Automotive Current best 6" x 8" sealed beam replacements

Ofelas

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 7, 2007
Messages
204
I guess I meant color reproduction - the only thing I have to go by is an LED bulb in a Surefire vs the regular incandescent bulb (which I much prefer, especially on snow/ice).

Cibie E-Codes with 55/100 + a harness vs JW Speaker/Trucklite etc was what I was after.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

N8N

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
1,176
send me some JW speakers and I'll send you some comparison pics <G>

Seriously, I don't know that you will get better color rendering than a halogen bulb in ANY other kind of automotive headlight light source. SWM will pop in any second or so and tell you that it doesn't matter. Personally I think that better color rendition is just on principle *better* but apparently it's not a big deal for automotive safety. I certainly don't feel unsafe driving behind the HIDs in my car as opposed to the Cibies in my Jeep - in fact I kind of like the neutral white color (probably about 4200-4500K) I doubt that the CRI is that great but they sure do work well. If you asked me if I'd want a high CRI light, sure I would, but like I said it seems that it doesn't really matter all that much.

I have absolutely zippy experience driving behind LEDs for automotive lighting, but if you haven't, you might want to check out jeepforum as as I said those guys started going nuts for LEDs once the Speakers and Truck-Lites were introduced and there are some pretty good threads over there with comparison shots and all. (I think it was jeepforum - maybe NAXJA? I'm damned if I can find the massive thread I was thinking about now. I never even read the whole thing, that's how long it was...) By the time they'd been well reviewed, however, I'd already installed Cibies and a relay harness so couldn't really justify upgrading AGAIN...

found it

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f96/headlight-shootout-1166827/
 
Last edited:

-Virgil-

Flashaholic
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
7,802
The objective performance of the JW Speaker headlamps will be better in terms of seeing distance on low beam. And you'll never have to change a bulb on them. Color rendering, which is not very important in vehicle headlamps' safety performance except maybe in some extreme off-roading circumstances but can influence subjective like or dislike, is better with halogen than with LED headlamps. The LEDs have a correlated color temperature (CCT) of something around 6500K, which is a very blue-white light; if you don't like that, these may bother you.

The Cibies cost (a lot) less and if you prefer a "warmer" (lower color temperatuer) light, you will prefer them. But you will periodically have to replace bulbs, and the objective low beam performance won't be as good.

It should be pretty easy to do the math and figure out how many bulbs you will have to replace before the Cibie package cost exceeds the Speaker package cost. I think it would be a lot of bulbs/years; those Speaker lamps are good but they are also expensive! The Truck-Lite LEDs are less expensive. I wish I could like them better than I do: the objective performance is good but there are distracting "artifacts" in the beam pattern (streaks/spots/weird X-shaped projection on the road). There's a range of opinion on how distracting these are.
 
Last edited:

TEEJ

Flashaholic
Joined
Jan 12, 2012
Messages
7,490
Location
NJ
Did any testing of those Petersons ever happen? (LED Headlights)
 
Last edited:

N8N

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
1,176
Keep in mind that when figuring cost of ownership, if you are going to compare Cibie H4s to JW Speaker, to also factor in the cost of a relay harness (either the supplies to make one yourself - with I'm assuming at least 12 AWG wire - or a premade one from a quality supplier, e.g. Susquehanna Motorsports) and also the additional time required to install. You really won't be happy with the improvement unless you get the voltage levels up where they ought to be. You also shouldn't run anything above a standard 55/60W bulb without a relay harness... yeah, there are guys that do it, but there are also guys that get intimate with a soldering iron at an inopportune time, and I don't want to be one of those guys.

Now I do have Cibies, a relay harness and the Osram "Rallye" 70/65W bulbs in my Heep and am quite pleased with the upgrade. I'm not really motivated to upgrade any farther. BUT - if I had it to do again today with the products that are currently on the market, it is hard to pick a clear winner on purely economic terms, and the additional cost of the LED headlights is offset somewhat by the lack of need to purchase and install a relay harness. It would be tempting to spend a little more money and get a decent upgrade that could be installed as easily as replacing a sealed beam.

Now there's one other factor that nobody's mentioned yet; a set of Cibies is mostly unobtrusive, and those "in the know" when seeing Cibies on an old car will find them a nice touch, especially if they're a set of vintage Z-beams. The appearance of LED headlamps on a classic car may cause a double take from many, and responses may not be as positive... kind of like how I feel when I see a set of black plastic windshield wipers on an otherwise nice old car :)
 

-Virgil-

Flashaholic
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
7,802
At the present time there are no Peterson headlamps in the 200mm rectangular form factor being discussed in this thread, and the only size the Z-beam ever came in was the 7-inch round.
 

