LED Headlight Lamp Info

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LED Headlight Lamp Info

Postby mogu83 » Tue Jul 10, 2018 9:46 am

I've been interested for a while in using LED units in my headlights.  Questions about heat generated by the bulb, what the light beam would look like, effect on oncoming cars and what light frequency was best.
As usual the internet was useless, bunch of people with 'opinions', friends that had 'opinions' some that read something somewhere.   And a few that had cheap units from China (usually with unhappy results).

At the BMW National rally (Oregon) I was talking with a guy from Cyclops Adventure Sports (Cyclops)about a LED for my R1200R Beemer.   Basically he told me no one made a LED for my bike that would work (although a few said they would work) and he wouldn't sell me something that I wouldn't be happy with.  I thanked him for his candor and went on my way, but I don't forget a good turn.

Lately I started thinking about a LED for my Valkyrie, standard H4 bulb.  A call to Cyclops found they had a H4 LED and they said it would work in my bike.  Back to the net I ordered a CIL-LED-10.0H4 unit (LED H4).

A few days later it arrived. Installation was a breeze almost like changing a lamp, except I had to find a place to tuck the driver unit (about the size of a BIC lighter) and the led has a fan on the back about 1 1/4 inch in diameter and 3/4 inch thick. No problem in my Honda headlight shell.

Had the bike out last night and very satisfied. A slight whine can be heard when the headlight comes on (the fan) but it can't be heard when the engine fires up. The low beam is well focused with a little more light on the sides of the road then the stock lamp (a good thing), the high beam reaches out down the road and seems broader than the stock lamp. The color at 5600K seems just right, the road is really lit up but I saw no bounce back from road signs or other flat surfaces (that I experienced when I tried, a failed, HID conversion). After an hour ride the headlight shell above the bulb felt relatively cool, not even warm, which dispelled my concerns about the wires behind the bulb being melted by the heat thrown off by the fan. Maybe the cheaper units run hotter, but the heat doesn't seem to be a problem with this one. Lastly the beam must be well focused because while the light down the road seemed very bright, not one car flashed me indicating they thought I had my high beam on.

Overall, very happy. At $80 not cheap but should outlast a few of the $35 high power halogens I've been using.
...nowadays I have two good wheels
And I seek refuge in aluminum and steel
It takes me out there for just a little while
And the years fall away with every mile

Honda CB125S
Harry Costello
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Re: LED Headlight Lamp Info

Postby w2ge » Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:58 am

Good review Harry,

I think you're on the money... You cant go with cheap LED's that are advertised on the market. LED's DO CREATE HEAT... Laws of physics can't be denied, watts of candlepower no matter what light creates HEAT! Some lights are more efficient in that the amount of PPFD (a usable light output measurement) they throw.. i.e. LED vs HID, but wattage equals heat.. no matter what. And LED's are without any doubt, the present (NOT FUTURE) for lighting, it just matters when doing conversion to older units that it's done right (if it can be done at all, size, cooling limitations etc).

So cheap LED's will be poorly focused, heat issues which shorten life, etc..

As they say.. "YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR." An aside, LED development is similar to the early days of PC development.. GROWING LEAPS AND BOUNDS PRACTICALLY EVERY DAY.
Phil Levin, current “Da’ Prez”
2010 R1200RT
2016 Aprilia Caponord RALLY
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Re: LED Headlight Lamp Info

Postby mogu83 » Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:35 pm

I never considered the PPFD rating in relation to automotive lighting. More so, a concern for the horticultural community in rating things like grow lamps.
My major concerns were focus, wavelength and lumens (in that order). The overall heat generated wasn't a problem because,as we know, watts are a function of current and voltage and the LEDs draw significantly less current (in relation to lumens down the road) than other available forms of lighting.
Problem was the heat presents in the area of the fan which is laying against the wiring in the headlight shell, instead of inside the reflector where a normal H4 resides, seems OK but I'll check in a few months.
...nowadays I have two good wheels
And I seek refuge in aluminum and steel
It takes me out there for just a little while
And the years fall away with every mile

Honda CB125S
Harry Costello
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Posts: 340
Joined: Mon Sep 09, 2013 8:06 am
Location: Beachwood,NJ

Re: LED Headlight Lamp Info

Postby zoomtoob » Sat Jul 14, 2018 6:11 pm

I have a cyclops for my GS main beam. Great disbursement nice color but not enough Bright. Cheapo LED auxiliary lights I bought turn night into day though.

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Johnny Moorhouse - AKA Zoom
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