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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have an Astra J 5 door with reflector headlights. I have always liked whiter bulbs (not blue) and have tried several in the past. Some were dangerous as the output is significantly reduced from standard halogens. I settled on some PIAA extreme white plus on my Astra J since new and replaced with Philips white vision when they blew. Both are around 4000k in colour and produce about the same light output as normal halogens ~ 1300-1400 lm. Philips diamond vision with 5000k though looks nice, has poor output ~900lm and are useless in bad weather, Philips crystal vision is just slightly better with 1100 lm but still yellowish.

The 4000k halogen bulbs still appear yellow next to LED DRLs , so wanted better colour match with better output as well.

Main issue with aftermarket HID or LED bulbs on reflector housing is glare - as the size of the bulb, and beam pattern are not built for reflector lenses. So I searched for LEDs with these criteria:
1. Just about 2000 LM. (HIDs go to 3200lm +, some LEDs also can go higher). Its about useable light not sheer power.
2. Color is 6000k or lower
3. Tries to replicate the halogen bulb beam pattern (size and placement of led chips)
4. Feasibility to fit Astra J headlights: the heat sink has to be removable and the stem of the bulb be narrow enough to fit the compatible bulb holders.

This is what I got : http://m.ebay.co.uk/itm/SLDX-Led-Headlight-Bulb-50w-4000LM-Philips-Leds-Replace-HID-Halogen-5700K-H7-/252425720726?nav=SEARCH
- it's 24w 2000lm, 5700k color output LEDs. It's the only one I found to fit the criteria.
Additional items:
- H7 bulb holders with a larger hole in the middle to fit the back of the bulbs
- 5/8 galvanized washers to secure the bulb holder against the bulb and heatsink
- LED can bus error free (resistor for H7). Gives a bulb error without it
- Some back covers with a hole in the middle (got some generic rubber ones) for the heatsink to pop out.

Results:
1. Overall quite happy so far, the glare and beam pattern is not anymore than my Philips White Vision H7 I had (1400lm, 4000k colour), which still appeared yellow next to the LED DRL.
2. Pure white (no hint of blue) - can see some contrast with my 6000-6500k LED DRL that seems to have a hint of blue relatively.
3. Stronger without additional glare
4. Throws farther - so I have now notched down the level via the electrionic switch. (0-3 level, Was on 2 before, now just at 1)
5. Error Free!


Photos:
Assembly


Got some additional items: 5/8 galvanized washer, H7 LED error canceller (resistor), HID bulb holder, rubber covers




Old Philips White Vision H7 (4000-4300k, rated at 1400lm per bulb)

Comparison L: Philips White vision R: LED 5700k (2000 lm)

Both H7 LED

Upclose shots


with the led DRL (on bright mode all the time)


Enjoy!
 

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Link removed as now not working and originally led to an advert that has been removed by eBay. A link from eBay UK may be more relevant (Y)
 

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Great guide @rocky424 - Have to say this is the first time I've heard such a positive outcome from LED headlights and it certainly seems like you've put your research time in. It'd be interesting to know how they hold up in the winter months and how the overall feeling is from you living with them for awhile, perhaps you could update us in a bit and let me know any post-install issues you've had (or hopefully, lack thereof!)
 

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Great post! It's a perfect colour match with your DRL and looks like a nice cool white without going too far towards blue or glare.

As Jamie said, please report back how you find them after some driving experience in various weathers etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you @Darkrain82 @MusicLoverUK . I will definitely update on how it goes in different conditions. The other very important criteria I had was cost, had to keep it all under 50 GBP for a viable go at it. I will also be putting electrical tape on the wire connections that sit outside the housing (factory plug to error canceller, error canceller to led driver).
The only concern I have at the moment is that the the headlight housing is no longer sealed in this set up as the heatsink is best exposed outside and the wires have to go out and back in (led driver and error canceller). The rubber cover makes the hole smaller but still has a gap from the stem of the LED heatskink. Do you think this would cause issue? I am still thinking of how to minimise the risk.
 

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Thank you @Darkrain82 @MusicLoverUK . I will definitely update on how it goes in different conditions. The other very important criteria I had was cost, had to keep it all under 50 GBP for a viable go at it. I will also be putting electrical tape on the wire connections that sit outside the housing (factory plug to error canceller, error canceller to led driver).
The only concern I have at the moment is that the the headlight housing is no longer sealed in this set up as the heatsink is best exposed outside and the wires have to go out and back in (led driver and error canceller). The rubber cover makes the hole smaller but still has a gap from the stem of the LED heatskink. Do you think this would cause issue? I am still thinking of how to minimise the risk.
To be honest, it sounds very much like the situation I had when I had fitted my own HID kit. The ballasts of course sit outside of the headlight enclosure, and the method of getting the wires in to the unit was to drill a hole in the factory cover and insert a rubber bung, probably in a similar fashion to how you have yours set up. It didn't cause me any issues, the only problem you might get weather dependent will be fogging inside the headlight enclosure (but then even standard headlights can get that). If that becomes an option I'd just look at cleaning around the rubber seal of the caps you've installed, or if you're happy with the LEDs long term maybe think about silicone sealing around the wires and the outer rim of the bung (This will make it more of a ball ache to remove later on down the line, so bear that in mind)
 

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To be honest, it sounds very much like the situation I had when I had fitted my own HID kit. The ballasts of course sit outside of the headlight enclosure, and the method of getting the wires in to the unit was to drill a hole in the factory cover and insert a rubber bung, probably in a similar fashion to how you have yours set up. It didn't cause me any issues, the only problem you might get weather dependent will be fogging inside the headlight enclosure (but then even standard headlights can get that). If that becomes an option I'd just look at cleaning around the rubber seal of the caps you've installed, or if you're happy with the LEDs long term maybe think about silicone sealing around the wires and the outer rim of the bung (This will make it more of a ball ache to remove later on down the line, so bear that in mind)

I have just converted mine back to Halogen after installing the HID kit last year. Wasnt sure if it would pass MOT or not despite using reflector H7R bulbs. Had to drop the bumper and remove N/S headlamp to recover the bulb holder that fell inside.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Update: 10 months on and still going strong. Installed last spring, survived hot sydney summer, a very wet autumn, and now in cool winter.
 
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