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Xan Presents: Everything You Need to Know About Automotive Lighting

danbfree

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#21
Sorry, I am in architectural lighting and 3000k is the temp i generally relate LEDs to, but yes if its over 4300-5000k its just going to look Blue if you have a true white light next to it.. BUT if you feel those little LEDs are better then put it in your car. The headlight reflectors are not designed for PnP LEDs regardless how you'd like to believe OEDRO. Just correcting the wire would give you better output.
Alrighty then, agree to disagree on the LED's, I hate the Brown/yellow light of anything under 5000k, especially when it's clear 5000-6000k clearly lights up objects in the distance better but also good info to know about the wiring, so thanks for that.

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danbfree

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#22
I've been going back and forth with Daniel Stern about the new developments in LED kits, including the ones linked in this thread - here are the relevant bits from our emails:





When asked about how one would go about constructing an A/B test between high-quality halogens and an LED kit, he responded:
Good stuff, thank you Xan for taking the time to take another look objectively at this and research the latest... And to be clear this set I have now is the very first I have ever seen that actually has a throw distance that is actually better than halogen... As far as reflectors being only designed for halogen, let's look at the main factor: 360 degree light output and is it coming from the exact area the halogen filament is... Again the 4 sides and very thin tip on mine does a VERY good job of this as well... Sometimes black is black and white is white when it comes to perception and in this case I'm clearly, clearly getting better distance, clarity and objects lighting up better ahead... Now are they technically legal? Looks like not, but if not a single soul of oncoming traffic, especially a police officer, cannot tell the difference and are not bothered by them, then I'll take that knowing I'm actually clearly seeing better and SAFER.

We can all agree to disagree, but I know that the design of mine works great, no matter if very opinionated engineers don't even want to bother to test my set and just to push an assumption as fact.

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XanRules

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Thread Starter #23
I think the issue is less that people don't want to test them - I love that kind of shit - but that it's more that the equipment needed to objectively test the necessary parameters is cost-prohibitive to a layman such as myself. Trust me, if I could I'd be crunchin' all the numbers and data I could.
 


danbfree

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#24
I think the issue is less that people don't want to test them - I love that kind of shit - but that it's more that the equipment needed to objectively test the necessary parameters is cost-prohibitive to a layman such as myself. Trust me, if I could I'd be crunchin' all the numbers and data I could.
Fair enough man, I do appreciate you keeping an open mind on the new ones and willing to investigate them... I KNOW that they provide me with a much better level of visibility including distance over the factory bubs without blinding people. The pics are of my neighborhood where I drive all the time and I can directly compare and it is easy to tell that I can see much better now.. Again, I understand it's my risk as far as the legality, but no one has flashed me a single time, and the color output is clean and white unlike other LED's that are more clearly 7000k so I'm happy... I can see more research being done and the minds of those against them and the legality changing as more sets are designed appropriately going forward.

My problem is that Daniel Stern didn't even address WHY he says that it's impossible for LED's to work in a housing designed for halogen. He just immediately says it's impossible with no factual information, that is not an objective based opinion no matter how eloquently he expresses it. It doesn't even make sense, honestly, as at a certain point if a light source is coming from exactly the same spot that the reflectors are designed to handle, why would it matter if an LED or halogen bulb produces it? Again, the reflectors are designed to accept 360 degree light coming from an exact mounting point in the housing, I just don't see how that is "impossible" simply because it is an LED and not a halogen bulb producing it.

I'll leave this subject alone going forward, sometimes even the very brightest Dr.'s can miss a diagnosis because they are too stubborn to think they might be wrong and it may or may not be the case here, sometimes it's good to get a 2nd opinion... That said, I'm going to unsub from this thread as I'm happy where I'm at, but please Xan, give me a mention if you have info that I really should know about.
 


KKaWing

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#25
Here's a start I guess, a good chunk of it goes way over my head.



Fig. 16. Comparison of a TFFC white LED against conventional halogen and HID lamps used for “low-beam” automotive forward lighting. Top row is the lit visual image. Underneath is the color-scaled luminance image. The scale for the halogen filament and HID arc are the same. The scale for the LED is different, and is indicated at left. The table lists average luminance, source flux, input power, and useful flux (utilization percentage) in the application.

https://www.researchgate.net/figure...alogen-and-HID-lamps-used-for_fig16_228841897
One thing of note is LEDs emit light from a flat surface, even if the chip is small and the same size as a filament, it will shoot light out at a different angle compared to a cylindrical wound filament. I'm on my 3rd set of leds lol, I want them to work but nothing I feel comfortable running.

