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  1. #1
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    Impressions: Maxx-D, 800L, Wilma 5, Tesla, Seca 700, 400l, Maxx Enduro

    All,

    I have had the opportunity to test many lights recently. I thought I would share some impressions with you all.

    Exposure Maxx-D: The all is one design as well as the mount and ability to run accessories or external batteries is impressive. What is not impressive is the light output when compared to other systems available. The beam pattern was nice and wide, and it had a very yellow tint to it. The battery lasted about 2:45 on high.

    Exposure Enduro: I fashioned a good way to mount this to my helmet while leaving the adjustability and quick-detach in tact and keeping a low center of gravity (wooden dowling fixed inside a helmet vent using the bar clamp on it). Anyway, it wasn't THAT heavy. The amount of light that I got was the second best for use as a helmet light, but I don't think many people would use this as a helmet light.

    Dinotte 800L: Compared to the other 4 LED lights out there this one is considerably brighter. It is even brighter than my new Wilma by 10% or so. It absolutely puts the smack down on the Maxx-D. The beam is pretty wide, and VERY bright with 3 intensity settings. The beam is a white-blue color. The mount and all hardware is very high quality. You also get 2 batteries and the ability to purchase additional batteries at a low price. The whole system is also very lightweight. It will fit multiple bar diameters out of the box and comes with some nice extra connectors and such. The is by far the best bang for the buck. The battery lasted about 3.5 hours on high (MUCH better than advertised).

    Dinotte 400L: I used this as a helmet mounted light in conjunction with the 800L. This is a superb combo, especially considering the price. The light is incredibly light and mounts very securely, but there is no way to quickly detach the light. For many people that would be an issue. The beam is a good spot with really good throw and is a good mate to the 800L on the bar. Again, battery times were much longer than advertised.

    Lupine WIlma: It is like a Dinotte 800L with a little wider beam, and a little less intensity - and only one battery. It is smaller and lighter than the 800L. It does come with the ability to set the thresholds of the light settings - meaning that you can just have high or low, or high, low, and medium as well as setting how bright each of these are - pretty nifty. It gets REALLY hot - the hottest of the group by far. I have no verified battery burn times yet. Build quality is great, but I don't think it is worth the premium over the Dinotte, though it is still a good light and would do the trick.

    Lupine Tesla: This light is the ultimate butt-kicker! It is simply amazing. It has TREMENDOUS throw, a bright spot, and incredible spill. It lights up from the tip of the wheel to a 100 yards out. I could go on and on, but I just can't say enough about the bang for the buck you get with this light. It wallops every light out there including the Seca 700. I am using it on the helmet with the Wilma on the bars, but I really wish I could try a 2 Tesla setup. Even on medium the Tesla washes out the Wima. It does have the same deficiency with the mount that the Wilma has in that you cannot easily move from one bar diameter to another, but this light is so good that it negates any downfalls.

    Seca 700: It is like a Lupine Tesla on medium with a really heavy battery. I would have been impressed if I hadn't had the Tesla there to test alongside this light.

    So, all of these lights are good lights, and all of them have shortcomings. I think that Dinotte makes the best light system for the dollar, and the Tesla is the best light ever made.

    The end.
    Last edited by spawn350; 11-10-2008 at 09:05 AM.

  2. #2
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    Obe observation about the Lupine mounts- I am using them all (Wilma, Betty, Tesla) on regular bars and oversized bars....just have to stretch the bands more on oversized bars. It defintely isn't easy with frozen fingers but I am now using them exclusively on oversized bars. There is a light "technique" to making it "hook" easier but they fit.

    Do post some pics when you get a chance.

  3. #3
    BBW
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    Quote Originally Posted by spawn350
    Dinotte 800L: Compared to the other 4 LED lights out there this one is considerably brighter. It is even brighter than my new Wilma by 10% or so.


    Lupine WIlma: I really dislike only having 2 intensity settings.

    Lupine Tesla: Even on medium the Tesla washes out the Wima.

    Seca 700: It is like a Lupine Tesla on medium with a really heavy battery.

