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Discussion Starter #1
Want to go with HID headlights and I found two different kits that I'm considering and would like someone who knows more than I do about them to tell me what they think. Thanks


 

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Want to go with HID headlights and I found two different kits that I'm considering and would like someone who knows more than I do about them to tell me what they think. Thanks


Don't know specifics of those kits. I will ask why going HID? More light and better visibility down the road I assume. My advice then is don't go too high a K number. REAL factory 35 watt HID are 4300K. This light shows down the road very nice. Somehow we think more blue (high K) is better, but it SUCKS in rain and doesn't go as far because the bulb is tinted to give this color. Tinting actually makes the bulb dimmer.

LEDs are around 6K to 6.5K and honestly in rain don't light up as well, but people think "look so nice", we are moving in that direction.

Just my advice. FYI, any 35 watt HID is going to throw WAY more light than a halogen bulb. Having projectors in the Niro means we can use HIDs and not blind on coming traffic. Changing bulb might be against DOT law, but talk about a law that is never enforced. I like going with 4300K, as look like a factory HID and in a projector, cops will never know as that was an factory install option on top trim levels. Go too blue (8K on up ) and obvious the bulb isn't legal.
 

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4,300K makes for a good headlight but there are good technical reasons to do 3,000K headlights (actually mandated in France for several decades). Yellow lights penetrate fog and rain much better, and have better visibility in general. Whiter lights look brighter with the same output but they fool your eye too as being brighter, which causes your iris to contract, thus losing out delivered visibility on that apparent brightness. In addition, white lights cause glare which is not only a problem for oncoming drivers, but for the driver using them. But they look bright! Bright is not always better.

Good headlights are an engineered total solution. There is a reason why LED or HID headlights are such an expensive OEM option ($1,000 plus or similar trim upgrade) and it is hard to replicate the performance with a simple bulb replacement. That is partly why you read about as much disappointment on forums as those who like their mods.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am also concerned with the longevity of aftermarket HID's and the install, not a lot of good reviews. Have to have a place to pass a wire out of the headlight housing. I am also considering LED's. I need brighter headlights. On my 2008 HHR winter beater I hold back on the dimmer switch and both high and low beam are on, now that lights up the road.
 

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1. I would still go with 4300K. I agree, a yellower, lower K rating has advantages, but 4300K is the 'natural' light of most HIDs and will be the brightest. They can change the K with different salts and mixtures, but factory HIDs are around 4300k and work very well.
2. As long as you don't go cheap HID kit, should be ok. I spent $150 on a kit to put Morimoto from TRS HIDs into a '11 Caddy SRX as the stock halogen progectors were TERRIBLE, way worse the the Niro stock and joke for a Caddy to even release in the lower trim levels. The 35watt 4300K HIDs had WAY, WAY, WAY more light that the stock H11 bulbs. I had to deal with getting the cables into the housing. I mounted the balast, ignitor and CAN bus filter outside the housing and used gromets to get in/out as the wire even came with gromest on it.(see install instructions on TRS website). Was waterproof for 3 years. Never lost a bulb or other parts, so was reliable.
The Morimotos have a 5 year warranty also. Again, don't sell them, just had good luck with the kit
 

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Discussion Starter #6
The GTR Lighting Ultra 2 LED's are looking interesting. When tested on projector headlight housings they were brighter than 55 watt HID's, supposedly. I do love no hassle installation.
 

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The GTR Lighting Ultra 2 LED's are looking interesting. When tested on projector headlight housings they were brighter than 55 watt HID's, supposedly. I do love no hassle installation.
Would like to know myself. Back 3 years ago installed some LEDs in the Caddy while doing this project. They were highly rated, BUT SUCKED! Lots of light, sure, but was only 10 feet in front of car!. The throw was TERRIBLE. Brighter is one thing, but need to PROJECT down the road or totally useless. The focus on LEDs has been a problem, and hence the throw is bad. They when back to Amazon. Put in the HIDs, SO much better than stock and the LEDs.

Maybe the new ones are better??? Would really like to know, as daughters Niro could use a light upgrade. Halogens are OK and not bad enough to screw around with the HID and balasts and ignitors. LEDs would be great, but which throw down the road? Better than 3 years ago??? I wish someone would change then and do a critical anaylys, as I don't always trust the reiews. 3 Years ago reviews said good, but they were not for us.

Didode Dynamics SL1 :LED series is USA made and suppose to focus right. They are not the brightest by any means, but if they engineered a good focus, that might help? Also not cheap.
 

