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Article: VOLT 2" LED Light pods [flood]

  1. #1
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    Default VOLT 2" LED Light pods [flood]

    Recently I purchased several of these Light Pods from Chris @ Whites4WD.co. I found him promoting these on JKOwners.com.

    I currently am running six ProComp55 55watt 6" round lamps on the front of my Jeep. I had 4 spots and 2 floods. They worked well enough but the color was not that natural. When I'm out in total darkness I can really see the yellowish tint coming from the lamps.



    After PMing back and forth with Chris, I decided to bite the bullet and get 8 of them. 6 to replace my current setup and the other two will go in the rear of the jeep. They retail for $45.00 each, or $40.00 each if you buy 3 or more. Chris offered me a good deal. I purchased 8 LED pods for $279. That's $35.00 each!

    Here are the specs:

    * 10 watt CREE chip (same chips as used in our pro series lights)
    * IP68 waterproof rating
    * 2x2 inch housing makes mounting easy
    * only 14 ounces
    * 94% optical efficiency
    * over 800 lumens
    * Newly developed lens to make the most use of the illumination possible


    The first pair arrived and, I have to admit, I was less than impressed. The packaging was cheap and very common to "Made in China" packaging. All the specs were printed on the outside of the box. It's a simple 2-wire connection so I was not surprised that no instructions came with the light pods.

    My first concern was how tiny these things are. After running 6" round lamps for so long, I feared that I would not like the look of a 2" square lamp.



    The second concern was how small the mounting screws were! They are tiny! My current mounting holes are close to 3/4" in diameter. They look weak as hell. I considered drilling a bigger hole into each mount and run a 1/2" nut/bolt, but since the light pod's base was not solid, It may not have held up to the drilling.



    The third concern was that most of my current lights are spots, and these light pods are all floods. Would I loose some distance?

    It's 9pm and pretty dark outside so I wanted to see how bright these suckers are. I hooked up a 9v battery and lit one up. WOW! They are white and bright! Now I was feeling a bit better. Still can't judge how far it was throwing the lights, but it was impressive. One pod lit up my entire backyard.

    Several weeks later my other light pods arrived. It's now time to install them. I removed the existing 6 ProComp 55s 6" round lamps and tried to figure out how to mount these. I needed some kind of spacer to fill in the larger mounting holes on my front bumper and windshield mounts. This is what I came up with:

    I chucked the nut, washer, and bolt that came with the lights. They were too tiny and didn't look durable enough. I replaced the bolt with a #10-32x1/2" machine screw. To make a spacer, I needed 2 or 3 #10S flat washers. They fit in the holes nice. It took 3 for my bumper mounts. On the bottom of the hole, I used a 1/2" flat washer and a #10-32 machine screw nut.

    All these parts came from Home Depot

    * Crown #10-32x1/2" machine screw [#27872]
    * Crown #10S flat washer [#20001]
    * Crown 1/4" flat washer [#19821]
    * Crown #10-32 machine screw nut [#18532]


    In hind sight, I should have used a 3/4" length machine screw so I could also add a locking washer. I may go back and do this if the lights start working themselves loose. Your install may be different if the thickness of the mounting area is thinner or thicker.






    Here's a video of my first test. I'm out in the parking lot of my local library and am using the parking space lines to judge viewable distance. I compared my OEM headlights, my windshield 6" ProComp 55watt spots, and a pair of LED light pods.

    The video does not do the lights justice, as it could not pick up just how far these lamps were projecting the lights. All three lights had about the same throw distance. The ProComp on the windshield mount looks to throw farther because they are spots, but they are mounted higher and pointed straight on. When compared to the spot mounted on the bumper, the LED light pod threw light about the same distance. The LED light pods definitely gave a wide beam and the light was nice and white. It was WAY easier to see with these LED light pods than the ProComp 55s.



    Summary:

    1. The lights are very nice. They give a natural white light output and is as wide as my ProComp 55 floods and as far as my ProComp 55 spots.

    2. Being LEDs, they use a LOT less power than my halogen lamps.

    3. I'm disappointed in how cheesy the mounting hardware was. I would have been happier if there was a choice for a mounting bracket with a larger mounting hole. I hope they hold up to all the bouncing my Jeep takes on the washboard trails.

    4. Adjusting the elevation angle was not pleasant. The small bolts use a tiny Allen key (which was not provided). You have to remove the bolts, adjust, and reinstall the bolts. It would have been nice if they "click adjusted" after loosening the bolts. It was a pain and the adjusting took longer than the initial installation. Once set, I hope I never have to adjust them again.

    5. There are mounting holes on the back of the light module. I guess they would allow for flush mounting instead of using the brackets. That's cool, but they did NOT provide a template. That sucks...

