LED lights. Are they actually any better?

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  • LED lights. Are they actually any better?
  • kevonakona
    Member

    Mate has HIDs and i ride with LEDs. To be honest sitting at the top of spooky woods is no longer fun at night as he comes along and lights everything up and blinds me. LEDs can be turned off to allow to to enjoy teh night.

    My mate has a 4 year old HID, i have Ay-Ups, i think his HID is better, if he is riding behind me i am in shadow

    Trouble is if i follow him i end up following his horrific line choices !!

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    yep, 'in use' there wont be much difference, but LEDS will use a little less current, you can switch them on and off to your hearts content, are more reliable, prob wont go wrong so wont be expensive to replace bits like in HID…

    IanMmmm
    Member

    What about battery life and the lifetime of the unit itself?Aren't these better on LED?

    Dibbs
    Member

    I've got a L&M Arc and a L&M Seca, the Seca is brighter, its got a better beam pattern, I don't have to wait for it to warm up and the LED's are a lot more robust than the HID.

    clubber
    Member

    But a 3 year old HID may well not have a great life left – they're a bit hit and miss after a couple of years judging by all my mates' ones.

    Anyway, LEDs have definitely reached the point of being better than HIDs when everything's considered (output, durability, life, switch on/off ability (with thanks to BritGas..)) nowadays I reckon.

    Also, my experience is that the LEDs we've compared to HIDs are of similar if not better brightness than HIDs though obviously different models of HIDs and LEDs may vary in this respect

    saladdodger
    Member

    PP fair point on a lux test the LEDS of a P7 tourch against the HID the leds are almost twice the output

    But real world usage I can see there is not realy alot in it. Bright does not necessary mean usable!!!

    What I do like is the "bastid" and battery pack are realy small compared to my old Lumi HID oh and it only cost £52

    guess it is time for a ride to compare both

    coffeeking
    Member

    if he is riding behind me i am in shadow

    That's always going to happen, unless you have a stadium floodlight, because the area where both beams hit the floor is getting twice the power, whereas the area where your body covers is only getting yours.

    I'm still not convinced on LED lights myself, though I've not used HIDs, I still prefer my old halogens.

    I'm wondering about using yellow LEDs though, as these bleach your night vision less meaning you'll see more around and better with your lights off, rather than a brightly illuminated spot and then darkness.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    I've got a L&M Arc and a L&M Seca

    See, that's a decent comparison, but how much is a Seca? 🙂

    What about battery life and the lifetime of the unit itself?Aren't these better on LED?

    Point = missed. Read the OP, I've already covered that. 🙂

    BlingBling
    Member

    I can't be arsed carrying the 2kg house brick around to power the HID.

    Everything in life is a compromise.

    Junkyard
    Member

    you must have cr@p LEDs or great HIDS.
    My older version troutie is brighter than any HID i have ever seen. Battery life is about 3 times the length and you could run the light over with a car whilst switching it on and off and it would still work.
    Anyone ever seen a HID recommended on a what light thread in the last year ? Can you still buy them new?

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    you must have cr@p LEDs or great HIDS.

    Great HIDs I think. 🙂 You should try an L&M!
    It's certainly better than twin Lumi LEDS and Ay-ups (I know a couple of people with Ay-Ups. TBH I think the beam is feeble)
    Has to be said that if I was buying a new light now, I think I'd try a Trout light, mind 🙂

    soobalias
    Member

    when someone wires up the switch on the led's properly i will be interested.

    you should be able to switch from medium power straight to full power without having to go via flashing and off.

    My Niterider Storm is brighter than my Minewt Dual X2 which is brighter than the DX.

    owenfackrell
    Member

    Now i haven't used a bike hid but my car has them and i can turn those on and off as much as i like plus they are still on the original lamps and they are 5 years old. so i sopose my question on them is are they (bike ones) built less reliable?

    clubber
    Member

    when someone wires up the switch on the led's properly i will be interested.

    LOL – that's a pretty weak argument 🙂

    FWIW, my LEDs switch between high and low without going through flashing (you have to do something different for that).

    Dibbs
    Member

    but how much is a Seca?

