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  1. #1
    bumble
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    Review: Dinotte Ultra 5 vs. Dualcross Li-Ion

    I have not seen a direct comparison anywhere between these two lights. I narrowed my own choices to these two after applying my own inscutable requirements and preferences.

    I will populate this review with as many photos as possible. I will be taking pictures of the comparing the light beams on the trail, attempting to show here exactly what I am seeing when I am using them.

    The Dinotte Ultra 5 is a revised model with 200 lumens output instead of 120 lumens, and the beam, as I am told by the Dinotte staff, is also tighter and more focussed then previously.

    My experiences disussing my needs and wants with Dinotte through e-mail was nothing short of excellent. I purchased, on sale, two Ultra 5 lights, one with a longer cord and one with a shorter cord, without batteries or chargers as I already have some of the best of both that is available. Here are some pictures of each of the Cygolite Dualcross Li-Ion and the Dinotte packages upon opening. The Dualcross came with a very slick handlebar mount. The instructions say to remove and cut one piece to fit oversized bars, which I have, but I found that I had to completely remove both rubber pieces to make it clamp on my bars.

    You can see from the photo of the Dinotte package that I received a plethora of stuff. I received an extra nylon carrier, over and above the two I expected. I received an extra helmet mount, although technically it is not extra because I ordered two lights and each one comes with a helmet mount. I received extra plastic battery cases, three to be prcise, and I received what I consider to be extra mounting hardware which consisted of o-rings, straps, and wire keeper straps.
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    Last edited by bumble; 05-18-2007 at 10:26 PM.

  2. #2
    bumble
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    Dinotte Ultra 5 Helmet Mount

    This is a series of pictures of the helmet mount for the Dinotte Ultra 5. Simple, easy to attach, and light weight. In use, it stays where I put it. It is a little fiddly to adjust exactly where I like the beam, but then I do not have to re-adjust.
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  3. #3
    bumble
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    Dinotte Ultra 5 Mounted on Helmet

    Thes pictures show how the final mounting looks on the helmet.
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  4. #4
    bumble
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    Dinotte Ultra 5 Connector

    This shows the connector that the Ultra 5 uses to the battery case.
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  5. #5
    bumble
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    Cygolite Dualcross Bar Mount

    These show the bar mount for the Dualcross. I had to remove both of the rubber pieces. The third picture shows how the mount goes on the bar. The latch is fine-tuned for the diameter of the bar by a long threaded rod that the latch is attached to. It is an excellent system that works, and is quite secure. If I was keeping the Dualcross, I would find a way to use the rubber pieces in there as they were menat to be used. I would probably contact their customer support. The mount is supposed to fit my 31.8 mm bars, but it does not.
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  6. #6
    bumble
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    The Lights, Mounted

    The first picture shows the Cygolite mounted. The second picture shows the Dinotte mounted on my bars. The ride is a 2006 Iron Horse Mk III Sport, purchased about three weeks ago.
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  7. #7
    bumble
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    Backyard Light Beam Comparison

    The first picture is of the Cygolite Dualcross Li-Ion. Notice the more defined main spot, and the wider spill light closer to the rider. Both lights have their main spot pointed at the plants. The second picture is of the Dinotte Ultra 5. Notice that the total beam is narrower than the Dualcross, but that the light is much brighter and there is much more light along the path from in front of the tire to the end of the beam on the wall. I much prefer, so far, the beam intensity and pattern of the Ultra 5. I have used the Ultra 5 on-trail and it rocks. Tonight I will be using the Ultra 5 and the Dualcross in comparison on the trail, and I will be taking comparison pictures of the beams on the trail, hopefully in a wider, flatter section and a tight singletrack section. I will then post the pics and my opinions on how they stack up against each other on the trail.

    The plants where the beams are aimed are 26 feet, or 8 meters from the front of the front tire.

    Please post if you have any types of pictures you wish to see, and I will try to oblige.
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  8. #8
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    Bumble

    Thanks for the information and the pictures. Have you had any experience with other LED spot lights? I have also tried my Princeton Tec Apex (3w luxeon) on my helmet and, while not as bright, it has a better beam to support the overvolted 20 watt halogen I run on the bars.

    I look forward to the beam shots from the trails.

    Tim

  9. #9
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    Hey Bumble, Is the shot of the Ultra 5's w/ both lights on or just one?

    If you don't mind me asking, what did the total package from Dinotte cost?

    Thanks

    MB

  10. #10
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    Nice comparison.

  11. #11
    bumble
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    Wombat,

    I do not have experience with other LED lights. My previous experience is with Nightsun halogens and Nightrider halogens. I like this Dinotte light better. One thing I learned during the testing is that the Dinotte Ultra 5 makes a great helmet light.

  12. #12
    bumble
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    mb323323,

    That shot is of the single Ultra 5. If I put two Ultra 5's on the handlebar and compared it to the Dualcross, it would not be fair.

    Dinotte has a sale, and I did not get the batteries or charger. The total came out to $308.00. I feel it is well worth it. geoman has the complete sets, including batteries and charger, on sale for $149 each. That is less than what I paid.

