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3rd Gen HID vs LED vs Halogen H11 projector headlights

Discussion in '3rd Gen. Tacomas (2016+)' started by crashnburn80, Jan 25, 2019.

  1. Jul 2, 2019 at 12:01 PM
    #1301
    CAG Gonzo

    CAG Gonzo Ascendant Spaghetti

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    Just low beam for now. Been about 2 weeks now and I'm still confident the difference is noticeable: better fill and slightly whiter light. I don't use my high beams enough to want to replace them just yet, and they're already H9's anyway.
     
  2. Jul 2, 2019 at 12:03 PM
    #1302
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    Stock high beam is already German Philips H9s.
     
  3. Jul 2, 2019 at 12:06 PM
    #1303
    CAG Gonzo

    CAG Gonzo Ascendant Spaghetti

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    I thought they were also Osram. Even better! Now I have dedicated spares.
     
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  4. Jul 2, 2019 at 8:27 PM
    #1304
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    Teaser post. All data is collected for the Morimoto XBs, low beam performance, distance projection, high beam performance, ect! Just need to compile the data and create some plots. Should be posted within 24hrs.

    A6E1A4C4-8F76-41D0-85F3-2FAAA5E0084C.jpg
     
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  5. Jul 3, 2019 at 2:30 PM
    #1305
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    Morimoto XB LED Headlights - 3rd Gen Tacoma

    fullsizeoutput_108f.jpg

    Finally a proper full replacement SAE LED headlight for the Tacoma. To correctly run LED lights, the light assembly needs to be designed for an LED light source. Projected light is a system where the light source and light assembly must be designed to work together. Placing replacement LEDs in the halogen projector like the 3rd Gen Tacoma causes the distance projection to be lost. These long anticipated headlights are exciting because finally there is an off the shelf product that is designed from the ground up as an SAE LED headlight, meaning the light source and light assembly are properly designed from the beginning to work together for proper performance.

    At a current MSRP of $1250, these are not inexpensive. While they certainly look awesome and the build quality appears great, this post will focus on what your hard earned money is buying you in terms of projected lighting performance.

    Morimoto Low Beams
    BAtdlJkeRnmdnZbJCigXDQ.jpg

    Power draw (cold)
    Morimoto left: ~20.2w
    Stock wattage GE +120 right: ~58.9w
    cHBTB86sTuGO3rqqHk+KTA.jpg

    For the low beam testing, the LEDs were tested warm after 20+ minutes of runtime, as LEDs warm up their output goes down. It is ideal to test their warm stable output to get real world numbers. After 20+ minutes of runtime the LED low beam reduced power consumption to 14.2A, or about 19.6w, which is about a 3% loss, which is pretty good for a passively cooled LED. Meaning each low beam projector is about 0.71A or roughly a 10w LED.

    Output comparisons

    Lux comparisons measured at 18'
    Stock H11 Osrams: 623 lux vs Morimoto: 1413 lux
    fullsizeoutput_1080.jpg

    Impressive 2.27x lux improvement over stock. The Morimoto beam doesn't have quite as saturated of a beam down low, but the more critical area is up near the cut off for distance projection. Compared to the stock halogen projectors, the Morimoto projector cut offs provide a much cleaner cut off and include a right side step like HID projectors to minimize glare to oncoming drivers.

    fullsizeoutput_1086.jpg

    Color temp is about 6000k. Light quality (CRI, hows accurately the light shows color) is about average for an LED headlight at 71 CRI.

    Unlike the OEM halogen headlights with a single low beam projector and a high beam reflector, the Morimotos feature 2 low beam projectors and a single high beam projector. One projector contains the stepped cut off, while the other low beam projector has a flat cut off. Covering the stepped projector shows a flat cut off on the other low beam projector.

    al0D6YwAQymJooPN0+cZQQ.jpg

    An obvious question would be how do the Morimotos compare to running a basic bulb upgrade such as >$20 Philips H9 low beam bulb swap.