N8N

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Apr 26, 2013
Messages
1,176
I was speaking in generalities... and yes I actually did have a set of Z-beams on one of my old cars :)

I didn't drive enough with them to make a judgement but have driven extensively with newer 7" round Cibies. Hard to say whether they're better, worse, or the same than the rectangular ones though as the vehicles they are on are dramatically different in ride height.
 

-Virgil-

Flashaholic
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
7,802
The 7" round and 200mm rectangular Cibies are similar in performance: both significantly better than Hella. About the only other H4 lamps in these sizes that are currently being made that I would rank pretty much on a par with the Cibies are the Bosch 200mm rectangulars and the Koito 7" rounds and 200mm rectangulars.
 

Hamilton Felix

Enlightened
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
930
Location
Marblemount, WA, USA
Just confirming what you said, Scheinwerfermann, regarding the high-low separation on the Hella H4 lights. I don't use my F250 much, but lately I've had to make a few night runs. Headlight centers are 42 inches above ground, I had low beam just right, and high beam threw lots of light on the tree trunks next to the road with a dark zone at mid range in front of me. I had to drop low to a significantly shorter low beam than I wanted, to get a useful high beam.

And yes, when I have time, a relay harness and good bulbs are definitely on the list (along with some auxiliary backup lights to supplement the pitiful little 1986 Ford pickup reverse lamps).

i wish they made the Z-beam in a large rectangular lamp. Budgetary constraints being what they are, I will just be dreaming about the JW Speaker lights.
 

Diesel_Bomber

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 19, 2006
Messages
1,772
Trust me, the one time I had a relay fail (not from a vendor mentioned in this thread; sadly he is now deceased and I'm sure the failure was a fluke) it was of course pitch black and I am lucky I did not ditch the car as I suddenly only had two 5W bulbs for forward illumination... a little bit scary.

Sent from my XT897 using Tapatalk

I live out beyond street lamps as well. If your headlights fail again, throw on your right blinker. That will usually illuminate the fog line enough to keep you on the road while you to get the vehicle stopped.
 

Ofelas

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 7, 2007
Messages
204
Just confirming what you said, Scheinwerfermann, regarding the high-low separation on the Hella H4 lights. I don't use my F250 much, but lately I've had to make a few night runs. Headlight centers are 42 inches above ground, I had low beam just right, and high beam threw lots of light on the tree trunks next to the road with a dark zone at mid range in front of me. I had to drop low to a significantly shorter low beam than I wanted, to get a useful high beam.

And yes, when I have time, a relay harness and good bulbs are definitely on the list (along with some auxiliary backup lights to supplement the pitiful little 1986 Ford pickup reverse lamps).

i wish they made the Z-beam in a large rectangular lamp. Budgetary constraints being what they are, I will just be dreaming about the JW Speaker lights.

With a 42" headlight height, what was the height of the Hella low beam cutoff for a perfect low beam pattern before you lowered the Hellas?
Would Cibie lights have given you a good high beam with the low beam heights you optimized with the Hella units?
 

Hamilton Felix

Enlightened
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
930
Location
Marblemount, WA, USA
With a 42" headlight height, what was the height of the Hella low beam cutoff for a perfect low beam pattern before you lowered the Hellas?

Would Cibie lights have given you a good high beam with the low beam heights you optimized with the Hella units?

Not sure exactly how to answer this. Using the old tried and true Cibie instructions for aiming at marks on a wall 25 feet in front of the vehicle (I know it's not as good as an optical aimer, but this is redneck country and I do have a really good level floor in the plant at work), you want your high beam hotspot to center at the same level as your headlamp centers (42" if headlight is 42" high) and you want the horizontal part of your low beam cutoff to be 3 inches below headlight height (so 39 inches in this case). But you're aiming one lamp that has two beams. With the Hella, the change between the two is a bit excessive. With low aimed at the standard of headlight height minus 3 inches, switching to high will put the hotspot above headlight height - resulting in "monkey chaser" lights illuminating the tree tops while leaving a black hole on the road.

