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      03-18-2012, 08:12 AM   #1
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Added Depo headlights with Mtec HID kit

Two crappy iPhone pics, but you get the idea. Ignore the dirty car and the soon-to-be-replaced-by-CS7s filthy 17" wheels. I coded out the cold and warm bulb checks and I have no errors and no flickering or otherwise undesirable behavior.

The MTEC kit I got is BMW-specific and uses a relay system to power the ballasts rather than the headlight wiring. The wiring harness also has two additional features connected to each ballast - a "control box" and a "rectifier" - but I'm unsure whether the coding changes I made or the fancy wiring harness are the cause of no errors. Either way, I'm a happy camper and I'm more comfortable knowing that there is a relay system powering the HIDs rather than the headlight wiring.

One note to add about the HID kit. In the interest of wanting to maintain an OE look and have the highest lumens possible, I stuck with an OE-like 4500k for the kit. Unfortunately, these are quite white and have zero hint of blue; definitely more yellow than OE HIDs are. My guess is that these are actually closer to the 3700k range than the advertised 4500k. Side-by-side with any factory HID setup, mine look almost like standard halogen bulbs in terms of the Kelvin rating. Put mine next to a typical halogen setup, however, and they look less yellow and more white. Point being, they still are whiter than halogen lights, but not as white/blue as factory HID setups. The manufacturer sells replacement HID bulbs and I may pick up a set of 6000k to see how they look.

The T5 LEDs lighting up the angel eyes use 2 side-firing high-power SMDs each. I carefully installed them so that the LEDs were pointing sideways in the mount, thereby projecting their light through the circumference of the ring, rather than at the center and outside edge. This combination of using only side-firing LEDs and careful alignment in the mounting holes all but eliminates the four hotspots that are typical of the Depo AEs. Note, I ordered 5000k LEDs because the Depo AEs already have a slight blue tint to them. At night, these definitely have a blue hue to them (definitely more blue than the HIDs) and in hindsight, I might have gone for the seller's 4000k offering, but I'm still very pleased with the results. Since changing the LEDs requires pulling the headlights out, I'll stick with these until one happens to burn out, if that occurs. Speaking of which, the eBay auction included 20 T5 LEDs. Nice to have as a backup in case one or more fail.

Speaking of the AEs, I also coded my car to run them as DRLs. Now, these aren't even close to being as bright as the late-model E92/E93 LED AEs, but they are still noticeable during the day and I think they add a nice modern BMW character to the front of the car during the day.

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MTEC HID kit

T5 LEDs
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      03-20-2012, 03:57 AM   #2
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coool. where did you buy the headlights from?
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      03-20-2012, 08:14 AM   #3
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I picked them up from **********s.com, though there are a number of vendors that carry them.
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      03-20-2012, 04:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AW128i
I picked them up from **********s.com, though there are a number of vendors that carry them.
Finally pulled the trigger on them! Congrats! They look good. I wish I could afford the pricey mod though...
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      03-20-2012, 06:53 PM   #5
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Sorry about double post what was the final price ?
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      03-21-2012, 07:53 AM   #6
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With the LEDs, the HID kit, and the headlights, it came to about $700. I was ready to pull the trigger on OE non-adaptive HIDs since they were only a few hundred more, but there's so much uncertainty about the NFRM being compatible or not, etc. I decided that I would go this route as it was the next best thing and I was confident that I could make it work without any issues, which it did.
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      03-24-2012, 11:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AW128i View Post
With the LEDs, the HID kit, and the headlights, it came to about $700. I was ready to pull the trigger on OE non-adaptive HIDs since they were only a few hundred more, but there's so much uncertainty about the NFRM being compatible or not, etc. I decided that I would go this route as it was the next best thing and I was confident that I could make it work without any issues, which it did.
Very cool! So I assume you went the same route as the other guy and used his links for the products? Or did you use different MTEC HIDs or LEDs?
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      03-25-2012, 08:48 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Satalite View Post
Very cool! So I assume you went the same route as the other guy and used his links for the products? Or did you use different MTEC HIDs or LEDs?
I did use the same products he linked to, with the exception being that I ordered the BMW-specific HID kit. I tried to contact that guy to see if he used the regular kit or the BMW-specific one, but he never responded to me. I figured I would just fork over the extra money for the BMW-specific one just in case.
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      03-25-2012, 10:17 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AW128i View Post
I did use the same products he linked to, with the exception being that I ordered the BMW-specific HID kit. I tried to contact that guy to see if he used the regular kit or the BMW-specific one, but he never responded to me. I figured I would just fork over the extra money for the BMW-specific one just in case.
So there are 2 kinds of HID kits that you could possibly use? OEM BMW HID Kit (MTEC)? VS eBay (MTEC)?

What are the differences.

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      03-25-2012, 10:29 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Satalite View Post
So there are 2 kinds of HID kits that you could possibly use? OEM BMW HID Kit (MTEC)? VS eBay (MTEC)?

What are the differences.

