The difference between Real JW Speaker LED Lights and fakes!

We’ve been hearing reports of people purchasing JW Speaker brand LED fog lights and headlights, from supposedly trustworthy retailers on the internet, only to find out that they were lied to, and what they received was a cheap Chinese knock off! I wanted to take some time to put this comparison together for you to make sure you’re actually getting what you paid for!

In today’s world of modern technology it’s becoming easier and easier for lazy companies around the world to copy somebody else’s innovation. Now, the Wisconsin, USA company J.W. Speaker Corporation is no exception! We recently got our hands on a set of real JW Speaker 6145 lights, and JW Speaker 8700 Evolution headlights and tested them against a counterfeit version to see what the differences are. What we found was not surprising. Afterall, if a product is worth copying in the first place, then somebody out there thought it was a great product and instead of creating their own they were unethical and just copied it.

The lights looked similar in size and shape, but all of the details were missing. The JW Speaker lights had way more light output, they are built with better materials (sealant, wires, connectors, lenses, etc…) and the fit & finish of the JW Speaker brand products was much nicer.

Here are some comparison pictures of the visuals of the JW Speaker products versus their Chinese counterfeit knockoff products to give you an idea of what to look out for when you’re trying to purchase the real thing. Hopefully this posting will help some people out if they are worried about being scammed by a seller.

Especially you should watch out for dishonest sellers trying to sell you the real thing on websites like Amazon, eBay and other international sales platforms on the internet. If you have any doubt, just compare their products to this review and there should be no question if it’s real or not!


First, here’s a comparison of the real JW Speaker 6145 LED fog light, and the Chinese knock-off version:

JW Speaker real and fake 15
It’s important to know if you are buying the real deal or someone’s cheap knockoff. Here’s a comparison picture side by side showing the JW Speaker 6145 and it’s terribly performing counterfeit copy.


JW Speaker real and fake
All JW Speaker LED fog lights are built using the industry’s best practices, even down to the details like how the lens sealant looks when finished! Not only is it important for the sealant around the lens to look good, but a poorly applied lens sealant will also cause moisture problems.


JW Speaker real and fake 2
On the original JW Speaker 6145 you can clearly see the Speaker logo embossed on the fog light bezel. The knockoff is blank.
JW Speaker real and fake 3
All JW Speaker LED headlights and fog lights come with a lifetime warranty, but they also tell you exactly what month and year they were manufactured. Here you can see the real one shows a sticker with the production date listed.
JW Speaker real and fake 4
Real JW Speaker lights do not cut corners, so in this side by side example you can see that the real one uses thick metal construction and high quality hardware components. The cheap Chinese version has thin metal attachments, and low quality components which will give you more issues during install.


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JW Speaker LED headlights and fog lights are sealed to IP67 waterproof ratings. This is evident in how the wires are sealed at the back of the housing. The Chinese knockoff of this light does not do a good job of sealing the back side of the housing from moisture.
JW Speaker real and fake 6
With real JW Speaker lights you will never find cut corners on quality even when it comes to the wiring and connectors. Here you can see that not only does the JW Speaker product use the highest quality connectors, but also heavier gauge wires.
JW Speaker 6145 real and fake beam patterns
Here you can see the real JW Speaker LED fog light beam pattern is brighter, taller, wider and has less weird shadows in the beam pattern. The fake light has a very small and un-impressive beam pattern.


Now, here’s a comparison of the real JW Speaker 8700 Evolution LED headlight, and the Chinese knock-off version:


JW Speaker real and fake 7
This is the JW Speaker 8700 Evolution side by side with a Chinese counterfeit knockoff product that’s supposed to look like the real thing. But trust me, they are very different!
JW Speaker real and fake 8
The back side looks very similar, but it’s the important details that matter such as the type of harness that is used, the moisture vents, and the wiring connections.
JW Speaker real and fake 9
The real JW Speaker headlight uses high quality moisture vents on the back side that are sized properly for the application, where the cheap knockoffs use random over-sized vent covers that will fail over time.
JW Speaker real and fake 10
JW Speaker LED headlights are sealed to an IP67 weatherproof rating, the Chinese knockoffs have no IP rating to speak of. You can see the different wiring methods used by both here and one is safe to use and the other is not. The Chinese version has the wires covered because they don’t want you to see how easy it is to get water into their housing.
JW Speaker real and fake 11
When you knock off a product you need to cut corners everywhere to make it cheaper. Even in the connectors! JW Speaker uses the industry’s best quality H4 style connectors, where the Chinese copy uses a low quality, inexpensive connector that is prone to having crimp and connection issues.
JW Speaker real and fake 12
The JW Speaker 8700 LED headlights are DOT and SAE approved, and it says so right on the lens! The cheap Chinese copy is not DOT, ECE, SAE, or any other 3-letter acronym approved by anyone! Also, JW Speaker LED headlights are made in the USA!
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Real JW Speaker LED headlights are easily recognizable because you can see the company logo stamped right into the bezel of the light. There’s no doubt if you’re getting the real thing here!
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One of the reasons JW Speaker LED headlights are better than cheap copies is they use the best materials in the business, and they do all their own product engineering. It’s not a randomly selected LED, it’s not an off-the-shelf optic, and it’s a custom built power supply. Here you can see that the knockoff headlight uses a tiny high beam projector, and cheap LED chips.
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All JW Speaker LED headlights will have identifying marks on them, including a handwritten inspection label so you know you’re getting the real deal!
JW Speaker real and fake 17
All JW Speaker LED headlights will have identifying marks on them, including a month and year label to indicate time of production, so you know you’re getting the real deal!
JW Speaker 8700 real and fake beam patterns
Here you can see the differences between the high and low beam outputs on the real versus fake headlights. The genuine JW Speaker products have no funny shadows being thrown around, and have a much higher power high beam. The Chinese knockoff lights look like the high beam might be better, but when shining down a road a couple hundred feet, the real American made JW Speaker headlights go about 3 times further down the road!

Hopefully this comparison helps you from getting ripped off in the future when you are trying to get a good quality product. Why waste your money on a cheap knockoff when the real thing is available from reputable dealers like Headlight Revolution, Black Top Racing, and Headlight Superstore!

8 thoughts on “The difference between Real JW Speaker LED Lights and fakes!

  1. Excellent article, it’s nice to see a legit comparison and understand why the speakers price point is the way it is.

  2. It is really disgusting to see how poor ethical people try to get advantage of innovation by copying and counterfeiting great companies who have been working hard to bring us novel products. Furthermore it is completely illegal. Thank you for taking the time to make such a serious article, which will help numerous users not to get cheated.

  3. You say that the JW lights are “DOT and SAE approved,” but there’s actually no such thing. DOT and SAE do not approve anything.

    1. Actually, that’s not totally true… Google this phrase:
      FMVSS 108 Lamps, Reflective Devices, and Associated Equipment”

      It’s a document that outlines the testing procedure that independent testing laborotories / testing houses, and manufacturers should follow to ensure their lights fall in line with the FMVSS 108 regulation for safe and legal light output.
      The DOT does not test anything, the SAE does not test anything, NHTSA and IIHS do not test anything, but there are still guidelines that need to be met in order for a light to be approved. It’s up to the manufacturer to do the testing and submit the report to the DOT and NHTSA for proof of the testing done.

  4. Isn’t it true That JW Speaker Lights are only ASSEMBLED in US. Yes the real are better quality made but the parts are still outsourced overseas, they just have to follow stricter guidlines. Do some better research please. I am all for keeping products here at home and buying them. But I must say These Companies that Lie to us are almost as bad as the copiers.

    1. Hi Mike, I have been to the manufacturing facility in Wisconsin. ALL of their lights (headlights, tail lights, trailer lights, work lights, safety lights, semi truck lights) are manufactured in Wisconsin. Some of their brackets for mounting to different vehicles get outsourced but the actual lighting division is 100% American made. Pleas watch this video:

      1. Does JWSpeaker manufacture the actual LED that is used in the manufacture of the headlight or is that outsourced, the video does not specify that.

      2. Good question. JW Speaker uses CREE, Philips or Nichia LED chips in their products. They manufacture the housings, lenses, optics and electronics inside the light, but not the LED chips themselves.

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