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Bulbs have no focusing ability. They have to be designed for the reflector/projector.
True. But the LED locations have to match the filiment locations pretty precicely, or the Projector won't focus the beam. Common problem where LEDs aren't in the right place, so light source doesn't match the light patteren of the 9005 bulb and the light might be BRIGHT, but it isn't focused down the road and is not as good as a halogen bulb.

So Yes I agree, LEDs don't focus. But they have to be designed right or the result is worse than the halogen that the reflector/projector was designed for, even if the lumen rating is higher.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Would like to know myself. Back 3 years ago installed some LEDs in the Caddy while doing this project. They were highly rated, BUT SUCKED! Lots of light, sure, but was only 10 feet in front of car!. The throw was TERRIBLE. Brighter is one thing, but need to PROJECT down the road or totally useless. The focus on LEDs has been a problem, and hence the throw is bad. They when back to Amazon. Put in the HIDs, SO much better than stock and the LEDs.

Maybe the new ones are better??? Would really like to know, as daughters Niro could use a light upgrade. Halogens are OK and not bad enough to screw around with the HID and balasts and ignitors. LEDs would be great, but which throw down the road? Better than 3 years ago??? I wish someone would change then and do a critical anaylys, as I don't always trust the reiews. 3 Years ago reviews said good, but they were not for us.

Didode Dynamics SL1 :LED series is USA made and suppose to focus right. They are not the brightest by any means, but if they engineered a good focus, that might help? Also not cheap.
Here is the video about the new LED's.
 

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Video sort of interesting. Not sure if I got his methodology, nor his results. At least for the projector beam, I thought the halogen OEM was a win. No idea about the reflector results.

I'm not even sure how one could design an LED halogen replacement that could mimic the exact way that the halogen emits light. Thus it cannot be in synch with the OEM housing design, mis-focused if you will.

But if it looks brighter, that will appear better to most tinkerers. I think that is what this market is based on.

I once took a working vacation in a stereo shop. On most AB tests, no matter how carefully we matched volume, the louder speaker always sounded better to customers on first listen. Long term tests came out different. I think something similar happening here in regard to human perception.
 

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Here is the video about the new LED's.
Nice video. You can see that one LED had terrible light 'focus' with no hot spot and would SUCK in all cars even compared to stock. The S.V. 4 and GTX look nice. Heres the thing: Not cheap, both over $160. And they both have external boxes that have to be mounted, so same problem as the HID: not a very simple plug-in and your done install as have to deal with the box. The S.L. 1 isn't quite as bright, but is easy to install(no external box) and has a nice hot spot while being brighter than stock.

He also gimped the HIDs by using a 6500k. He is honest and talks about how 5000k is the brightest but wanted to match color to LED to not throw off comparison. Also says lower K is better for aactual vision and references a different video I didn't watch.

For my money, I would do 35W HID in a 4300k. If bright LED and HID both need an external box, I'm going HID as the color temp is better for actually SEEING on the road, not just 'looking cool'. Plus my experience was VERY happy with the HIDs I installed for a very low light output in the Caddy projector. Could do 55W but seems like overkill as the 35W were very bright compared to stock.

Also GTX talks about how ALL these lights are really not legal other than in fog lights as not a factory certified D.O.T. solution. Because of that, I want the option that LOOKS the most like a factory HID to not gain attention and be a good citizen by not blinding other drivers. That means 35W 4300-5000K HID bulbs. That law seems to be the most unenfocred out there, but I'm going 35W to match faactory and that color K to match look.
 

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One other BIG point! In the video, notice the dark shadow on bottom center going out on both HIDs in the projectors? NOT GOOD. That is from the support thing that goes to the tip of the bulb. These projectors don't invert the beam and the shadow caused by the support is visible. Going to drive a person nuts as will have a dark strip on the road right in front of you. Don't know if the Niro does this or not or if can index and turn the bulb relative to the mount. The Caddy actually inverted the beam when looked back in to the projecor housing, now I know why. More to think about, but could be a problem.
 

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Sorry, I was pretty conviced I would get the HID 35W 4300k if doing it until I saw the shadow from the end support. Not good. Will the Niro do that? Does it invert the light so the shadow is 'up' and not visible? Don't know. So that leads to get LEDs as those all seem to bee able to be turned or 'indexed' so the light doesn't do that shadow thing, as they worked around it by allowing that.

So the S.V. 4 or GTX would be good, but both required mounting boxes remote of light. S.L.1 appear to be quality and don't have the box to deal with, brighter than stock, but not as bright the other 2 LEDs listed.

Glad I don't have to make this decision.:)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
The shadow from the end support would bug the **** out of me, glad you brought that to my attention. Maybe I will try the LED's with a option to send them back if not happy with them, if possible.
 
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