  13. #13
    bumble
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    James,

    Thank you!

    I have a bunch of photos from tonight's trail trip. I will have them up tomorrow. The bottom line is that the Dinotte lights are better than the Dualcross in every measure of light output and beam pattern on the trails. I will be returning the Cygolite. The MSRP is the same for both, but the Dinottes are on sale now, so that is a no-brainer between the two.

  14. #14
    Spanish biker
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    Hi, excellent work and photos

    Such how you have mount the dinotte light, this don't work well, since the cygolite light do shadow to go in front.

    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

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  15. #15
    bumble
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    msxtr,

    I do not understand your comment/question. The Dinotte and Cygolites are mounted right next to each other on the handlebar. There is no shadow from the cygolite, as there is nothing in front of it.

    Maybe you are trying to say that the cygolite is blocking part of the light from the Ultra 5?
    Last edited by bumble; 05-19-2007 at 11:21 AM.

  16. #16
    bumble
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    Trails-Night Ride Pictures!

    Here are the pictures I took from the night ride. Exposures are all exactly the same. I set up the camera on the tripod at just about head-height if I was sitting on the bicycle. The exposures were made to show what I was seeing myself, and I think I have pretty much done that.

    The first trail here is some wide singletrack.

    This first set is two pairs: The first picture is of the Dualcross pointed close to my front tire, where I would like it to provide full lighting on my immediate track, assuming I also had a helmet light for looking farther. The second is of the Ultra 5 pointed the same place.

    The second pair: the first picture is the Dualcross pointed down the trail, as if I did not have a helmet light and I wanted to have the maximum use of the light. The second is of the Ultra 5 pointed the same place.

    The pictures show you exactly what I saw. The Dinotte wins hands down.
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  17. #17
    bumble
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    Second Trail, Pictures from Night Ride!

    This set is from a second trail. It is much wider than the first trail, to simulate how wide the beams are for illuminating a wider area in front as you are riding.

    Again I have taken two pairs.

    The first picture is of the Dualcross pointed close to my front tire, where I would like it to provide full lighting on my immediate track, assuming I also had a helmet light for looking farther. The second is of the Ultra 5 pointed the same place.

    The second pair: the first picture is the Dualcross pointed down the trail, as if I did not have a helmet light and I wanted to have the maximum use of the light. The second is of the Ultra 5 pointed the same place.

    Again the Dinotte wins. Bear in mind that the Dualcross is a very good light. I did like it, but it just is not as good at anything as the Dinotte lights, IMHO.
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    Last edited by bumble; 05-19-2007 at 11:57 AM.

  18. #18
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    I'm wondering how the Dinotte compares to the old Nite Rider Digital Night Owl that I've been using for many years. Decent performance, though its outdated compared to HID's.

  19. #19
    bumble
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    Dinotte Light Level Comparison, and Final Thoughts

    I made a comparison between the high beam and low beam of the Ultra 5 so you all could see what I would like to comment on.

    The first is the high beam on singletrack, pointed down the trail as if I did not have a helmet light. The second is the low beam, pointed the same place.

    The low beam of the Dinotte is, I feel, adequate for slower trail riding if you want it to last considerably longer. Instead of a low beam that you will never use, I felt that this level of light was at least barely adequate, and useable, on actual trails. I did do some riding with the low beam on the single Dinotte on the handlebar, no helmet light, and that is my observations.

    FINAL THOUGHTS:
    After taking all these pictures, I went for a ride for a while so I could switch back and forth between the lights and just see how I felt about them at speed under different conditions. I rode each light alone as a bar light. I also rode each light as a bar light with a helmet light (another Ultra 5). I rode the lights on singletrack, wider trails, and bombing fast down a fire road. In each case, I optimized the pointing of the light for what I felt was its best point for each situation. The end result: in every case, I felt the Dinotte Ultra 5 provided more light, and a more useful beam pattern than the Cygolite Dualcross Li-Ion. The Cygolite is a very good light. The design, materials and thoughtfulness of application, including the bar mount, are top quality. So is the Dinotte, though, and the Dinotte, for me, just performed better at everything I threw at it.

    I am performing some burn time testing on the Dinotte lights with my own batteries and charger, which are some of the best available today. I will also post a link to the web site/article for the battery and charger testing so you all can find out the same info. I will post the results of this testing as I acquire data.
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  20. #20
    bumble
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    Jerk_Chicken,

    The Dinotte web site states that the Ultra 5 is similar to a 12-15 watt halogen. That is for the older 120 lumen lights. The lights are now 200 lumens. Based on my experience, the light quality and beam pattern, this may be a real step up for you from your old halogens. It seems to me that a single Ultra 5 is easily comparable to a 20 watt halogen. Then you get the better efficiency, and you never have to replace the bulb.

  21. #21
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    It sounds like a good deal. I can make my own battery packs and loathe the Li-Ions, so I might opt for a headunit only.

