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Headlight Upgrade 2017 TRD

Discussion in '3rd Gen. Tacomas (2016+)' started by FourTimesFour, Oct 29, 2018.

  1. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:39 PM
    #1
    FourTimesFour

    FourTimesFour [OP] New Member

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    Hey folks,

    Any suggestions on a reasonably priced headlight upgrade out there? I've looked into the following;

    1. High output Halogens
    - Problem is with how long these things last...No Bueno

    2. LEDS
    - Excellent life expectancy but way too many choices. Anyone try any of the Phillips products yet? They look decent?

    3. HID
    - Good product/Life expectancy but a lot of harness stuff and they're pricey

    * Headlight Revolution is way over priced imo*... $199US for 2 high beam lights?? Wtf?

    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
     
    RobP62 likes this.
  2. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:41 PM
    #2
    Unchained 5150

    Unchained 5150 Well-Known Member

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  3. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:48 PM
    #3
    Technique

    Technique Well-Known Member

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    If you want to stick with halogen, you can do a H9 conversion to gain a lot of output.

    If you want to go to LEDs, I would recommend the Hikari (LumiLED version) or others have liked the XenonDepot LED kit.

    I did have Hikari LEDs and recently switched to HIDs and love the output, but I am dealing with HID shake..so I would look into that before buying HIDs if you want to go that route.
     
    FourTimesFour [OP] likes this.
  4. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:51 PM
    #4
    FourTimesFour

    FourTimesFour [OP] New Member

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    Awesome, thank you, I'll have a look!
     
  5. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:52 PM
    #5
    toyotatacomaTRD

    toyotatacomaTRD Senior Member

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    People always neglect to talk about HIDs shaking. I always notice it when someone is behind me and has them.

    I went with the xenondepot led pro. I'm really happy with them. I had a couple times where I got out if my truck with the stock bulb's to see if the lights were on, they were the worst of any vehicle I've had.
     
  6. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:56 PM
    #6
    Technique

    Technique Well-Known Member

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    If I knew about the shaking issue, I would not of spent $180 on them...RIP.
     
  7. Oct 29, 2018 at 2:59 PM
    #7
    FourTimesFour

    FourTimesFour [OP] New Member

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    Oh man, I hear ya. I do a lot of hwy driving.
     
  8. Oct 29, 2018 at 3:03 PM
    #8
    syeve

    syeve Member

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    I went with the xenon depot xtreme LED's and they are great. Significantly brighter.
     
  9. Oct 29, 2018 at 3:07 PM
    #9
    bikesinmud

    bikesinmud Well-Known Member

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    I did the Xenondept HID for low beams and the LED pros for high beams. Was really impressed until this am when I had to drive through really thick fog. The HID's didn't penetrate the fog very well, about the same as stock Halogens. Glad I installed the Bajadesigns Squadron sports in amber. If it's clear out, they HIDs are great.
     
  10. Oct 29, 2018 at 3:09 PM
    #10
    DrastikTRD

    DrastikTRD Well-Known Member

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    Xenon Depots LEDs Xtreme here. Very happy with them and easy to install without having ballasts to mount.
     
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  11. Oct 29, 2018 at 3:12 PM
    #11
    OrangeJulius

    OrangeJulius Well-Known Member

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  12. Oct 29, 2018 at 3:25 PM
    #12
    Taco1.1

    Taco1.1 Well-Known Member

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    H9 conversion is a cheap and easy first step.
     
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  13. Oct 29, 2018 at 3:36 PM
    #13
    Reypac24

    Reypac24 NRA Member

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    I've had the OPT7 Boltzen AC 6k xenon hid low beams and OPT7 fluxbeam led high beams for a year and a half without any issues. I also installed the OPT7 fluxbeam led for driving lights.
     
  14. Oct 29, 2018 at 5:49 PM
    #14
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 Vehicle Design Engineer

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    This is a copy/paste from a couple of my posts on the subject, so it might be a little redundant.


    HID vs LED
    What is often overlook in these comparisons is distance projection. The wider LEDs significantly change the lighting geometry and instead of increasing focus to project light further, they lose focus causing the beam pattern to shorten significantly and shift toward the vehicle. LEDs do not project correctly, for the way the housing is designed, which is why people always talk about LEDs lack of throw.

    The HID is 80% brighter in lumen output than the LED counterpart it was measured against below (according to reputable specs), but because of the loss of focus by the LED, the HID has 3.8x the output in the hotspot for drastically better projection. Unfortunately the shift of the light pattern toward the vehicle with LEDs produces great looking photos as people see a lot more light immediately in front of the vehicle and think it looks great. Reflective and projector based optical designs are designed to focus the light into a concentrated hot spot for maximum distance projection, which depends on the light source being exactly center in the housing (not offset like LED), and the smaller the better. While you can put more light into a headlight, if you are not maintaining your hotspot the distance projection is lost, which is the primary purpose of the headlight.

