What’s the best HARLEY Headlight that’s Not A Harley Daymaker Headlight? We surveyed the biggest Facebook groups to find the answers. The results may surprise you.
Let’s face it–that OEM headlight the Motor Company put on your bike is an embarrassment.
Yes, we can add backside lighting, seat and exhaust to that list, but those are topics for another post, another day. We’re here to talk about the headlamp that’s gonna seriously light the road ahead of you.
But if swapping that OEM dinner candle with a Harley Daymaker headlight seems kinda expensive, you’re not alone. We surveyed a few different Harley Facebook rider groups, and it turns out, plenty of others feel the same way.
Wondering what Daymaker headlight alternatives they’re riding with? You’re in the right place.
In this top-10 roundup, we’ll–
- Tell you how we arrived at the ten best Harley headlight choices (See TOC below).
- Give you as many features, facts and specs for each headlight as we could dig up. And what each will cost ya.
- Give you a few easy links to fitment details, and sites where you can buy the light.
- Tell you what to look for when choosing an OEM headlight replacement.
- Cover a few (not) dumb questions in our FAQ.
And then, we’ll let you pick the headlamp that’s right for you. But before we move on, let’s whet your appetite with a glimpse of the top 2 finishers–
Top Brand Choice
Custom Dynamics® White Halo Headlamp
The Custom Dynamics® White Halo headlamp is the ideal OEM swapout for the rider who wants a very good halo headlamp but doesn’t want to pay a premium price for it. Read on to find out why.
Top Economy Choice
Sunpie® Daymaker Headlamp
The Sunpie Daymaker is the classic Amazon OEM replacement. It’s low cost will make you wonder what’s not right with it. Nothing, according to a lot of riders. Read on to learn more.
How We Picked The Best Harley Daymaker Headlight Alternatives
Our August Rider’s Choice survey set out to find the best non-adaptive OEM headlight replacement that didn’t say Harley Daymaker Headlight on the box. (We’ll cover Adaptive Headlights in an upcoming post).
But let’s be clear–we didn’t decide on this list. The riders did.
This top-10 roundup represents the opinions of well over 100 riders who were asked what they replaced their OEM Harley headlight with. Opinions, in some cases, repeated dozens of times in the survey we took. So how did we get these numbers?
We ran one poll with the Harley Davidson Street Glide Owners Facebook Group. The results were okay, but the sampling not large enough. So, we went back into their archives and found posts– dating back no farther than 2021– that asked the same question we did–
What is the best Harley LED headlight replacement for OEM?
That survey produced 70 results.
To broaden the polling field, we surveyed the Harley Davidson Electra Glide Ultra Classic Owners Facebook group, and, running the same query, got 30 more results. And, we found another 20 results from the Street Glide Owners Nationwide Facebook group. So, 120 results, enough to get a sampling of what riders–if they’re not going with a Harley Daymaker headlight–are replacing their OEM bulb with.
Thus, the August Rider’s Choice survey. Not scientific, but it is a solid sense of what riders out there like for Harley headlights. And from the numbers, and our experience, none of these finalists are outliers, regardless of cost.
Cost? That’s where things get interesting.
What’s In A Name? Besides $$$? Depends On Who You Ask
The list has some familiar names–including the first three finishers. And it’s those three names that reflect an interesting battle between the brand-plated headlights and the shockingly inexpensive models sold chiefly on Amazon.
(Okay. That’s unfair–Sunpie is clearly its own brand and a quality brand at that, but I couldn’t come up with anything else, so work with me here.).
So, what’s in a name? Really?
Well, depends on who you ask. That guy who’s said he’s been running Sunpie lights on his bike for 6 years was seconded over and over in the Facebook groups we surveyed.
But, so was the guy who paid nearly $200 more to have his road lit by a Custom Dynamics White Halo headlamp. Or the guy who paid $230 more when he bought his Hogworkz lamp. Or, frankly, the guy who’s dropping $520 more for, yes, that Harley Daymaker headlight.
Clearly, brand and price matter differently to different riders. Because aside from slip-on pipes, I can’t think of another aftermarket accessory that ranges so wildly in pricing, when the specs compare so closely.
Ultimately, it’s the rider’s judgement–how much they trust the word of others, what brand means to them, and how much they’re willing to pay to back that up.