  22. #22
    bumble
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    The Dinottes use NiMh batteries. Only their special Endurance Series uses Li-Ion.

  23. #23
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    Hmmmm...got several packs of 2300 AA's at home. Wonder if it's worth it to go with the most basic kit.

  24. #24
    bumble
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    It might be. But please take a look a little later when I post run times, because I will be posting a link to some VERY useful info on batteries and chargers. My first run-time test is nothing short of amazing. I am re-running to verify. But consider that I just got 2 hours and 38 minutes of run-time on high with 4 NiMh AA batteries!!!!

  25. #25
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    Bumble

    Great review, thank you. It certainly looks like the upgrade is the way to go. Casting logic aside I have however decided to buy the 3 w version for $89 and will upgrade it with a Seoul P4. I know that this breaks the basic rule of buying thing: don't buy something with the intention of immediately upgrading, but I could do with another light (although others may not agree) and it gives me the opportunity to pull it apart.

    Do you have any idea what emitter Dinotte used in the new 5W?

    Thanks for taking the time to post all of the information.

    Tim

  26. #26
    bumble
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    Wombat,

    Never too rich, or too thin, or too many lights. I'm there with ya.
    I do not know which emitter they are using for the new lights. After reading about the Crees and the Seouls and everything else here, I am also curious. email Rob and he will tell you if he can. He has been extremely helpful.

  27. #27
    Spanish biker
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumble
    msxtr,

    I do not understand your comment/question. The Dinotte and Cygolites are mounted right next to each other on the handlebar. There is no shadow from the cygolite, as there is nothing in front of it.

    Maybe you are trying to say that the cygolite is blocking part of the light from the Ultra 5?
    Yes, that I wanted said

    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

    Easy DIY led light1
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    The Beast!!!

  28. #28
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    Excellent review and pictures... Thanks!

  29. #29
    bumble
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    You're welcome!

  30. #30
    bumble
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    I have just performed some testing on the burn times of the new Ultra 5. I am using the Energizer 2500 AA batteries, and the Maha 204W charger which is one of the best on the market. I have confirmed that the burn times are fantastic on these. First set of batteries went 2 hours 38 minutes until it switched to low mode. The second set, same brand, different set, 2 hours 30 minutes. This is far and away better than the stated run time of 100 minutes!

    Here is the link to the web page with the information on batteries and chargers.

    http://www.imaging-resource.com/ACCS/BATTS/BATTS.HTM

    The main batteries plus a spare set give me 5 hours of run time! I think this ia a great value as it is just the cost of the Energizer 2500's for a spare set. I did get the Maha charger and the batteries from Thomas Distributing. The prices are great.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumble

    I do not have experience with other LED lights. My previous experience is with Nightsun halogens and Nightrider halogens. I like this Dinotte light better. One thing I learned during the testing is that the Dinotte Ultra 5 makes a great helmet light.
    Nice sharp pictures & well thought out plan . After seeing the above here then reading this... My first night ride, or What not to do! , i just dunt know...

  32. #32
    bumble
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    Grumpy,

    What is it that has you puzzled?
    I had fun!! The Dinotte light on my helmet was a great help when I was getting my rear wheel back in!

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumble
    Grumpy,
    I had fun!!
    Great.
    Quote Originally Posted by bumble
    The Dinotte light on my helmet was a great help when I was getting my rear wheel back in!
    I am sure it was..lol

  34. #34
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    Oh, Dinotte himself is here...lol

  35. #35
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    Oh, Dinotte himself is here...lol
    QUICK bumble! Get your Dinnote out!

  36. #36
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    DiNotte current model run times

    Yes, we're well aware that 2007/2008 models have far better than stated run times. We're in the middle of season changes, and the new lights run for well over 2 hours on high (AA version) We also use 2500 mAh batteries as opposed to the 2300 in our spec sheets.

    as we get closer to the 2007 season and all old products are phased out, we'll have the new information. We'll also have the information on the upgrades, etc., but for now we know all products will meet or exceed every spec we have out there.

    Thanks to all of you for the enthusiasm regarding our product's performance.


    Best Regards
    Rob

  37. #37
    bumble
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    Got it!!

  38. #38
    It's carbon dontcha know.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumble
    mb323323,

    That shot is of the single Ultra 5. If I put two Ultra 5's on the handlebar and compared it to the Dualcross, it would not be fair.

    Dinotte has a sale, and I did not get the batteries or charger. The total came out to $308.00. I feel it is well worth it. geoman has the complete sets, including batteries and charger, on sale for $149 each. That is less than what I paid.
    Are the Geoman ones the newer model with 200 lumens?

  39. #39
    bumble
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    I don't know. I was wondering that myself. You would have to ask geoman or Rob.

  40. #40
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    Incredible review, you have really helped me out.

    Is the newest Dinolite out on the market? Where can I get the best price for this light?

    I need to buy a light in the next week.

    Thanks !!

