Chevy Impala SS Forum banner

1 - 20 of 29 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Guys,
I'm looking into getting all of the bulbs replaced in my cluster, and would like to get the opinion of the folks here who have dones this or something similar with the LEDs now available @ SuperBright LED 194 Bulbs

1. How many are required for the cluster?

There's a wide variety for the 194s, and I'm not sure of the difference between them.


Then I'm not sure of:

2. The style; 1-bulb, 5-Bulb, 5-Bulb tower
3. The Brightness; Cool, Natural, Warm

I'd appreciate any input, suggestions, or first hand experience stories too.

Thanks!

1LED


5LED


5LED-TOWER
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
1,646 Posts
Junior, I would go with the first bulb. Look at the angle of light output. For a dash the light should more directly toward you. The last bulb (360*) would be good for a floor shifter where you need light to illuminate the entire area of the PN123O. I may be wrong but I would go with that line of thought if it were me.

Mark: Snowman-33
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,093 Posts
If my memory is correct the 94-96 Caprice gauge lights are placed in side a clear plastic light directors. The four bulbs for the gauges are above or to the outside edge of the gauges. The "bulb" has to shine left and right (from driver's view) not forward (straight at driver). There is a thread where a forum member claims that a vendor has a very wide angle LED that works. Some will create dark spots or shadows when used with light directors. The "gear indicator" seems to shine forward.



Like light bulbs different LEDs will react differently to the dash dimmer. Most will be hard to reset to the level you like.



Most people would only need to replace the normal bulbs one or two times in the life of a car. They are cheap and known to work. The "right" LED replacement may be out there but the $$ and time to find a good one is huge.


The only way you could convince me to switch is if I could in person see a identical or similar construction dash lit with LEDs. Pictures are useless to compare with.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for input fellas. I haven't made a decision, it was just one of those thought of: 'While I'm at it, I might as well replace the bulbs...."

I don't know anything about directionality built into the cluster.

Thanks for the help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,518 Posts
Junior

If doing LED I would go with the Phillips one from RA that was posted. Its diffused cap will mimic better the incandescent (stock) bulb in terms of beam spread and not be "spotty" like the single or multi LED chip ones

Not sure these are dimmable

The cool or warm refers to the color temperature the light puts out. 5700k is considered "daylight" which would appear more "white" to the eye (6000k+ even more) vs warm which is 3200k aka "incandescent". That would be a personal preference as how you want the gauge cluster illuminated. LED can be harsh so you would want dimmable. IDK if our B-body dimmer works with LED. Maybe someone who has put LED in can advise
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
594 Posts
Junior, I've had excellent results using these LED's in all the Z clusters I've prepped/installed.Accents the cluster very well,without being too bright and bleaching out the numbers. You'll need 7 of them for the cluster illumination.The stock bulbs in the Z cluster are all 161's,way to dim imho. For turn signals/high beam indicators I toss the 161's and use oem 194 bulbs.Brightens up and actually enhances the colors of them.LED's in these 3 positions bleaches out the color,imo.

Also,get the right bulb bases,you need the bases locking tabs when installed to be at 11a-5p position like the oem bulb bases/sockets.Most of these aftermarket bases/sockets lock in at 12p-6p position,which over shoots the solder contact pads on the board.

In the pics below I show the 7 illumination bulbs from backside of cluster.Then with the turns/high beam bulbs lit up.Also in the backside pic with the 10 blue 11a-5p sockets,the 3 with yellow crayon are turns/hi beam.The other 7 blue are panel illumination positions.

And yes,you'll have no issues with full dimmer adjustability with these led's.

Hope this helps, Jim

Links to the Led's and correct 11a-5p bulb basesI've had great results with.I like the canbus style,but either style bulb base will be fine.

