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  1. #1
    fc
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    2012 Mtbr Lights Shootout.

    I'm working on it now. I have a ton of lights and I'm getting a bunch more!!!

    It will be broken up in a Commuter and High End category.

    What do you guys want to see?

    Here's some sneak peak photos.

    - ok light
    - very flat beam pattern light
    - bright light

    fc
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2012 Mtbr Lights Shootout.-img_1773.jpg  

    2012 Mtbr Lights Shootout.-img_1753.jpg  

    2012 Mtbr Lights Shootout.-img_1751.jpg  


  2. #2
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    That bright light is... AWESOME!
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  3. #3
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    I think you have done good job breaking it down in the past. I like the idea of "commuter" and "high end" for sure.
    Battery life on max is always what I'm looking for.

    What light is photo 3? Pretty much makes it daylight out.

    I'll be waiting to see the shootout.

    Thanks,
    Woody

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    I'd like to see comparisions between the china lights (bike ray, magicshine ect ) VS Niterider, Light and Motion ect. I'm torn between spending more on those non china lights or just dealing with the battery problems. Old L&M Arc is on it's last days and I need to make a informed decision.

  5. #5
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    OMG what is light #3? I just know that's gonna be way out of my price range but holy sh*t is that impressive.

    How soon will you have some results up? I need lights (yeah plural) soooooo bad
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  6. #6
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    Maybe you can separate the wireless into their own group as well otherwise you always do a great job.

    MB

  7. #7
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    I'd like to see more lights on bikes... I'd like to see budget lights that meet commuters' needs.

    All to often I see the familiar reflective patch pedaling in the dark without any lighting whatsoever.

    ...and don't leave out the tail light catagory!

  8. #8
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    I think grouping by light output would be helpful, but it doesn't need to be specific. Something like:

    Commuter/Be Seen: < 200 lumens
    General Riding: 201-1000 lumens
    Ah, my eyes!: 1000+ lumens

    And some sort of grouping by price would be great as well since budget is a limiting factor for almost everyone. As someone else said, light setting on high is all I care about.
    "Got everything you need?"

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biscuit Pants View Post
    I'd like to see comparisions between the china lights (bike ray, magicshine ect ) VS Niterider, Light and Motion ect. I'm torn between spending more on those non china lights or just dealing with the battery problems. Old L&M Arc is on it's last days and I need to make a informed decision.

    I second this.

    I bought a Cygo-Lite Centauri 1000 OSP back in spring of this year and while it's been working well since then, I feel it's power is a bit wasted with it being so much flood and not enough throw. I would REALLY like to see a beam comparison between the Bike Ray IV and a high end cygo or nightrider.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois View Post

    It will be broken up in a Commuter and High End category.

    What do you guys want to see?
    This sounds like a good idea at first glance but one person's idea of a commuter light is another persons MTB light.

    As for what I would like to see: Francois you have a very nice back yard but it lacks the distance needed to demonstrate the throw capability of the brighter lights. Ideally I would like the lights demonstrated in a flat trail/dirt environment or fire road. It has to be wide to demonstrate the width of the beam pattern but it also needs a good 200 to 150ft of distance...hopefully with some trees or brush near by to help judge depth. Also distance markers starting at 50ft. and continuing every 25ft. till about 150-200ft. ( for the throwers )

    I'm sure the commuters will want at least one beam shot on a road with at least one or two distance references which wouldn't be a bad idea.

    Now if you can't get a longer place for testing I suppose a way to compensate would be to place a *lux meter at the longest distance and give us that reading. Even better, three lux meters spaced out so wider beams get some credit. (*now if lux meters won't work at distance forget that idea. )

    Anyway, just my thoughts. I realize much of what I said won't be done but you did ask "Want do you want to see"?
    Last edited by Cat-man-do; 09-19-2011 at 12:19 PM.

  11. #11
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    We're getting to the point where beamshots are not all that useful anymore due to the limitations of digital photography and computer displays.

    I'd like to see a measurement at distance of how wide the brightspot (down to 50% of max beam brightness) is at several distances, say 25', 50' and 100' then how wide the beam is overall to 90% of brightness for the spill. I don't know if that's possible, but one ought to be able to do that with a spot light meter or an incident light meter, I would think.

    Those two pieces - the measurement and the beamshot would tell us a lot more about the beam and brightness and usability of the light.

    J.

  12. #12
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    Quit messing with us that last picture is taken during the day!!! If that light is less than $700 I'll be buy it in a heartbeat.

  13. #13
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    You did a very god job last time...the idea of "commuter" and "high end" is great...can't wait to see the new shootout.


    Thanks, Eran.

  14. #14
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    Maybe some ride reports from the top 3 or 5 lights that grab your attention in a good way.
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    I'm going to guess it's the Betty 12
    I'm interested to see the revised exposure 6 pack

  16. #16
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb323323 View Post
    Maybe you can separate the wireless into their own group as well otherwise you always do a great job.

    MB
    Wireless... took me a while to understand that.

    Cable Free or Flashlight style lights. I got it now.

    fc

  17. #17
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    This sounds like a good idea at first glance but one person's idea of a commuter light is another persons MTB light.