    So, all of these lights are good lights, and all of them have shortcomings. I think that Dinotte makes the best light system for the dollar, and the Tesla is the best light ever made.
    I own a Lupine Wilma and had own DiNottes.

    You don't know much about Lupine do you? The Lupines have more settings than ANY light. The Wilma has 10% 40% 60%

    Seca is 700 lumes, Tesla is 700 lumens, wilma is 930 lumens. even on the best scenario there is no way that a 700 lumen-light at 35% (medium setting Tesla) washes out a Wima with 930 lumens and I could go on and on with your comparisons

    The only true/reasonable thing you've said is that DiNotte makes a very good bang for the buch

  4. #4
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    So what would you say is the lightest setup of those tested?

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    The 400L is around 120 grams while the Wilma is around 125 grams. The Tesla is around 100 grams. I'm somewhat sure the rest are heavier.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BBW
    I own a Lupine Wilma and had own DiNottes.

    You don't know much about Lupine do you? The Lupines have more settings than ANY light. The Wilma has 10% 40% 60%

    Seca is 700 lumes, Tesla is 700 lumens, wilma is 930 lumens. even on the best scenario there is no way that a 700 lumen-light at 35% (medium setting Tesla) washes out a Wima with 930 lumens and I could go on and on with your comparisons

    The only true/reasonable thing you've said is that DiNotte makes a very good bang for the buch

    BBW - either you recently worked for Lehman Brothers or you are mourning Prop 8 getting passed in CA, but either way it is no reason to take your pent up anger out on me.

    I was in fact wrong about the settings. I knew that you could change the thresholds, but I didn't know I could add a third setting. My dealer told me it only had two, but I should have read the manual more thoroughly.

    A lumen is not a lumen. If it was, then the Exposure Maxx-D would be a little brighter than the Wilma, and much brighter than the 800l, and this is not even close to being true. Some of the manufacturers post actual tested light output and some post theoretical output from the LED, and I am sure that some do everything in between. Furthermore, more lumens doesn't mean that you can see better. It is the same way that more horsepower doesn't mean that one car is faster than another. Being able to see more is the ultimate (subjective) measure and goal of our lights right?

    That being said, the Tesla washes out the Wilma, even on medium. I did mix my words up a little in an effort to not totally bash the Seca 700. I don't believe that the Seca 700 would wash out the Wilma, but I didn't test those 2 directly against each other. Back to the Tesla - if you don't believe it then wait till you run across one and then test it out for yourself. Perhaps my eyes have some ultra-rare ailment where I see better with exactly 700 claimed lumens from a single LED light, but others seem to be having similar favorable results.
    Last edited by spawn350; 11-10-2008 at 09:07 AM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Resist
    So what would you say is the lightest setup of those tested?
    Resist: the lightest total setup is the Exposure combo. These are still great lights for the money and have a lot of truly innovative and outstanding features. I would be perfectly happy using these for the rest of my life.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    Obe observation about the Lupine mounts- I am using them all (Wilma, Betty, Tesla) on regular bars and oversized bars....just have to stretch the bands more on oversized bars. It defintely isn't easy with frozen fingers but I am now using them exclusively on oversized bars. There is a light "technique" to making it "hook" easier but they fit.

    Do post some pics when you get a chance.
    Flyer: I just didn't have the guts to stretch the o-ring that far on my new light. I am thinking I might get an oversize mount and just use a shim on my one bike with a standard bar. It would be just my luck for that o-ring to snap and run over my own light.

    I am not going to post any beamshots. All the ones that I have taken are misleading from what the eye sees. I based all my opinions on about 5 hours of riding with each light system with the exception of the Seca 700. My opinions were based on the ability to see what was going on around me and avoiding obstacles at speed and that sort of thing. It is entirely subjective, but useful to some folks nonetheless.

  9. #9
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    I didn't realize Lupine made a specific oversize mount. I just thought the existing mount fit both sizes so I have been using them back and forth with no issues. The only time I have problems is when I have to take the light off the bar after a winter night ride and my fingers are really cold.