Yes, based on past experience (long past), I would expect to be quite a bit better off with Cibie lights. Back in the mid-late 70's when I had 7 inch round Cibie headlghts plus 5-3/4 inch Cibie H-1 high beams in separate buckets on my 1969 Chevy half ton, I was quite happy. I have also used the 7 inch round Cibie Bobi (Z-beam pattern) and the large rectangular Cibie on ambulances in the 80's and 90's. I would definitely put the large Cibie H-4 lamps ahead of the large Hella H-4. My ideal package of that sort would probably be the Cibie Z-beam accompanied by the curved lens 5-3/4 inch H-1 high beam.

I had hoped (and I'm sure it helps) that the height of the truck would help compensate for the excessive change between high and low on the Hella. If correctly aiming high beam results in a low that's a bit too low and consequently cuts off closer to me than I want, imagine how bad it would be in a low car that had headlights only half as high off the ground.

Well, I have other lights to play with. I even have an old set of sealed beam Per-lux 200T lamps. Was going to try them on the F250 for offroad use just to see if they help me see around corners. I don't recall their legal status, though. I remember when all the truckers used them, but I don't think they they qualify as auxiliary low beams. The 200T's were a 100 watt PAR46. I even have a New In Box set of Per-lux Fogcutters, the smaller version with the 75 watt PAR36. Hmmm... talking with a fellow forum member here, maybe I can sell/swap him something I have for enough to make a down payment on a set of Sylvania Xenarc X1010 aux lows. I do like what the Cibie Booster Beams do for the StarrHID low beams on my Crown Vic.
 
Last edited:

Ofelas

Enlightened
Joined
Mar 7, 2007
Messages
204
Ah, ok; first Gen or 2nd Gen?
Love the warmth provided by halogen bulbs, but can't get the LED units out of head for bulb longevity & water resistance.
 

-Virgil-

Flashaholic
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
7,802
The first-generation Truck-Lite LED headlamp was the one that had about 10 emitters, each with its own funnel-shaped optic and lens optics in front. That's an obsolete product, no longer manufactured AFAIK. The current Truck-Lite lamps are as shown in the link you posted.

GE's LED headlamps are also reboxed Truck-Lites. The Osram-Sylvania "Zevo" LED headlamp is a reboxed Peterson, and so is the KC LED headlamp (unless I'm mixed up and that's a Truck-Lite).

I'm still kind of at loss to explain why the current Truck-Lite LED headlamps were built to the old mechanical-aim (sealed beam) photometric standard instead of the newer, and better, visual/optical aim standard that was added to FMVSS 108 in 1997.
 

Alaric Darconville

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 2, 2001
Messages
5,377
Location
Stillwater, America
I'm still kind of at loss to explain why the current Truck-Lite LED headlamps were built to the old mechanical-aim (sealed beam) photometric standard instead of the newer, and better, visual/optical aim standard that was added to FMVSS 108 in 1997.

Well, they DO replace sealed beams... My guess is that there's no way to build it to the optical aim standard and still work with the aiming bumps and mechanical aimer (if indeed that's how these LED units are aimed).
 

-Virgil-

Flashaholic
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
7,802
No, actually, there's nothing legally or technically standing in the way of creating a headlamp that produces any kind of visual/optical aim pattern (VOL or VOR low beam, VO high beam), in accordance with the newer beam standard, and having the aiming pads on the front face of the lamp. Peterson chose to do so on their 7" round LED headlamp (VOR). JW Speaker chose not to have them on their LED headlamps (VOL or VOR depending on the model). The legal gray area is whether the aiming pads must be present. It depends on how one interprets the relevant language in FMVSS 108. On one hand, nobody uses those mechanical aimers (that use the 3 lens-face aim pads) any more. On the other hand, they have to be there on sealed beams, and it's hard to argue with a straight face that a headlamp built to the dimensions of a sealed beam is something other than a replacement for a sealed beam. On the other hand, it doesn't necessarily have to be a replacement for a sealed beam; the current Jeep Wrangler (JK) headlamp is a replaceable-bulb (H13) VOR unit that will fit direclty in place of a sealed beam. It has no aiming pads.
 

Alaric Darconville

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 2, 2001
Messages
5,377
Location
Stillwater, America
it's hard to argue with a straight face that a headlamp built to the dimensions of a sealed beam is something other than a replacement for a sealed beam.
If it's *sealed* such that there's no way to get to the LED without destroying the "seal" (or perhaps the lamp itself), it's almost like it's the very definition of the "sealed beam". I suppose one could try REAL hard and replace the filament in a sealed beam, but the result wouldn't be pretty...
 
Last edited:
Top