blind you.”

The study also brought attention to the fact that U.S. auto-safety regulators have left headlight regulations largely untouched for a half century, thus prohibiting certain new technologies that would light the roadway better while reducing glare.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, responding to the IIHS report, noted that its proposed overhaul of its five-star safety ratings will depend partially on vehicles’ use of lower-beam headlights, semi-automatic beam switching and amber rear turn signal lights — technologies that are supposed to improve visibility for the driver and other motorists.

“Basically, we agree headlights can and should be stronger,” NHTSA spokesman Bryan Thomas said.

Since it’s the auto industry, there are often many different headlight options available through various packages on vehicles. So IIHS evaluated every possible combination in several scenarios, including traveling straight, veering left sharply or gradually and veering right sharply or gradually.

After assessing 82 possible combinations in 31 vehicles, the non-profit said only one — the Toyota Prius v with the highest trim level — qualified as “good.” That light combo is available only with the advanced technology package, which includes LED lights and high-beam assist. The standard model, which comes with halogen lights and no high-beam assist, gets a poor rating.

Eleven models’ best option qualified as “acceptable,” while nine were “marginal” and 10 were “poor.”

If want to read more of this article, you can find it here > https://usat.ly/2sEcDDL

Lightbringer
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scotlarock wrote:
Can someone help me out here? Before anyone sends me hate mail,

Hang on… PM hatemail on the way… Big Smile

scotlarock wrote:
Halogen last quite some time during normal usage.

Not the best, especially if you switch to harder-driven filaments like the H9, but not terribly inconvenient, either.

scotlarock wrote:
The decreased power consumption of LED is really a non-issue in an automotive application.

You never lost an alternator on a long trip, have ya?

I literally got back to the end of my block and was just trying to back up maybe 50yds before everything just upped and croked on me.

Then again, I was running 90W/130W H4s in 4×6 format lights…

scotlarock wrote:
The negatives really seem to outweigh the positives here. Such as:

For headlights, absolutely.

scotlarock wrote:
Heat dissipation Cost Reflector placement/design issues

Especially the last one. What good is it to throw twice the lumens as the original filament, only to have most of them scatter and be lost, or worse, throw light where they shouldn’t. Think of glare to oncoming cars, getting tickets, etc.

 

All the other LEDs I put into my cars, at least match and in most cases outperform the stock hotwire bulbs. Side-markers are as bright as I can get ‘em (and still fit), turns/tails/backups are all brighter than the original bulbs.

Then again, they’re meant to scatter light in a wider swath, for maximum visibility. So just go for power. As I mentioned, I had great luck with the JDMs I’m using, and “standard” 194s in yellow and red can be had which are way brighter than (filtered) hotwire 194s.

My only complaint about “dual filament” LED bulbs (xx57 replacements) is that the difference between low and high is a paltry 3:1, so parking lights are wonderfully bright, but turn signals are only a smidge brighter, visually. I’d rather have them turn down the low setting to have maybe a 10:1 difference, so that the turn signals will stand out more.

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Texas_Ace wrote:
Stock Halogen is around ~700-800 lumens compared to an HID of around 3000 lumens and LED of 4000. Pretty easy to see why they would be better for driving at 60mph+.

The H9 is only 65W and belts out around 2100lm, and the filament is exactly in the same position as the H11.

My headlights have the built-in shields in front of the bulbs, so there’s no danger in doing the swap.

3100K, 2100lm, only 10W more than stock? I’ll take it!

Best of all, they look like stock bulbs at a quick glance. Nothing to attract unwanted attention…

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I put leds headlights in my reflector based housings and got a huge increase in output (like 4x) along with the factory beam pattern. Here’s how:

http://forums.tccoa.com/15-exterior/182185-2017-upgrade-led-headlights-9...

Here is a similar conversion on my H4 bulbed bike.

https://vfr.bikersoracle.com/index.php?threads/led-headlight-bulb-upgrad...