https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/led-vehicle-replacement-bulbs/194-can-bus-led-bulb-5-smd-led-tower-miniature-wedge-retrofit-car/1127/2674/?utm_source=Criteo Dynamic Remarketing&utm_medium=Facebook&utm_campaign=Criteo Dynamic Remarketing

https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/miniature-wedge-base/194-led-bulb-5-smd-led-tower-miniature-wedge-retrofit-car/206/

https://www.ebay.com/itm/GM-instrument-panel-sockets-1-2-hole-194-bulb-6-pcs-/372063774715?hash=item56a0baa7fb
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,851 Posts
Consider using green leds for turn signal indicators,and blue for high-beam. Quite dramatic effect for those who like that sort of thing...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,643 Posts
Junior, I've had excellent results using these LED's in all the Z clusters I've prepped/installed.Accents the cluster very well,without being too bright and bleaching out the numbers. You'll need 7 of them for the cluster illumination.The stock bulbs in the Z cluster are all 161's,way to dim imho. For turn signals/high beam indicators I toss the 161's and use oem 194 bulbs.Brightens up and actually enhances the colors of them.LED's in these 3 positions bleaches out the color,imo.

Also,get the right bulb bases,you need the bases locking tabs when installed to be at 11a-5p position like the oem bulb bases/sockets.Most of these aftermarket bases/sockets lock in at 12p-6p position,which over shoots the solder contact pads on the board.

In the pics below I show the 7 illumination bulbs from backside of cluster.Then with the turns/high beam bulbs lit up.Also in the backside pic with the 10 blue 11a-5p sockets,the 3 with yellow crayon are turns/hi beam.The other 7 blue are panel illumination positions.

And yes,you'll have no issues with full dimmer adjustability with these led's.

Hope this helps, Jim

Links to the Led's and correct 11a-5p bulb basesI've had great results with.I like the canbus style,but either style bulb base will be fine.

https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/led-vehicle-replacement-bulbs/194-can-bus-led-bulb-5-smd-led-tower-miniature-wedge-retrofit-car/1127/2674/?utm_source=Criteo%20Dynamic%20Remarketing&utm_medium=Facebook&utm_campaign=Criteo%20Dynamic%20Remarketing

https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/miniature-wedge-base/194-led-bulb-5-smd-led-tower-miniature-wedge-retrofit-car/206/

https://www.ebay.com/itm/GM-instrument-panel-sockets-1-2-hole-194-bulb-6-pcs-/372063774715?hash=item56a0baa7fb
Subscribed for future use in my Z-cluster install.


The link with the CAN bus LED's did you go with the warm 3100 LED's?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Junior, I've had excellent results using these LED's in all the Z clusters I've prepped/installed.Accents the cluster very well,without being too bright and bleaching out the numbers. You'll need 7 of them for the cluster illumination.The stock bulbs in the Z cluster are all 161's,way to dim imho. For turn signals/high beam indicators I toss the 161's and use oem 194 bulbs.Brightens up and actually enhances the colors of them.LED's in these 3 positions bleaches out the color,imo.

Also,get the right bulb bases,you need the bases locking tabs when installed to be at 11a-5p position like the oem bulb bases/sockets.Most of these aftermarket bases/sockets lock in at 12p-6p position,which over shoots the solder contact pads on the board.

In the pics below I show the 7 illumination bulbs from backside of cluster.Then with the turns/high beam bulbs lit up.Also in the backside pic with the 10 blue 11a-5p sockets,the 3 with yellow crayon are turns/hi beam.The other 7 blue are panel illumination positions.

And yes,you'll have no issues with full dimmer adjustability with these led's.

Hope this helps, Jim

Links to the Led's and correct 11a-5p bulb basesI've had great results with.I like the canbus style,but either style bulb base will be fine.
Jim,
Thanks for the help, the pictures look excellent! I appreciate the help, and will be moving in that direction.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
594 Posts
Here's pics of what I'm talking about with many aftermarket bulb bases being clocked wrong at 12-6p. May still be able to find correct 11a-5p clocked sockets on Rock Auto too.

The aftermarket 12-6 type over shoot the solder pad,the correct 11a-5p land nicely on the pad in same position as the original oem bulbs.

In the pic the gray socket is a stock original 96 Imp SS part with 11a-5p clocking. The other pic with black socket, is the typical aftermarket one using incorrect 12-6 clocking that that many websites say is for our 94-96 cars,which is wrong.

Jim
 

Attachments

·
Registered
1996 ImpalaSS WX3
Joined
·
448 Posts
[

The higher the color number, The more blue the light appears. 2700k is red, 5000k is daylight white and everything above starts to go more and more blueish the light appears.
Also. I have a difficult time during certain times of the day, and depending on my position to the sun, seeing the white bulbs display the gauges. It sucks not hardly being able to see the speedometer with sunglasses on when heading into the sun.
I have heard that when you go to colored LED’s,(especially bluish) the display becomes darker and even harder to see. Many wished they went back or did go back to the stock lights.

