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      11-10-2017, 08:42 PM   #1
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LED vs Adaptive LED Headlights 2018

I have ordered (though I still have time to change the order) a 2018 240i. At this point, I have NOT ordered the Adaptive LED headlights, however, I am wondering if its worth it.

I have tried finding out the differences between standard and adaptive but I am not really finding info that helps me make a clear cut decision.

I read the adaptive headlight "adjust" for various driving and lighting conditions but I have no idea what that means. Aside from the differences in terms of looks, what is the real world practical benefits of the Adaptive LEDs? Are they worth the money? What are the big differences??

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      11-10-2017, 09:18 PM   #2
Ron Jeffries
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the adaptives turn when you turn the wheel, so they shine around curves. they donít do the fancy stuff you can find in the videos, wrapping around cars ahead, etc. they do auto-dim for cars ahead or coming the other way. iím glad i have them.
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      11-10-2017, 09:55 PM   #3
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In addition, I believe that the adaptive ones feature the new hex ring shape/design, whereas the standard LEDs carry over the circular rings from prior years. I ordered 'adaptive' for their marginally better night vision on curves, and for their auto-dimming feature. Both are on my current Mazda and nice to have, but hardly necessary if you're cost conscious.
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      11-11-2017, 07:49 AM   #4
Ron Jeffries
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yes, my angel eyes are hex shaped bright LEDs.
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      11-16-2017, 09:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Jeffries View Post
the adaptives turn when you turn the wheel, so they shine around curves. they donít do the fancy stuff you can find in the videos, wrapping around cars ahead, etc. they do auto-dim for cars ahead or coming the other way. iím glad i have them.
The fancy stuff is what BMW calls Intelligent Headlight Technology. It's equivalent to Mercedes's Multi-Beam LED and Audi's Matrix LED. They're illegal in the US because of an old law that require high beams to be completely separate from standard headlights. It's a neat technology which uses a lot of different LED's that light areas only where there are no other cars. So the beams can wrap around other cars, both in front and behind them, with the computer selectively turning off LED's to avoid blinding other drivers. These companies have been trying to get this law overturned for years. Canada may finally do so, but don't hold your breath for the NHTSA to embrace it.

Adaptive headlights are very nice, though, even without the IHT. They'll see incoming cars or cars in the same lane and turn off the high beams. And they'll shine cornering lights when you turn the wheel. If you're tight on money, it's not absolutely necessary, but they are a nice-to-have option.
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      11-18-2017, 02:23 PM   #6
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In the F3X, the adaptive LEDs are brighter than the regular LEDs. Not sure if the same applies to the 2 series, but I'd say it probably does.
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      11-19-2017, 12:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabrola View Post
In the F3X, the adaptive LEDs are brighter than the regular LEDs. Not sure if the same applies to the 2 series, but I'd say it probably does.
Yes but the F3x series uses reflector LEDs. The F2x LCIs are projector LEDs.
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      11-19-2017, 02:37 PM   #8
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I have the non-adaptive LEDs on my '18 M240i. I like the look and they are very bright at night. Here's a pic of the halos in daylight.


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      11-20-2017, 06:47 PM   #9
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You can probably code "on" Intelligent Headlight Technology if you get the adaptive LED headlights if it's the same actual headlight hardware and just a legal / country software lockout.
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      11-20-2017, 07:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northwest240 View Post
They're illegal in the US because of an old law that require high beams to be completely separate from standard headlights ... These companies have been trying to get this law overturned for years. Canada may finally do so, but don't hold your breath for the NHTSA to embrace it.
Sorry, but this statement is incorrect. ALL pre-LCI 2 Series with the Lighting Package have self-contained, single-projector headlights for both low beams and high beams within the same unit. This is why they're called "Bi-xenons". In fact, the projector lens that takes up the inner nacelle has absolutely nothing behind it.

The old law you're referring to requires any headlight unit to be capable of switching from low beam to high beam in totality. The new 'intelligent' LED array systems effectively don't do this; they re-aim themselves but never actually switch from high to low. In a nutshell: if the unit can't completely switch from high to low, it's illegal.
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      11-21-2017, 07:43 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BodegaBay View Post
Yes but the F3x series uses reflector LEDs. The F2x LCIs are projector LEDs.
That doesn't change anything other than how the light is directed, not actual light output. The actual LED power is higher in the adaptive units vs non-adaptive ones for the F30. Source: http://f30.bimmerpost.com/forums/sho....php?t=1374141
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      11-21-2017, 01:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabrola View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by BodegaBay View Post
Yes but the F3x series uses reflector LEDs. The F2x LCIs are projector LEDs.
That doesn't change anything other than how the light is directed, not actual light output. The actual LED power is higher in the adaptive units vs non-adaptive ones for the F30. Source: http://f30.bimmerpost.com/forums/sho....php?t=1374141
Interesting, I didn't know that piece of info. Thx. I've read some F3x posts regarding how disappointing the reflector LEDs have been.

