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Thread: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

  1. #1

    Default Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Hi Guys

    long time reader and learned TONS via reading in the past.

    I have been experimenting with different leds lights for nighttime boating on my suclided river and lake in Canada that commenly has dangerous debris.

    Originally I had a 54” led lightbar from earthtrack that offered no help. Too much wide spread and not enough spot as the water eats the light.

    Second I tried 2 rigid Q2 hyperspot. Big improvement from the lightbar but not enough brightness at only 80 watts.

    Desprite to try something brighter with a spot pattern I bought 2 510 watt spot lights from Opoo Lighting in China. Let me say wow these things are stupid bright but they draw a tremendous amount of power. Like many LEDS from China they fasely advertise these 510 watts draw just under 20amp each.

    I have been reading in-depth recently and realized that I should be exploring high watt HIDS for long range lighting. The 510 watts work well but the longevity of these lights make me worry. Should I be looking at getting HIDS?

    i am looking for the suggestions for the best night boating spotlight that draws a combined total under 80 amps at 12v

    Thanks for for the suggestions

  2. #2

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    So... watts of electrical power consumption aren't really a useful measure of light output. Instead, there are two things we want to be looking at: lumens, and candela. Lumens are total light output in all directions, and candela is light intensity at the brightest part of the spot. Here are some beamshots from fonarevka.ru to illustrate what this looks like:

    Low lumens, high candela (Armytek Barracuda XP-L HI, 1150lm, 150kcd) - a spotlight:

    http://fonarevka.ru/beamshot/Dendrop.../Turbo/0.8.JPG

    High lumens, low candela (Niwalker MM18: 5200lm, 29kcd) - a floodlight:

    http://fonarevka.ru/beamshot/Dendrop..._flood/0.8.JPG

    High lumens, high candela (Nitecore TM16, 4000lm, 122kcd):

    http://fonarevka.ru/beamshot/Dendrop.../Turbo/0.8.JPG

    The Rigid Q2 Hyperspot advertises 7040lm and 328kcd. Are you asking for more candela, more lumens, or both?

    You might also want a warmer color temperature, which results in less visible backscatter. LED stuff often defaults to very cool.

    Moderator Note:

    Hotlinked images converted to URLs. There are also copyright notices on the pages:
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    Last edited by Alaric Darconville; 11-24-2018 at 03:05 PM. Reason: Hotlinking & copyright concern
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  3. #3
    Flashaholic* FRITZHID's Avatar
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    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    HIDs will provide a large amount of throw compared to LEDs but keep in mind HIDs do not like to be turned on and off repeatedly, so turn them on (they need to warm up to full power) and keep them running till you're done using them for the night. LEDs on the other hand can be turned on and off and are at full output from the start.
    HIDs are also going to require a larger reflector so physically a larger light unit. (Idk if space is an issue).
    You MIGHT be able to find a lenser LED that will throw like you'd prefer and then have floodier lights to light the surrounding area.
    There are also marine remote controlled bow spotlights available.
    I Got tired of looking for the light at the end of the tunnel so i lit that bitch up myself! Convoy s2 365nm, Maxa-Beam Gen II, 55w hid/100w incan Vector Twin, Amondotech n30, vss-3A, Reylight Ti Lan v3, Helius Sigma 9, astrolux s41 219, Shadow JM35, BLF GT,

  4. #4

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Thanks for the helpful info.

    I would think that low Lumens and high Candela would be the best for lights on water for spotting debris.

    The 510watt lights that I have are huge weighing at 7kg each and 10” tall. I have lots of room for lights on my 26’ aluminum boat.

    Are HIDS able to withstand constant vibrations on rough waters?

    Where should I be looking for a big 1 mile HID light with low lumens and high candela?