Here's to sum up my 3 sets. Cree XHP 50 (Rocket R3) - totally killed the beam pattern.

Seoul CSP (Maxgtrs Mini H11 pink thing) - beam pattern is "correct" however, it overpowered the squirrel finders. Effectively it raised the cutoff a foot or more above the hotspot depending the distance of the wall.

Philips Lumiled (G5S bulb chassis, possibly fake Lumileds) - closest thing to a decent beam pattern to me, the squirrel finders look ok, but seems kinda dim on the road. Part of it might be colour is too far on the blue side. I wasn't too comfortable running copper braid heatsinks stuffed inside the headlights.

Bonus set! Seoul CSP 800 lumen fog bulbs - Perfect beam pattern (aka looks stock, just 5K colour temp.). Its downfall is it being an 800 lm bulb.

My poor attempts at instrumented tests using the lux sensor of my phone, totally not really accurate.

Edit: Taken in my totally dark garage, roughly 7 feet from the wall to the plastic lens of the bulb (I don't have a garage-mahal :p)

The first 2 are the set of 800lm led bulbs, the second set should be my first attempt in capturing 2 year old Nightbreaker Unlimiteds, but didn't get the hotspot just right. Everything else I grabbed the highest number I can by fidgeting with the placement of the phone.



The rest are labeled.



 


danbfree

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#26
Here's a start I guess, a good chunk of it goes way over my head.



One thing of note is LEDs emit light from a flat surface, even if the chip is small and the same size as a filament, it will shoot light out at a different angle compared to a cylindrical wound filament. I'm on my 3rd set of leds lol, I want them to work but nothing I feel comfortable running.

Here's to sum up my 3 sets. Cree XHP 50 (Rocket R3) - totally killed the beam pattern.

Seoul CSP (Maxgtrs Mini H11 pink thing) - beam pattern is "correct" however, it overpowered the squirrel finders. Effectively it raised the cutoff a foot or more above the hotspot depending the distance of the wall.

Philips Lumiled (G5S bulb chassis, possibly fake Lumileds) - closest thing to a decent beam pattern to me, the squirrel finders look ok, but seems kinda dim on the road. Part of it might be colour is too far on the blue side. I wasn't too comfortable running copper braid heatsinks stuffed inside the headlights.

Bonus set! Seoul CSP 800 lumen fog bulbs - Perfect beam pattern (aka looks stock, just 5K colour temp.). Its downfall is it being an 800 lm bulb.

My poor attempts at instrumented tests using the lux sensor of my phone, totally not really accurate.

(remainder redacted for space consideration)

Thanks for testing, sounds like you are above my knowledge level! Couple of thoughts?

1. Why not just aim those ones that raised the cutoff a bit downward? Did they have good throw distance at least? Do you have a link to them?
2. Why would you stuff the braids inside the rear covers? I don't bother with rear covers myself as I feel they aren't really needed but some people want a seal so you could always just use the pass-through rear covers for like $10.
3. Have you tried the mini 4 sided? They seem to be the ones that mimic halogen by far the best, I had good luck with mine but honestly would like to get those Euro projectors w/ LED DRL's eventually anyway...

Thanks again for some good data! Definitely shows they can be bright, just gotta deal with cutoff and throw distance...
 


KKaWing

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#27
Thanks for testing, sounds like you are above my knowledge level! Couple of thoughts?

1. Why not just aim those ones that raised the cutoff a bit downward? Did they have good throw distance at least? Do you have a link to them?
2. Why would you stuff the braids inside the rear covers? I don't bother with rear covers myself as I feel they aren't really needed but some people want a seal so you could always just use the pass-through rear covers for like $10.
3. Have you tried the mini 4 sided? They seem to be the ones that mimic halogen by far the best, I had good luck with mine but honestly would like to get those Euro projectors w/ LED DRL's eventually anyway...

Thanks again for some good data! Definitely shows they can be bright, just gotta deal with cutoff and throw distance...
Aiming downwards: the hot spot is well below the "cut off". It will kill distance vision due to it being so bright too close to the car.

Braids inside / dust cover: the braids for my 3rd set are really short, only an inch sticks out past the grommet from the first set. The bulb socket is not fully enclosed. The area where the glare shield attaches actually leaves a gap for dust and crud to fly in. It would be terrible to clean out.

4 sided: the oedro ones is a no for me, one set of the led is not aligned with the others. See the bulbfacts.Com for a cut off picture. The zdatt one has the light source too far from the centre so I have my doubts. So far the only one that aren't over a hundred bucks that would fit the socket is something called the "bullet 6" LED bulbs. Bulbfacts.Com also have a cut off picture. It's the J87 Lighting Z on the site but you can get it far cheaper on aliexpress. It's the one I'm tempted to try but the measured lux is near the same as the night breaker unlimited.