So, time to go out and get yourself some candlepower. Our Rider’s Choice roundup should help you decide. Check out my comments, check the features and specs. (Use the Product Headline and ‘Go to Site’ buttons to find deeper detail, rider reviews and a shopping cart. Prices shown for each lamp are for standard 7″ Touring applications at regular prices at time of publication)
And make your choice.
10 Best Harley Daymaker Headlight Alternatives
Rider’s Choice Top Pick
Custom Dynamics® White Halo
A catalog staple and best-seller for Custom Dynamics, this headlamp is far and away the top pick for riders who prefer an affordable alternative to the Harley Daymaker headlight that’s also designed, assembled and shipped from the USA.
Custom Dynamics® 7” LED Halo Headlamp with Touring Adaptor is plenty bright, delivers the halo aesthetic, and is backed by Custom Dynamics’ lifetime warranty and super-easy customer support.
If you’re the kind of rider who just doesn’t feel great about piercing the darkness in the middle of a curve with $70 worth of candlepower, here’s your light.
The included adaptor makes for an effortless plug and play installation on 2014-current Harley-Davidson® Touring, Trike & 1984-2017 FL Softail models.
Priced at $229.
Rider’s Choice Top Pick
Sunpie® LED Daymaker
We’ll let The Motor Company and Sunpie® decide who thought of the name first, but for $79, you’re getting a hella headlight here. And there’s lots of riders who put this bad boy on their bike years ago and are still riding with it.
This headlight’s been upgraded too, which means the traditional gripe about Sunpie–radio interference–is taken care of. The headlight comes with everything–an H4 to H9 or H11 dual beam harness, and a 4 Pin adaptor harness.
Spend a few dollars more for the same light with a halo.
If there were no surprises in this poll, this was one of them.
Priced at $69 with promotions as low as $49.
Rider’s Choice OG Standard
Inflation-priced at $299, you’re gonna pay more for this lamp, but when you get a solid 5-star rating over the course of 576 site-specific reviews, I’m guessing nobody complains.
The Hogworkz® Halomaker numbers might explain why–a 5400 lumen high-beam and 3600 lumen low-beam. That’s…pretty bright.
Add a buzz-free anti-interference design and true Plug-n-Play (via the included wire harness for ’14+ touring models or headlight bracket for ’94-’13 touring models) and everything’s feeling bright and cheerful.
Now back that up with a lifetime warranty, and you wonder why this headlight isn’t on everybody’s bike.
Rider’s Choice Rising Star
Eagle Lights Gen III
Eagle Lights® is an excellent company that sells an excellent line of lighting. Their ridership is growing, and the Gen 3 Halo headlamp is solid evidence why.
It’s DOT approved, has a high beam lumen rating of 3315 (2170 on the low beam), and offers simple plug & play installation.
And, it comes with a lifetime warranty.
Any drawbacks? Well, the light will cause radio interference, and you have to buy a kit that eliminates that. And, depending on your bike, 1 or 2 bulb harnesses (897 & 899) or adaptor rings have to be purchased separately for an extra $20 and $40 respectively.
Not a deal breaker to the 45 riders who gave this light a 5-star review on the Eagle Lights website. But seeing as how everyone else throws in the harnesses, and have worked out the interference issues, well, I guess that’s why you read posts like this. Just the same, a nice headlight to consider, and awesomely quick customer service response.
Priced at $319.
rider’s choice premium pick
Custom Dynamics ProBEam
Custom Dynamics®’ entry into the premium Harley headlight aftermarket comes with the ProBEAM® headlamp. Designed in partnership with J.W. Speaker of Germantown, Wisconsin, the ProBEAM is…
100% Made in USA.
Which may make this headlight the only one on this list that is.
That feather in the cap aside, ProBEAM headlamps offer a hybrid Reflector/Projector design, the kind of engineering innovation Custom Dynamics has spent 20 years building a reputation for. The ProBEAM features–
- A low beam consisting of three advanced optical D lenses + a position light.
- The high beam runs with the low beam illuminated and adds two additional LEDs with optical D lenses, plus three more LEDs with projector lenses.
Translation? Really bright, really wide, really far.
For candlepower of this magnitude, $449’s not a bad price. But this bad boy routinely sells out, so if you’re thinking of getting it, better move fast. Or be ready to take a number.
