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LED headlights vs HID headlights

Discussion in 'Gen III 2010+ Prius Main Forum' started by Chris2128, Apr 21, 2011.

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  1. Chris2128

    Chris2128 New Member

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    I heard, the gen III V is the first car in U.S to offer LED headlights !! True or not? Or was it 2002 Nissan cima/ Infiniti q45?
    Which is brighter? LEDs of a gen III v or high power HIDs ?
    What are other differences besides LEDs being cooler in temperature ?
    I also heard its a life-time or "life of car" guarantee for those lights.

    I understand the difference between DRL aftermarket LEDs but I'm talking here about real headlights.
    Does my car have 4 LED bulbs or 2 bulbs with dual projection for the low beam ? The high beam is regular/yellow lights but thats not in question.
    Also I noticed these low beams are much brighter than any car I have driven which I love about my car.
    I don't want to change them or anything but just for knowledge.
  2. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    The 2010 has a revised headlight system utilizing a "projector style" headlight for the low beam instead of a halogen reflector housing and/or a modified reflector housing with HIDs (poorly executed bi-xenon).

    The 2010+ LED headlights work VERY well and are better than a large percentage of OEM HIDs. That being said, I think a high quality HID projector headlight will outperform the LED setup in the Prius. This can be OEM or OEM retrofits (see The Retrofit Source). I think that LEDs will eventually outperform HIDs but they are not quite there yet and definitely not for the masses due to expense.

    Also remember, 90% of the lighting experience is the headlight and not the type of bulb. HIDs in a reflector housing will usually produce poorer lighting than a halogen in a high quality projector.
  3. macmaster05

    macmaster05 Senor Member

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    My coworker and I were talking about this very topic today, lol. The advantage of your LED headlights is that they should last forever if done right. I saw a new Mercedes with halogen projectors and thought that was criminal, then realized halogen projectors are today's standard. Even the Lexuses come with halogens now only to have LEDs available on the highest level trim. It didn't use to be that way. HIDs used to be the standard for lux cars.

    I guess my point is, it's pretty cool that you have LED headlights, but I'm disappointed that Toyota/Lexus has mostly axed their efforts at HIDs.
  4. Thai

    Thai Prius Neophyte

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    Our LEDs consist of 3 LED units: Light focusing type, diffusion, and parabolic cylinder.

    Advantages of LEDs: lasts forever, quicker ON to max power, and uses less energy.

    My LEDs are just as wide and far reaching (if not more uniformly distributed) than my wife's TSX HIDs. My wife's HIDs are considered by some to be the best factory HID units. TSX HID is more intense just in front of the car.
    1 person likes this.
  5. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Nadir of Wrongness

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    I think they failed to educate their customers how an HID burned out, so they are diagnosing their cars wrong.
  6. F8L

    F8L Protecting Habitat & AG Lands

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    The TSX lights are indeed one of the best. How many miles does she have on the car? I've seen some pictures of older HID bulbs compared to new ones and the difference is pretty dramatic after 1000hrs of use. Another plus for LEDs.
  7. Judgeless

    Judgeless Senior Member

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    I think the halogen bubls look great and they only cost $8 to replace vrs $800.
  8. Thai

    Thai Prius Neophyte

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    She has about 35k miles, but she does not drive at night much...so the usage hours are probably still low.
  9. qbee42

    qbee42 My other car is a boat

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    Note that the LEDs on the Gen III Prius are only for the low beam. High beam light is provided by conventional non-HID lamps.

    Tom
  10. 32kcolors

    32kcolors Senior Member

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    I have LEDs on my Prius and HIDs on the Lexus. Both bright white light with a horizontal cutoff. Seem the same to me compared to halogens.
  11. Tech_Guy

    Tech_Guy Class Clown

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    I agree with you. From pure cost perspective, you can't beat halogen bulbs.

    Keith
  12. cproaudio

    cproaudio Speedlock Overrider

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    The Prius is not the first car in the US to use LED headlights. The Lexus LS had this option starting in 2007. I dont know about other cars. The LED still has heat issues just like other light bulbs. It's the back of the LED that heats up. High power LED setups have large heatsinks in the in back of the LED. Auto makers that don't use HID or LED headlights are using halogen bulbs with HIDish specs. I saw many cars at the LA auto show that use bluish halogen bulbs. The new RAV4 EV I saw had halogen bulbs. The H9 halogen bulb uses 65w of power, puts out 2100 lumen compare to 1500 lumen for regular halogen and 2900 lumen for HID. The color temp for H9 is 4100k compared to HID's 4300k.