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Thread: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

  1. #1

    Default 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    My friend has a '06 Camry with extremely aged lamps that are in dire need of replacement not only because of the aged lens, but also because of extreme internal damage. Forgive me for being so thick, but I don't see any signs of the chipped reflector inside the headlamp. I doubt that anyone at Jiffy Lube (the only place my friend takes his Camry for maintenance) bothered to fish out the debris...and I doubt that NAL assembled the headlamp as pictured. So, what could have happened to the broken piece? I've actually taken the headlamp off the car already and shaken it, listening for any sort of internal clattering, but found none. What do you think happened to the part of the reflector that snapped, and why would such internal damage occur? There are no signs of external physical damage--no broken mounting tabs, for example, which would be indicative of a fender bender. And the lens is perfectly intact and the headlamp has no fogging issues.

    https://imgur.com/a/eM8bq7y

    Second question: what's better for a '06 Camry: the '05-06 OEM headlamps, or the earlier '02-04 OEM headlamps? Both will physically fit onto the Camry. The difference is that the '02-04 lamps have an outboard turn signal. The post-facelift headlamps, on the other hand, have in-board mounted turn signals which are all but invisible from the side given their design and location. However, the '02-04 headlamps also have squared off reflectors, unlike the post-facelift lamps, and the '02-04 lamps have not only a squared off high-beam compartment but also a "slashed-off" high-beam compartment. I can't help but wonder if the extra geometric flourishes impact low and high-beam performance. The post-facelift lamps have no such geometric flourishes and instead seem to have near perfectly rounded low and high-beam compartments.

    The '02-04 lamps will require some slight wiring modification to make the turn signal work correctly on the post-facelift Camry, but nothing too crazy. My friend is willing and enthusiastic about upgrading to the best possible set of lamps, be it the pre-facelift version or the post-facelift version.

  2. #2

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    The chipped reflector is a curiosity mostly in terms of "how did that happen?", because it's not exactly subject to impact damage without destroying the rest of the lamp. My only guess is a flaw in that particular part that eventually created a fault line (crack) with repeated thermal cycling. The missing piece is probably lodged (hence no rattling sound) down at the bottom inside the rear of the headlamp housing. It doesn't matter much; as you say, the lenses are driving a need for new lamps.

    As far as parts selection for optimal lighting, that's pretty easy. Get the earlier headlamps. Specifically, the SE version with the black bezel, that is this one and this one. Black (or more precisely, non-bright-metallized) internal bezels mean less stray light reflections bouncing around. The low beam and high beam performance levels are at least as good as the later lamps (yes, there is that slash-cut on the early high beam reflector, but the reflector itself is larger overall because it's not crowded by an inboard turn signal). And the outboard turn signal is larger, brighter (it has to be, because it is located within 4 inches of the lit edge of the low beam) and has good outboard visibility the later inboard turn signal lacks. The early lamp's side marker light is also a good candidate for an upgraded bulb and a "flash with the turn signal" upgrade as described here on this board and on this page to provide lateral visibility of the turn signal.

    The low beams should get good HIR2 bulbs and the high beams should get HIR1s, and of course the new lamps should be aimed correctly with an appropriate aiming machine.

    (Incidentally, that series of Camry is a great counterexample for those who think that European headlamps are always/necessarily superior. Both early and late versions use an H4 bulb in the outboard chamber. That means dramatically less light on the road on low beam compared to the US lamp with its HB4 (9006) bulb.)

  3. #3

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Thank you for the detailed and helpful reply. I had not considered internal bezel color as being important previously.

    On aiming: these lamps are OEM and have regulatory markings but don't indicate whether they're VOL or VOR. Why is that, and what are they?

    On European Camrys: Powerbulbs indicates that UK/Ireland Camrys use H7 low beams starting in 2002 and 9006 before. Perhaps I am confused, but I don't see references to H4s. Edit: I see that the Australian Camrys use H4s circle 2002. I wonder why Toyota chose to develop so many different lamps; wasn't UK/Ireland and Australia both governed by ECE lighting regulations? Also, it makes me curious as to how Stern's H9/H7 bulb would do in a UK Camry versus a HIR2 in a US Camry.
    Last edited by Ls400; 08-24-2019 at 09:38 PM.