    Lux measured at 18'
    Philips H9 low beam: 1294 lux vs Morimoto: 1413 lux
    fullsizeoutput_1081.jpg

    The Morimotos put down higher lux numbers than the H9s, by about 9.2%. Replacement LED headlight bulbs performance issues are often masked by short range testing, with these being a vastly superior product designed from the ground up for LEDs, how does the distance projection compare?

    Lux measurements at 42'
    Philips H9 low beam: 256 lux vs Morimoto: 265 lux
    mII2K9UrRCqPm4bFvGWfpA.jpg

    Morimoto comes out with slightly higher lux readings by 3.5% compared to running the Philips H9. (Stock lux comparisons in chart below). However, the lux reading doesn't tell the whole story. The Morimoto uses dual low beam projectors, giving 2 points of focus. At shorter range the focus points coincide more giving greater intensity. At longer range these focus points have a small degree of vertical offset, meaning the 'hot spot' effectively becomes where the focus points overlap at the cut off of the lower focus point, to create the brightest part in the beam. If you look at the above photo carefully you can see the 2nd lower focus point cut off, approximately the middle of the 2nd panel up on the right. While the peak lux on the halogens was at the top of the beam at the cut off, the peak lux on the Morimotos was at this lower 2nd cut off, not at the top of the beam. This is important because for maximum distance visibility and projection, the brightest point needs to be at the top of the beam pattern, at the main cut off. Recall that the Morimoto lower beam area was not as saturated in the short distance wall shot, I'd speculate this was done to provide a slightly fuller beam pattern but in doing so compromised locating the hot spot at the top of the beam pattern. With only 2 projectors it doesn't leave many options, compared to using many projectors on some OEM LED headlights where you could double up focus points in the critical projection area while using others to spread the pattern.

    Comparing distance projection:
    (Note: plotted 42' lux for Morimotos is at lower cut off as described above)
    DistanceProjection.jpg
    'DD LED' is Diode Dynamics LED, to compare drop in LED performance to full replacement LED assemblies.

    While the peak beam intensity is a little low in the beam pattern for optimal performance, these are by far the best LED low beam I've seen so far for a Tacoma and a huge upgrade over stock.

    Raw data
    upload_2019-7-3_11-19-0.jpg

    So the low beams are a big improvement over stock, what about the high beams?

    The stock 3rd Gen high beams run a Philips H9 in a reflector housing, the Morimotos are using an LED projector. Larger reflectors are more efficient in distributing and projecting light than a projector, which is why many vehicles that use projector headlights still use reflectors for the high beam.

    Stock high beam w/ Philips H9 low beam (left light only)
    High beam hot spot: 2425 lux
    YkHuX6FRSx+QZX+DL6fwtw.jpg

    The low beam cut off is aligned with the top of the 2nd door panel. The stock H9 floods the area with enough light distribution and intensity the cut off is no longer distinguishable. The high beam reflector very effectively illuminates a huge area but it also focuses a 2nd hot spot above the low beam hot spot for extended distance projection. You can see in the above photo if you look closely the blue ridge of the low beam cut off, and then the high beam hot spot above it.

    Morimoto XB High Beam (right light only)
    High beam hot spot: 2043 lux
    fullsizeoutput_1085.jpg

    For low beam, the tests were run after 20+ minutes of warm up time for stable output. For high beam the tests were run within a few minutes of turning them on, as most don't typically leave high beams on for long extended periods.

    fullsizeoutput_1087.jpg

    Morimoto combined high and low beam output draw
    iX8%4wHPT9CtBfDOOnP1LQ.jpg

    With the low beams drawing 1.4A, the combined high and low output draw is 2.1A, meaning 2.1-1.4=0.7A or ~10w. The high beam projector is the same power as a single low beam projector. In the 3rd Gen halogen headlight, the high beam has ~2x the lumen output of the low beam. In the Morimoto XBs, the high beam has 1/2 the output of the low beam.