  41. #41
    bumble
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    Thank you. The newest Dinotte is on the market, from Dinotte. There are various sales going on, from geoman.com and Nashbar, for $149 for the set. I do not know if they are the new 200 lumen light, though. I suspect that they are not the new light. The best way to make sure is to get it from Dinotte.com. They have it on sale for $170. That is what I did.

  42. #42
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    Is it going to fall apart when I ride over roots and rocks etc if it is attached to my handlebars? The straps that are used to hold it on don't look like they would work very well, do they?

    Thanks.

  43. #43
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    I sent in my older 5w to rob @dinottelighting.com for the upgrade just waiting to get them back to use a night also I sent in my 300L and upgraded to a new 500L with over 600+ lumens rob gave me a killer deal with both light on the high setting I should have over 800 lumens !

  44. #44
    bumble
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    zeroman,

    You have nothing to worry about there. Read the reviews of the U5 in the Reviews section.

    My personal experience: I don't see these lights falling apart. The construction is very robust and the mounting system is well-designed and it works. I have had these lights out several times now, and they have not shifted position on me. I have been on some pretty heavy-duty rocks/drops/downhill-fear runs and the handlebar light stays put. There is a rubber piece on the bottom of the light body that contacts the handlebar. In practice, this works very well. Between the o-ring strap and the rubber piece, I do not have a shifting problem. On the other hand, it does make it very easy to change where I want the light pointing on the fly. On tight single track I point it much closer to the front tire. On more open fire road I point it farther away. It is easy to point and stays where I point it. he construction is such that I personally will never worry about them coming apart. 'Nuff said.

    In my use, the system is superior, I find the light output equivalent to much more expensive HID lights. The cost, maintenance and durability are far superior to HID lights, IMHO.

  45. #45
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    will I went out last night with my ultra5w upgraded holy cow ! damm it's bright ! then I turn on the upgraded 500L word of warning don't look at the light ! I cant't see (lol) it's really really bright . I also bought the taillight from dinotte this is the best tail light !!!! bar none

  46. #46
    bumble
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    Count me jealous. If I had the scratch, I would own a 500L immediately.

  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by frank418
    will I went out last night with my ultra5w upgraded holy cow ! damm it's bright ! then I turn on the upgraded 500L word of warning don't look at the light ! I cant't see (lol) it's really really bright . I also bought the taillight from dinotte this is the best tail light !!!! bar none

    Hey Frank418, Is that the 500L that came out a bit ago and is it already being upgraded? Also, do you mind telling us what kind of deal you got.

    Regarding the taillight, I'm looking for something that can be seen during the day in traffic. I use the reflector tape around my ankle which works good day or night however, I want to be even more cautious and was looking around for a taillight that can be seen during the day.

    Thanks

    MB

  48. #48
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    Bumble,

    I've not really read the review but the photos blew me away. Have you returned the DualCross Li-ion yet? If not I would like to see a comparison shot at 3 meters and 5 meters on the open road and/or trail (I prefer both tho road is more heavily favored as I ride on the road). I tend to prefer lighting at that range for more early detection as I often ride around ~25 - 35kph.

    I would also like to hear your experience with both lights jumping off curbs, potholes, and about 1 - 2 feet jumps/drops. Having seen the design of the Dinotte I have faith it it can take a hit/crash and keep on shining however I'm not so sure on the Cygolite DualCross and the Dinotte on how well they fair on previous mentioned situations and if they shift in position/fall from thier mounts. Last thing I want is the light to shift oput of place as I land.

    I am primarily a road rider on a MTB with semi-slicks (Conti TravelContacts 26 x 1.75) and mostly a paved path rider tho I do like the hardpacked trails from time to time when I change the tires to my IRC Methos 2.1". I am really divided right now on a DIY or purchase solution. A mate of mine is a DIY person and recently ordered Seoul SSC P4 star emitter LED's that put out 240lm @ 1000mA which with a regulator board and ghetto looking build I can have 480lm @ 2000mA which if it works out would give me ~1.5hr if I'm screaming on the pavement.

    Someone mentioned about what Dinotte uses for thier LED's. I'm thinking they're using the SSC P4's which are about $6.18 USD a piece and if I read the specs right they last about 50,000hrs (which I think is if you run them on low) seeing as thier specs say 200lm.

    Right now I'm still not sure which to go for as I'm still trying to compile personal data to make a final choice.

    Oh yes, if you're able to get some fog or rain shots I would love to see that. I'm very curious if the Cygolite or the Dinotte can cut through the puddles so you can see if that puddle is a pothole or flat road.


    Zero_Enigma

  49. #49
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    It cost me !!

    hey everyone this is what I bought for dinotte first I returned everything back to rob mounts,lights,o-rings,straps,batteries, etc. and this is what I rob sent me back 2 ( 4-cell batteries ) & 2 ( 2 cell batteries ) note the new batteries have a new hard plastic case on the top for the case is like a cutout so out can mount it under a tube. hears what rob sent to me extra 10- o-rings and a handlebar mount so now I have a 5w,500L and the taillight everything cost me a total of $260.00 !