  4. #4

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Well, you caught me not digging in the parts books deeply enough! It looks like Toyota put weak ECE H4 headlamps on Camry models of this generation sold in some parts of the world, not in Europe itself where it looks like they used an H7 low beam/HB3 high beam. So that raises another option, of putting in the European-European headlamps for RH traffic, that's this and this. The second pic reveals some interesting details: the pic of the rear of the lamp shows that it's definitely an H7 low beam/HB3 high beam, and if you look carefully at the back of the housing above the low beam bulb access port you will see it says "EU H7 12V55W JPN HIR2 12V55W". So add yet another variant to the list of headlamps.

    Advantages of using the European lamps: you could aim them to US VOL specs and, especially with the 65w H7 bulb, probably wind up with nicer beam performance overall. And you'd gain horizontal aim adjustability, a nice plus. But there would be added costs and hassles. You'd lose the side marker light and side reflex reflector, so you'd have to install those as separate items. Not impossible, just a nuisance. You'd need to also get the parking light socket and pigtail (note the EU lamp has a hole in the low beam reflector for a small socket with a W5W bulb for the parking light).

    The US lamps are no slouch, so while the Euro H7 lamps are nifty, I think I would probably get the linked US lamps and the HIR bulbs, do a careful aim job, and call it good unless I was absolutely intent on having European-type beam patterns.

    Why did Toyota develop so many different lamps? Because market preferences exert strong pressures. In certain parts of the world it might be more important that a replacement bulb can be bought easily even if it means low headlight performance. H4 bulbs can be bought almost literally anywhere on the planet; 9006s and H7s and HIR2s less so. Even if the situation isn't that extreme, local preferences can still hold some influence. In Europe, HB4 and HIR2 are allowed, but H7s are everywhere. In the USA, H7s and HIR2s are allowed, but 9006s are everywhere. When market preferences are violated, even if the regulations aren't, there can be significant blowback. The '97-'99 Camry used H4 (HB2, 9003) in the US headlamp, and it met the regs, but it was a pathetic lamp: very weak on low beam. For 2000 a new 9005-9006 lamp was released, and the light performance was much better. And at some point in that general year range there was a similar situation in Australia, though it might have involved high beams considered unacceptably weak even though they met the regs.

  5. #5

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    JPN HIR2: does that mean that Japanese Camry's came with 9012 lows standard?

    While we're on 9012s: yes, I've used that Amazon link previously to obtain some Vosla 9012+30s. I still have them, and I'm donating them to the friend-in-need. I'm just curious: has the 9012+30 been discontinued?

    https://www.vosla.com/wp-content/upl...alog-DE_EN.pdf

    It seems that the +30 has been deprecated in favor of the +50. Also, is there a GM part number for the 9012+120?

  6. #6

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    JPN HIR2: does that mean that Japanese Camry's came with 9012 lows standard?
    Yes (confirmed in the parts books).

    has the 9012+30 been discontinued?
    Maybe or maybe not. They might still supply them to GM...or they might not.

    It seems that the +30 has been deprecated in favor of the +50.
    Looks like it, in the product line they provide for the aftermarket. This doesn't necessarily dictate what they do/don't offer to OEMs. It wouldn't be the first time a bulb supplier created/supplied a bulb to OEMs that they don't supply on the aftermarket. GM part number 89024715 is a Sylvania "9006HP", which as far as I know was never offered through any channel other than GM Parts. Sylvania put it into existence because NHTSA determined the 1999 Buick Century and Regal low beams didn't put enough light on overhead road signs. NHTSA said they missed the minimum upward sign light requirement by something piddly like 3 candela. Transport Canada's tests showed no such problem, and it was a BS "problem" anyway; within an hour of taking a brand new car on the road for the first time there's enough dust, film, and scratch on the lenses to significantly increase the upward light from any low beam, and this recall on the '99 cars wasn't done until 2004, which means each and every '99 Buick with the allegedly inadequate headlamps was putting out a whole lot more upward sign light than the brand new lamps in the test lab. Nevertheless, NHTSA was insistent and so GM issued the cheapest possible recall: they got with Sylvania and said "Make us a bulb that puts out a little more light", knowing full well any car that got those bulbs once would probably never get those bulbs again.

