22

The Bright Side: Projector vs Reflector Headlight

ellipse

By  AIS Windshield Experts

Category:  Headlight Installation

What is Projector & Reflector Headlight
When buying a new car or upgrading the headlights on your current vehicle, you may come across terms like "projector headlights" and "reflector headlights." But what exactly do these terms mean, and what are the differences between the two headlight setups? Here we will cover an in-depth explanation of how both projector and reflector headlights work, as well as the pros and cons of each design.

What is a Projector Headlight Setup, and How Does it Work?

A modern projector headlight utilises three main components in its design: a reflector, a lens, and a light source. The reflector inside a projector headlight functions similarly to a flashlight, acting as a reflective half-sphere that directs light from the bulb forward.

Once the light leaves the reflector, it passes through a specially designed projector lens. This lens bends, spreads, and concentrates the beam of light. The distance between the light source, the reflector, and the projector lens determines the exact intensity and focus of the beam.

To clarify this concept, consider how a magnifying glass can concentrate sunlight onto a specific spot, ultimately leading to an explosion in certain situations. Similarly, a projector headlight operates on a comparable principle, using a lens to evenly and intensely distribute light.

There is also a cutoff shield that helps direct the light beam downwards on the road, creating a sharp cutoff line for the projector headlight's beam pattern.

Pros of a Projector Headlight Setup:

  • Distinct and well-defined cutoff between low and high beams, preventing glare for oncoming traffic
  • It can accommodate high-intensity discharge (HID) bulbs thanks to the cutoff shield
  • HID bulbs provide brighter light than conventional halogen bulbs
  • Evens the distribution of light across the beam pattern
  • No extremely bright or dark spots
  • Elegant, high-tech appearance

Cons of a Projector Headlight Setup:

  • More expensive to manufacture than reflector headlights
  • The light source must be carefully matched to the projector for optimal performance
  • Limited to higher-end vehicles from the factory

What is Reflector Headlight Setup and How Does it Work?

Reflector headlights are the more traditional headlight design that has been used as standard equipment on vehicles for decades. A reflector headlight consists of a bulb enclosed in a metal bowl-shaped housing lined with mirrored surfaces.

As the bulb beams, the light reflects off the mirrored surfaces and is directed outwards in the form of a forward-facing beam pattern. Unlike old sealed-beam headlights, modern reflector headlights have removable bulbs that can be accessed by opening the housing.

Some reflector headlight designs also incorporate multiple reflecting surfaces to help shape and guide the beam pattern. However, they need more fine-tuned control over the beam that projector headlights can achieve with their lens technology. The output is simply a diffuse reflection of the light source.

Pros of a Reflector Headlight Setup:

  • They are very affordable and easy to manufacture
  • Simple and robust design
  • Compact size allows flexibility for headlight styling
  • Easy to replace burnt-out bulbs

Cons of a Reflector Headlight Setup: 

  • Beam pattern and low beam cutoff are less controlled and defined
  • Most use conventional halogen bulbs rather than high-output HID bulbs
  • Light output and brightness are often inferior to projectors
  • More likely to have uneven spots across the beam

Conclusion

Projector headlights offer superior lighting performance thanks to innovative optics that finely shape the light beam. However, their higher cost makes them exclusive to higher-end vehicles. Reflector headlights are an affordable and reliable choice that gets the job done, but they cannot match the crisp and bright output of well-designed projectors.

Windshield Experts offers affordable headlight restoration services using high-quality 3M products to restore aged and foggy headlights to like-new condition. Contact AIS Windshield Experts today for more information.

Similar Post

Recent Post
Blog Categories
Car Glass(56)Windshield Maintenance(19)Car Glass Dealer(7)Car Windscreen(6)Auto Insurance(3)Hyundai Car Glass(1)Maruti Suzuki(2)Windshield Price(1)Bharat Benz(1)FAQ - Windshield(3)Toyota Windshield(2)Windshield Cracks(9)Auto Glass Chip Repair(9)Car Windshield(43)Car Glass Replacement(20)Car Glass Repair(28)Urethane Adhesive(1)Windshield Adhesives(4)Winter Ready Cars(1)Tire Pressure(1)Non Genuine Glass(1)Road Trip(1)Car News(7)Sunroof Installation Service(1)Windshield Wiper Replacement(1)Windshield Insurance(2)Car Battery(4)Other Services(1)Headlight Installation(1)Sunroof Installation(3)Headlight Restoration(5)Sunroof Tips(4)Sunroof Replacement(2)Car Tips(4)Car Glass Insurance(2)Windscreen Replacement(3)Wiper Blade Check and Replacement(1)Windshield Crack Repair(3)Glass repair(2)Car Headlight Services(8)WINDSHIELD HACKS(1)Auto Glass(2)Windshield Wipers(10)Battery Check and replacement(6)Laminated Windshield(1)Laminated Glass(2)Glass & Adhesives(3)Genuine Products(3)Importance of defogging(2)Acoustic Windshield(2)Safety Glass(3)Wiper Maintenance(3)Wiper Blades(9)Uncategorized(20)Car Care Products(12)Battery Power(7)Windshield Replacement Doorstep Facility(26)Doorstep Facility(2)Windshield Repairment(34)Windshield Experts(59)One Stop Solution(1)Featured(51)Windshield Glass(25)Solar Glass(3)Types of Glasses(1)Tempered Glass(1)Windshield Protection(5)Defogging Techniques(2)Windshield Installation(7)Windshield Chip Replacement(7)Windshield Guard(1)Types of windshield cracks and chips(1)Cracked Windshield(15)Autoglass Damage(6)Windshield Replacement(99)Automotive Tempering(1)Fuel Efficiency(1)Low Quality Windshield(1)High Quality Windshield(1)Nano-coating technology(1)Car Cleaning(7)Windshield Advancements(1)Cashless Insurance(5)Car Insurance Policy(7)

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.

Toll-Free 1800-102-6364

icon9818866364

icon9599087715

iconInsurance Claim Enquiry Form icon
Request A Callback icon Find A Service Centreicon
icon1800-102-6364 icon9818866364 icon9599087715
  Offers & Deals

We use cookies to help you get the best possible experience of our site. By clicking 'Accept' you agree to our use of cookies.