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* FRITZHID's Avatar
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    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    I'd check out the marine options. Plenty available with many options, you'll have to look thru them & decide which option will work best for your needs. The major marine suppliers will have higher prices but usually better quality, Amazon and eBay have them as well but dodgy quality going that route, far cheaper tho.
    I Got tired of looking for the light at the end of the tunnel so i lit that bitch up myself! Convoy s2 365nm, Maxa-Beam Gen II, 55w hid/100w incan Vector Twin, Amondotech n30, vss-3A, Reylight Ti Lan v3, Helius Sigma 9, astrolux s41 219, Shadow JM35, BLF GT,

  6. #6

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    From my experience googling Marine lights are typically for commercial vessels that have massive lights high above on the mast shining down. Other than crummy Golights I have not been able to find anything that would be a great spotlight. Where would be a good place to shop around for some big tough HIDS that throw light huge distances?

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* Unicorn's Avatar
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    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Maybe a couple of VisionX 6.7 inch Light Canons if you feel like spending a lot. They also have a larger version that puts out more light, but are 90 watt I think.

    The Golight might also fit your needs. LED and HID are available with the HID giving more light of the two.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Check out the Stryker LED by Golight. They are weatherproof and saltwater resistant.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Quote Originally Posted by FRITZHID View Post
    HIDs will provide a large amount of throw compared to LEDs
    That is not an accurate statement; it is not possible to generalize like this. There are some HID lights that have longer beam reach ("throw") than some LED lights, and there are some LED lights that have longer beam reach than some HID lights. There is nothing inherent in either technology that makes for necessarily longer beam throw.

    But LED technology does have some major inherent advantages over HID for usage anywhere near water: with HID you have extremely high voltage that must be very carefully sealed against water (liquid and/or vapor). With HID you also have vulnerability to vibration and mechanical shock, and you have to figure out where to mount the required ballasts. And there is the slow ramp-up time of HIDs. LEDs have none of these issues.

    Original poster, you're going to have to spend some money on legitimate lights. Cheap Chinese dreck isn't going to do what you want. First, you're going to have to figure out just what it is you want. Zak is correct that focusing on watts won't help you get a useful light. What is leading you to believe you want a tight spot of light? Are you trying to penetrate the surface of the water to see underwater debris not visible on the surface?

    Zak is also correct that you would preferably want a warmer color temperature, ideally no more than 3500K, but this is going to be difficult -- All of the HIDs and most of the LED lights you'll find have a higher color temperature, up to 6500K, which is not optimal for what you're trying to do/see.

    You have a lot of room for lights...what's the money situation look like? Because if you have money in the budget for serious lights, and your boat can provide the required type of electrical feed, the amber (actually yellow in operation) Hella Hypalume lights would seem to check every box: an enormous amount of light, totally waterproof and shock/vibration-proof, low color temperature (again, in the amber models) and available in three beam patterns. The "long range" pattern would seem to match up with what you're saying you want.
    Last edited by -Virgil-; 10-22-2018 at 05:33 PM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Even in the long range version of the Hypalume, this is still a bad suggestion for the targeted application, even if just for the fact it is almost 2 feet * 1 feet, and unlikely to fit nicely on a boat of the typical size for a secluded Canadian river/lake.

    - Very typical for a low lying haze over lakes after dark resulting in excessive refracted light back (the optical design is going to have lots of spill)
    - Seeing rocks/debris in a marine environment is difficult. 1800CCT is not going to help, and when you couple the halved light output under photopic conditions and even less in mesopic / scotopic (those reflections will be dull)
    - They require a minimum 24V electrical system
    - They are not really any more light than the Ops already used Hyperspot Q2 with similar lumens to the Amber Hypalume.

    Since this is not a saltwater application, I think the op is already on the right track with the Q2. If you need more light, mount 2 or 4.

    That said, I question whether the hyperspot version is most suitable. Objection detection in the water is near impossible at any distance. You may find the spot version which has almost the same useful range to be better, though you could always use one of each (or more).

  11. #11
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Quote Originally Posted by MeMeMe View Post
    1800CCT is not going to help, and when you couple the halved light output under photopic conditions and even less in mesopic / scotopic (those reflections will be dull)
    The light output may be just slightly more than half of the white version, it's because it's eliminating a giant portion (or all of) the problematic blue light, leaving the red and green light.