    As for what I would like to see: Francois you have a very nice back yard but it lacks the distance needed to demonstrate the throw capability of the brighter lights. Ideally I would like the lights demonstrated in a flat trail/dirt environment or fire road. It has to be wide to demonstrate the width of the beam pattern but it also needs a good 200 to 150ft of distance...hopefully with some trees or brush near by to help judge depth. Also distance markers starting at 50ft. and continuing every 25ft. till about 150-200ft. ( for the throwers )

    I'm sure the commuters will want at least one beam shot on a road with at least one or two distance references which wouldn't be a bad idea.

    Now if you can't get a longer place for testing I suppose a way to compensate would be to place a *lux meter at the longest distance and give us that reading. Even better, three lux meters spaced out so wider beams get some credit. (*now if lux meters won't work at distance forget that idea. )

    Anyway, just my thoughts. I realize much of what I said won't be done but you did ask "Want do you want to see"?
    Great point. My backyard hits the its limitations at around 1200 lumens. I started using a new location last year. I'll use it again if I can't find a better one.

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois View Post
    Great point. My backyard hits the its limitations at around 1200 lumens. I started using a new location last year. I'll use it again if I can't find a better one.

    Exposure Six Pack Bike Light Review | Mountain Bike Review

    fc
    If you were to do light meter readings from a distance I would also recommend multiple readings too. I did a test in July on 4 similar xml light heads to measure light fall off from the center. Meter reading at 20m distance, readings from the center, at 1m either side of center and at 2m either side. The 4 similar lights all had different beam patterns and different size hot spots which reflected on my lux meter results.



    Also including beam patterns on a white board to also help compare similar lights beam patterns



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  19. #19
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    Can't wait to see this years offerings. As far as technical readings at distance and whatever else. That's a bit technongeek. A measurement isn't going to mean squat on the trail. A 500 HP car isn't squat if it doesn't get it to the ground but on paper its impressive.

    I think beam shots like last year possibly from behind the light source a bit back or different landscape to really showcase lights beam and throw would be more use full.

    Just a thought.
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  20. #20
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    The last picture should be in the holy **** category

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    ....Now if you can't get a longer place for testing I suppose a way to compensate would be to place a *lux meter at the longest distance and give us that reading. Even better, three lux meters spaced out so wider beams get some credit. (*now if lux meters won't work at distance forget that idea. )
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    ....I'd like to see a measurement at distance of how wide the brightspot (down to 50% of max beam brightness) is at several distances, say 25', 50' and 100' then how wide the beam is overall to 90% of brightness for the spill. I don't know if that's possible, but one ought to be able to do that with a spot light meter or an incident light meter, I would think.....Those two pieces - the measurement and the beamshot would tell us a lot more about the beam and brightness and usability of the light. J.
    Quote Originally Posted by dereknz View Post
    If you were to do light meter readings from a distance I would also recommend multiple readings too. I did a test in July on 4 similar xml light heads to measure light fall off from the center. Meter reading at 20m distance, readings from the center, at 1m either side of center and at 2m either side. The 4 similar lights all had different beam patterns and different size hot spots which reflected on my lux meter results.
    It seems I struck a chord that others can resonate with. The problem I see with using lux meters is deciding just where to place them. Some people favor lights with wide close in beam patterns. That would require using the meter(s) used more close in and spread farther apart. Others like myself want distance readings to help judge which throw the farthest.. Yes, it would be nice to have but it would be tedious to set up and record to say the least.

    Francois, if you decide to include direct throw lux readings and don't mind playing with the distances a bit it would be quite awesome. ( Particularly with the brighter lights )
    Last edited by Cat-man-do; 09-20-2011 at 02:28 AM.

  22. #22
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    Comparing throw [for fast road riding] would be sweet.
    If you could rig up something on a pitch black country road/trail with distance markers.
    A bit like the Lupine beam shots.

  23. #23
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    I've been wait for this, keep up the good work.

  24. #24
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    ditto the ^. Beam shots on some kind of non-reflective surface (ie. not grass) with more distance - fire roads are excellent for this. Also, if you want to better reflect what the eyes see, drop the exposure time on the higher powered lights. I don't know if you're still using 6s, but I find that setting washes out the brighter beam patterns and doesn't accurately represent what my eyes see. If you want continuity between lights of different power, do all of them at one exposure then the mega lights at lower exposure times.

  25. #25
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattthemuppet View Post
    ditto the ^. Beam shots on some kind of non-reflective surface (ie. not grass) with more distance - fire roads are excellent for this. Also, if you want to better reflect what the eyes see, drop the exposure time on the higher powered lights. I don't know if you're still using 6s, but I find that setting washes out the brighter beam patterns and doesn't accurately represent what my eyes see. If you want continuity between lights of different power, do all of them at one exposure then the mega lights at lower exposure times.
    Great insight!

    I've maintained my camera settings over the years.
    Camera – Canon G9
    Setting – full manual
    ISO – 100
    Exposure – 4 seconds
    Aperture – F4.0
    Focus – Manual
    White Balance – Daylight

    It works well as it similutes what I see with my eyes. But with these lights over 2000 lumens, there is a washout effect on the grass.