    Despite having comparable low beam intensities when running the Philips H9 in the low beam, the stock high beam washes out the cut off with a flood of light whereas the Morimotos do not produce nearly that same flood. Instead there is a smaller targeted region above the cut off. The elevated hot spot for extended distance projection is still present meaning they will still perform that critical function though the numbers are noticeably lower than stock, but the flood function of the high beam is significantly altered and will not provide the same wide area illumination. Projectors do not produce flood light as well as reflectors, nor are they as efficient. The stock Tacoma Philips H9 high beam is a 75w H9, which is the maximum legal output for a 65w H9 bulb. Legal output specifies a range of +/-15%, and Philips (the stock bulb) has it maxed out at +15%. A 10w LED in a high beam projector is not going to matching the performance of the stock 75w (65w) H9 in a more efficient high beam reflector.

    K+zOECM6QH2YuIVQPA3lWg.jpg


    The Morimoto XBs are certainly a big improvement over the stock low beams, but they do sacrifice a lower performing high beam compared to stock. Aux lights could certainly fill the high beam performance gap. These won't match the output of HIDs, but these are plug and play without having to hassle with a proper retrofit or dealing with bouncing issues of HIDs in the halogen projector and come with a 5 year warranty. SAE compliant products are significantly more challenging and time consuming to build than lighting products that do not meet any compliance standard, it is great to see a company take interest in building SAE compliant lighting products and tackle the challenge of providing a real LED replacement headlight for the Tacoma.

    My post is purely focused on the lighting performance of these new headlights. To see install pictures, DRL function and other info see @MESO review here.

    Notes:
    1) All measurements in these tests were taken with a full spectrum NIST traceable digital spectrometer.
    2) Tests were run at 13.8v, which is the measured voltage at the headlight connector with the truck running.
    3) The stock bulb used is an OEM H11 Osram standard bulb removed from a stock Tacoma.
    4) While GE +130s were used in the comparison data for easy reference to the original post, the GE Xenon +120 bulbs are a higher performing stock wattage bulb than the GE +130s.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2019
  6. Jul 3, 2019 at 2:36 PM
    #1306
    replica9000

    replica9000 ./$0|./$0&

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    I had a thought, that if you made YouTube videos with all of your findings, you would probably get a high view count, and the ad revenue would pay for your testing :D
     
  7. Jul 3, 2019 at 2:40 PM
    #1307
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    LOL. Good thought! I've thought about it, but YouTube is so much more work and it would be really challenging to provide the same level of data in a video. Watching me with a digital spectrometer on video wouldn't be that entertaining. :)
     
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  8. Jul 3, 2019 at 3:12 PM
    #1308
    avi8or_co

    avi8or_co Well-Known Member

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    Results look like a good reason to keep $1250 in my pocket.
     
  9. Jul 3, 2019 at 3:16 PM
    #1309
    LegendaryAcura88

    LegendaryAcura88 Well-Known Member

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    So the question is, should you spend $20 on a vast improvement over stock for the Philips H9, or $1250 on the Morimotos that perform SLIGHTLY better than the H9's? I'll stick with my H9's, but know that there are some out there obsessed with matching colors to LED pods and fogs. To each their own I suppose...
     
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  10. Jul 3, 2019 at 3:19 PM
    #1310
    DaBigDogg

    DaBigDogg "Say when..."

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    Of course it would be; all you'd have to do is put it to some EDM and film it at strange angles and maybe throw in a fan service opening lmfao.

    So basically, if I've already gone ahead and did the upgraded Phillips H9 bulb swap; there isn't necessarily a strong argument to get this unless I *REALLY* wanted LED's and that a RX350 retro is still the superior solution at this current time.
     
  11. Jul 3, 2019 at 3:21 PM
    #1311
    replica9000

    replica9000 ./$0|./$0&

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    I've looked into similar headlights for my 4Runner. Besides the Morimoto led upgrade, there are other options such as halos, demon eyes, switchback DRLs etc... K54 offers lots of customizations.

    That said, wish they were in the 5k color temp.
     
  12. Jul 3, 2019 at 3:52 PM
    #1312
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    I think the reasons for the Morimotos in that case would be:
    1) Those that really want LEDs
    2) Those that want the higher color temp light, not going to get that with halogen
    3) The unique aftermarket blackout look, with the DRL and signals
    4) Not having to worry about reduced life bulb changes
    Although many don't need justifiable reasons for their truck mods.

