I still use my Niterider Classic 6 quartz halogen lighting system for regular riding. I ride all year round, and my quartz halogens are heavily used from mid September through mid March. I use one on the helmet and one on the handlebars. They work quite well, and more importantly they are paid for. And yes, I am on my 3rd set of battery packs.
If you just need to deal with near dawn/sunset conditions, then one of the brighter LED systems based on AA or AAA batteries will serve you just fine. If you are serious about night riding, then one of the Niterider LED systems is more up your alley.
On tour, I take one of the AA/AAA LED lights because I may be out early or late but I don't plan to ride any great distances in the dark.
The original poster's needs sound quite different. HID is an interesting footnote in bicycling lighting history, but LED lights is where he should be looking. My friends and I all own Niterider products, but I am sure there are other sources out there. I cannot say enough about the merits of having a light on the helmet and a light on the bike. I have been known to use the helmet light to shine the face of any automobile driver that I want to make sure knows I am there. I don't try to blind anyone, but the practice does make my presence known, and is better than tossing a water bottle at their windshield.