    XD Philips HID vs XD LED
    Hotspot vs no hotspot
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The HID lights pictured are 4300k Philips from Xenon Depot. You can get higher color temperature lights to match LED DRLs, but the higher color temperatures do slightly reduce output. I like that XD offers German Philips bulbs as an option. I've run these in bench testing but have not tried them on the street to test the bouncing issue.


    Performance halogen vs LEDs
    Halogen optics work by concentrating a beam into a hotspot to project distance. Lack of a hotspot or reduction of hotspot equates to lack of distance projection and a pattern shift of moving the light pattern toward the vehicle, which aside from greatly reducing distance projection also increases foreground light which constricts pupils to further reduce night distance vision. Hotspots and distance projection is increased by making light sources smaller and more precise to increase optical focus to project the light further. While you want more light, you want the more light projected further down road, not more light in a blob immediately in front of you.

    Stock wattage H11 GE Megalight +130 performance halogen on the Left vs XD Pro high output LED right
    [​IMG]

    While the LED actually has a higher lumen output rating, focus is completely lost. Hotspot is eliminated and distance projection is lost. The pattern has shifted from projecting distance to high foreground lighting, which as mentioned above is not a good thing.

    You can see the halogen filament on center, with reflections off the rear of the projector concentrating the light into a focused hotspot. And recall smaller light sources create better focus for higher intensity.
    [​IMG]

    Compared to the LED, there is no center focus at all. It is difficult to say if those even reflect off the back of the projector since they are side firing, but for focus you should have light in the very center of the housing, and it is absent. Affect on the beam is predictable.
    [​IMG]

    So what does this mean for output? See earlier photo for pattern.

    Using a professional grade LED compatible light meter:

    XD Pro LED:
    [​IMG]


    Stock wattage H11 GE +130 performance halogen:
    [​IMG]

    The stock wattage performance halogen has excellent hot spot intensity with the highly focused projected distance lighting while the LEDs are providing more of a generalized short range flood light, which is not what you want in a headlight. The headlights primary purpose is to see distance. So while the LED may put out more raw light, it is not designed correctly for the halogen housing and results in lower performance. Lots of people see the greater amount of foreground light and think the lights have improved, but in reality they have lost their beam hotspot and distance projection and pattern shifted the lights close to the vehicle.

    GE adds the blue tint at the back of the bulb, so that the edges of the beam get the blue appearance that many are looking for without affecting the output by filtering the primary beam pattern with blue tint.

    Somewhat difficult to tell in these photos but the halogen beam arcs down on either side of the hotspot, with the LEDs it arcs upward on either side of where the hot spot would be if there was one, because the light sources are moved off center. Not helpful to oncoming drivers.

    GE Megalight +130 bulbs used in this test:
    https://www.powerbulbs.com/us/product/ge-megalight-ultra-h11-twin

    H9s are another good option, to significantly increase overall output without affecting the stock pattern projection, though the high efficiency performance bulbs will produce better hotspot distance projection.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2018
    mmatheny and House Forsaken like this.
  15. Oct 30, 2018 at 1:49 AM
    #15
    bikesinmud

    bikesinmud Well-Known Member

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    Followed the link that Crash provided, but its for 2nd gen. Did a search and didn't find anything for the 3rd gen. I'd like to do the ultimate headlight mod for my 3rd gen, including where to source everything from. Thanks.
     
  16. Oct 30, 2018 at 4:07 AM
    #16
    jdiru

    jdiru Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone have more info on doing the H9 conversion? What does it entail? I am thinking about doing it for the sake of cost and simplicity.
     
  17. Oct 30, 2018 at 5:32 AM
    #17
    ZYBORG

    ZYBORG Let's roll...

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    Stock light output was pretty good, IMO. Hikari lumi leds now. Decent output, but definitely not an improvement over stock. Just nicer color. Lol.

    As mentioned above, LED’s are not meant for the housing; therefore, loosing intensity and range when compared to stock. But if you are willing to compromise on that, it can be a great / inexpensive solution.

    If you are really after output, HID or retrofit FTW.
     
  18. Oct 30, 2018 at 5:41 AM
    #18
    ShirtTucker

    ShirtTucker Well-Known Member

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    It's just modifying the H9 bulb to fit in the H11 socket.

    Modified H9 bulbs shown on left in photo. Credit to @crashnburn80 for the photo.

    Top plastic tab in socket removed on left.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
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  19. Oct 30, 2018 at 6:18 AM
    #19
    crashnburn80

    crashnburn80 Vehicle Design Engineer

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    To put an H9 in the headlights, only the internal tab modification is needed. The additional metal external tab modification is needed when putting H9s in the fogs.

    Edit: Alternatively you can make an adapter plug, so the H9 is plug and play, like this in post 78:
    https://www.tacomaworld.com/threads...de-not-led-or-hid.475064/page-4#post-18845649
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
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  20. Oct 30, 2018 at 6:20 AM
    #20
    ShirtTucker

    ShirtTucker Well-Known Member

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    Whoops! Thanks for the clarification. I'll edit my post.
     
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