    Overall, I think they are worth the $45 price tag per LED light pod. Only time will tell if they hold up. I look forward to using them in October when I have my elk hunt. It's freakin dark out there in the backwoods and I will really be able to see how well they work.
    Last edited by 2ndchance; 07-28-2013 at 10:25 PM.
    2009 4-door JK - 85% daily driver, 15% hunting vehicle, 100% fun!

    It's better to be prepared, than scared.
    Mailman by day, Gun Nut by night.
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  2. #2
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    In the second video, I have one ProComp 55 6" halogen (spot) mounted next to one 2" LED light pod (flood). Using my fat ass, I'm blocking one light at a time, to compare side-by-side the output.



    6" ProComp 55 Halogen (spot)



    2" VOLT LED light pod (flood)

    Last edited by 2ndchance; 08-05-2013 at 05:31 PM.
    2009 4-door JK - 85% daily driver, 15% hunting vehicle, 100% fun!

    It's better to be prepared, than scared.
    Mailman by day, Gun Nut by night.
    NRA Certified Instructor - 5 disciplines.

  3. #3
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    nice writeup james!

    how many lumens were your old halogens rated for?

    any issues with the LED's distorting the color at all? Ive seen some where it makes everything look like its under hospital lighting


    its a bit hard to tell from the pic, but is the throw from each about the same? Just the LED's have a wider beam?
    Zombie Caving
    Siblings are like sausages. Itís better not to see them being made.

  4. #4
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    I definitely like the LED flood much more for just pure visibility.
    The Dusty Gnome / White Collar Publishing
    Follow @thedustygnome on Twitter and at www.thedustygnome.com or White Collar Publishing on FB

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by offroadaz View Post
    nice writeup james!

    how many lumens were your old halogens rated for?

    any issues with the LED's distorting the color at all? Ive seen some where it makes everything look like its under hospital lighting

    its a bit hard to tell from the pic, but is the throw from each about the same? Just the LED's have a wider beam?
    1. The ProComp 55's use the H3 halogen bulb. At 55 watts, they produce 1,450 lumens.

    2. Because the LEDs are so bright, I do think they tend to bleach out what they hit. Especially up close. At a distance, they don't seem so bad. I'm uploading two new videos. Check them out.

    3. The throw from the halogens and LEDs are about the same. The thing to note is that the halogens are spots, while the LEDs are floods. For the LEDs to throw about the same distance as the floods, it's a winner in my book. If I increase the angle of the LEDs, I can probably get it to throw a bit farther.

    If you look at the lens, you will see that the center is not fluted, and allows some of the beam to be a flood. The surrounding flutes does a good job making the beam nice and wide. Yeah, the pics and vids do not do it justice.
    2009 4-door JK - 85% daily driver, 15% hunting vehicle, 100% fun!

    It's better to be prepared, than scared.
    Mailman by day, Gun Nut by night.
    NRA Certified Instructor - 5 disciplines.

  6. #6
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    I drove out to Carefree Highway and New River Rd (99th ave), and found a nice stretch of unlit road. I wanted to see what it looked like when I'm cruising at 50mph. This will be the condition when I'm out hunting and driving the frontage roads.



    If video shows unavailable, it's still uploading and processing. Give it a few minutes.
    2009 4-door JK - 85% daily driver, 15% hunting vehicle, 100% fun!

    It's better to be prepared, than scared.
    Mailman by day, Gun Nut by night.
    NRA Certified Instructor - 5 disciplines.

  7. #7
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    Last test...

    First, let apologize for the quality of the video. I wanted to see how they will perform during an off-road condition. I went out to the desert and got a bit disoriented in the dark. I could not find the spot I wanted to test the lights so I roamed around (while recording) until I found some suitable spots.

    Also, I was using a RAM Mount to attach my cellphone to the windshield. The rough roads really caused portions of the video to bounce around. Probably should have aired down the tires.

    Lastly, the noise. I have the custom tire carrier and a Tuffy Trunk Enclosure in my Jeep. They tend to be noisy.

    I paused at several points of the video to try and capture comparisons of the lights. If you feel like you are about to have an epileptic seizure, feel free to forward to these jump spots.

    Jump spots: 1:17, 1:50, 3:55, 4:12, 5:25, 7:15


    If video shows unavailable, it's still uploading and processing. Give it a few minutes.
    Last edited by 2ndchance; 08-05-2013 at 05:41 PM.
    2009 4-door JK - 85% daily driver, 15% hunting vehicle, 100% fun!

    It's better to be prepared, than scared.
    Mailman by day, Gun Nut by night.
    NRA Certified Instructor - 5 disciplines.

  8. #8
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    how well did these hold up?
    Zombie Caving
    Siblings are like sausages. Itís better not to see them being made.

  9. #9
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    Good news. Still going strong.
    Bad news. The seller disappeared. I tried to buy more and he's MIA.
    2009 4-door JK - 85% daily driver, 15% hunting vehicle, 100% fun!

    It's better to be prepared, than scared.
    Mailman by day, Gun Nut by night.
    NRA Certified Instructor - 5 disciplines.

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