  50. #50
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    I'm thinking in asking a buddy of mind to take some pictures at night for you guys and I will try to post them

  51. #51
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    hey mb323323 Get rid of your refector and the tape around your ankle this tailight will do the job at night and day. The light is the same size as the ultra5w and looks the same the settings on the light are steady low, medium,high and also rapid flash this light is very birght I think it has 140 lumens

  52. #52
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    Tons of great info. Thanks everyone, especially Bumble!

    I just purchased this light from REI. Is there any way to determine if I bought the 2007 versus the 2006?

    Ant

  53. #53
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    I've been using the Dinotte Ultra 5/3 combo (2006 models) for a year now and couldn't be happier. I had good service from Dinotte when I crashed and broke the front of one of them.
    All problems in mountain biking can be solved by going faster, except the ones that are caused by going too fast.

  54. #54
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    Rob at Dinotte answered all my questions via email very quickly - great CS so far.

    Oh, and I have a 2007! It completely outshone my 12 halogen in my crude backyard test. I'm saving my pennies to get a second Ultra 5.

    Ant

  55. #55
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    I'm not sure but I believe that your light might be only 120 lumens, rob just came out with the upgrades this year 2008

  56. #56
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    Thanks for the heads-up. I think it was implied that the characterstics of my beam meant it was a 200L, but I'll double check.

    Nevertheless, it's still a lot brighter with a more consistent beam than my 12w halogen, so I'm impressed.

    Ant

  57. #57
    bumble
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zero_Enigma
    Bumble,

    I've not really read the review but the photos blew me away. Have you returned the DualCross Li-ion yet? If not I would like to see a comparison shot at 3 meters and 5 meters on the open road and/or trail (I prefer both tho road is more heavily favored as I ride on the road). I tend to prefer lighting at that range for more early detection as I often ride around ~25 - 35kph.

    I would also like to hear your experience with both lights jumping off curbs, potholes, and about 1 - 2 feet jumps/drops. Having seen the design of the Dinotte I have faith it it can take a hit/crash and keep on shining however I'm not so sure on the Cygolite DualCross and the Dinotte on how well they fair on previous mentioned situations and if they shift in position/fall from thier mounts. Last thing I want is the light to shift oput of place as I land.

    I am primarily a road rider on a MTB with semi-slicks (Conti TravelContacts 26 x 1.75) and mostly a paved path rider tho I do like the hardpacked trails from time to time when I change the tires to my IRC Methos 2.1". I am really divided right now on a DIY or purchase solution. A mate of mine is a DIY person and recently ordered Seoul SSC P4 star emitter LED's that put out 240lm @ 1000mA which with a regulator board and ghetto looking build I can have 480lm @ 2000mA which if it works out would give me ~1.5hr if I'm screaming on the pavement.

    Someone mentioned about what Dinotte uses for thier LED's. I'm thinking they're using the SSC P4's which are about $6.18 USD a piece and if I read the specs right they last about 50,000hrs (which I think is if you run them on low) seeing as thier specs say 200lm.

    Right now I'm still not sure which to go for as I'm still trying to compile personal data to make a final choice.

    Oh yes, if you're able to get some fog or rain shots I would love to see that. I'm very curious if the Cygolite or the Dinotte can cut through the puddles so you can see if that puddle is a pothole or flat road.


    Zero_Enigma

    Zero,

    I am sorry, I did not see this request. I have returned the Cygolite, but I will answer what questions I can.

    Neither the dinotte nor the Dualcross shift positions on drops and small jumps. The Dinotte is very easy to re-position as I go along, when I get to a different type of terrain. The Dualcross mount is very well designed and is very solid. The Dinotte can shift position, but in my use so far it has not.

    For a DIY solution, if you are getting a reliable setup with 480 lumnes, that is a great way to go. I have neither the time nor the inclination to DIY, so the Dinotte line is the best I could find out there.

    Rain and fog shots are problematic as I live in Arizona, Phoenix area.

  58. #58
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    hey bumble, thanks for the post and all the hard work that went into this review.

    i'm looking for a new light system for the kind of night time single track that demands all of your attention, and have found the current marketplace for lights utterly confusing.

    i have an old NightSun setup (no, i don't know the specs), with halogen lights and water bottle sized batteries. when my riding buddy saw those, he gave me his backup light, which i also don't know anything about, but it's bright, with a square-ish body and medium-to-small battery pack. that one is more than bright enough...

    but he thinks it costs $400+ new. and i'm not down with that right now.

    so, my two questions are:

    1. why no helmet mount for the u5 (so it says on dinotte's site)? if i'm going to run just one light, which i think i am, seems like the helmet is better for being able to see around turns, etc. would you run this light as a single helmet-mount?

    2. is the ultra 5 the same light (different battery) as the 500L? hard to tell.
    Last edited by TeleBear; 07-05-2007 at 08:53 PM.

  59. #59
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeleBear

    1. why no helmet mount for the u5 (so it says on dinotte's site)? if i'm going to run just one light, which i think i am, seems like the helmet is better for being able to see around turns, etc. would you run this light as a single helmet-mount?