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=spawn350

    I am fully aware that the Wilma is adjustable in terms of being able to adjust the lower setting. However, you can't do that on the fly. I find the need for 3 levels that I can use on the fly. Again, I really dislike this. [/QUOTE]

    Well... Wilma can be set to 3-step dimming, and you could set up the levels to be just about however you need them...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd@gretnabikes
    Well... Wilma can be set to 3-step dimming, and you could set up the levels to be just about however you need them...

    Then I am a retard - I will verify that the new model can do this and then edit my post to reflect accurate information. Thanks for letting me know.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    I didn't realize Lupine made a specific oversize mount. I just thought the existing mount fit both sizes so I have been using them back and forth with no issues. The only time I have problems is when I have to take the light off the bar after a winter night ride and my fingers are really cold.
    I found out after I got them that there are 2 different mounts. I figure the easier way is to use the larger one and then use a shim when using smaller bars.

    I was afraid that in the cold the rubber o-ring might get brittle and snap. I figured a $10 investment in the front end might save me $500 in the back end if that o-ring breaks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by spawn350
    Then I am a retard - I will verify that the new model can do this and then edit my post to reflect accurate information. Thanks for letting me know.

    You're not retarded Just read the manual. That programming option is one of the biggest reasons someone would want the Wilma. Not many lights allow you to custom tune you're dimming levels like that.

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    Oh please oh please don't make me regret my recent Wilma purchase! Guess I should have gotten the Tesla? I do like my Wilma. But having a brighter spot and more spill might be nice. Still don't understand how the Tesla on medium can be brighter than the Wilma. Was this a 2008 Wilma or the older one with the wired switch?

    Also, the pics I've seen of the Tesla's light quality makes it look bluer than the Wilma. Is this true?

  15. #15
    BBW
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    Quote Originally Posted by spawn350

    That being said, the Tesla washes out the Wilma, even on medium. if you don't believe it then wait till you run across one and then test it out for yourself.
    I think I will be picking up a tesla very soon to go with my Wilma and I will let you know hard to believe though (sorry I'm skeptical but we are talking about the same company claiming the lumens not across brands so I don't understand how 250 lumes or so could wash out 800.....)

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by spawn350
    ...

    A lumen is not a lumen. If it was, then the Exposure Maxx-D would be a little brighter than the Wilma, and much brighter than the 800l, and this is not even close to being true. Some of the manufacturers post actual tested light output and some post theoretical output from the LED, and I am sure that some do everything in between. Furthermore, more lumens doesn't mean that you can see better. It is the same way that more horsepower doesn't mean that one car is faster than another. Being able to see more is the ultimate (subjective) measure and goal of our lights right?
    ...
    Spawn, your reasoning makes sense in general but you´re talking about the SAME manufacturer here. Both Wilma and Tesla are Lupines, so they should compare in the way that BBW proposed (and everyone seems to agree about). But, beam patterns can be deceiving as well as lumen specs, you´re right about that. Sheer power is one thing, efficiency is another. What I mean is the 220 lumen difference shouldn´t be the reason for this as much as beam pattern (IMHO), but indeed it´s hard to believe that the Tesla 700´s lm on medium would overcome the Wilma´s 920 output. Since I own a Wilma but not (yet ) a Tesla, I´ll take your word for it!

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    Well, you should just save up and buy the Tesla as well....for the helmet. Two lights provides 150% of the fun. The Wilma is nice too. It lights up everything with a very even swath of light. I have both...wait, I have the Betty as well. I just can't give any up. So relegate the Wilma to bar duty when you get the Tesla. They are very different and you must have them both.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dstedman
    Oh please oh please don't make me regret my recent Wilma purchase! Guess I should have gotten the Tesla? I do like my Wilma. But having a brighter spot and more spill might be nice. Still don't understand how the Tesla on medium can be brighter than the Wilma. Was this a 2008 Wilma or the older one with the wired switch?

    Also, the pics I've seen of the Tesla's light quality makes it look bluer than the Wilma. Is this true?
    I have the new 2009 Wilma and the 2009 (obviously) Tesla. I wouldn't regret the Wilma - if you can see with it then it is the perfect light. It is still a great light, as are all the lights I have listed here. I do agree that you should get the Tesla as well. I am running the Wilma on the bar and the Tesla on the helmet. I tried the reverse and it didn't work out that well.