The key to getting a good pattern is this:

It’s been about a year since I converted my car and some of the LEDs are starting to fail (I drive a ton at night) so I switched back to Silverstar 9007s and they absolutely suck! I can’t tell they are on most of the time and they are so yellow. Sick

Now I am on the hunt for some 2017 model lights. I’ve ordered 3 kits so far. The first was supposed to use Philips Luxeon ZES chips, but they used something different. A quick lux measurement at 18” with my old led lights, Real Luxeon showed 250 lumen (I meant 2500), while the new ones showed 60 lumen (600) (same visable brightness to my Silverstar as I drove around with one each in my car so I could compare them). Horrible. I sent them back. Hopefully the next 2 sets will be better.

I will try and answer many of the questions mentioned in above posts as soon as I get time.

My Convoy L6 thread with XHP70.2, Texas Avenger FET driver, Narsil v1.2 ramping firmware, lighted side switch and cut down SMO reflector. Lots of amp draws on stock driver as well.
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/54477

My Supfire L5-S thread with XHP70, Texas Avenger FET driver, NarsilM v1.0 ramping firmware and lighted side switch. My mini L6! http://budgetlightforum.com/node/55746

9 NarsilM user videos including GT
http://bit.ly/narsil-vid1

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bottom line is there is no pnp led that will outperform factory led’s or a proper hid projector retrofit. any led that is placed into a factory halogen housing may have a more desireable cosmetic appearance, but the performance will be poor. if you want performance, perform a proper retrofit with projectors. everyone claims huge increases but won’t provide wall shots other than ones from the person trying to sell the “kit”. also i’d like to see lux readings of the 4x increase

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Texas_Ace wrote:

The biggest issue I have with them is the designs I have seen just don’t give me a lot of confidence in their ability to shead ~30W of heat without a fan. While a fan is a fine backup, I do not want to have to count on a fan to keep the headlights working long term. Using a fan for say the high beams when more heat is being generated for example I would consider acceptable use of a fan.

Keep in mind that some companies qoute way more output than delivered. You have to look in the description and it might say 160w kit, 80 watt per bulb. This would be super bright, btw, if it were accurate. That’s just exaggerated figures like a 3,000 lumen C8 for $12. Marketing crap.

20 to 25 actual watts is more than enough. It’s like 4 times brighter than a 55w bulb (roughly speaking). I tried a kit that was supposed to be 25w (rated at 80w per bulb, but I knew that was very exaggerated) against one I think was actually 25w and it had 1/4 the output. Closer to 6 watt and was about the same brightness as my halogen Silverstar bulbs. 6 actual watts would have no problem staying cool, but you won’t like that output.

I don’t like the idea of fans either, but “good” led bulbs are so much better and safer I’d be willing to buy a new set every year if I had to. I do NOT want to go back to incandescent.

I think output and beam pattern are higher priorities than fan cooling. Still, I’m trying out 3 different passive cooling bulbs and so far one failed as far as output (as well as the leds being a bit out of place moving the beam downward).

These are the ones I tried recently that failed. The close up shots of the light show Philips chips, but if you zoom in on this shot, they are something else. I was hoping for at least 20w per bulb and got 6 watt instead. Too good to be true. Had to return them. When asked why the leds were not correct the company said those were old pictures. Yeah right.

My Convoy L6 thread with XHP70.2, Texas Avenger FET driver, Narsil v1.2 ramping firmware, lighted side switch and cut down SMO reflector. Lots of amp draws on stock driver as well.
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/54477

My Supfire L5-S thread with XHP70, Texas Avenger FET driver, NarsilM v1.0 ramping firmware and lighted side switch. My mini L6! http://budgetlightforum.com/node/55746

9 NarsilM user videos including GT
http://bit.ly/narsil-vid1

Lightbringer
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JasonWW wrote:
I think output and beam pattern are higher priorities than fan cooling. Still, I’m trying out 3 different passive cooling bulbs and so far one failed as far as output (as well as the leds being a bit out of place moving the beam downward).

All this is always going to be the problem trying to “retrofit” LED headlights. It’s 20lbs of crap in a 5lb bag. All that light needs to be concentrated into a very small area for the beam to be worth a damn, and that means high heat concentrated in that area.

At least with marker lights, tails, even brake lights, you can have an array of a few dozen 5050s and it’ll still throw out a decent amount of light.

A headlight has to have more power than all that, concentrated into a teeny tiny area. The problem’s not really power, but power density.

You can put them on a nice thick Cu slab, but that thickness is going to shift the LEDs from their optimum (if not necessary) position.

