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Headlight HID lamp comparison.

Discussion in 'Electrics, Vacuum, Ignition and ECU' started by Corned, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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    If you're interested...

    I did a comparison between some different colour temperature lamps in my HID projecstrs earlier this week. Bit of a boring subject, but I thought the results were quite interesting.

    I recently tried some 6000K lamps, just to see how they performed after my tired 7-year-old 4300Ks.

    Initially, the change looked quite impressive. The light output was noticeably better, and the way they picked out reflective road signs, particularly on open motorways, was very good. However the way they lit the road surface was not so impressive, and although it was better than the old 4300s I felt it was still a little lacking.

    So I got hold of a set of 5000Ks and set up a little experiment. I waitined until night time and set up a light meter about 4 metres in front of one of the headlights. With the 6000Ks still in, I fired them up and gave them 10 minutes to get fully up to working order. Then I took the reading.

    Next, I put back in the old 4300s, and again took the reading after letting them warm up properly.

    Finally I put in the new 5000Ks and let them burn in for an hour before taking a reading. The results are as follows:

    4300K - 635 lux.
    6000K - 786 lux.
    5000K - 1024 lux.

    I was aware there would be a difference, but the level of difference was quite surprising.

    The moral of the story? There are two:

    1. Blue might look 'cool', but it's ****** useless for lighting your way! :rolleyes:
    2. Old HIDs really drop off in performance over time.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2012
  2. television

    television Always remembered RIP

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    That was nice to know, thank you :D Certainly an interesting subject, How old were the 4300k in the test.
     
  3. OP
    Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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    As stated above - 7 years old. ;)

    I have no reason to think they are not the OEM originals supplied with the car when new.
     
  4. television

    television Always remembered RIP

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    Thank you, that is quite a drop off in light output and all the more important to replace say 4years old bulbs in pairs

    Thank you
     
  5. OP
    Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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  6. Still Learning

    Still Learning Senior Member

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    Do the bulbs age with time? (maybe through gas pressure reduction), or only through use?
     
  7. television

    television Always remembered RIP

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    There is always an erosion of the elements in all lamps, some have a better life than others
     
  8. Still Learning

    Still Learning Senior Member

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    Thanks for doing this test. £50 buys a couple of D2S bulbs so I may give mine a swap and see the difference.

    Has anyone changed an R230 offside bulb without removing the bumper? (to remove the headlight unit). I've practiced on the nearside and the procedure is simple.

    Is it just a case of squeeze your hand in and have the plasters ready?
     
  9. Bolide

    Bolide Senior Member

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    How much does the sensitivity of the light meter vary with colour temperature?

    If the Lux is a logarithmic scale like the Bel & decibel then the change between 635 and 1024 Lux will only just be perceptible.

    The fact that the difference appears quite distinct is partly because the eye can determine the colour difference very clearly

    The only test that counts is which one is best for night driving?

    Nick Froome
     
  10. OP
    Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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    I'm a lighting engineer by trade, so I could bore you all to death with such rivetting topics as photopic and scotopic sensitivity, light wavelengths, lumens and pupil lumens. But I won't...

    I'll let you know how the night driving fares after the weekend! A late-night return trip from the outlaws down the M1 is the acid test.
     
  11. television

    television Always remembered RIP

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    Do you dislike them that much :rolleyes:, but if you see the light you will get to heaven so they say;)
     
  12. Miffy

    Miffy Senior Member

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    But there is more to this than just the LUX of each bulb type/colour. Our eyes can identify objects better with certain wavelenghts
     
  13. OP
    Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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    ^ But I just made a promise that I wouldn't bore you all to death about that stuff... :rolleyes:


    :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2012
  14. Miffy

    Miffy Senior Member

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    please do. I am sure a good few of us would be interested on your take of HID / Filament /Colour Temp / Eye Sight
     
  15. V6Matty

    V6Matty Senior Member

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    Go on you know you want to, and I need to learn something new everyday :lol:
     
  16. television

    television Always remembered RIP

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    I am very interested in these subjects :D:D
     
  17. Fleetwood

    Fleetwood Senior Member

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    Ok it's got me hooked !

    I have been thinking about changing the HIDs in my SL as I've heard they deteriorate with time
     
  18. Triv

    Triv Senior Member

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    Please, help us to see the light.
     
  19. OP
    Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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    Here is an excerpt from a paper which we devised for use by my business, which is in the industrial/commercial lighting sector. Please forgive the industry-specific terminology and occasional product references.

    But it will give you an idea of why Miffy is right to question light meter readings whern the capability of the meter is not known.

    The meter I used is one which would 'fail' the test above. However ones which measure a fuller mesopic range are available, if cripplingly expensive.
     
  20. OP
    Corned

    Corned Senior Member

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    I also found this little nugget:

    [​IMG]
     

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