Best H9 bulbs for high beams

SpruceRains

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Jun 13, 2019
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As many before, I was quite surprised to find that there are no "performance" H9 bulbs. I would still prefer to get the best ones available, while not going beyond the specified 65W. These will go in high beams, which I rarely get to use, but would prefer good output for those rare trips on unlit roads. Winter is coming, and so on.

Googling for the best H9 bulb mainly led me to this thread from 2 years ago. The main brands I've seen (in Finland/Europe) are Osram, Philips, and Hella. Any recommendations/considerations?

There are photos of a retail package for Philips Vision +30% H9 bulb, but the stated part code 12361B1 appears to be for the standard Philips H9 bulb. There is another website with a different photo of the same blister pack, so the +30% version should exist...

Toyota/Lexus will of course happily sell me their own H9 bulb, which costs 4-5 times as much as an ordinary Osram H9 bulb. No idea on who makes that specific bulb, but I can't believe it's worth the price.

On another note, I am very happy with the LED low beams on the Lexus LS600h. Apparently they were the first non-DRL LEDs on a production car. They are noticeably brighter, with a very even pattern, than the bi-xenons on my previous car, which were fitted with new Osram Night Breaker Unlimited D1S bulbs.
 

-Virgil-

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Welcome to the board.

The thread you linked contains recommendations that are still valid, and the exclusion of Hella bulbs from the recommendation list is also still valid.

That Philips Vision +30 H9 bulb is an interesting case of Philips apparently telling lies. There is no +30 H9 bulb. It's a regular H9, exactly the same as the one that comes in the package that doesn't say +30.

There is no advantage to buying an expensive H9 from Toyota.
 

SpruceRains

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Jun 13, 2019
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Welcome to the board.

The thread you linked contains recommendations that are still valid, and the exclusion of Hella bulbs from the recommendation list is also still valid.

That Philips Vision +30 H9 bulb is an interesting case of Philips apparently telling lies. There is no +30 H9 bulb. It's a regular H9, exactly the same as the one that comes in the package that doesn't say +30.

There is no advantage to buying an expensive H9 from Toyota.

Thanks for the advice! I'll probably go with Osrams, since they're the only ones readily available here.

Interesting, perhaps the +30% Philips H9 is a marketing department hiccup or something...
 

Ls400

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Jun 27, 2018
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Speaking of "higher"-performance H9s, I recall that someone made a bet with Daniel Stern about the existence of higher-performance H9s. Not sure why he would want to bet against Mr. Stern, and he hasn't spoke of the bet since, but I think this thread is enough confirmation that he lost :).
 
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-Virgil-

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Nobody knows everything about anything, so I'd be willing to bet it's possible to win a bet of this general nature against Stern. But (1) I wouldn't actually place that bet, not for real money, and (2) I wouldn't want to be the one to try to come up with the exact snippet of trivia to try to trip him up with!
 

IdahoDoug

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Jun 4, 2007
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I just wanted to chime in here and thank the board's knowledge on the H9/H11 conversion of a modification to use H9s in our 2017 Outback with the projectors. I've been using another mod for decades with the HIRs on our LandCruisers and this is another stellar one. I learned about it 90 minutes ago while searching for upgrades for an upcoming cross country trip for the low beams. Picked up a set of H9s at a local store for 15 bucks a piece. Modified them with a touch of the dremel and already test drove them. Very strong upgrade to the light output with no artifacts or changes to the excellent cutoff and beam pattern. Keep up the good work, one and all. The HIRs are on their way for the high beams and this will make the 22hr straight run through the night a bit safer. Regards.

PS - I would also not bet against DS - heh! I've been buying lights from him for years. Most recently a fantastic set of hard to find Japanese Koito round 7" lamps which he touted as better spread than the already very good Cibie H4s he has on his site. Safe driving to all.
 
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