On a side note, thx for your DIY thread re: LCI rear LED retrofit. I'm looking forward to trying mine in couple weks.
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      11-21-2017, 05:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northwest240 View Post
Adaptive headlights are very nice, though, even without the IHT. They'll see incoming cars or cars in the same lane and turn off the high beams.
Isn't that a function of automatic high beams, which is a separate (although sometimes bundled) option code?
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      11-21-2017, 05:38 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inktomi View Post
You can probably code "on" Intelligent Headlight Technology if you get the adaptive LED headlights if it's the same actual headlight hardware and just a legal / country software lockout.
I have mine coded for it. US spec car. The projectors move based on speed now; not just the angle of the steering wheel.

The slower I go the wider it projects. As I speed up they project forward more so I can see farther out the faster I'm going.
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      11-26-2017, 11:06 AM   #15
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I have none-adaptive LEDs on my LCI2 M240i. They are plenty bright enough on high beam, believe me!
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      11-26-2017, 11:24 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony235 View Post
I have mine coded for it. US spec car. The projectors move based on speed now; not just the angle of the steering wheel.

The slower I go the wider it projects. As I speed up they project forward more so I can see farther out the faster I'm going.
iíve not found how to code them on in bimmercodes app. do you have a link to instructions, please?
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      11-26-2017, 10:35 PM   #17
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Can the adaptive lights be installed in a non-Premium Package car and coded to work? When I was configuring my m240i, I was a bit disappointed when I found out I couldn't upgrade to the adaptive lights without also adding the Premium Package. I didn't want all of the extra gadgets in the Premium Package, so I skipped all of it. I would still like to add the adaptive lights a la carte, if it's possible.
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      11-27-2017, 02:51 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Jeffries View Post
iíve not found how to code them on in bimmercodes app. do you have a link to instructions, please?
Sorry, I paid for a the service and didn't do it myself.
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      11-28-2017, 04:25 AM   #19
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I have a 2015 M235i, so no LEDs - but I did pay extra for the adaptive headlights because in my Golf 7R which I had bought a couple of months before the M235i, the system works briliantly in both aspects:

- the beam following turning the wheels very precisely, and indeed making the road edges much better illuminated

- at night driving, I can just turn on my high-beams and forget about it; not a once did an upcoming driver flash his lights on me to make me turn of my highs because they would dazzle him

Unfortunately, the similar functions of my M235i do not work as nice at all; swiveling the lights in curves is almost imperceptible and I cannot leave my high-beams on permanently because other people coming from the opposite direction keep flashing their lights on me because the get dazzled....

Is the above your experience as well, or should I have my system checked for malfunctions by my Dealer?

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      11-28-2017, 05:00 PM   #20
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Mine is very quick to dim the lights. I've been flashed but only when someone was down a small crest from me, so he had the full brunt of the low beams. Mine is a 2018 M240i tho.
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      11-29-2017, 10:35 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BodegaBay View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gabrola View Post
In the F3X, the adaptive LEDs are brighter than the regular LEDs. Not sure if the same applies to the 2 series, but I'd say it probably does.
Yes but the F3x series uses reflector LEDs. The F2x LCIs are projector LEDs.
so what's the difference between reflector and projector leds and why would bmw uses two different kinds of led lights in their cars?
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      11-30-2017, 11:08 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CP911 View Post
Can the adaptive lights be installed in a non-Premium Package car and coded to work? When I was configuring my m240i, I was a bit disappointed when I found out I couldn't upgrade to the adaptive lights without also adding the Premium Package. I didn't want all of the extra gadgets in the Premium Package, so I skipped all of it. I would still like to add the adaptive lights a la carte, if it's possible.
Bump. Still looking for a solid answer on this. Anyone?

Curious if there are sensors or computers involved anywhere but the light housings themselves, in which case I'm guessing my incoming car likely wouldn't have them.
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