The first in a series of LED light bar reviews, welcome to our Auxbeam Review! Things have come a long way since the days of the carbide lamp on a Ford Model T. Automotive lighting has developed over the last century, offering more than increased visibility and signaling. This is especially true with auxiliary lighting on vehicles used for overlanding or off-roading.
These changes are seen with high-intensity auxiliary lighting that provides additional visibility beyond that produced with traditional high beams. These auxiliary driving lamps, used for decades on the rally car circuit, have become more popular on production vehicles purposed for camping and other overland adventures. These lights are often described as either floodlights or spotlights.
Difference Between Floodlights Or Spotlights
Floodlights produce wider beams reaching 120-degree arcs, while spotlights reach 45-degrees maximum. The narrower spotlight beam is more concentrated and is easier to control or direct. These lights have been mounted with a-beam hand controls, racks, and even strips.
Different types of lights have been employed over the years, with LED technology becoming prevalent within the automotive industry since 2004. Today, many off-road auxiliary lighting takes advantage of an LED's lack of a ballast, energy efficiency, and longer lifespans reaching up to 50,000-hours or more. What follows is a look at six LED products that Auxbeam offers for better off-road visibility and safer overland travel.
Auxbeam LED Headlights Review
Auxbeam offers a wide selection of LED headlights for use on most off-road vehicles. The headlights are constructed of durable materials, including aircraft grade aluminum. These design elements provide for a work life of 30000 hours or more. The various series of LED headlights may be confusing for some customers, but a bit of research allows access to lights that can be used in fog or headlight roles on ATVs, carts, cars, trucks, off-road rigs, as well as heavy equipment used in a variety of settings.
Color temperatures range from brighter 6000 Kelvin ratings to a cooler 6500 Kelvin. The chip designs are housed to offer 360 beam patterns with no blind areas. Voltage level requirements are in an acceptable 9-32 volt range. While proper sitting may require some adjustments, these headlights will provide large angle coverage averaging in the 270-degree range with the cut-off line.
Design elements within all Auxbeam headlight series provide ample cooling through shapes, heat sinking technology, as well as fans. Almost all headlights have waterproof ratings that also protect against dirt, dust, and shock. The large operational temperature ranges allow these lights to function in nearly any overland or work climate.
- Provides an increase in visibility distance and width
- Offers consistent beam strength throughout the lit area
- Matching headlights to vehicles may be confusing
- May require multiple adjustments to set lighting angle
Auxbeam 4" 18W FLOOD LED Pods Review
The Auxbeam four inch 18 Watt LED pods are crafted from aluminum rated as 6063. Though some users complained, that the mounting brackets could be improved on, most of the buyers did not have an issue with this part of the product. Measuring 4 x 3.4 x 2.5 inches, each pod weighs 2.2 pounds. Cooling is accomplished by combining heatsinks with venting fins. Each pod is capable of operating in temperatures ranging from 40 degrees below 0 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit.
The Auxbeam design protects against dust, shock, and corrosion while having a waterproof rating of IP67 (submerged in three feet of water for 30 minutes). This is a feature that proves beneficial for wet overland trips. CE and RoHS certifications should offer confidence with indoor or outdoor use. A 50,000-hour working life can make for a good backup light for off-roading as well as farming or other heavy equipment.
Operating power ranges between 9-32 volts which in turn produces 18 watts of power at 1260 lumens (1800 lumens for the pair). A color temperature of 6000k is spread over a 60-degree floodlight pattern, offering users extended visual length and width while driving. This pattern is accomplished through six CREE LED chips rated at three watts. Some reviews mention issues with the harness and mounting hardware, but this should be easy to overcome with patience.
- Smaller size ideal for multiple locations
- Effective for indoor and outdoor situations
- Inconspicuous due to size
- Mounting hardware could be more durable
- Mounting instructions may be confusing to first timers
Auxbeam 7” 36W SPOT LED Light Bar Review
Each of the Auxbeam 7’ 36-watt spots LED light bar measures 6.57 x 2.87 x 4.21 inches and weighs 3.1 pounds. The 6063 aluminum body provides a waterproof rating of IP67 while protecting from dust and vibrations as well. With more than 50000 working life hours, the 36 watts of 6000k color temperature is focused into 30-degree spotlights. This is beneficial when the concentrated light is needed to play or work in.