    2. is the ultra 5 the same light (different battery) as the 500L? hard to tell.
    TeleBear,

    1) Our current supply of Ultra 5's (or 200L's as they are now called) have the helmet mount included with them. A helmet mount is certainly better for seeing around corners.

    2) The Ultra 5 (now the 200L) is not the same unit as the 500L. The model number designates the number of lumens and although the 500L is bright, it is not as energy shy.

    FYI, I own and use four Dinottes; the Ultra 5 (200L), Ultra 3, 500L, and the Tail Light. My favorite configuration is the Ultra 5 (200L) and the Ultra 3 combo with either one on the helmet and the other on the bar (the Ultra 3 has a rear firing tail light incorporated into it which is perfect on a helmet). In my opinion, one should night ride with two lights or at least a spare - just in case. The 500L is a great light but expensive and hungrier than the other Dinottes and I find myself using it less than the others, frankly.
    GeoMan
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  60. #60
    bumble
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    TeleBear,

    I almost agree with Geoman. I am running one 200L one my helmet and one 200L on my handlebar. For the light output, the safety, and the advantages that two lights have, (HB light = depth/rock perception, and helmet = seeing where you are looking), two are what everyone recomends. After having the 200L system that I do have, I would not go with the Ultra 3 myself. Take that FWIW, because I do not have experience with the Ultra 3. Also, the Ultra 5 (200L), comes with everything you need, including the helmet mount. It is a great system, and I do not think it has any competition in its price class.
    To choose doubt as a philosophy of life is akin to choosing immobility as a means of transportation.

  61. #61
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by bumble
    TeleBear,

    I almost agree with Geoman. I am running one 200L one my helmet and one 200L on my handlebar. For the light output, the safety, and the advantages that two lights have, (HB light = depth/rock perception, and helmet = seeing where you are looking), two are what everyone recomends. After having the 200L system that I do have, I would not go with the Ultra 3 myself. Take that FWIW, because I do not have experience with the Ultra 3. Also, the Ultra 5 (200L), comes with everything you need, including the helmet mount. It is a great system, and I do not think it has any competition in its price class.
    Points well taken, bumble.

    There are three reasons "some" prefer the Ultra 3 as a second light and those are; 1) it has a slightly different beam and they use it as "fill" inside the Ultra 5 (200L) pattern, 2) the Ultra 3 has a mini-tail light on the backside for safety on roadway commutes (helmet mounted) and 3) it is slightly cheaper than the 200L.

    Thanks for the input - it is much appreciated.
    GeoMan
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    thanks, guys.

    was just in the LBS tonight doing a bit more research, and the tech was trying to turn me on to the MiNewt, from NR. but based on these reviews, seems like it's not even close.

    really appreciate all the advice a ton.

  63. #63
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeleBear
    thanks, guys.

    was just in the LBS tonight doing a bit more research, and the tech was trying to turn me on to the MiNewt, from NR. but based on these reviews, seems like it's not even close.

    really appreciate all the advice a ton.
    Not even close!

    GeoMan
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  64. #64
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    Niterider has upgraded their Minewt. Supposedly a single Minewt is approx. 170 lumens, 340 for the dual. Also out is a new TriNewt at 480 lumens. Don't know the prices.

    Since I'll be upgrading to LED's this fall, I'm still leaning to 2 or 3 200L's as they're separate units. Like the idea in case something happens you are not stuck in the dark. Also can use one on the helmet. Awesome reviews regarding customer service. Also, they seem to understand about upgrading a current system as opposed to making you drop coin for a new unit when you want to upgrade.

    MB

  65. #65
    Baz
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    My review

    GDay,

    posted this elsewhere so thought I'd paste it in here: might be helpful to someone.

    Me: I've done a few 24's and a few 12's, as well as a heap of night riding generally (at least once a week. Young kids- its the only time I get!). Have owned/used a few halogen lights (nightrider, marwi etc), but no HID. Obviously ridden in the company of and observed heaps of lights.

    I bought two dinotte ultra 5's a month or two back. To be clear, these are the new upgraded ones that aren't specced on the dinotte web site (http://www.dinottelighting.com/) yet. Output is claimed 200lm, not the 120 as listed. Run times are apparently the same or longer, even with the higher output. Haven't raced with em yet but have done a lot of night riding on familiar trails round home. Here's what I think so far.

    My thoughts:
    - Lights are small and very light weight. Mounting is simplicity itself and very solid (rubber o-ring). Lights on or off bike in a matter of seconds. I went for the aa batt option: therefore the batt pack is a small set of four aa's under the stem or bars. No leads going back onto the frame. Nice!
    - Quality feel. Beautifully made and have the sense of being bullet proof. All associated gear v professional blah blah.

    - Output: Plenty of punch, beautiful white and bright beam. Its a little tight for my liking, but thats picky, and at the size, weight and price I am running two on the bars to give me the spread I want (will mention my helmet light below). Haven't outrun them at all- maybe thats just me but its 400lms out there so plenty for me on the proverbial 'fast fire road descent'.