    RX350 projectors with HIDs will be significantly higher performing, though that requires a custom retrofit as there is no 'off the shelf' product.
     
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  13. Jul 3, 2019 at 8:19 PM
    #1313
    ratcityrain

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    OEM Running boards |oemassive headlights | winjet tail lights | led lighting | hid headlight & fogs | oem tri-fold Bed cover | Custom dual JL Audio 10tw3-d4 sub box and custom amp rack | black off road wheels | painted oem grille | jbl door speakers |
    Still "patiently" waiting for mine to arrive :)
     
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  14. Jul 3, 2019 at 8:26 PM
    #1314
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    I paid full price to get them ahead of the group buy. :)
     
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  15. Jul 3, 2019 at 9:30 PM
    #1315
    Semper_Fi

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    @crashnburn80 have you (or going to) installed the xb headlights yet? are there any fitment issues or unexpected large gaps between the housings and the fenders? Can you include a pic how they fit?
     
  16. Jul 3, 2019 at 10:10 PM
    #1316
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    I... don’t own a 3rd Gen... :anonymous:

    I have a 2nd Gen and paid the $1250 just to provide the data to the forum, because I’m a lighting nerd. I have no use for these lights.

    In Meso’s thread, which I linked in the post, there are more install and fitment pics. My post was just intended to be about performance since I have built a database based on standardized tests for Tacoma headlights, making comparisons easy. In Meso’s thread there was concern over the rear most corner of the Morimoto light having a very small gap, but turns out the OEM ones did as well. The lights were laser measured and replicated to be identical dimensions as OEM so fitment should be like stock. But you’ll get better info on fitment over in the other thread.
     
  17. Jul 3, 2019 at 10:59 PM
    #1317
    Semper_Fi

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    All good, thanks for doing the performance review. Detailed and to the point. I agree with others, if you had a YouTube channel I'd subscribe and watch.
     
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  18. Jul 4, 2019 at 8:23 AM
    #1318
    DaBigDogg

    DaBigDogg "Say when..."

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    So what I'm reading is there may be a set of these going up on the marketplace soon? :rofl::rofl::rofl:
     
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  19. Jul 4, 2019 at 8:49 AM
    #1319
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 [OP] Vehicle Design Engineer

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    I’ve given initial dibs to a specific member, if they turn them down then yes.
     
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  20. Jul 4, 2019 at 8:56 AM
    #1320
    skierd

    skierd Well-Known Member

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    Very very intriguing results.

    Were you or would you be able to measure the output of each of the Morimoto low beams independent from each other? Or be able to show point of aim for each projector individually? Are each of the projectors able to be aimed, or is there position fixed and only the housing can be aimed like OEM?


    My concern is that these will look great on a wall test but further down range, as the beam patterns diverge, you’ll actually get less light on the road. Unless of course each LED still puts out more than stock, which brings me to my next question:

    How wide is the morimoto pattern compared to stock with GE’s or H9’s? Would I be wrong to infer from what I’m seeing in the 42’ photo that the inner projector faces more forward and the outer faces more to the sides of the road?

    Edit - I can see the hot spots much better now that I'm on a computer and not my phone. The hotspot on the Morimoto low beams looks to be centered a good 12" below the stock projector in the 42' photo and several inches below the stock hot spot in the close range measurement photo.

    I'm speculating now, trying to add to the discussion.
    From re-aiming my headlights, I found that moving the hotspot up 1/2" to 3/4" led to getting light close to 100' further down road. I posted about this in this thread:
    https://www.tacomaworld.com/threads/headlight-upgrade-2017-trd.575174/page-6#post-19322085

    It would be hard to tell without testing them on an actual truck but I have a bad feeling that these are going to have a really really short throw down the road compared to stock unless they're aimed up significantly. Unless maybe the projector is lower in the housing compared to OEM, or is internally angled differently so it projects "straighter" than the stock projectors.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2019

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