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      11-30-2012, 11:35 PM   #1
Irish-Texan
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Automatic high beams less than ideal.

Wondering how satisfied y'all are with the performance of the auto high beams.
Driving at night on rural two lanes I have noticed that the auto high beams take too long (for me) to revert to high after oncoming traffic passes by. I have stopped using it as I prefer to manually hit high beams immediately the oncoming traffic has passed. The wait for the system to re-engage the high beams was driving me nuts. Also underwhelmed by the decision making ability of the system in general. Moderately undulating roads with oncoming traffic seem to put the system into a tailspin of activity. Additionally, the high beams come on sooner than I would manually choose with rear lights clearly visible ahead of me. Approaching rural traffic lights with the newer LED lamps also confuse the sensor from almost a mile away - red light and the headlights stay on high, but the brighter and more piercing green causes lights to dip (this is rural with absolutely no street lights).
Are they operating similarly for everyone else? How many others are choosing not to use this feature?
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      12-01-2012, 02:05 AM   #2
danintas
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I love the feature ... the only reservation I sometimes have is that they don't go to low beam quick enough, but I haven't been flashed by oncoming cars yet.
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      12-01-2012, 09:57 AM   #3
Grovsnus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danintas View Post
I love the feature ... the only reservation I sometimes have is that they don't go to low beam quick enough, but I haven't been flashed by oncoming cars yet.
Define "not quick enough"?
There are two myths about high-beams I would like to dispel:

1: High-beams should be turned off the moment you see an oncoming car. This is wrong.
They should be turned off when the light cones from the two vehicles start overlapping each other. You cannot blind anyone outside the light cone, and that is the reason to turn them off.
So why not wait even longer?. You want to turn them off while you still have a memory of a fully lit area between the cars. By the time your eyes have adjusted, you should be in the range of the combined low-beams. Turning the high-beams off when the light cones start overlapping is a good compromise.

2: High-beams should not be turned on again until after you have passed an oncoming car. This is wrong.
They should be turned on again about one car length in front of the oncoming car, when there is no longer any risk of your high-beams blinding the oncoming driver.
Failure to turn them back on again means the driver gets several seconds of severely reduced vision after leaving the combined headlight area, before the retina adjusts. Worse, what was right behind the oncoming car, in either lane, is something you didn't see. Needless to say, this is bad.

If anything, I think automated systems like this are too aggressive, yet don't cover situations like an oncoming biker, or a deer.
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      12-01-2012, 06:04 PM   #4
danintas
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grovsnus View Post
Define "not quick enough"?
There are two myths about high-beams I would like to dispel:
Good points Grovsnus ... and that's why I guess I haven't been flashed ... I am obviously overly cautious when manually operating high/low.
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      12-01-2012, 08:55 PM   #5
dchao
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Same with the automatic windscreen wiper. Sensor never gets it right. LOL
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