Priced at $449
Rider’s Choice Loyalty Pick
Harley Davidson® Projector LED
Sometimes the best alternative to OEM is simply scaling up.
This was our surprise pick of the survey. Given the numerous options for a nice, super-bright OEM upgrade, for hundreds less, there were still plenty of riders comfortable with staying inside the Harley catalog & dropping nearly 6 bills for a sweet projector flashlight.
Granted, the Harley Davidson® Daymaker headlight is a true projector headlamp (we’ll have a post covering the Reflector vs. Projector nit-grit coming soon), and it’s supposedly built by J.W. Speaker for Harley, so anyone choosing this headlight to replace their OEM can feel good about that.
The tale is in the specs, though–
(cue the crickets)
I’d love to tell you more, but the Harley website was amazingly stingy with details. Just classic Harley adspeak, and not much in numbers. What I did find out was that the Harley Daymaker headlight has a single top-mount low-beam projector lens and a large bottom-mount high-beam projector lens. And, there’s 2 D-shaped fill-light lenses
Its lights are directed slightly downward to avoid blinding oncoming drivers. And, a super-cool H.D. Bar & Shield logo glows when the ignition is in accessory position–how awesome is that?
And with some digging elsewhere, I discovered that the Daymaker headlight does offer a lumens rating of about 3300. Not bad.
But that warranty–one year? Hmm.
That said, this is a solid pick for those who like to spend more than they need to. To each their own.
Priced at $592
Rider’s Choice Amazon-ONly Pick
Like Sunpie® and a few others, Truckmall® is a value buy, using Amazon’s reach as their primary sales platform and selling their headlamp–complete with mounting ring and harnesses–for right around $70. Got another $50 of credit card space left? they’ll throw in matching passing lamps.
Tried to find a website for these guys, and couldn’t. Does it matter? Not for the decent number of riders who swear by these lights–
Out of 295 Amazon buyers, the Truckmall 7″ Harley headlamp is pulling a 4.7 rating. That’s a lot of satisfied riders.
It’s eye-burning 4000 lumens-rated high beam (2600 on low beam) might explain it.
This headlight is plug & play with included harnesses and mounting rings. It’s DOT & SAE approved, and E-Mark-rated. It’s only got a 1 year warranty, but for the price, well…
Here’s the deal. It’s an inexpensive headlamp, and my stroll through the reviews tell me that a lot or riders out there are happy with it.
You could be one of them. So, if the low price doesn’t bother you–still seems weird to say that–this is a headlamp worth looking into.
Priced at $69.
Rider’s Choice Cool Pick
Rogue Rider® V1 Halo
Want to put some attitude on your headlight without creating a light show? Rogue Rider Industries®’ Blazemaker V1 is a hella headlamp that gives you a white or amber halo option.
Cool, but not too cool. That’s the sense you get with these guys. Set in Surprise, Arizona, they’re a small outfit with value and brotherhood in their DNA.
And comments splashed across their website say as much.
But what about the lamp? Well, it’s —
- A nasty-bright 2800LM low beam and a 4000LM high beam
- Low-power-consumption with cool-operation
- Plug & play for most models and…
- Very comfortably-priced
As some headlights are Amazon origin-nonspecific, this is the Independent American Iron Balls counterpart. Rogue Rider Industries may be loved by as many riders as they are because of that, but their headlights seem to work pretty damn well also.
Priced at $129.
Rider’s Choice Underrated Pick
XMC by Vision X®
Sold on Amazon and through the Ciro 3D® catalog (couldn’t get anything off the Vision X site cuz it can’t pass an SSL handshake) the XMC by Vision X® is one powerful halo headlight that gets more than just a few mentions for its candlepower.
The details were a bit hard to scrounge up, but here goes–
- High Beam, Low Beam, LED Halo Ring
- Available in Black or Chrome Finish
- DOT- Approved
- 4,210 Raw Lumens, 2,947 Effective Lumens and…
- Plug & Play (wiring adaptor plug NOT included).
Read the reviews, and this headlamp gets lots of props for its wide beam pattern. This is in part due to the two side LED’s. And, an added pattern of lights at the top of the low beam gives the high beam a fuller pattern.