    As far as I can remember I paid a similar amount for the Seca to that I paid for the Arc (that said, the Seca jumped up in price after I bought it due to the weakness of the £).

    devs
    Member

    Was just about to say. We do club rides twice a week at night and there used to be a dominance of HIDs. Once the Hope4s and Ay Ups started appearing the HIDs were starting to be outclassed in both performance and practicality and faff factor. I don't think anyone uses them anymore. The last time I saw one it died mid ride and couldn't be resurrected even after multiple battery changes. So, in answer to the original question – YES!

    I prefer the colour of HID over LED, that said they are both great in their own way. I run both my old Lumi HID on the bars and a new Lumi LED on my helmet, great combo i reckon. Both use Li-Ion batteries too so not much weight and both are around 4 hour burn time. Not had any problems at all with the HID either, except a bulb replacement after i dropped the lamp from a fair height onto concrete.

    SOOBalias, the Lumi`s are wired up properly with a little rocker switch, one way up, the other way down in power.

    AndyP
    Member

    with PP on this – yet to see an LED setup which compares to my L&M ARC. I have a couple of powerful LED lights which I use as backup, but wouldn't be without my ARC.

    Premier Icon glenh
    Subscriber

    HID ~ 50 lm/W
    Latest LED ~140 lm/W

    Therefore, much smaller/longer lasting/cheaper batteries.

    Add to that much better robustness (no £70 bulb replacements) and it's a no-brainer as far as I'm concerned.

    elliptic
    Member

    My Trailtech HID was flaky and unreliable and cut out with no warning when it decided the battery level was too low.

    My Tiger LEDs (similiar amount of light) are now starting their third winter, far more user friendly, dimmable, "fuel gauge" battery indicator lights on the back and 100% reliable so far.

    more robust and can be dimmed easier

    Anyway, what have the Romans ever done for us, eh? 😉

    robdob
    Member

    I've just ordered some of those DX lights for my first night ride. For me the cheapness of the LED's gets my vote, plus less faff n'all. In use, I'd say just enough light to stop you crashing is ok, makes it more exciting!!!! I'll get my coat….

    Coleman
    Member

    I used to run Cateye Stadium 3 hids – in its day the most powerful light available but bulky and heavy.
    For the past 2 years I've used Exposure LEDs – light and compact.
    Both systems have been great, but at the moment LEDs are in favour so more development and advances are being made in this type of light.

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    I've just ordered some of those DX lights for my first night ride.

    You're gonna LOVE it!
    I'd like to see the DX light too….. 🙂

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    Than a decent HID?
    Well, they are in theory more robust and can be dimmed easier, I'll give you that.
    But in use, I'm not so sure.

    On my last night ride we crossed a big open area and the guy next to me was using 2 of those new Lumi LEDs, with a flood and a spot, both turned on. I asked him to cover them so I could compare them to the L&M ARC I was using.
    To be honest, I'd got a better, wider, more even beam, more penetration and just as much brightness. From an outdated 3 year old light you can pick up for just over £100 off Ebay…..

    Just a thought……
    🙂

    Premier Icon Del
    Subscriber

    well, if you're buying new now, there's no reason to buy HID. if you've got HID, there's no reason to bin them yet, and probably won't be for a couple of years. they're still great lights.

    lux test the LEDS of a P7 tourch against the HID the leds are almost twice the output

    SD keeps rolling this one out but will never state how old his HID bulb is, which rather makes the test useless unfortunately. if you look at the welch-allyn data sheets there is a clear correlation between hours of service and light output.
    this years LEDS might just pip the HIDs on output/w, but lensing has to be done right too. aside from that the well documented robustness of LEDs is a winner ( though the driving electronics has to be robust too ) and the assumption is that you will never have to repair them ( rightly or wrongly ), whereas HID inevitabley will require a new bulb, and maybe a ballast too, after some years use.

    Premier Icon glenh
    Subscriber

    this years LEDS might just pip the HIDs on output/w

    Sorry, but see my post above – LEDs are miles ahead.

    To be fair, no commercial lights have those LEDs yet (Cree XPGs), but that's all the more reason to make your own!

    mudshark
    Member

    So would anyone pay to replace their HID bulb when needed or would they be better off just getting a new LED system?