    Also, is there a GM part number for the 9012+120?
    Not that I know of. The GM part number for the HIR2+30 exists because GM used that bulb in a customer-satisfaction campaign for the 2014-2015 Chevrolet and GMC pickup trucks.

    Oh, I forgot to answer your question about US Camry lamp aim: they are VOR, and I am sure if you keep looking you'll find the marking. Often the markings are very small, very faint, and very hidden.

  7. #7

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Do you have any recommendations as to obtaining the 9012+120? The usual suspects, eBay and Amazon, are useless. I only found one hit, and that was through Amazon.de. I am curious about the +120s, and a side-by-side qualitative comparison with the +30s would be interesting.

  8. #8
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    The '97-'99 Camry used H4 (HB2, 9003) in the US headlamp, and it met the regs, but it was a pathetic lamp: very weak on low beam. For 2000 a new 9005-9006 lamp was released, and the light performance was much better. And at some point in that general year range there was a similar situation in Australia, though it might have involved high beams considered unacceptably weak even though they met the regs.
    I have friends with a '97 Camry needing new headlamps-- will the '00 headlamps fit a '97 without mechanical modification? The wiring part might be slightly complicated but without a mechanical fit there's no need to attempt.

    Also, it appears the later-model tail lamps look cooler, but I'm not sure they're objectively better.

  9. #9

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Alaric Darconville View Post
    I have friends with a '97 Camry needing new headlamps-- will the '00 headlamps fit a '97 without mechanical modification?
    The '00 headlamps are taller, if memory serves, so you'd need to do some additional parts swapping. Bumper parts, hood, maybe others? Not sure. This (the '97) is an application where the European headlamp is better. It's the same size and shape, and still takes an H4, but gives better light distribution. Also, at least for part of production, the lenses are made out of glass!

    A relay-and-wires upgrade helps a lot, too, as does careful bulb selection and, of course, careful aim.

    Also, it appears the later-model tail lamps look cooler, but I'm not sure they're objectively better.
    They're a little bigger, but they don't fit the earlier cars. Aside from that, go nuts! :-)

  10. #10
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    The '00 headlamps are taller, if memory serves, so you'd need to do some additional parts swapping. Bumper parts, hood, maybe others?
    Ouch!

    This (the '97) is an application where the European headlamp is better. It's the same size and shape, and still takes an H4, but gives better light distribution. Also, at least for part of production, the lenses are made out of glass!
    And probably costs arms/legs

    They're going to a Pick Your Part soon; I should tag along and see if they have an '00 and a '97, so I can see if the headlamps are really all that difficult to do. Wouldn't take a whole lot of time to do the proof of concept, and if it fits and the hood closes normally then I'd have the confidence to have them order the parts... If not, well, I guess it's a daily, not nightly, driver!
    Last edited by Alaric Darconville; 08-26-2019 at 12:10 PM.

  11. #11

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    Nevertheless, NHTSA was insistent and so GM issued the cheapest possible recall: they got with Sylvania and said "Make us a bulb that puts out a little more light", knowing full well any car that got those bulbs once would probably never get those bulbs again.
    How did GM get away with this "temporary" safety remedy? From NHTSA's viewpoint, wouldn't the lamps be back to "square 1"/the pre-recall state after the 9006HP bulbs burned out and the owner likely replaced the bulbs with the cheapest possible 9006? Or was GM forced to supply 9006HP bulbs for the remaining life of the vehicle? I'm not 100% confident, but it seems that you are implying that the recall involved extended availability of 9006HP bulbs with the words "knowing full well any car that got these bulbs once would probably never get those bulbs again." But were the replacement bulbs always free? The recall document isn't very clear. I believe that recalls are supposed to be performed for free though.

    https://repairpal.com/recall/04V375000

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    parts books


    What parts catalogs do you use? I often times find myself longing for a better parts catalog than, say, Autozone.com and its constant admonitions to "confirm fitment" and its semi-helpful advice such as "Majority = high beam applications. Confirm high beam or low beam application."

