First let me say if you don’t want to read another DDE install thread, STOP! LOOK AWAY! LOOK AWAY!
I received a very well packaged kit from Umnitza last week and installed it this weekend. I can’t comment on anyone else’s products or compare brightness, fit, etc since I’ve never seen or experienced any kit of this type first hand. (Other than the picts posted here)
First, I have to say that Matt is very accessible, and very willing to help. I have emailed and IM’d him several times and he has always been back to me quickly, even on Saturday. The installation is not technically very difficult, but it is time consuming if you’ve never taken your headlight assembly apart before and have a good healthy fear of screwing something up. Almost like taking apart your gauge cluster to install overlays only on a much bigger scale. Since you’re dealing with expensive parts, I was a little afraid of damaging the xenon assembly but everything went well. It took me most of the day working on and off. If I were to do it again, I think I could get it done in about 2 hours.
The rings, clips and light boxes are all nicely made, and there is an abundance of heat-shrink tubing, and wire ties, mounting screws, etc. included. The light boxes are a little bigger than I thought, a function of the bulbs and spacing I suppose. The trim around the headlights wasn’t too difficult to remove. You have to fight with it a bit, push here, pull there, but it came apart without anything breaking or scratching. I installed the fibers in the kit by drilling 1 hole for all 4 fibers roughly in the middle of each headlight assembly. I think that’s the cleaner looking way to install it, but drilling an individual hole in the right location for each fiber would help ease the bends necessary to route the fibers the right way and connect to the ring. The point at which they connect to the ring is a tight area so having them find their way through the assembly at the proper angle without too much bending is important. Reassembling everything went remarkably well, usually it’s much easier to take things apart than put them back together! They are definitely bright, noticeable and interesting to look at. I really don’t know enough about what’s changed in the different generations but I think what might be one of the best aspects of the Gen V kit aside from their visibility during the day is the fact that everything that can possibly be done for you ahead of time, is. It was VERY helpful to have the clips, wiring, end connectors, the relay, wire loom, light boxes etc. all pre-assembled and ready to go right out of the box. Visually, other than the light boxes themselves, there is almost no obvious wiring or parts under the hood that isn’t nicely wrapped or covered. I wired them to the fogs for now; I may go with an interior switch at some point for more control. I drove around town for about an hour with them on and the rings stayed in place perfectly, and look very evenly illuminated. The boxes get fairly hot, but I think most of that is because of under hood temps. They cooled off completely in just a few minutes after I got home and popped the hood.
If I were to change anything, (I think maybe Matt already has or is going to soon) it would be to update and consolidate the install instructions. To me, there are too many install videos, promo videos, pdf’s, etc out there that apply to old versions or include steps that aren’t required (assembling of light boxes, wiring, more than 1 place to drill holes.) That VERY minor point aside, it’s a nicely packaged, well-supported, high-quality item. If you like the look (I do!), it’s definitely well worth it. Thanks again Matt!
Check out the picts and decide for yourself - they are taken about 30 minutes before sunset. It looks a bit darker than it was since I took them with no flash . Other than a bit of a "corona" effect around the light rings and fogs in the 1 picture, the picts are very representitive of how it looks in person.