But, whereas most lights featured in this rundown keep the low beam illuminated when the high beam is activated, you’ll need the Hi-Lo Adaptor (purchased separately) to make that happen on this bulb.
That’s kind of disappointing for a headlight of this price.
Just the same, its popularity with riders say the XMC by Vision X is a headlight to consider.
Priced at $459.
Rider’s Choice Hybrid Halo
CUSTOM Dynamics® TruBEAM
Custom Dynamics® hits the Rider’s Choice trifecta with their TruBEAM, a premium haloed Harley Daymaker Headlight alternative that–like its ProBEAM brother–is a hybrid Projector/Reflector lamp.
The TruBEAM features a complex reflector design– 3 low beam LEDs, 2 high beam LEDs plus a combination of projector and reflector type LEDs.
And a built-in halo ring.
If you’ve got the money to jump into the premium market, and you’re debating ProBEAM or TruBEAM, here’s a few fast facts to consider (shout out to Brad over at Custom Dynamics for the deets):
- The ProBEAM tends to provide a smoother beam output.
- The ProBEAM produces a light that eliminates dark spots on the road for full(er) visibility at night.
- By comparison, the TruBEAM headlamp also produces a super bright beam and tends to provide lighting directly in front of the bike and father down the road, but there are less illuminated areas in the space in between.
- As to color temperature, the ProBEAM burns around 5500K, and the TruBEAM burns around 5800K which is slightly “whiter” in color.
- The TruBEAM is haloed, the ProBEAM is not.
One final footnote o the TruBEAM–Custom Dynamics® Hi-Lo-Halo Headlight Adaptor is required to run both the halo and low beam when the high beam is activated.
Taking all of this–along with Custom Dynamics’ quality and lifetime warranty–into consideration, if you’re jonesing for a premium hybrid halo headlamp, the TruBEAM headlight is a solid option.
Priced at $439
What Makes A Headlight Great?
If it’s not OEM? That’s a great place to start.
But if your bike’s still rocking that pair of candles the Motor Company chose for your ride, you know why you’re here. So let’s find solutions.
Choosing the right headlight can be difficult, because there’s are so many solid choices out there. And when deciding which headlights are gonna be your OEM replacement, you’ll consider–
- Ease of installation (Is it true Plug & Play, or is there splicing involved?)
- Reliability, company history and customer/technical support
- How the headlamp looks and…
- What other riders are saying
And yes, there’s other things to consider–
- Lumens, which by now you know means the higher the brighter
- Color temperature (higher means whiter light)
- Projector, Reflector and Hybrid-style lighting technologies (we’ll get into that in an upcoming post)
- Plug & Play harnesses, adaptors and mounting rings
To be honest, I found it disappointing that many of the websites were sparse in the kind of numbers needed to make an informed decision. Numbers like lumen ratings at both high and low beam– these are basic power numbers that tell you how your road’s gonna show up to you at night.
Sellers need to be better that way.
All of these considerations are important, though, which is why we made every effort to include them in our discussion of each headlight. We hope this Top 10 roundup was helpful to you.
So, ball’s in your court now. We encourage you to use the links provided and do your research, read the reviews, and check out the FAQs below.
Good luck with your decision.
Wrapping It Up
There you have it – our August, 2022 Rider’s Choice: The 10 best Harley Daymaker headlight alternatives. Yep, there’s a few of them there, and every rider who was part of this survey has their favorite. I hope this list helps you choose the option that’s right for you.
What headlight will be on your bike?
Further Reading on JBetley.com: If you want to learn more about headlights–Projector/Reflector, Lumens/Lux, Cost vs Quality and any other specs involved– this Buying Guide covers all the details. If you’re interested in adding accent lighting to your bike, along with new headlamps, check out this post I wrote on the new ProGLOW Accent Underglow Lighting System by Custom Dynamics.
In the meantime, Ride Safely and Be Well!
About the Author
Jim Smurawa is a full-time blogger and enthusiast of all things that require him to get off his ass. Jim loves bikes, so much so that he sold his 2019 Street Glide to study advanced blogging and digital communications so he could write full time about the Harley Life. He looks forward to getting back on a bike of his own, and he’s currently deciding on whether he should get a Softail, an Ultra or another Street Glide, since he’s owned one of each in the past.