    Finally, since we're on the topic of taillamps, I'm a little curious as to the '02-'04 vs. '05'-06 Camry taillamps. Is there a performance difference?
    Last edited by Ls400; 08-26-2019 at 01:52 PM.

  12. #12

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Alaric Darconville View Post
    Ouch!
    Well, when I look on the used-parts search engine (www.car-part.com) and ignore the one or two probable mistakes, it looks like the hood interchange is '97-'99 versus '00-'01. But I don't know if that's because of the headlamp contour cutouts or if there's some other difference that might or might not affect anything substantial (it could be just a different accent line or something like that). Bumper covers appear to go '97-'00, then '00-'01 (by VIN up to/after). So I think your idea of going to the parts yard with a tape measure is probably a good one.


    As far as the European headlamps go, yes, they probably would cost a bunch if you could even still get them (remembering we're talking about a car that's 20 years old). And then you'd have the question of whether leveling motors are needed, etc.

  13. #13

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    How did GM get away with this "temporary" safety remedy?
    GM + NHTSA = usually something not completely commonsensical.

    From NHTSA's viewpoint, wouldn't the lamps be back to "square 1"/the pre-recall state after the 9006HP bulbs burned out and the owner likely replaced the bulbs with the cheapest possible 9006?
    NHTSA works in mysterious ways!

    Or was GM forced to supply 9006HP bulbs for the remaining life of the vehicle?
    No, once the recall was done on any given vehicle, it was no longer eligible for another free set of 9006HP bulbs. It looks like that's still a valid GM part number, though, for whoever wants to go buy headlight bulbs from the dealer for their 1999 Buick!

    What parts catalogs do you use?
    Well, in the case of Toyota vehicles I use Toyota parts catalogs.

    I'm a little curious as to the '02-'04 vs. '05'-06 Camry taillamps. Is there a performance difference? [/FONT]
    Not that I know of, formally. Neither design strikes me as concerning in terms of its performance; they both seem to work reasonably well.

  14. #14

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    I pulled the bulbs out the Camry for closer inspection. The original Koito 9006 bulbs are still working! Interesting, the Koito 9006 bulbs, when installed in the headlamp, have no filament support running above the filament. The conventional Sylvania 9005 that came out the high-beams have a filament support running above the filament when the bulb is installed correctly.

    In the gallery below, the brown bulb is the Koito; the black bulb is the Sylvania.

    https://imgur.com/a/q1cuBvQ

    I've never seen a bulb like the Koito 9006. All the 9006/9005 bulbs I've seen resemble the Sylvania 9005. A bit of speculation on my part: it seems that not having a filament support running directly above the filament would be advantageous in some cars, such as the Camry. With the low-beams illuminated, it seems that it's mainly the middle and upper portions of the low-beam compartment that is lit.

  15. #15
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    So I think your idea of going to the parts yard with a tape measure is probably a good one.
    Or, if they have both model year cars, just do the swap right there to check for mechanical fit/hood closure. Measure nonce, cut nonce Then I'll know with certainty that they can go ahead and order new genuine parts.

    It doesn't take a whole long time (didn't seem to when I replaced headlamps on an '01 Corolla).

    The eBay.de auctions seem to list them ohne Motor; even when I use search terms like
    1997 Camry Scheinwerfer H4 einschlie▀lich Motor or
    1997 Camry Scheinwerfer H4 mit Motor
    Enclosing mit Motor in quotes means NO matches.
    Last edited by Alaric Darconville; 08-27-2019 at 08:09 AM.

