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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Cosmetic and Lighting Modifications (exterior/interior) > HID angel eye ballast



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      08-17-2011, 10:07 PM   #1
blaze739
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HID angel eye ballast

Does anyone have an extra electronic ballast for the Alpine HID angel eye kit they would be willing to sell? I am looking to buy one. Alpine sent me a ballast with a bad connection but they won't respond to my emails even though it's under warranty. I am completely fed up with them and I just want to buy it myself so I can finally have 2 halos again.
There is a vendor in Hong Kong that sells these exact ballasts for $6-$10 a piece but there is a minimum order of 10. If anyone else needs a ballast we can order together and split the costs. I am sure I am not the only one in this boat since many members have complained about bad ballasts and terrible customer service.
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      08-17-2011, 11:08 PM   #2
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Yeah same here I had a bad canceler and sent emails that weren't replied to and my hid kit was under warranty.
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      08-17-2011, 11:42 PM   #3
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AS someone in the industry I would avoid those $6-10 wholesale kits as they are the same crap that already failed on your current kits. You might want to look into a higher quality replacement to avoid any further trouble.
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      08-18-2011, 01:22 AM   #4
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Hey there, I bought my replacement ballast from hidextra.com. They are the slim black ones with the igniters inside the ballast itself. They are the same size and I feel like they are better quality overall. The only downside with the igniters inside the ballast is that there isn't a wire that comes out of the ballast on one side so there is less mobility. However, the pre-existing coords in the alpine angel kit were long enough to fit without over-extending the wires.

The light doesn't flicker and is still the same with the original ballast. Also I wired a 4300uF capacitor on both the driver side and the passenger side just before each ballast to ensure the voltage doesn't fluctuate too much when I start the engine.

Let me know if you have any more questions!
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      08-18-2011, 07:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff@topgearsolutions View Post
AS someone in the industry I would avoid those $6-10 wholesale kits as they are the same crap that already failed on your current kits. You might want to look into a higher quality replacement to avoid any further trouble.
any suggestions on where i can find higher quality ballasts that will work with my kit? those $6-$10 ones were the only ones i found as an exact match
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      08-18-2011, 07:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cisf0rcalvin View Post
Hey there, I bought my replacement ballast from hidextra.com. They are the slim black ones with the igniters inside the ballast itself. They are the same size and I feel like they are better quality overall. The only downside with the igniters inside the ballast is that there isn't a wire that comes out of the ballast on one side so there is less mobility. However, the pre-existing coords in the alpine angel kit were long enough to fit without over-extending the wires.

The light doesn't flicker and is still the same with the original ballast. Also I wired a 4300uF capacitor on both the driver side and the passenger side just before each ballast to ensure the voltage doesn't fluctuate too much when I start the engine.

Let me know if you have any more questions!
thanks for the tip. i will look into this tonight. does having the igniters inside the ballast mean you have to open the ballast and solder the wires to it? i'm not sure how the alpine kit connects to it.
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      08-18-2011, 04:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaze739 View Post
any suggestions on where i can find higher quality ballasts that will work with my kit? those $6-$10 ones were the only ones i found as an exact match
Excuse my language on my previous post btw. Just trying to help.

At any rate I only deal with www.highperformancebulbs.com because I know they use the higher quality units and they also offer great customer service and won't avoid you.
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      08-18-2011, 05:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaze739 View Post
thanks for the tip. i will look into this tonight. does having the igniters inside the ballast mean you have to open the ballast and solder the wires to it? i'm not sure how the alpine kit connects to it.
You don't have to do anything to the ballast.



As you can see, the left side does not have the cord coming out of the ballast. This makes it a bit harder for the wire from the kit to reach the ballast (less mobility). Because of this, I do suggest you find one with a plug that comes out on both sides like the ones from highperformancebulbs. Good luck!
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      08-19-2011, 09:08 AM   #9
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Thanks for help guys. I will look at hid extra.com and highperformancenulbs.com and weigh my options. I have one last question though. If I replace the one bad ballast I have with a higher quality ballast, won't the angel eyes look different? Or at least startup different? Do if have to replace both ballasts with the new ones?
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      08-19-2011, 10:06 AM   #10
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It will be the same. I replaced both ballast just so that I wouldn't have to worry about the older one going bad. I'm not sure about replacing only 1 ballast though, but I'm pretty sure its fine. Hopefully somebody else here can give a definite answer to that.
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      08-28-2011, 05:23 PM   #11
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i found the problem with the kit and i figured i would give you guys an update. as shown in the picture below, the ground connection in the ballast was poorly soldered. a huge ball of solder was used, which caused it to separate from the circuit board when the unit was potted with silicone. looks like whoever soldered it was extremely unexperienced. i considered resoldering it myself but i'm alittle nervous about putting the board back in my car now that it has been opened up and depotted. anyway, i will never buy an alpine product again now that i see the crappy quality of their products and how they completely ignore you once you need a warranty replacement. i attached images of the entire board as well in case anyone wants to see what the internals look like.

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      08-30-2011, 09:35 PM   #12
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Told you guys to watch out for these cheap ballast Sorry you had to learn the hard way.

Soldering issues is the biggest problem and after that is the quality of chips and components.

You will notice the cheap ballast tend to cause interference with radios and such.
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      08-30-2011, 10:56 PM   #13
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Wow that solder job on that pcb looks like shit
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      08-30-2011, 11:52 PM   #14
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I sent my entire kit back because both my ballasts died. Now i am waiting for my kit back... Alpine wont respond to any emails or anything. WTF i blew $200 and now i cant even get my kit back... its been over a month and still not package in my mailbox. I think i got fucked over.