    I have the 1st generation Cateye tripleshot and just got a LUU light – not sure what to do with the tripleshot now.

    grumm
    Member

    I've just ordered some of those DX lights for my first night ride.

    Maybe next winter then. I ordered mine on the 14th September and they still haven't showed up. 👿

    Premier Icon ransos
    Subscriber

    I prefer the colour temperature of halogen to HID or LED, I think it picks out more detail on the trail. And if it's a question of lumens, my 40W Lumicycle seems to be as bright as anything else in our club. The downside is of course a heavy battery and short run-time.

    Bedds
    Member

    I've got the Niterider Enduro HID.. I bought it last year as it was pretty much half price, I've had real problems with it, Mayhem and 24/12 night laps were horrid as it generally died mid lap.

    I got so fed up with it that I've bought some Hope 4's.. now I use them both (strangely, my HID light is working perfectly all of a sudden) and I'm loving night rides.. the HID light is great mounted on my lid but I wouldn't want to rely solely on it again..

    coffeeking
    Member

    OK my initial research was wrong, you actually want to be using RED leds up front as this does not bleach your night vision (rods) and still allows resolution of fine detail. Not good for road riding of course, but still I might knock up a red CREE option.

    devs
    Member

    yet to see an LED setup which compares to my L&M ARC

    These are the HIDs to which I referred. All replaced by either AyUps or DX lights now.

    z1ppy
    Member

    mudshark – Member
    So would anyone pay to replace their HID bulb when needed or would they be better off just getting a new LED system?

    Nope now replaced my completely dead lupine (element is broken) with a magicshine and am very happy with it.
    £90+ for a HID replacement lamp vs £50 for a complete LED system, do the math.

    As per DeVs, all of my m8's are replacing there HID with LED's as the HID die.

    Totally lost as to why the OP believe a 2nd hand L&M off ebay for £100 is better than a £50 LED whith the same output level & a warrenty (which is honoured)

    PeterPoddy
    Member

    What is it with Ay-Ups? Why so popular? They really are pretty feeble compared to most other lights I've seen….. 😕

    kinda666
    Member

    I've got a lumi led, and have ridden with guys with different Hid's and must say out of all of the Hid's the only one which i thought was better than the lumi led was the L&M Arc!

    saladdodger
    Member

    "lux test the LEDS of a P7 tourch against the HID the leds are almost twice the output"

    SD keeps rolling this one out but will never state how old his HID bulb is, which rather makes the test useless unfortunately. if you look at the welch-allyn data sheets there is a clear correlation between hours of service and light output.

    Sorry for trying to be constructive but perhaps if the question was asked how old the HID I would of said about 4 years old and aproximatly 50 ish hrs use. I would say that the lux test is a honest test as opposed to reading data sheets ( which anyone can do but it does not allow for manifacturing tolerances) because I did it back to back in the real world ok my garden, not a lab

    But of course it is of no indication to how usable the light spread of colour rendition is, thats where using them comes in, hence that is why folk still like there old Lumi halogens

    stumpy01
    Member

    I've still got Lumi halogens and definitely prefer the yellowy light compared to the bright white of LEDs. You don't even notice how yellow they are until you ride with someone using LEDs.

    Mate of mine i did the D2D borrowed the Lumi 4LED spot for one lap & used it with his halogen 12w spot for comparison. He said he much preferred the halogen as it was just as bright, but lit up more 'around' the focus point of the beam. He said the LED was very on/off at the edge of the beam.
    He also tried the flood, but I'm not sure what he made of that – forgot to ask him.

    I am interested in converting my Lumi halogen at some point to LED just to see what it performs like, but I am sure when I first looked the Cutter kit was about £45, now it's nearer £70.

    AndyP
    Member

    £90+ for a HID replacement lamp vs £50 for a complete LED system, do the math[b]s[/b]

    AndyP
    Member

    yet to see an LED setup which compares to my L&M ARC

    These are the HIDs to which I referred. All replaced by either AyUps or DX lights now.

    Comparing my ARC to my AyUps, or my friend's DX, I'll be sticking with the ARC and keeping the AyUps as the bar-mounted backup thanks.

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