  16. #16
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    I've never seen a bulb like the Koito 9006. All the 9006/9005 bulbs I've seen resemble the Sylvania 9005. A bit of speculation on my part: it seems that not having a filament support running directly above the filament would be advantageous in some cars, such as the Camry. With the low-beams illuminated, it seems that it's mainly the middle and upper portions of the low-beam compartment that is lit.
    That's not how that works. The lamps were designed for an HB4, not an HB4 of a particular brand.

  17. #17

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Alaric Darconville View Post
    That's not how that works. The lamps were designed for an HB4, not an HB4 of a particular brand.
    Yeah, I get that. I understand that's part of the reason that 9006 (and other) LED retrofit kits are illegal; sure, a kit might work great in 0.1% of all cars, or 0.2%, or even 98.5%, but they're still illegal until they can work in 100% of all 9006-type headlamps. I just can't help but wonder:

    a) Why is it that Koito chose a different design than most other bulbs on the (US) market? I doubt they wanted to be different just for the sake of being different. Maybe it's just a mundane reason. Perhaps that's just how the tooling was configured, and there are no significant consequences for choosing either design. I don't know.

    b) Could it be that the Koito design works better than the design found on the Sylvania long-life 9005 (and most other 9006/9005 bulbs in the US)? I understand that both are almost definitely legal and compliant with all applicable standards.

    Also, back to the Buick and supposed lack of uplight issue: I'm just curious, why did NHTSA even bother to investigate the Buick's headlamps? From what I understand, they run few actual tests of headlamps. I wonder what the impetus for testing was. A lot of customer complaints about not being able to see reflective signs? Or do they do random spot checks and just happened to stumble upon this "issue"?

    Finally, my friend found what was likely an Amazon pricing error for a genuine passenger side Toyota/NAL '06 headlamp. I showed him everyone's helpful advice about getting an earlier version ('02-04) with the blacked out interior, but he found a deal that was too good to pass up: a typically $300 OEM headlamp for only $67 with tax, brand new, on Amazon. It's the '05-06 design, with the chrome/shiny interior, but I inspected it today and it appears to be both new and genuine! Right after purchase, the list price on Amazon shot up from $70 to nearly $300. Bank, er, Amazon error in his favor? I did find a few small dust specks (?) in the headlamp, not on the reflectors themselves, but on a non-critical part of the headlamp internals, and there appears to be some gray sealing material around the lens/headlamp body interface that appeared to have been pushed out during assembly. Are these reasons for concern? EDIT: The old headlamp also has grey sealant "leaking" from the joints, and the old one, despite the FUBAR reflector, has never had condensation issues in its life. I think we'll be okay .

    On a positive note, however, I did convince him to get some 9012+120s through Stern! And perhaps I can convince him to get some '02-'04 headlamps for the other side of the vehicle! The Camry is already in horrible condition, cosmetically, and he doesn't care if the lamps aren't perfectly matched on each side. Finally, since he has something of a um, obsession, with LEDs, I convinced him to get the Zevo 168s to replace the incandescent side-marker bulbs after showing him the positive sentiments for the Zevo 168s on CPF.
    Last edited by Ls400; 08-27-2019 at 06:08 PM.

  18. #18
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    Yeah, I get that. I understand that's part of the reason that 9006 (and other) LED retrofit kits are illegal; sure, a kit might work great in 0.1% of all cars, or 0.2%, or even 98.5%, but they're still illegal until they can work in 100% of all 9006-type headlamps.
    They work great in exactly 0.00% of cars.

    a) Why is it that Koito chose a different design than most other bulbs on the (US) market? I doubt they wanted to be different just for the sake of being different.
    Maybe it's cheaper that way.

    b) Could it be that the Koito design works better than the design found on the Sylvania long-life 9005 (and most other 9006/9005 bulbs in the US)? I understand that both are almost definitely legal and compliant with all applicable standards.
    But if the change makes it work better in a particular lamp, might it not make it WORSE in another?

    Also, back to the Buick and supposed lack of uplight issue: I'm just curious, why did NHTSA even bother to investigate the Buick's headlamps?
    Probably lots of complaints about poor lighting.