    - Runtime: I run 2500ma rechargables and have just got two hrs a couple of times, but I haven't been careful about charging etc and some of my batts are cheapies. Some on the net are claiming well over 2hrs. There's a low beam that cuts output by what seems like only 20%(?. Still heaps of light for vast majority of situations), but extends run time by over an hr. Also aa's are growing in capacity all the time.

    - Service: I bugged Dinotte with heaps of questions and got helpful and fast replies. When there was a comm's breakdown in the order (possibly my fault), it was immediately and generously covered by them.

    All in all, I'm very happy. The aa thing wont be everyones cup of tea, but for most riders punching out a lap or three theyre the go I reckon (even solo? Easy to put spares in jersey). New batts are cheap and even available at the servo if you need them in a pinch.

    As for the helmet:
    http://www.torchworld.com.au/catalog...4c94756be45f63

    Fully regulated, 120lm, great spill but good bright spot, 2 1/2 hr burn time with no dimming, low beam option, waterproof, seems bullet proof (had it for mnths now). Couple of zip ties to the helmet and youre good to go. no cords, no batt pack in pocket. I've actually got a third dinotte but sometimes like this better for the helmet. [By way of comparison, this thing significantly (by factor of two?)out guns a minewt for a fraction of the cost. As for ultra 5 vs minewt- no comparison].

    Cheers

  66. #66
    GeoMan
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    We started selling the 200L's in May. As always, they are a great unit from Dinotte.
    GeoMan
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    Anyone coming up with a brighter LED (besides Lupine)? It isn't a huge deal going uphill by coming downhill of steep sections requires a bit more light output. The HIDs and bright Halogen work great but the LEDs I have seen so far are a bit lacking in light output. They are fine for commuting or relatively flat trails where you don't plan on picking up the speed but if Lupine can come out with a 700 Lumen plus LED and now a 1500 Lumen LED, I'm sure it can't be that hard for the others to come close to 700-800, right? Why are all the others hovering around 200-400?

  68. #68
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    LED technology is still on the steep part of the curve, with rapid advances coming almost daily.

    200 lumens per LED seems to be the sweet spot now. You can push more current through a LED die to make it brighter, but the efficiency drops off pretty quickly, you have to get rid of the extra heat somehow, and the LED's lifetime drops off rapidly too.

    Give the LED chip makers a couple of years and you should have plenty of choices in the 800 lumen range.

  69. #69
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by chucko58
    LED technology is still on the steep part of the curve, with rapid advances coming almost daily.

    200 lumens per LED seems to be the sweet spot now. You can push more current through a LED die to make it brighter, but the efficiency drops off pretty quickly, you have to get rid of the extra heat somehow, and the LED's lifetime drops off rapidly too.

    Give the LED chip makers a couple of years and you should have plenty of choices in the 800 lumen range.
    Agreed, but don't wait. Night riding is too much fun!
    GeoMan
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    I agree- night riding is a blast. However, I'll be using HIDs till LEDs get brighter.

  71. #71
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    I agree- night riding is a blast. However, I'll be using HIDs till LEDs get brighter.
    I thought the same thing until I started night riding with others using HIDs and saw them fiddling with heavy battery packs (bricks, almost) and finicky light heads. I've seen plenty of riders ready to make the move to something more reliable in exasperation over their "conventional" lights. Many of the extreme racers are stepping up to LED's and giving rave post-race reports.

    My personal light system (typically a Dinotte 200L and Ultra 3 in combo) draws overt interest from other riders every time I'm on the trail because of its light output, battery life, and diminutive weight. Plus, using two LED's in tandem provides the redundancy we should all have at a price less than a single HID.

    But the main thing is getting out and riding whether it be with an HID, LED, or one of the other technologies, right?

    GeoMan
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  72. #72
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    Flyer,

    If you don't want to pay out the @#$$ now the other option is DIY. There are several great threads on here that give you almost step by step instructions. Several people are getting around 1200 lumens out of these LED's and the best part is when a new LED comes around it is a simple and cheap upgrade. If that is not your cup of tea then either go Dinotte or conventional, but HID's days are numbered. Also Lupine is at the 150-200 lumen sweet spot as well, they are just running multiple LED's in a single housing ala the Dinotte 500l. I haven't checked, but I bet you get a 500l and a 300l for less than a comparable HID and a lot smaller/lighter battery brick to boot.

    IMHO

  73. #73
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    zen- thanks for this info. A DIY sounds like a very exciting project actually. I'll have to research some threads on this. I'm actually very happy with my HID but I'd also like to try out a DIY LED project since I do need another whitish redundant light. I'll be looking for threads on this while checking out the Dinottes as well.

    Thanks again. I look forward to learning more about all this.

  74. #74
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    If your going to to try a DIY LED light then you can spend hours researching online or you can just start and end with Allen's web page,

    http://myfwyc.org/bikeled/DIY_LED_Bi...ing_Guide.html

    Tony

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    Hey all,

    I just found this thread. For any of you that have upgraded your 5w is it a lot better? I am curently torn for the following reason.