Heat sinks and vertical cooling fins provide protection for the 12 CREE LED chips. This number of chips is ideal for providing bright light rated at 3600 lumens. The lights do not come with a harness, which can easily be purchased if it is needed. While there are limited set positions with the mounting gear, they provide enough mounting angles for standard positions.
- Provide ample bright light for the size
- Spotlights offer well-lit work area when used in tandem
- Wire harness not included
- Mounted bracket offers limited adjustments
Auxbeam 7” 36W FLOOD LED Light Bar Review
With similar dimensions as the seven-inch spotlight, the Auxbeam 7” 36 watts LED floodlight light bars that measure 5.57 x 2.87 x 4.21 inches. The 6063 rated aluminum is a good choice for body material for outdoor lights that need to stand up to overlanding conditions. Operating temperatures ranging from -40 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit allows these lights to function in almost any climate. The exterior fins help to prevent overheating while the housing protects the chips from dust, shock, and water.
A 12 chip CREE LED set-up produces a 60-degree floodlight arc, an advantage for users who work in dark conditions. The CE and RoHS certifications back-up a working life of over 50000 hours for each light bar. While some customers felt the need for Allen keys a negative, we feel this isn’t a problem for a well-stocked modern toolbox. A lack of a wire harness won’t present a stumbling block for informed consumers or those replacing existing light bars.
- Provides good light over a wide distance
- Lumens level consistent in the lit area
- The need for Allen keys for tightening the mount
- Wire harness not included
Auxbeam 12” 72W COMBO LED Light Bar Review
The Auxbeam 12”72-watt combo light bar measures 11.89 x 4.17 x 2.52 inches and weighs 2.65 pounds. Operating power requirements range from 9-32 volts DC while producing 72 watts of power output. With a working life of 30000 hours or more, this combination light bar is a good choice for those requiring diversity in an outdoor setting.
The 6000-Kelvin pure white color range is offered in either a 30-degree spot beam or a 60-degree flood beam. The ability to combine coverage is a great feature for those looking to maximize their light output. A black die-cast housing holds 24 high-intensity CREE LED chips that are covered by a PC lens. While these lights are sold individually, they can provide ample light for many outdoor tasks.
Light strength rates at 7200 lumens, providing for consistent strength and visibility. Even though external wiring and switches are sold separately, this packaging allows a customer the ability to save money where these items are not needed. The versatility of this light bar would lend itself well to demanding applications, including emergency and military intensive work.
- Combination floodlight and spotlight coverage
- Emergency vehicle lighting versatility for overland use
- High lumens output for size
- Housing nuts can be over tightened
- Switch and wiring sold in separate packages
Auxbeam 5D Series Review
The 5D series from Auxbeam offers a selection of light bars in 22, 32, 42, 50, and 52 inches in length. The entire series is constructed of extruded aluminum bodies that offer IP67 rated waterproofing, which is great for off-road environments. These light bars are notably heavier than smaller Auxbeam set-ups, which is understandable when considering the range of lumens produced (12000 - 30000 lumens). This is possible with a high concentration of 3-watt CREE chips (40 to 100).
Color temperatures range from a pure white at 6000 Kelvin to cooler 6500 Kelvin consistency. The higher price point can be justified by the fact that these light bars come with all necessary hardware and wiring as well as their ability to perform alone as a single light source. Their length may limit mounting points on a vehicle, but the lighting provided is ample from any angle. The combination of a 30 spot and a 60-degree flood beam make these light bars ideal for all outdoor tasks.
With a working life 50000 hours, the 5D series are long lasting as well as CE and RoHS certified. The high transmission PC lenses protect chips that are able to function in extreme climates found from heavy agriculture, mining, overlanding, or rescue services.
- Combines floodlight and spotlight coverage
- Available in a range of sizes
- All necessary wiring and hardware included
- Length of bars limits available mounting options
Conclusion - Auxbeam Review
Auxbeam LED lights provide a variety of options for most off-road vehicle needs. The LED headlight range would be a good option for those who wish to take advantage of Auxbeam's brightness and coverage. Customers who want to add supplemental light bars may not find the headlights adding to a lightbar's visibility. The wide range of light bars and pods are ideal supplements for overland adventures that require durable lighting sources with longer ranges and wider coverage. Standard vehicle driving will also benefit!