  19. #19

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    Why is it that Koito chose a different design than most other bulbs on the (US) market?
    Sylvania makes some large proportion of the 9006 bulbs on the US market. That doesn't mean their design is the correct one or the preferred one, it just means their design is the one most commonly seen. Sort of like the Camry isn't the "right" design for a sedan, just the most popularly selected one in America.

    Koito designed their 9006 bulb in accordance with what they consider to be best practices -- and Sylvania did the same. "Best practices" might mean doing something a specific way for manufacturability (maybe there's something about their bulb production line that makes it easier, less expensive, faster, and/or otherwise better to make the filament and filament supports one way instead of another), or because there was some aspect of bulb performance or durability that they felt was best achieved by designing the bulb the way they did, etc.

    There's actually a lot of variability in the details of bulb design, brand to brand (and year to year...have you ever seen an early-type H1 bulb? It's got a big external support wire and a flat, sort of ravioli-shaped envelope. Looks very different from later/current H1 bulbs, but the two types are optically compatible. Back to 9006s: some of the Asian off-brands provide HB4 bulbs with H7-style filament and support structures. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying they put H7 burners on 9006 bases, just that the filament and support structure are along a typical H7 design and not along a typical 9006 design. This doesn't make the bulbs inherently better (or worse), just different. There's theoretically an advantage to the H7-style setup, in that there's a metal-free region surrounding the filament so in theory you get less stray light and glare, but there's still plenty of opportunity to make a bad bulb with this design.

    Could it be that the Koito design works better than the design found on the Sylvania
    Maybe, but any difference would probably not be large.

    the Buick and supposed lack of uplight issue: I'm just curious, why did NHTSA even bother to investigate the Buick's headlamps?
    Probably complaints. Think about the cars in question, and who tended to buy those cars: generally those were the cars your grandparents would buy, perhaps as their last automobile. Think about the implications of the visual acuity and night-driving eyesight of the drivers of those cars, and think about that demographic's tendency to have time and tendency to write letters about issues affecting them.

    Were there other headlamps on other cars that might not have been meeting the upward sign light requirements? Probably! Some automakers in the American market got their butts handed to them by buyers who hated the European-style cutoff/upsweep low beams, so they went back to American-style low beams and concluded that's what Americans want. Yet other automakers who continue to provide low beams with European-style cutoffs seem to get no such complaints from their American buyers.

    Finally, my friend found what was likely an Amazon pricing error for a genuine passenger side Toyota/NAL '06 headlamp. I showed him everyone's helpful advice about getting an earlier version ('02-04) with the blacked out interior, but he found a deal that was too good to pass up: a typically $300 OEM headlamp for only $67 with tax, brand new, on Amazon.
    That's crazy! How could he afford not to buy three of them? :-)

    perhaps I can convince him to get some '02-'04 headlamps for the other side
    I would try to put a matched set of headlamps on the car, myself, but there's no real safety hazard posed by using one of each, and it would be an interesting side/side experiment to see what the subjective impression is of low and high beam quality.

  20. #20

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    Back to 9006s: some of the Asian off-brands provide HB4 bulbs with H7-style filament and support structures. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying they put H7 burners on 9006 bases, just that the filament and support structure are along a typical H7 design and not along a typical 9006 design. This doesn't make the bulbs inherently better (or worse), just different. There's theoretically an advantage to the H7-style setup, in that there's a metal-free region surrounding the filament so in theory you get less stray light and glare, but there's still plenty of opportunity to make a bad bulb with this design.
    A few months ago I did notice that the Sylvania Basic 9012 bulb has a "conventional" design while the XtraVision and SilverStar 9012s have the H7-style setup. I guess all that extra $$$ buys you not only a blue coating but also a theoretically better filament-support design! Totally worth the extra outlay of cash now !