    I bought a 5W in March, almost exactly a month before the upgrade and the new lights were announced. So I have a certain annoyance at the thought of upgrading an almost brand new light. I know similar to the computer world that bad timing like this happens. But it is annoying nonetheless. Stilll $50 isn't that much money if it is a noticable difference,

    Of course I could burn the bank and just get a second 5W and that would give me a free upgrade for my existing one.

    -D

  76. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by Derath
    Hey all,

    I just found this thread. For any of you that have upgraded your 5w is it a lot better? I am curently torn for the following reason.

    I bought a 5W in March, almost exactly a month before the upgrade and the new lights were announced. So I have a certain annoyance at the thought of upgrading an almost brand new light. I know similar to the computer world that bad timing like this happens. But it is annoying nonetheless. Stilll $50 isn't that much money if it is a noticable difference,

    Of course I could burn the bank and just get a second 5W and that would give me a free upgrade for my existing one.

    -D
    I've had mine upgraded with the flood lens option. Dinotte offers the 200L with both spot and flood option. Compared with the Ultra 5, it has a slightly tighter and brighter spot beam without the annoying donut, light throw is slightly better,a far wider (progressively dimmer when it gets to the edge). Most importantly, it gets a longer runtime at high beam. Together with my new 2700mah Sanyo batteries (upgraded from the old 2500mah), I can run them in High mode permanently for my night trails (I used to switch to low beam when climbing to conserve power). Dinotte even gave me an extra battery carriage for free when they upgraded it.

    I'll advise you to get a second 200L and get Dinotte to upgrade your current one so you'll have a spot/ flood combo. You can choose to run both on the handlebar, or run the flood on the handlebar and the spot on your helmet.

  77. #77
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    I upgraded my 5w also but after riding alot I like the older light better than the newer one I would than have a flood light than a spot , I really like the new run times

  78. #78
    Spanish biker
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    One question, the dinnote of 5w leds, with that led are upgraded?? I don't wrong, this leds works to 6,8v and the new leds seouls, crees...works to 3,7v aprox... or they change the constant current circuit and the led?? anyone know any on the subject..??

    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

    Easy DIY led light1
    Easy DIY led light2

    The Beast!!!

  79. #79
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    they change the lens, the led bulb, and the circuit board pretty much all the guts

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by frank418
    they change the lens, the led bulb, and the circuit board pretty much all the guts
    Well, but, by which led bulb??

    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

    Easy DIY led light1
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    The Beast!!!

  81. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flyer
    Anyone coming up with a brighter LED (besides Lupine)? It isn't a huge deal going uphill by coming downhill of steep sections requires a bit more light output. The HIDs and bright Halogen work great but the LEDs I have seen so far are a bit lacking in light output. They are fine for commuting or relatively flat trails where you don't plan on picking up the speed but if Lupine can come out with a 700 Lumen plus LED and now a 1500 Lumen LED, I'm sure it can't be that hard for the others to come close to 700-800, right? Why are all the others hovering around 200-400?
    I raced at 24 Hours of Big Bear with the Dinotte 500L and 200L and found I had plenty of light to almost match my day speeds. Big Bear is a fast and sometimes technical course, so for me these LED lights seem to be more than enough.

  82. #82
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    sorry I'm not sure

  83. #83
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    A great review that I ordered a Dinotte 200L. I hear so much about it, but no one has really posted an informative review + photo comparisions until I saw this thread.

  84. #84
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclon
    A great review that I ordered a Dinotte 200L. I hear so much about it, but no one has really posted an informative review + photo comparisions until I saw this thread.
    So what are your first impressions???
    GeoMan
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  85. #85
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    I'm curious what Dinotte does with all the old light parts?

    Also on the 200L flood model did Dinotte get rid of the donut of death black hole?

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by GEOMAN
    So what are your first impressions???
    And I got the light from YOU! Thanks!

    -The light is bright.
    -Lightweight and compact.
    -Such a simple mount, yet it's great since I can move it from bike to bike with ease without having to buy multiple mounts.
    -Not having to pack a big brick charger, because of a proprietary battery for the light, when taking my bike on a road trip.



    -I guess the only thing is, what's a good solution in keeping the battery pack dry if it happens to rain? A small waterproof bag?

  87. #87
    GeoMan
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclon
    And I got the light from YOU! Thanks!

    -The light is bright.
    -Lightweight and compact.
    -Such a simple mount, yet it's great since I can move it from bike to bike with ease without having to buy multiple mounts.
    -Not having to pack a big brick charger, because of a proprietary battery for the light, when taking my bike on a road trip.



    -I guess the only thing is, what's a good solution in keeping the battery pack dry if it happens to rain? A small waterproof bag?
    Excellent feedback! And THANK YOU!

    I probably wouldn't worry about a little water in the battery pack but if you feel compelled, I'd carry a plastic bag and rubber band, frankly.

    It's a great light.
    GeoMan
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