Sorry for the confusion. No. MTEC makes a generic H7 HID retrofit kit, and they also make a BMW-specific H7 retrofit kit. The OP in the thread that you're referring to never responded to my inquiry about which kit he used so I just picked up the BMW-specific one to be sure. It's possible that the generic kit will work as long as the proper coding changes are made to the car, but I didn't want to go through the hassle of trial-and-error so I just ponied up for the BMW-specific kit. P.S. The eBay auction for this MTEC seller had (has?) a Make an Offer option, which I exercised. I ended up getting the kit for about the same price as the regular, generic retrofit kit, including shipping.

The BMW-specific kit includes a relay harness that powers the ballasts via a fused (one fuse circuit for each ballast) connection to the positive battery terminal under the hood. It also includes what the MTEC documentation refers to as two "control boxes" and two "rectifiers." I imagine they are used together to perform some CAN-BUS trickery. Again, I can't tell if the kit components or my coding changes are what make the kit work because I made the coding changes prior to the install. I've thought about reverting the coding changes to see if the kit alone would be a cure-all, but I figured why mess with something that works. Also, I really like the idea of having a relay controlling the equipment because it electrically isolates the HID kit from the vehicle's actual lighting circuitry.

Finally, because I think I neglected to include this in my original post, I mounted the ballasts, control boxes, and rectifiers to the forward side of the front fender liners. I simply drilled some small holes in the liner and then used black zip ties to secure the equipment. This way the equipment is out of the way, hidden, and secure.
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      03-25-2012, 11:17 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AW128i View Post
Sorry for the confusion. No. MTEC makes a generic H7 HID retrofit kit, and they also make a BMW-specific H7 retrofit kit. The OP in the thread that you're referring to never responded to my inquiry about which kit he used so I just picked up the BMW-specific one to be sure. It's possible that the generic kit will work as long as the proper coding changes are made to the car, but I didn't want to go through the hassle of trial-and-error so I just ponied up for the BMW-specific kit. P.S. The eBay auction for this MTEC seller had (has?) a Make an Offer option, which I exercised. I ended up getting the kit for about the same price as the regular, generic retrofit kit, including shipping.

The BMW-specific kit includes a relay harness that powers the ballasts via a fused (one fuse circuit for each ballast) connection to the positive battery terminal under the hood. It also includes what the MTEC documentation refers to as two "control boxes" and two "rectifiers." I imagine they are used together to perform some CAN-BUS trickery. Again, I can't tell if the kit components or my coding changes are what make the kit work because I made the coding changes prior to the install. I've thought about reverting the coding changes to see if the kit alone would be a cure-all, but I figured why mess with something that works. Also, I really like the idea of having a relay controlling the equipment because it electrically isolates the HID kit from the vehicle's actual lighting circuitry.

Finally, because I think I neglected to include this in my original post, I mounted the ballasts, control boxes, and rectifiers to the forward side of the front fender liners. I simply drilled some small holes in the liner and then used black zip ties to secure the equipment. This way the equipment is out of the way, hidden, and secure.
Gotcha. Makes much more sense now. I was unaware he sold the actual OEM BMW HID MTEC Kit as well... Good to know though that the "make offer" button would produce a bite at the other standard price.

Was the other guy on the forum link to that MTEC the standard version?
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      03-25-2012, 11:51 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Satalite View Post
Gotcha. Makes much more sense now. I was unaware he sold the actual OEM BMW HID MTEC Kit as well... Good to know though that the "make offer" button would produce a bite at the other standard price.

Was the other guy on the forum link to that MTEC the standard version?
The link I have above is to the BMW-specific kit. I think the other guy linked to the generic kit.
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      03-25-2012, 03:57 PM   #13
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The link I have above is to the BMW-specific kit. I think the other guy linked to the generic kit.
Okay cool didn't see the link. Thanks
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      04-11-2012, 12:54 PM   #14
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Do you have any pro-tips as to how you installed the lights? I'm about to go ahead and buy the Depo's myself. I saw from another thread that some guy was able to keep his bumper on, and if I could do that I would.

Plus, I don't mind going all halogen/stock lights that Depos come with for now. I just want to have the AE look, even if its yellow.
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      04-11-2012, 12:57 PM   #15
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You might have answered this, but where did you buy the lights again? I found a few sellers on eBay that are selling for 340/free shipping, and was wondering if you went that route.
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      04-11-2012, 02:42 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by titleistforged View Post
Do you have any pro-tips as to how you installed the lights? I'm about to go ahead and buy the Depo's myself. I saw from another thread that some guy was able to keep his bumper on, and if I could do that I would.

Plus, I don't mind going all halogen/stock lights that Depos come with for now. I just want to have the AE look, even if its yellow.
I followed the DIYs that can be found on this site. I didn't find the install hard by any means. But, I'm certainly no stranger to taking cars apart, either. I removed the bumper completely, and frankly, it only takes about 5-10 minutes to get it off so I don't know why you wouldn't just go ahead a remove it and make the whole process easier. I was able to get the bumper on/off without any help without a problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by titleistforged View Post
You might have answered this, but where did you buy the lights again? I found a few sellers on eBay that are selling for 340/free shipping, and was wondering if you went that route.
I picked up the lights from **********s.com, though there are several vendors that sell them.
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      04-15-2012, 05:09 PM   #17
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thanks for the information! i revisited the earlier posts and saw that you had answered it so my bad :|

looks like i shall be going this way soon myself. hope it works out!
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      07-21-2012, 12:38 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AW128i View Post
Two crappy iPhone pics, but you get the idea. Ignore the dirty car and the soon-to-be-replaced-by-CS7s filthy 17" wheels. I coded out the cold and warm bulb checks and I have no errors and no flickering or otherwise undesirable behavior.