QUOTE=juniorwatson;12093122]Guys,
I'm looking into getting all of the bulbs replaced in my cluster, and would like to get the opinion of the folks here who have dones this or something similar with the LEDs now available @ SuperBright LED 194 Bulbs

1. How many are required for the cluster?

There's a wide variety for the 194s, and I'm not sure of the difference between them.


Then I'm not sure of:

2. The style; 1-bulb, 5-Bulb, 5-Bulb tower
3. The Brightness; Cool, Natural, Warm

I'd appreciate any input, suggestions, or first hand experience stories too.

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,093 Posts
1. How many are required for the cluster?
For Gauge illumination of a Caprice 4 for gauges and 1for PND21


Impala, Z28, Cadillac, and Roadmaster may be different number of bulbs.


Due to different designs what LED works in one may not work in a different designed one.


Replacing the MIL bulb with a LED may cause the PCM to fail the MIL bulb test.


For a Caprice the bulb light illuminates the gauges two ways. The red circled items are light directors that almost touch the bulbs. These direct light from the top of the filament to specific parts of the clear gauge backs. The gauge backs let light through to provide light to the gauge graphics.As most LED shine light directionally dark patches may result.
 

Attachments

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Hmm, I didn't get notification about the last post to the thread I started. I just decided I would throw out this follow-up, after having things installed for a few weeks.

Overall I'm happy with the exception of the HIGH beam, blue LED. I did a bit of night driving last night and found it to be too bright when driving down country roads with no other illumination.

The past few weeks, I have had the headlights on but typically driving leaving the house for work, and then leaving work for hoie I rarely used the high beams.

The brightness was not affected by the rheostat, so when I do pull things back apart to make some tweaks, I will be putting a regular incandescent bulb in its place.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I thought I'd add these 2 pictures to this thread I started. I was cleaning up my PC, trying to get organized, and forgot I had them. It's an EXCELLENT resource for the cluster as a whole.

I think you'll have to save it to be able to zoom in in the text, but it details what each light bulb socket is for, as well as the low oil circuit, and and ABS.


 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
594 Posts
Hmm, I didn't get notification about the last post to the thread I started. I just decided I would throw out this follow-up, after having things installed for a few weeks.

Overall I'm happy with the exception of the HIGH beam, blue LED. I did a bit of night driving last night and found it to be too bright when driving down country roads with no other illumination.

The past few weeks, I have had the headlights on but typically driving leaving the house for work, and then leaving work for hoie I rarely used the high beams.

The brightness was not affected by the rheostat, so when I do pull things back apart to make some tweaks, I will be putting a regular incandescent bulb in its place.
Instead of LED's in the turn signals and high beam locations,I like to upgrade to the slightly brighter 194's. Those 161's seem to dim and the 194's are noticeably brighter,but nothing like an LED.
Jim
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Instead of LED's in the turn signals and high beam locations,I like to upgrade to the slightly brighter 194's.

[SNIP]
Jim,
I'm not familiar with "slightly brighter 194 bulbs"

Do you have a link? Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,851 Posts
LED's ,and their brightness are listed on http://superbrightleds.com I did have the experience of high powered led behind the "high beam" icon. However since my steering wheel partially blocks turn signal indicators. I do appreciate those being more noticeable during the day. The 194 style LED's come in wide varieties of colors,as well as brightness... I also like the additional richness of color provided by bulbs the same color as the icon they shine through.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,542 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
LED's ,and their brightness are listed on http://superbrightleds.com I did have the experience of high powered led behind the "high beam" icon. However since my steering wheel partially blocks turn signal indicators. I do appreciate those being more noticeable during the day. The 194 style LED's come in wide varieties of colors,as well as brightness... I also like the additional richness of color provided by bulbs the same color as the icon they shine through.
You're right. For whatever reason this AM, I had my mind stuck on incandescent bulbs, and was thinking 'How can you have a brighter style incandescent?'
 
1 - 20 of 29 Posts
Top