    The Tesla might be a shade off, but not as drastic as the pics look. Again, that is why I don't post pics or rely on pics any longer, though the ones Flyer just posted are very accurate per my experiences.

    Now - when Lupine comes out with a 2 P7 light at 1400 lumens that will be something spectacular.

  19. #19
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    Whenever I hear Maxx-D, I think of this:
    http://offroaders.com/directory/mons...estruction.jpg

    Last edited by rkj__; 11-11-2008 at 11:34 AM.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.


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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by spawn350
    I am running the Wilma on the bar and the Tesla on the helmet. I tried the reverse and it didn't work out that well.
    why? can you explain? I'm waiting on my Tesla
    I will try both configurations to see what I like the most.

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    Hey Spawn

    Did you test the lights together or separate. I'm a bit confused about that. It sounds like you gave them a real test on the trail while riding which is really the best way as all lights seem dimmer while traveling at speed. Did you test the lights on the same trail.

    Anyhow, couldn't resist the Dinotte sale for the 800/400 combo. It's on it's way.

    I'm keeping the Turbocat S47 as a back up as it's a great light, just no run time on high. If I find some time, I'll post a beam shot of the 800/400 on high and the T/C on high just for kicks.

    MB

    EDIT: Wanted to add that before I bought the Dinottes, I e-mailed them w/ a few ?'s. They responded w/in hours. I ordered the lights last Fri eve and got an e-mail they were shipped the next AM, a Saturday. That pretty much rocks!!!
    Last edited by mb323323; 11-10-2008 at 08:58 PM.

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    Sigh. Well, you talked me into it. Geomangear.com was nice enough to take my Wilma back even though I am a couple of days past the 14 day return policy, so I will be exchanging it for the Tesla. Hope you guys are right. It does sound like it will be a better light for my needs since I not only ride with it, but also do more static things where heat might become an issue (hiking at night, skiing).

    BTW - I really recommend geomangear.com for buying any of these Lupine lights. Great customer service & you can even chat online with someone about products at their website. Top notch!

    dan

  23. #23
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    I orderd the Tesla from Geoman also... I'm waiting ansiously
    I will post some pics as soon as I get it and a comparison Tesla/Wilma

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by BBW
    why? can you explain? I'm waiting on my Tesla
    I will try both configurations to see what I like the most.
    I can - when riding slow there is no functional difference between which one is mounted where. When you ride fast the Tesla has much better reach so that you can avoid obstacles before it is too late to change course.

    I would like to hear your impressions when you get the Tesla. If you don't like it I will buy it from you myself.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb323323
    Hey Spawn

    Did you test the lights together or separate. I'm a bit confused about that. It sounds like you gave them a real test on the trail while riding which is really the best way as all lights seem dimmer while traveling at speed. Did you test the lights on the same trail.

    Anyhow, couldn't resist the Dinotte sale for the 800/400 combo. It's on it's way.

    I'm keeping the Turbocat S47 as a back up as it's a great light, just no run time on high. If I find some time, I'll post a beam shot of the 800/400 on high and the T/C on high just for kicks.

    MB

    EDIT: Wanted to add that before I bought the Dinottes, I e-mailed them w/ a few ?'s. They responded w/in hours. I ordered the lights last Fri eve and got an e-mail they were shipped the next AM, a Saturday. That pretty much rocks!!!
    With the exception of the Seca, I tested them all in a variety of settings, including doing the same hour long loop with them all. That loop has a very fast section that has a bunch of holes that will take out a rim if you hit them hard enough, but they are difficult to see since you are going so fast - even in the daylight. It made for the perfect test of which light allowed me to go the fastest safely.

    I also tested the lights on the road, and all around where I live in serial order to try to figure out which was the best combo.

    The Dinotte combo is by far the best bang for the buck with that sale going on. That combo was the second best combo I came up with, and was all the light that I could really need.

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