Projectors are the end game but I'd probably get 2 PT brace / torsion bar / radiator before that.
 


danbfree

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#28
Aiming downwards: the hot spot is well below the "cut off". It will kill distance vision due to it being so bright too close to the car.

Braids inside / dust cover: the braids for my 3rd set are really short, only an inch sticks out past the grommet from the first set. The bulb socket is not fully enclosed. The area where the glare shield attaches actually leaves a gap for dust and crud to fly in. It would be terrible to clean out.

4 sided: the oedro ones is a no for me, one set of the led is not aligned with the others. See the bulbfacts.Com for a cut off picture. The zdatt one has the light source too far from the centre so I have my doubts. So far the only one that aren't over a hundred bucks that would fit the socket is something called the "bullet 6" LED bulbs. Bulbfacts.Com also have a cut off picture. It's the J87 Lighting Z on the site but you can get it far cheaper on aliexpress. It's the one I'm tempted to try but the measured lux is near the same as the night breaker unlimited.

Projectors are the end game but I'd probably get 2 PT brace / torsion bar / radiator before that.
All you need is the $10 pass-through rear covers, well worth it if you are concerned and give the bulb stem some cooling too...The Oedro are aligned differently on each side to ensure full filament mimicking, it's for a good reason, those are the ones that work great with awesome throw distance. I wish I knew about that site, very interesting, but mine don't have that overlap like that, you can clearly see the cutoff at the top with all the lighting below that... That is obviously not our car, not sure why you'd go by that, they don't even say which car they used? THAT SAID, the very highest rated Hikari are only $71.99 right now on flash sale, those look really interesting!
 


TyphoonFiST

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#29
All you need is the $10 pass-through rear covers, well worth it if you are concerned and give the bulb stem some cooling too...The Oedro are aligned differently on each side to ensure full filament mimicking, it's for a good reason, those are the ones that work great with awesome throw distance. I wish I knew about that site, very interesting, but mine don't have that overlap like that, you can clearly see the cutoff at the top with all the lighting below that... That is obviously not our car, not sure why you'd go by that, they don't even say which car they used? THAT SAID, the very highest rated Hikari are only $71.99 right now on flash sale, those look really interesting!
Those are pretty decent output...who makes them?[rockon]

Ill get a beam pattern on my Xenon depot LEDs also....we should start a compilation of beam patterns in stock housings with LED lighting.! [wiggle]
 


danbfree

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#30
Those are pretty decent output...who makes them?[rockon]

Ill get a beam pattern on my Xenon depot LEDs also....we should start a compilation of beam patterns in stock housings with LED lighting.! [wiggle]
Not sure if you're trolling since I'm defending mine? My sarcasm detector is off tonight and may be too sensitive.. LOL
 


TyphoonFiST

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Not sure if you're trolling since I'm defending mine? My sarcasm detector is off tonight and may be too sensitive.. LOL
IM like De kerstman celebrating sinterklaas dawg....I know who has been good and who is getting a bug lump of Gifs.....Seriously though...who made them there lights? [wrenchin]
 


danbfree

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#32

danbfree

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#34
I remember seeing these and thinking about them....They do cutoff well! [party]
I heard about them from a Facebook FiST group, apparently a certain regional group all got them as somehow they work pretty damn well in our specific reflectors... it's worth a shot if you get them from Amazon and you hate them you can always invoke the "Did not meet advertised claims" or however it's worded for a free return... I sent back three sets that way. Keep in mind I also made and kept other purchases too, gotta balance it out and can't return too much stuff but LED's are worth using up some return karma on if you hate them.
 


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I heard about them from a Facebook FiST group, apparently a certain regional group all got them as somehow they work pretty damn well in our specific reflectors... it's worth a shot if you get them from Amazon and you hate them you can always invoke the "Did not meet advertised claims" or however it's worded for a free return... I sent back three sets that way. Keep in mind I also made and kept other purchases too, gotta balance it out and can't return too much stuff but LED's are worth using up some return karma on if you hate them.
Did you ever try to Put the rear covers on with them installed?[scratch]
 


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XanRules

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Thread Starter #37
All you need is the $10 pass-through rear covers, well worth it if you are concerned and give the bulb stem some cooling too...The Oedro are aligned differently on each side to ensure full filament mimicking, it's for a good reason, those are the ones that work great with awesome throw distance. I wish I knew about that site, very interesting, but mine don't have that overlap like that, you can clearly see the cutoff at the top with all the lighting below that... That is obviously not our car, not sure why you'd go by that, they don't even say which car they used? THAT SAID, the very highest rated Hikari are only $71.99 right now on flash sale, those look really interesting!
Those are pretty decent output...who makes them?[rockon]