    - They require a minimum 24V electrical system
    Many marine applications use a 24V electrical system already, because doubling the voltage means you can lower the current. Current is the enemy, especially on long runs.

    They are not really any more light than the Ops already used Hyperspot Q2 with similar lumens to the Amber Hypalume.
    Two of those are 14,080 "raw lumens" (if I'm looking at the right model, but "raw lumens" are based on emitter lumens and count, not the net output after optics). The Hypalume is 13,000lm by itself-- and again, light easier for us to process. That they describe it as "Sea turtle friendly" which suggests boating as an application.

    Since this is not a saltwater application, I think the op is already on the right track with the Q2. If you need more light, mount 2 or 4.
    If it tolerates saltwater, then brackish or freshwater will also be no problem. I'd go with the Hypalume myself.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Accidentally hit post ...
    Last edited by MeMeMe; 10-31-2018 at 04:32 PM.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Sorry, but your answer makes little sense.

    Starting at the end, by Sea Turtle friendly, that is not to imply boating applications (They don't offer 1800CCT through their marine division). It means you can use it for lighting near sea-walls and the turtles will not be drawn onto shore. This is a big issue in areas where sea turtles hatch.

    Let's say the unit is 70% efficient (though 75 is likely closer). Two of the Q2s would still blow away an 1800CCT Hypalume in terms of total lumens. Where the light drops to mesopic/scotopic levels, the difference will be large.

    Unless you have a >40' yacht, with thrusters, you are highly unlikely to have a 24V electrical system on your boat. That size is unlikely in a secluded river and lake. The only other 24V would be if you have a 24V trolling motor, but one tends not to trust your trolling motor batteries to lighting duty.

    You would put it on your boat .... it's a 2 foot * 1 foot block of aluminum essentially. Not sure what type of boat you have, but I don't know anyone that would put that on a pleasure craft.

    It is pointless to eliminate blue light if you are not going to improve object detection. Eliminating blue is going to reduce glare which may give an effective contrast improvement, but 1800CCT is going to negate any improvements and likely to make object detection much much harder (Google studies on object detection speed at low light levels with different CCT sources).

    I can see benefit to lower CCT, i.e. <4000 (or 3500 as Virgil stated), but not 1800CCT. Even running trails at night you can notice a difference in ability to pick out hazards on the terrain with 4000-5000K versus 2700K. This is not like roadway lighting where you are assuming mesopic lighting levels, central vision, and nice diffuse surfaces.

  14. #14
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Quote Originally Posted by MeMeMe View Post
    Two of the Q2s would still blow away an 1800CCT Hypalume in terms of total lumens. Where the light drops to mesopic/scotopic levels, the difference will be large.
    Those certainly are words!
    We're not talking about mesopic, let alone scotopic, levels of light with either of these lighting solutions.

    Unless you have a >40' yacht, with thrusters, you are highly unlikely to have a 24V electrical system on your boat.
    Unlikely, but not impossible. If I wanted my bilge pump(s) to work reliably I'd go 24V. Maybe there's a watermaker, too. 24V would also let me use thinner-gauge wire which saves weight, is cheaper, and is easier to run. Depending on what I started with, maybe I might have to replace some electronics, but still-- 24V is not absolutely out of the question for the OP's boat.

    You would put it on your boat .... it's a 2 foot * 1 foot block of aluminum essentially.
    They tried a 54" light bar already, so perhaps size isn't quite the issue. However, they've been silent a bit and have given scant details on what they pilot.

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  16. #16
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: Absolute Brightest Spot Light for Boat

    Using from 400W to 1000W, and requiring 85VAC, this is not going to be a win for a boat. 400W is 33.3A@12V; with conversion losses both in the boost to 85V and the conversion to AC, you'll be seeing more like 37A. And for a 1000W lamp, that may work out to over 92A from the 12V system. The HypaLUME requires 10A at 24VDC.

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