You should add Alpine to the title so other will be warned.
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      08-31-2011, 09:42 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaze739 View Post
any suggestions on where i can find higher quality ballasts that will work with my kit? those $6-$10 ones were the only ones i found as an exact match
$6-10?? wow that just adds to my frustration with the Alpine kit. i had one of my ballasts go bad. it was pay a $50 deposit and get the ballast shipped right away...or take mine out and ship it in...then they would send one out after they received mine. of course i was in a hurry because nothing looks worse than driving around with one set of angel eyes. so i paid the $50 to get it as quickly as possible. once i received the ballast and installed it...didn't bother with the hassle of shipping the other one back. so i lost $50.

to add to that....the other ballast is now failing...it operates intermittently. so while driving i never know if it's on or not. i finally got fed up and took them off.....and shipped my headlights off to Luis at OSS to get their LED upgrade. from my experience ....i would say the HID kits are crap. and Alpine's response time is terrible. took him a couple weeks to respond to my emails when the bulbs that came with my kit didn't fit snug due to it missing that white spacer that fits around the base.

just a heads up...if you want to ditch the HID kits for good...OSS has a special going on right now...check the Vendor section under Lighting.
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      09-04-2011, 09:10 AM   #16
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Yea I'm a little ticked off with what a pain in the ass this is turning into. I bought a ballast from hidextra.com and replaced the bad alpine ballast. Now the angel eyes look different. The new ballast is bluer and not as bright as the alpine (which I like), but it has a slight flicker. I think i am going to buy another hidextra.com ballast so they look the same.
Alpine now claims my replacement ballast is in the mail but it has been over a week and still no package.
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      10-18-2011, 12:46 PM   #17
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What an ugly board, what is the grey and red crap on the potentiometer?

I've had many boards manufactured in the past, and would shoot someone if they supplied me that crap :/
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      11-10-2011, 03:38 PM   #18
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What an ugly board, what is the grey and red crap on the potentiometer?

I've had many boards manufactured in the past, and would shoot someone if they supplied me that crap :/
i am guessing the red stuff is some sort of thermal grease, and the gray stuff is just silicone that never fully hardened after reacting with the red crap. but yea the board is very poorly made. The ballasts i got from HIDextra are working great but make the outside halos look green for some reason.
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      11-10-2011, 04:26 PM   #19
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I want to bring this up because I was doing some research the other day on HID ballast failures and I found the reason as to why the units fail in early models.

Most of the halogen fixtures in the headlights have a Pulse Width Modulation, PWM signal on it. PWM Is used to dim lights. It accomplishes this by rapidly turning the light source on and off in a square wave.

Turning ballasts on and off is not good for them and life is decreased.

I saw some people changing the PWM values through coding and while this may temporarily get rid of problems, it is just hiding it.

I found a person on a Volvo forum who built a small circuit that absorbs the PWM signal and filters it into a clean, flat signal.

If anyone's ballast are failing within a year, I would look into build this circuit and installing it.

Another alternative is to wire your ballast directly to the battery. Then have it triggered by a bosch relay via a switched source of your choice. To make it function like OEM, you can use the + wire in your headlights, that have the PWM signal on it.

You can use resistors across the leads in the headlight to prevent errors or code out the bulb check system.
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      11-17-2011, 02:30 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by ********* View Post
I want to bring this up because I was doing some research the other day on HID ballast failures and I found the reason as to why the units fail in early models.

Most of the halogen fixtures in the headlights have a Pulse Width Modulation, PWM signal on it. PWM Is used to dim lights. It accomplishes this by rapidly turning the light source on and off in a square wave.

Turning ballasts on and off is not good for them and life is decreased.

I saw some people changing the PWM values through coding and while this may temporarily get rid of problems, it is just hiding it.

I found a person on a Volvo forum who built a small circuit that absorbs the PWM signal and filters it into a clean, flat signal.

If anyone's ballast are failing within a year, I would look into build this circuit and installing it.

Another alternative is to wire your ballast directly to the battery. Then have it triggered by a bosch relay via a switched source of your choice. To make it function like OEM, you can use the + wire in your headlights, that have the PWM signal on it.

You can use resistors across the leads in the headlight to prevent errors or code out the bulb check system.
ironically one of the angel eye ballasts i bought in august just went out yesterday. i'm getting it replaced by warranty. however to avoid future problems stemming from the PWM signal, cant i just install a capacitor before the ballast? I dont understand why a circuit is needed to convert to a flat signal. a capacitor would prevent the ballasts from being rapidly turned on and off, wouldnt it?
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      11-17-2011, 05:38 PM   #21
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At first I thought it was a ballast issue with mine. Mainly it was the passenger side not turning on after I crank the car. However, after replacing it with another ballast it still had the problem. Turns out it was the bulbs...so after replacing them with bulbs from highperformance bulbs everything is fine! No more issues.

Other than that, I did wire a 4700 uf 35v capacitor from radioshack onto both driver and passenger sides before the ballast. This gives the ballast some extra juice and evens the current out when I start the car, so that it doesn't make the bulbs turn on and off more than it needs to.
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      11-17-2011, 05:51 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blaze739 View Post
ironically one of the angel eye ballasts i bought in august just went out yesterday. i'm getting it replaced by warranty. however to avoid future problems stemming from the PWM signal, cant i just install a capacitor before the ballast? I dont understand why a circuit is needed to convert to a flat signal. a capacitor would prevent the ballasts from being rapidly turned on and off, wouldnt it?
Basically yes, a capacitor would work.

This is the circuit I'm talking about. It's not at all that difficult to make.
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