i-LBA v's Smartview
Over the last couple of years, we’ve pushed innovation into auxiliary LED driving lights design and function never seen before. Launched back in October 2019, our Triple-R 1250 ‘Smartview’ married exceptional lighting performance with 5 different lighting modes activated via a touchscreen dashboard controller. Additionally, the launch of Smartview also introduced an anti-theft system hard-wired into the vehicle electrics. In February 2021 we launched our range of i-LBA lights which used patent-pending technology to detect oncoming traffic and obstacles, automatically isolating zones of lighting during the transition from high beam driving lights. Both exceptional products, that operating just as high beam driving lights deliver incredible range and left/right spread of light for everyday use, but which is the optimum solution considering people’s different circumstances…
If you like to be in full control of your lighting, and you would enjoy the flexibility to select different beam patterns and modes depending on driving conditions, then the SmartView is the light for you. The option to quickly modify beam patterns at the touch of a button, can ensure you’ve a light distribution / beam pattern to suit any situation. For example, the lamp can be switched into ‘Near-View’ mode at any time, for example when an oncoming car is in the distance, or when driving over slow, rough terrain when there isn’t the same need to see 1km+ ahead. Within the lamp’s functionality is also the option to have the light distribution adjust based on the speed of the vehicle (albeit mindful the adjustment occurs between a relatively narrow range of speeds; 30mph/50kph – 50mph/80kph). The application of the Speed Adjust function becomes more relevant if you’re driving typically involves rural roads, or periodically driving through poorly lit towns/villages, where it’s normal for your speed to drop down <50mph/80kph.
Transitioning from High Beam
If you are happy to just sit back and “let the lamp do the work”, then the i-LBA product could be better suited for you. The i-LBA is designed specifically to give additional illumination when you switch off your high beam and transition to low beams. When high beams are turned off, the lamp enters i-LBA mode and scans the road ahead for oncoming cars. When an oncoming car comes closer, the lamp will locally deactivate the LEDs which are pointing in that direction, so there isn’t glare for the oncoming vehicle. It’s important to highlight though that there isn’t any way to adjust the sensitivity of the lamp, so if you are driving in an area with lots of road signs, then this product won’t be suitable for you, since the lamp will see the road sign as an oncoming vehicle. Additionally, an oncoming car may not appreciate to see a “light bar” switched on, on the front of your car, so even though their visibility is not impeded by operation of the lamp, you may still very occasionally get ‘flashed’, where you wouldn’t in the case of SmartView. We include a separate switch on the wiring harness, so the lamp can simply be used as a normal auxiliary high beam, should these situations arise.
The Smartview lamp has a Dynamic Dip function which immediately reduces the high beam output, and activates the Near-View LEDs. The drive current through the Near-View LEDs are then gradually decreased over a 5-second period, to provide a smooth transition from this level of lighting to your standard low beams over a 5-second period of time. It’s a more rudimentary system when compared against the i-LBA, but it is repeatable and reliable regardless of road signs or other influences. The i-LBA products use remarkably clever technology and firmware, but their suitability for everyday use will depend on a few factors.
Laws in your Country
Whereas the SmartView turns off completely when high beams are turned off, the i-LBA lamp will keep some LEDs on when a passing car is going past. In some countries there are strictly enforced laws on which lights may remain on during driving, when operating low beams. Generally, a Police Officer will expect to see: 2 x Low beams, 2 x Position Lights, 2 x Fog lights (in foggy conditions). Seeing an additional single light bar in the centre of the vehicle could be a reason for a Police officer to pull over a driver, and this should be checked in your market first before making a purchase.
Depending the type of driving and roads you’re driving on will go a long way to determining if buying either a Smartview or I-LBA lamp is a smart investment. These lamps may not be for everyone, but in the right settings each can greatly enhance your night driving experience. i-LBA is optimised for low-light ‘rural’ locations, in particular long Scandinavian roads where passing traffic might be quite rare. The more driving you do where there is: 1. much more regular consistent traffic, 2. urban areas, or 3. especially low speed tight, twisty rural roads, the less benefit you’ll receive from the i-LBA lamps. By comparison, there’s a Smartview function to work well across a wider variety of driving conditions and road types, but it’s worth considering the typical driving you’ll be doing and to make the most from the investment. Consider where you could envisage utilising the different functions at different times. Purely as a high beam driving light, Smartview really delivers, but the added value comes from knowing that you can utilise as many of the additional functions as possible.
You may already have in mind where on your vehicle your auxiliary light by go. It’s worth noting that some of the Smartview functions are optimised for lamps mounted slightly higher above the road/off-road surface. Certainly below Licence Plate height on a passenger car, you won’t fully see the benefit of near-view mode, or the dynamic dip function on Smartview. The i-LBA lamps offer more flexibility in this regards, as the up/down beam angle is consistent, and like all other Linear Elite or Triple-R Elite products is well suited to mounting even close to the road.
While it shouldn’t necessarily be a deciding factor in your purchasing decision, it is worth considering the installation of the lights and how this can be completed. i-LBA lamps have advanced technology embedded within the lamps and comparatively the electrical installation of the lights is as straight-forward as if mounting any of our other LED driving lights, aided by the supply of an included wiring kit. Smartview is more involved and given the additional wiring of the: anti-theft unit, dashboard controller, and speed adapt function, there’s a higher level of vehicle electrics required, including of CAN systems. If you’re getting a fitting centre to complete the install for you, be aware you’ll likely have to pay extra for the additional work involved to install the complete system.
Our website provides more details on each product, including within the ‘Downloads’ section on each relevant product page. Smartview and i-LBA represent the very latest and best in LED driving light performance and technology, and are both fantastic investments when used in the right way, and in the right circumstances. If there’s any doubts or questions regarding their application then don’t hesitate to contact us, or your local Lazer dealer, before making any purchase.