I did brighter LED for the front foot wells, OEM Acura MDX projector for the front doors, Acura projectors for the rear doors, LED replacement light for the rear hatch.
I did the OEM MDX front door projections at time of purchase. The rest I did on my own. I'm out of state with my 11 MDX and can't take pics. The only other upgrade I want to do is brighten up the blue ambient foot well light at night. It is so dim and you don't notice is is on.
So I popped open the dome light and I don't see a bulb. Instead it's a small shiny disc like thing with two ribbon wires going in the IC board. Given that most what I see on ebay/Amazon doesn't have LED replacements for that. See two pictures. Light fixture is easy to take out. Just pop the plastic cover, under that two screws and whole thing can be pulled out.
mrgold: I got the LED light you listed above for the hatch... Does it go in the hatch door? I have to check.
I was looking at dome light at the back and it's same as middle row. This time I opened it up and see two tiny LED they have put that gives out amber light and seems like there is some kind of light sensor.. I think it would be impossible to replace with larger LED as the whole board needs to be replaced (see picture).
Do you find those reading lights to be too dim? I find mine to be just right - no point in totally wrecking the night vision.
I have replaced the LEDs (4) in the vanity mirrors but frankly recommend against it. Even the single LED bulbs are too bright and close down the pupils, defeating the purpose.
I replaced the lights in the glove box and console, so they at least match the other LEDs' color. I also replaced the footwell lighting (now very bright), the under-door lighting, and pretty much everywhere else.
PDX, thanks for the information chart. Very useful for ordering bulbs. I have not spent much time at night in MDX to see if current bulbs are sufficient. I always replace stock bulbs with bright white LEDs in my cars hence my quest.
I think all external lights are good enough, I am only interested in the interior lights.
I don't need to replace vanity mirrors. However I would like to replace dome lights but as you can see from the picture above it's not easy to do. I do find other lights very dim (may be it's my age )
The rear replacement LEDs have a sticky back and I just mounted below the regular hatch lights with the wire under the plastic cover. Sometimes the stick back LED lights come off over time and I just used superglue to hold them in place. I did this with my 11 MDX and they have worked perfectly and stayed in place since I install back in 2014.
We have discussed this elsewhere. It is unnecessary to mount external LED clusters to upgrade the rear deck lights. LEDs are available that are plug-compatible and very bright. That is a much easier and tidier approach.
The external lights are just for me and my wife and it really helps at night when looking for items in a dark hatch. I've tried the LED direct replacements and they were just not bright enough for me. The external LED illuminate the entire hatch area and a very wide area under the hatch when open. The older I get, the better I can see in brighter light at night. I sometimes need to wear glasses when I drive at night or in dim light indoors. Everyone else that has seen the mod in person at night also like the brighter illumination compared to the OEM lights.
Love your enthusiasm and passion for interior lighting. The $11 LED upgrades has been the 100% solution for my 06 TSX trunk, 08 RDX hatch, 11 MDX hatch, and 19 MDX hatch so far. Probably won't change it up until they fail.
Still thinking about brightening up the ambient blue lighting in the front foot well areas. Any plug-n-play solutions for that?
My point about the deck lighting is that it is not necessary to make modifications that are so obvious, not that they don't work. I work really hard at times to keep things looking stock. The only way anyone can tell that the speakers were replaced is noticing the tweeters in the A-pillar are black and gimballed, as opposed to matching tan and flush. I could have used the old mounting but I preferred to have the better aim. I once repaired the clock in a 240Z by installing a nice VDO clock with the original Datsun face, then glued the original hands on top of the new hands. The only hint that it wasn't stock was the new sweep second hand.
Thanks guys, I could not make that larger LED work in the rear hatch door. I was able to slide it in but no way to secure it and if I tape it to light box it won't go in the opening (too large). I don't want to attach outside either. I might try one of the bulbs listed above (it needs to be T10 wedge type)
However what is the solution for dome lights? There are 6 of them.
There is a real faint blue ambient lighting in the driver and passenger's foot well. It is noticeable with my 11 MDX; but, very faint with the 19 MDX. Very hard to see at night sometimes with LED headlights and bright dash/center console sometimes.