The MTEC kit I got is BMW-specific and uses a relay system to power the ballasts rather than the headlight wiring. The wiring harness also has two additional features connected to each ballast - a "control box" and a "rectifier" - but I'm unsure whether the coding changes I made or the fancy wiring harness are the cause of no errors. Either way, I'm a happy camper and I'm more comfortable knowing that there is a relay system powering the HIDs rather than the headlight wiring.

One note to add about the HID kit. In the interest of wanting to maintain an OE look and have the highest lumens possible, I stuck with an OE-like 4500k for the kit. Unfortunately, these are quite white and have zero hint of blue; definitely more yellow than OE HIDs are. My guess is that these are actually closer to the 3700k range than the advertised 4500k. Side-by-side with any factory HID setup, mine look almost like standard halogen bulbs in terms of the Kelvin rating. Put mine next to a typical halogen setup, however, and they look less yellow and more white. Point being, they still are whiter than halogen lights, but not as white/blue as factory HID setups. The manufacturer sells replacement HID bulbs and I may pick up a set of 6000k to see how they look.

The T5 LEDs lighting up the angel eyes use 2 side-firing high-power SMDs each. I carefully installed them so that the LEDs were pointing sideways in the mount, thereby projecting their light through the circumference of the ring, rather than at the center and outside edge. This combination of using only side-firing LEDs and careful alignment in the mounting holes all but eliminates the four hotspots that are typical of the Depo AEs. Note, I ordered 5000k LEDs because the Depo AEs already have a slight blue tint to them. At night, these definitely have a blue hue to them (definitely more blue than the HIDs) and in hindsight, I might have gone for the seller's 4000k offering, but I'm still very pleased with the results. Since changing the LEDs requires pulling the headlights out, I'll stick with these until one happens to burn out, if that occurs. Speaking of which, the eBay auction included 20 T5 LEDs. Nice to have as a backup in case one or more fail.

Speaking of the AEs, I also coded my car to run them as DRLs. Now, these aren't even close to being as bright as the late-model E92/E93 LED AEs, but they are still noticeable during the day and I think they add a nice modern BMW character to the front of the car during the day.

Helpful Links:

MTEC HID kit

T5 LEDs

AW128i I was hoping when you have a chance, if you could take some pics from a distance of angel eyes during daylight. I am trying to see how noticeable they are when lights are on during daytime.


Thanks in advance!

J
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      07-21-2012, 06:55 PM   #19
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Wish I could take some additional pics, but I actually don't have the car anymore. Long story...

As for your question about the brightness during the day, you can tell they're on during the day, but by no means are they bright. Also, during the day you can see the four spots of light in each ring. At night, as I mentioned in my original post, you cannot see the four bright spots in each ring.
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      07-30-2012, 08:24 PM   #20
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Hi, BIG question my friends. I just install DEPO's on my 128i & upgrade the angel eyes with LED's, I am happy with the led's but i am not happy at all with the projectors beam. I have fit a retrofit on my 2000 4Runner and I love them. Is there any projectors that i can retrofit on the Depo housing with minor modifications?
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      08-24-2012, 12:21 AM   #21
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I am working with a guy to see if we can come up with a hardware only solution to an HID kit. He has something that is called an Easy Harness. It simply plugs in between the factory connector and the HID ballast. This acts as a Can-Bus kit as well as an error cancelling kit. He already has a kit that works with zero errors and since I am the test mule he will upgrade me to that kit if it doesn't work. I currently have his HID kit in my Fog lights zero errors for the past 2 weeks. I have had kits from this guy before (he is a bit pricy however it is worth the extra cost). I had his kit (fog and low beam) on my RSX for 4 years zero issues. Currently have his fog lights installed on the 1er, a full interior LED conversion and a set of amber LEDs as city lights. He also offers license plates LEDs that are bright!! I provided some pictures bellow.

I have subscribed to this thread and I will update when i get my H7 kit next week. I refuse to code at the moment as I want to make this work for the people that do not have access (funds or hardware) to coding. I plan on purchasing the DEPOs but will run these on the stock housings for testing purposes. He is sending the bulbs with caps which supposedly reduces the glare/scatter. I will let you know what i think of those too. PS Sorry for the crappy iPhone Pictures.



Stock's on the Left:


What they look like during the day:
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      08-24-2012, 10:45 AM   #22
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so i have some depo's sitting in my room with the HID's they come with and am awaiting for the 20 t5 AE LEDs from italy.. if i install these as is am i going to have any error codes or anything? they have the error cancelers with them installed already.. I'm asking because i have no idea how to code nor do i have access to anyone that can code.
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