Hey, I love LED lighting, but headlights (as far as retrofitting halogen bulbs) is one area where the tek is still way premature and inadequate.

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joel95ex wrote:
Bottom line is there is no pnp led that will outperform factory led’s or a proper hid projector retrofit.

If you can get factory led lights then more power to you, but this is irrelevant to the conversation.

I had a projector retrofit in my car for several years, but it was only a mild increase in performance. Yeah, the cutoff is sharper, but it depends on the projector size and bulb style used. I had to run a small diameter projector to fit in my headlight housing that took a very slim bulb. The output was not as good as a factory bulb would have produced. So in my case the projector retrofit was only a small improvement. Led bulbs in a stock housings were actually much better.

I did have to tweak the bulbs rotation and depth to get a factory beam pattern on low. Maybe this is not what you classify as pnp? If so, then you may be correct, but have you tested every option on the market? I don’t think so. So you have to keep looking. Maybe the new 2017 bulbs will be more pnp and need less adjusting.

So you shouldn’t make blanket statements.

joel95ex wrote:
Any led that is placed into a factory halogen housing may have a more desireable cosmetic appearance, but the performance will be poor.

This is another blanket statement and is untrue. You need to educate yourself, which I am trying to do. Just look at the beamshots from my bike install which uses a fluted reflector housing. Same exact pattern and cutoff. I had to adjust the bulbs rotation and depth to get it just right, then tightened down the setscrews. So far this seems the norm as opposed to just sticking the lights in and hoping for the best.

joel95ex wrote:

also i’d like to see lux readings of the 4x increase

Is this in reference to my post were I used the 4x number?
I’m trying to help people here, not sell them a product. I already sent the lights back, but even if I still had them I would not bother to take pictures as its not important. I measured that. If you don’t believe me, it’s no big deal to me. On axis with one side of the bulbs. Each bulb using 4 tiny emitters. Same distance. One measured 250 lumen and one measured 60 lumen. Simple as that. I posted a picture of the kit so others can avoid it.

I will be testing more kits as well and will post my findings here. Hopefully I can find a good kit, if not you’ll know what to NOT to buy. Lol

My Convoy L6 thread with XHP70.2, Texas Avenger FET driver, Narsil v1.2 ramping firmware, lighted side switch and cut down SMO reflector. Lots of amp draws on stock driver as well.
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/54477

My Supfire L5-S thread with XHP70, Texas Avenger FET driver, NarsilM v1.0 ramping firmware and lighted side switch. My mini L6! http://budgetlightforum.com/node/55746

9 NarsilM user videos including GT
http://bit.ly/narsil-vid1

JasonWW
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Lightbringer wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
I think output and beam pattern are higher priorities than fan cooling. Still, I’m trying out 3 different passive cooling bulbs and so far one failed as far as output (as well as the leds being a bit out of place moving the beam downward).

All this is always going to be the problem trying to “retrofit” LED headlights. All that light needs to be concentrated into a very small area for the beam to be worth a damn, and that means high heat concentrated in that area.

A headlight has to have more power than all that, concentrated into a teeny tiny area. The problem’s not really power, but power density.

You can put them on a nice thick Cu slab, but that thickness is going to shift the LEDs from their optimum (if not necessary) position.

Hey, I love LED lighting, but headlights (as far as retrofitting halogen bulbs) is one area where the tek is still way premature and inadequate.


Take a look at the Philips Luxeon ZES chips which I know are great. There is also the Seoul Y19 chip and Philips CSP flip chip, which I will be trying out soon. These 2 are new for this year.

You are right in that this led headlight technology is still in its infancy. It’s constantly improving though. Just like with flashlights, all cars will eventually transition from incandescent to LED. It’s just a matter of time.

My Convoy L6 thread with XHP70.2, Texas Avenger FET driver, Narsil v1.2 ramping firmware, lighted side switch and cut down SMO reflector. Lots of amp draws on stock driver as well.
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/54477

My Supfire L5-S thread with XHP70, Texas Avenger FET driver, NarsilM v1.0 ramping firmware and lighted side switch. My mini L6! http://budgetlightforum.com/node/55746

9 NarsilM user videos including GT
http://bit.ly/narsil-vid1

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