I meant to get back to you on the reading lights but been too busy. If you look at your photo you will see the two LED chips, under the lenses, and the driver circuits on each side. Those driver circuits are delivering a set current to each LED. To increase the light output you would need to replace both the drivers and the LEDs. First keep in mind that the LEDs are creating heat, and anything brighter may need a heat sink included; also, they would need to be mounted in the same location as they are lined up on the fresnel lenses (so height should matter too). It might be possible to bump up the output of the existing drivers; otherwise a new driver circuit is needed for each LED.
If you look closely the driver circuits each have a controller that has a single IC (3 legs on one side, one large leg on other), 3 diodes, and a single resistor. If you are lucky the resistor or diodes will determine the IC's current output, so could be replaced to change up the output. To solve that problem first you need to know what the IC is, which is written on the top. Get that info and download the datasheet and you can decode the driver, and work out what would be needed to change the output. I must warn you that replacing those tiny surface mount chips is difficult, but possible with the right tools. Otherwise you would have to hack into the circuit at the right place and install a small driver board. Keep in mind there are two ways of turning on the lights: manual switches on the board, and remote computer control.
Replacing the LED chips may be the easiest part of the problem - or not. First, don't let the size fool you: even very small LEDs can be quite bright. IIRC a 5mm square LED can have 1000 lumens or more, which is a lot more than this application can safely use. The real issue is heating, and dissipating that heat. I have a small, stainless steel, pocket light that puts out about 500 lumens on high; it gets too hot to hold in about a minute (LED flashlights use the metal cases, or at least the metal heads, for heat dissipation). In this case your LEDs are mounted on a PCB, which is an insulator, although there may have been some copper plating added to help conduct heat away. You will need to keep the LED to a small output, and probably need a heat sink as well. Of course the driver output needs to be less than the max for the LED, and the LED heat output needs to conducted away by a large enough heat sink.
Places like fasttech.com that serve the flashlight enthusiast community (flashaholics - I'm serious) will have the LEDs and drivers.
Personally I think you should learn to live with what you've got. If you are getting on in years then you might be getting cataracts if night vision is an issue. But if you are determined then get me the part number of the IC and I'll take a look.
PDX, you do know about lighting... I am not into that kind of mods (I was expecting socket to replace with brighter LED).
Current one seems quiet dim to me but it will stay till I can find a replacement...
My daughter is an eye doctor so I get through exam every year (although age does reduce eye's ability to collect light and make it seem dimmer).
I also don't like the amber LED either, prefer white light...
What is white light? In photography we talk about the white balance, and in lighting the white temperature. There is no single "white light". From a physics or engineering pov white is described by temperature. IIRC daylight is about 5000°K-6000°K, but it varies a lot by the direction you are looking and the elevation, clouds, etc. The blue-white that we see out of many LEDs is 6500°K, which is what Acura uses in the MDX. I find it harsh but it is easier to see (our eyes are more sensitive to the blue) and I dislike mixing the different whites. The old fluorescent tubes, and standard compact tubes, are around 5000°K. The old incandescents were way down to 2400°K, the warm white compact fluorescent at 2700°K, and the warm LEDs are around 3000°K. The point of the warm white bulbs was to be close to the same white as incandescents. They lower white points tend to be more comfortable for area lighting but less desirable for reading.
I live aboard my sailboat. When I built her I installed 2700°K CCFL (compact fluorescent) area lights, which fit well with the 2400°K incandescent reading lights. I am converting the area and reading lights to 3000°K LEDs. I prefer the slightly higher temp white light for seeing generally, and getting work done. Going much higher makes the lighting too harsh IMHO. You find the warm LEDs too yellow. It is a very personal preference. Of course to a certain extent it doesn't matter as our brain wiring compensates. Most of us don't realize how green the white is from fluorescent tubes until we see a photo taken under that light - our eyes compensate and see white - or someone turns on a 6500°K LED. With digital cameras the white temperature variations can be compensated with software so the green fluorescent photos are becoming a thing of the past.
Anyway, I don't see any likely way to make the changes you want short of applying electronics technician skills. The basic PCB needs to remain intact to support the switches and lenses, so any change requires modifying the board, including the traces. Other than my suggestions above it might be possible to cut out the board around the LED and fit an intact LED+driver module from an LED flashlight. None of this would be trivial I'm afraid.
PDX, I was reviewing your lighting chart as I am looking to convert the footwell lights over to LED. The link you have in one of your recent posts looks like it has different specs than what is listed on your chart. I ordered these bulbs yesterday, trying to match as closely as I could to your specs. Do you think these will work?