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What are the differences between CCFL, LED, & Plasma Halo Headlights?

Here at NFC Performance, we frequently get customers calling and messaging us with questions about the differences between the types of halo headlights available. Our goal in this article is to answer as many questions as possible to help you make the right decision for your vehicle. Here's some insight from our friends at Oracle!

ORACLE Halo Ring Overview: SMD vs. Plasma LED Technology - Which is Brighter? from ORACLE Lighting on Vimeo.

The first question you should ask yourself- which of the lighting technologies does Oracle or LED Concepts make for my vehicle? Oracle Lighting and LED Concepts are the brand names in halo headlights and the easy choice for auto-enthusiasts. Their top-quality design and construction has allowed them to back every halo kit by an unbeatable manufacturer's Lifetime Warranty. Don't make the mistake of choosing a knock-off brand and having to replace them a year later.

Depending on your vehicle, each of these technologies may be available in a wide range of colors. They may also be available in halo fog light rings and halo tail light rings. Because these are common characteristics, we won't discuss them in each section below.


CCFL Halo Headlights (Cold Cathode Fluorescent Lights)

ccfl-oracle.jpgCCFL is the oldest halo lighting technology. It produces a smooth glow that a lot of customers really like. What does that mean? It means that you can't see a bunch of individual lights on the ring (like you can with LED). Each ring is made from a small fluorescent tube. You know those light tubes in the ceiling of your office? It's like that, but really small and top-quality (built to last through 50,000 hours of continuous use).

These halos are usually the cheapest option and available for the largest selection of vehicles because they have been around the longest. The notable disadvantage to CCFL is that it is not as bright as LED or Plasma, and has been so far surpassed by Plasma and LED technology that it has begun a slow descent into the sad world of 'phase-out'. CCFL availability for many vehicles is dwindling, so act fast!

 Shop CCFL Halo Kits sorted by vehicle now



LED Halo Headlights (Light-emitting diodes)

oracle-led-live-example.jpgLED (also known as "SMD" or Surface Mounted Diode) has three very unique advantages. 1) These lights are built to be ultra-bright so that they can be seen in both light and dark environments during the day and night. If you want to be able to use your halos all the time, you should choose LED (or Plasma; see below). 2) Because each ring is comprised of a large group of individual LED lights, Oracle and LED Concepts have been able to built rings that have multiple colors on the same ring. It's hard to deny the convenience of being able to change colors on demand. For one thing, not all colors are street legal. With dual-color, Oracle's colorSHIFT, or LED Concepts ColorMORPH rings, you can easily keep your car street legal when you want to and show off crazy cool lighting effects when you won't get in trouble for it. 3) Because of how the LED lights are powered, these are the only type that can be controlled using remotes and other cool lighting controllers. We have wireless, sound activated, and custom programmable controllers that are simply amazing.

These rings are also more durable than CCFL and are built to last for 60,000 hours of continuous use. In reality, all three lighting technologies are going to outlive your car. Whether you get CCFLs with 50,000 hours, LED with 60,000 hours, or Plasma with 100,000 hours, your car will break down first! Think about it... 50k hours of driving 60mph would be a car with 3 MILLION Miles!

The notable disadvantage, that a lot of customers really don't seem to care about at all, is that you can see individual lights on LED rings. It's not a completely fluid output like CCFL or Plasma. In reality, a lot of customer LOVE the look of LED rings.  Find out if we have an LED Halo Kit for your vehicle now.



Plasma Halo Headlights

oracle-plasma-live-demo.jpgPlasma is the latest advancement in halos from Oracle, with it's only major downside being the inability to change colors. Released in 2013, the goal of this technology was to combine some of the greatest advantages of CCFL and LED so that customers didn't have to choose. They give off the smooth, fluid look of CCFL in an ultra-bright output that can be seen during the day and night. These lights really do rock! If you are looking for a single-color halo that is made in both plasma and CCFL, choose plasma! You'll love being able to see them anytime you want and the additional durability, with a life of 100,000 hours of continuous use.

plasma.jpgThe notable disadvantages of Plasma are three-fold. First, they are so new that they simply aren't made for as many vehicle make/models and they come in a limited number of colors. As of this writing, only customers who want white, red, green, or blue can choose plasma. Second, remember that only LED lights are made in multiple colors and can be controlled by remotes. Third, as a newer product, Plasma undergoes redesign and technology updates quite frequently, which means occasional back order. For a lot of customers, this isn't an issue. But it's something to remember when you are making the best decision to fit your needs.

Find the perfect Plasma Kit for your vehicle now.

If you have any further questions about choosing the perfect option for your car, truck, SUV, or motorcycle, don't hesitate to click the “Live Chat” button at the top of any page on our site. Our friendly and knowledgable staff of experts is on-hand to provide you with personalized, one-on-one assistance to help get you exactly what you need. We look forward to hooking you up!

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