An HID Projector is what actually emits & controls the light in a retrofit setup. It projects the light created from the HID bulb in a precision pattern. HID Projectors are the heart of any Retrofit project.

An HID projector is an awesome little contraption. How often do you actually see one apart though ?Projector Cutaway

An HID projector usually consists of a Back-Bowl, Bulb Holder, Front-Bowl, Lens and Cutoff shield. Bi-Xenon projectors have an additional component called a solenoid that moves the Cut-Off shield when required, to activate the high beam function.

The bulb holder does just that – keeps the HID bulb held Firmly in place/position. This is important as a mis-seated bulb can cause for an improper level of light output.Bulb Holder


The back-bowl is what actually reflects the Xenon HID Bulb’s Arc Light towards the front lens. The wider your back bowl is, generally, the wider & deeper your output beam can be. A good quality back-bowl is made from a cast metal. This allows for better strength, durability & reliability from the internal chrome finish.

The front-bowl is what holds & positions the lens in place. The projector lens is a critical piece for optimum light output. It’s positioned in the front bowl for an optimum focusing so that the light output is clear, crisp and focused properly.

A cutoff shield is what limits or shields the light output so it doesn’t blind oncoming drivers or create excessive glare. This is what creates the light steps.Cutoff Shield Internally

A bi-xenon solenoid is directly connected to the cutoff shield. This simply drops or lowers the cutoff shield with a 12 volt power supply to create a high beam light pattern.

Bi-xenon Shield Solenoid


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LS 430 Projector

Low Beam Projectors

Low beam HID projectors or Single Beam projectors are often used in vehicles with a separate bulb for low beam and high beam. These projectors have fixed cutoff shields. These type of projectors generally have wide output with plenty of depth (the higher quality ones). List here are a few of the very common ones …

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Mini Morimoto MH1 Projector

Bi-Xenon Projectors

Bi-Xenon projectors feature a solenoid that make the cutoff shield movable. When activated, the shield drops or lowers & removes the cutoff step. This disperses the HID light in a high beam pattern (bright and everywhere). These style projectors use the HID bulb as its only light source (one bulb for high & low beam). …

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Bi-xenon Shield/Solenoid in Action

Projector Solenoids

Projector shield solenoids are a unique little design. The cutoff shield is what controls a projectors light output & pattern. In a bi-xenon projector the cutoff shield is moveable. A solenoid is usually attached to the cutoff shield and can be activated with any 12 volt input. When this happens the cutoff shield will drop …

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Projector Cutoff Shields

The cutoff shield is what controls the light output from inside your projector. This is what creates the “step”, how that step looks and where the light goes. USDM vehicles have a “step-up” to the right-hand side of the road so the lights wont blind oncoming drivers on the left.(LHD)  JDM vehicles have a “step-up” …

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