Comparison of 25-yr-old halogens vs. Cibies with Philips Xtreme H4 bulbs - Vintage Mustang Forums
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-26-2018, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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Comparison of 25-yr-old halogens vs. Cibies with Philips Xtreme H4 bulbs

As the thread title says, here is a comparison of 25-year-old sealed halogen headlights and new Cibie housings with Philips X-Treme Vision H4 bulbs. Old headlight is shown on the left, new headlight is shown on the right.



New headlight covered, only old bulb visible:


Old headlight covered, only new bulb visible:


Note that in the photo of the old headlight, the light stretches in a flat fuzzy beam across 3 panels of the garage door. In the photo of the new headlight, the light has a sharp top cutoff (reduces glare for other drivers) and stretches in a complex shaped beam with strong right-hand lighting (improves visibility off the side of the road) and is distributed across the entire 8-panel garage door and then some.

Visibility is clearly going to be a lot better with these new lights! With the old lights, I struggled because I had to point them down a bit to avoid getting angry flashes from oncoming drivers who were experiencing glare. I also could not see anything to the side of the car at all. It used to feel like driving in a very close tunnel, and I suspect that will no longer be the case! I will be able to aim the new lights better without pissing anyone off, and I'll be able to see parts of the road that are not directly in front of my car.

I am actually not a fan of how bright the new lights are, as I prefer my headlights a bit dimmer to keep from blowing out my night vision. Super high contrast settings fuzz my reaction times and give me a headache. I think when these bulbs die I will scale it back down by one notch to the Vision Plus bulbs.


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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 01:49 AM
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Informative writeup. Are you running your headlamps through a relay or using the stock harness? The X-Treme look to be around 4300 kelvin vs the halogen 2800-3200 kelvin white balance which I think always helps with the rendition of colors at night.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 02:22 AM Thread Starter
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Yes, my headlights are on a relay. I have the AAW harness.
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Calamity Jane 1966 Modified Fastback - Driven semi-daily!
Wrecked and rebuilt even better
289 v8, 4-speed, 3.25 9" rear, goodies and stuff.

See my travel blog here for my adventures: http://mapandamustang.blogspot.com/
Over 50,000 miles of North American roads driven on road trips since 2014. More always in the works - stay tuned!

When I show up at a car show and my car is covered in mud, it's probably because I drove 2000 miles to get there
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 07:54 AM
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Nice comparison. I will keep that in mind when I get that far.

Not to get off the subject but your mention of aiming, side of the road and such reminds me of the first time I drove my wife's car. It is a Lincoln MKZ with headlights tied to the steering. Really, really neat and weird at the same time driving our twisty country roads and have the headlights following the curves....easier to spot deer at the sides of the road.

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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 12:23 PM
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A little adjustment will help with brighter bulbs. A little lower and a bit more to the right.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 12:58 PM
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How difficult is it to install the relay?
I have standard wagner halogens on my 68. I drove this same car in high school in the mid to late 90s. The night driving and lighting never bothered me.
Ever since I got the car back a few years ago I have found driving at night extremely tough to see. I know the headlights needs some adjusting but
the lights just don't seem to be helping much! I know I need to upgrade to something better.

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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 01:23 PM
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We need to find both Kelly H and Dan Babb some sort of photo shrinkinator gizmos.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 10:17 PM Thread Starter
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I provide only the highest resolution, highest quality photos just in case someone needs to zoom in a thousand times to enhance a blade of grass that catches their interest Fortunately VMF resizes your pictures for you to fit your screen!

Relays are very easy to install. One 12V power wire, one trigger wire (headlight switch wire), one outlet wire (going to the headlight), one ground. You need two relays for the headlights - one for each headlight circuit (standard and brights). There are a few kits sold to do it that are reasonably priced and include everything you need plus instructions so it is pretty dang simple!

My relays, of course, came as part of the AAW harness so I can't help out with the best way to modify the stock wiring in terms of placement or anything.
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Calamity Jane 1966 Modified Fastback - Driven semi-daily!
Wrecked and rebuilt even better
289 v8, 4-speed, 3.25 9" rear, goodies and stuff.

See my travel blog here for my adventures: http://mapandamustang.blogspot.com/
Over 50,000 miles of North American roads driven on road trips since 2014. More always in the works - stay tuned!

When I show up at a car show and my car is covered in mud, it's probably because I drove 2000 miles to get there
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 11:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 68gt390bench View Post
How difficult is it to install the relay?
I have standard wagner halogens on my 68. I drove this same car in high school in the mid to late 90s. The night driving and lighting never bothered me.
Ever since I got the car back a few years ago I have found driving at night extremely tough to see. I know the headlights needs some adjusting but
the lights just don't seem to be helping much! I know I need to upgrade to something better.
Wiring a relay is very easy. You can google it.

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-27-2018, 11:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 68gt390bench View Post
How difficult is it to install the relay?
I have standard wagner halogens on my 68. I drove this same car in high school in the mid to late 90s. The night driving and lighting never bothered me.
Ever since I got the car back a few years ago I have found driving at night extremely tough to see. I know the headlights needs some adjusting but
the lights just don't seem to be helping much! I know I need to upgrade to something better.
It's easy, there are several plug and play kits if you don't want to have you harness.

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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 08:34 AM
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Great job Kelly!

I did this upgrade on my last car (Triumph TR6) and did the same to the Mustang. The Cibie's really have a nice distribution pattern compared to the old lights, not to mention that the brighter light that a properly installed relay allows.

I know you can get some LED lights that are technically brighter, but in the case of headlights, brighter doesn't necessarily mean better.

-Shannon

PS: I also installed some Cibie driving lights on my Mustang. Talk about crazy bright! On a straight road at night they'll illuminate the road for a mile ahead.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 03:33 PM
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Thanks for posting these photos. I've seen people post that the Cibiés are better but you never really know if they'd really make a noticeable difference.

With your pictures the difference is pretty clear.

New lights have just bumped up another notch on the todo list.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 03:53 PM
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Installing H-4 bulbs, Cibie lenses, together with a relay kit, all sourced thru
Daniel Stern Lighting Consultancy and Supply

is the first modification I do to any classic car I drive. Quality products, sold by an authority in his field is a winning combination. Like many other small vendors, he excels at customer service, and is extremely generous with his time, answering any question and attentive to detail, individual needs, and situations.


After this lighting upgrade, I no longer worried about night driving in Texas / Oklahoma's deer country at night. Plenty of road shoulder illumination and confidence inspiring straight-ahead lighting.


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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
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Update: I've just driven with them in the dark (like really dark, as in rural Texas dark) for the first time and these things are great! Very confidence-inspiring. Side lighting is excellent as is straight-ahead lighting. No one flashed their brights at me so they must not be bothersome.

I haven't even aimed them yet because I haven't been bothered to find a building with a flat wall and a flat parking lot at least 25 feet long so... I assume they are "relatively" aimed (since my old headlights were pretty spot-on, and I didn't change the adjustment) but even with imperfect aiming they are excellent.


Calamity Jane 1966 Modified Fastback - Driven semi-daily!
Wrecked and rebuilt even better
289 v8, 4-speed, 3.25 9" rear, goodies and stuff.

See my travel blog here for my adventures: http://mapandamustang.blogspot.com/
Over 50,000 miles of North American roads driven on road trips since 2014. More always in the works - stay tuned!

When I show up at a car show and my car is covered in mud, it's probably because I drove 2000 miles to get there
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 04-28-2018, 11:42 PM
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I saw a post I think or maybe it was a magazine article that showed that just installing the relays will make your existing headlights brighter if they are halogen because they prevent a voltage drop on the circuits.


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