Ill get a beam pattern on my Xenon depot LEDs also....we should start a compilation of beam patterns in stock housings with LED lighting.! [wiggle]
Is the massive amount of hotspotting, cool/blue-ish tint to the light, and the comparatively narrow beam not immediately apparent to y'all? I'm not sure when or why this thread turned into people just insisting I'm wrong - which I'm not - but that coupled with the constant posting of photos of doing the wrong thing feels like trolling at this point. If you want to start your own compilation thread of people doing it wrong, please do so and leave this thread for technical discussion.
 


danbfree

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#38
Is the massive amount of hotspotting, cool/blue-ish tint to the light, and the comparatively narrow beam not immediately apparent to y'all? I'm not sure when or why this thread turned into people just insisting I'm wrong - which I'm not - but that coupled with the constant posting of photos of doing the wrong thing feels like trolling at this point. If you want to start your own compilation thread of people doing it wrong, please do so and leave this thread for technical discussion.
Looks far worse with halogen, so Ford did it wrong from the start... and that's just one pic up close to a garage door, but my point was the cutoff line is intact... the hotspotting is there, period with halogen too... Not sure what you're even talking about right or wrong, our factory lights are shit, period, and no posting of 5 year old LED pics and info while insisting you are right about everything is going to change that... Want me to pop in the factory halogens and take a similar garage door pic so you can see the same thing but even worse?
 


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#39
Looks far worse with halogen, so Ford did it wrong from the start... and that's just one pic up close to a garage door, but my point was the cutoff line is intact... the hotspotting is there, period with halogen too... Not sure what you're even talking about right or wrong, our factory lights are shit, period, and no posting of 5 year old LED pics and info while insisting you are right about everything is going to change that... Want me to pop in the factory halogens and take a similar garage door pic so you can see the same thing but even worse?
Totally not being sarcastic here. I would actually like to see an apples to apples comparison of stock halogens and these LEDs.
 


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XanRules

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Thread Starter #40
Looks far worse with halogen, so Ford did it wrong from the start... and that's just one pic up close to a garage door, but my point was the cutoff line is intact... the hotspotting is there, period with halogen too... Not sure what you're even talking about right or wrong, our factory lights are shit, period, and no posting of 5 year old LED pics and info while insisting you are right about everything is going to change that... Want me to pop in the factory halogens and take a similar garage door pic so you can see the same thing but even worse?
A certain amount of hotspotting exists by design, particularly in halogen reflectors - all bulbs are going to have some hotspotting and some peripheral flooding, but there are various minimum and maximum intensities specified at a large number of points and zones within the beam pattern. Without that, it's not a functional headlight beam, it's spray of light that resembles a headlight beam. In the case of the LEDs posted, the hotspotting is much more intense within a much narrower beam pattern than on even the bad stock halogens.

And again - the factory bulbs are total trash and the optics aren't great either, I agree with you, absolutely no question. The entire point of this thread could be summed up as how to mitigate that cheaply - inexpensive, good quality, totally legal halogen bulbs that require no modification to the vehicle. It's weird that I'm getting so much pushback on this and that y'all want to spend more money on something that, according to all existing studies and what we (ie people who know much more than me and do this for a living) understand about physics, doesn't work as well and sometimes requires modification to the headlamp assembly. I can't think of another situation in which someone has spent so much time telling car guys "hey, this thing is cheap, it's reversible, and it works the best" and the response so overwhelmingly being "actually this more expensive thing that isn't as good is better," but that's always the case with automotive lighting discussions, an oddly contentious topic for how boring the issue is.

Nothin' personal, we're all friends here - and I apologize if I came off harsh, my serious voice comes off a little gruff in writing sometimes - it's just a very strange thing for me to experience.

Totally not being sarcastic here. I would actually like to see an apples to apples comparison of stock halogens and these LEDs.
Dan and I have talked about this - though I'd have to buy another set of the god-awful stock halogens - but the problem is that there's no way to objectively measure which one is better, or rather, there's no way to do it that's accessible to the layman. Visual tests and photos aren't sufficient due to the issues outlined in the original post, and such equipment or testing is cost prohibitive. Trust me, if there was a way to easily and accurately do it, I'd have bought Dan a beer about it already. I do have some photos that show the difference between the stock halogens and the Philips Xtremevision +90s that I have in my car, but again, photos aren't much of a test.
 


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