    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    Back to 9006s: some of the Asian off-brands provide HB4 bulbs with H7-style filament and support structures.
    You probably have Eiko in mind. I remember being impressed by their use of the H7-style filament and support structures. Rock bottom price point...modern architecture...and probably rock bottom quality. Curiously, the computer catalog I used informed me that the Eiko bulbs didn't last as long as Sylvania basics, and also rather curiously stated that the output of the Eiko D2S HID bulbs was only 2800 lumens, while the Sylvanias were 3050 or something (can't exactly remember). Both within 3200 +/-450, but it quickly be came obvious to me that Eiko bulbs were targeted at price-sensitive consumers.

    I would try to put a matched set of headlamps on the car, myself, but there's no real safety hazard posed by using one of each, and it would be an interesting side/side experiment to see what the subjective impression is of low and high beam quality.
    Well, to make the most of the situation, could one safely swap the post-facelift headlamp's turn signal bulb (4157) for a 3457? Could one safely swap all the 3057s and 3157s on the Camry for 3457s? Finally, did Candlepower Inc. ever get around to releasing the 35-watt, 792 version of a 3457? I'm going to take a guess and say "no," because the last time it was mentioned was over a decade ago.

    In other news, I managed to make the front side marker lights blink asynchronously with the actual front turn signal by using Daniel Stern's guide. I used Posi-Taps, and they certainly lived up to the hype! At my friend's behest, I evaluated some Sylvania Zevo 3057 LEDs in the stop lamps. They did not work very well, as I expected, because the stop lamp bulb enters at an angle instead of inserting straight into the housing. The angled stop lamp bulb doubles as the rear side marker light, and the Zevo completely failed at creating any sort of discernible rear side marker light. I suggested instead that he replace the old taillamp and stop lamp bulbs with new, fresh bulbs since the old ones were likely original to the car and had fairly blackened housings.
    Last edited by Ls400; 08-30-2019 at 10:30 PM.

  21. #21

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    You probably have Eiko in mind.
    Yes, among others. I bought some Eiko 9006 bulbs (with H7-style burner design), and they very obviously degraded the beam focus and performance of the headlamps I popped them into, compared to any of the namebrand 9006 or HIR2 bulbs. So much so that I didn't even bother going to the effort of setting up any formal tests.

    the computer catalog I used informed me that the Eiko bulbs didn't last as long as Sylvania basics, and also rather curiously stated that the output of the Eiko D2S HID bulbs was only 2800 lumens, while the Sylvanias were 3050 or something (can't exactly remember).
    Dollars to donuts there is no real basis for those claims, just purely a marketing "buy the more expensive bulb" effort.

    could one safely swap the post-facelift headlamp's turn signal bulb (4157) for a 3457? Could one safely swap all the 3057s and 3157s on the Camry for 3457s?
    Yes.

    Finally, did Candlepower Inc. ever get around to releasing the 35-watt, 792 version of a 3457? I'm going to take a guess and say "no," because the last time it was mentioned was over a decade ago.
    I had to do some searching on that one...! Finally found it in this old post. Which looks like it contains an error of inattention (maybe I was trying to multitask or something), because the subject of that thread is brighter 3057 bulbs, and 3057 is a 2-filament design -- as is 3157, 3357/3457, etc. The proposed 792-lumen 35-watt version would have had to have been a wedge-base version of our old friend the 796 bulb, which is a single-filament type (so it would be an upgrade for 3156). As far as I'm aware it never entered production.

  22. #22
    Moderator Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Quote Originally Posted by Ls400 View Post
    Finally, did Candlepower Inc. ever get around to releasing the 35-watt, 792 version of a 3457? I'm going to take a guess and say "no," because the last time it was mentioned was over a decade ago.
    Quote Originally Posted by -Virgil- View Post
    I had to do some searching on that one...! Finally found it in this old post.
    Ls400, If you were referring to that specific thread in your post, maybe you should have linked it to save us some searching

  23. #23

    Default Re: 2002-2006 Camry headlamp upgrade

    Ah, yes, my bad, I should have linked to the original post.

    Anyway, I'm curious: how does the flashing inboard turn signal + flashing side marker compare to the pre-facelift's outboard turn signal? Would you rank one solution above the other? The front side markers have been replaced with Zevo 194 LEDs, if that makes a difference.

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