    Dropping the exposure times to 2 seconds, etc. may prove really useful for comparing these ultra powerful lights.

    fc

  26. #26
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    It seems I struck a chord that others can resonate with. The problem I see with using lux meters is deciding just where to place them. Some people favor lights with wide close in beam patterns. That would require using the meter(s) used more close in and spread farther apart. Others like myself want distance readings to help judge which throw the farthest.. Yes, it would be nice to have but it would be tedious to set up and record to say the least.

    Francois, if you decide to include direct throw lux readings and don't mind playing with the distances a bit it would be quite awesome. ( Particularly with the brighter lights )

    Direct path beam pattern lux readings are just not that good (pointing the light directly at the light meter). It's very hard to do and lux readings vary widely as one gets a few mm off center. I don't think I can do it well enough to be useful.

    There's a new light company in San Luis Obispo called Lezyne. They have a $40,000 integrating sphere that measures light output. I have free access to it so I just might drive there to measure all these lights.

    Just fyi to others, the way I measure light output is by pointing the light to the ceiling of a controlled room and measuring the ambient light in the room. It is a pseudo integrating sphere and it actually really good. I just did it for all the 2012 lights and it still agrees with my beam photos well.
    Bike Light Meter Setup for measuring output | Mountain Bike Review

    fc

  27. #27
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    This is the new testing grounds with last year's lights.

    2011 Bike Lights Shootout – Long Range Beam Pattern Photos | Mountain Bike Review

    Please note that these are last year's lights.

    fc
    Last edited by fc; 09-20-2011 at 08:29 AM.

  28. #28
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    you're welcome. I had this problem trying to capture the beam patterns on my collection of DIY lights that ranges from 100 - 2000lm. 2s with a Cateye EL320 (?) wasn't any different to moonlight, 6s with my dual XM-L@3A was like daylight

    I also think the ceiling bounce/ wall shots are still useful for getting an idea of how the light is distributed within the beam. That together with the outdoors beam patterns should give people a good idea what it should look like.

  29. #29
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    will you be testing the new hope R4 and R8?

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by dereknz View Post
    If you were to do light meter readings from a distance I would also recommend multiple readings too. I did a test in July on 4 similar xml light heads to measure light fall off from the center. Meter reading at 20m distance, readings from the center, at 1m either side of center and at 2m either side. The 4 similar lights all had different beam patterns and different size hot spots which reflected on my lux meter results.



    Also including beam patterns on a white board to also help compare similar lights beam patterns



    This along with Cat's suggestion of some quantitative measure of throw would do it. I think this (above) gives us some measure of the spread, size and utility of the beam and the throw tells us how far out it ultimately reaches. Digital photos are nice, but I think people are making determinations from them that are no longer valid in practice.

    j.
    Last edited by JohnJ80; 09-20-2011 at 12:55 PM.

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    Francois,

    Do we have an estimated ETA before seeing the first round of results? Are we talking 1 month, 2 months out etc? I am looking to make a rather large purchase and am unable to get my hands on these lights locally so your reviews will be very helpful in framing my decisions. Especially on the lupine with the various beam angles and xpg/xml color rendition/configurations.

    Thanks

  32. #32
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by cue003 View Post
    Francois,

    Do we have an estimated ETA before seeing the first round of results? Are we talking 1 month, 2 months out etc? I am looking to make a rather large purchase and am unable to get my hands on these lights locally so your reviews will be very helpful in framing my decisions. Especially on the lupine with the various beam angles and xpg/xml color rendition/configurations.

    Thanks
    one week!!!

    Then there will be a major update in November.

    fc

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois View Post
    one week!!!

    Then there will be a major update in November.

    fc
    ++++...Make sure you get a recent issue of the DiNotte 1200L+ which is suppose to be tweaked for more output. You might have to contact them to verify you have the newest version.

  34. #34
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    will you be testing the new hope R4 and R8?
    Make sure you get a recent issue of the DiNotte 1200L+ which is suppose to be tweaked for more output. You might have to contact them to verify you have the newest version.
    I'll second both of these requests
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    Last edited by suba; 09-20-2011 at 01:37 PM.

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    Second vote for beam shots on dirt/trail and battery life at High, medium and low. Also maybe LUX output at eh various setting as well would be helpful.

  37. #37
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    I can't wait to see the new Lupine Betty.

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    Quote Originally Posted by francois View Post
    one week!!!

    Then there will be a major update in November.

    fc
    Awesome. Looking forward to the outcome. Really hoping you have all the lupine TL series (Betty, Wilma, Piko) in this first pass.

    Especially up against the Exposure light family.
    Last edited by cue003; 09-21-2011 at 06:21 AM.

  39. #39
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    Francois, your tests are the BEST!

    I have to say, as someone building up a rig from good components, I had sticker shock.

    To second what some others have urged, it would be more useful than anything else if you could write up a section in the shootout that targets commuting / lower-priced setups. This fall, I've got a 10-mile commute up winding, unlit, bumpy 2-lane roads -- in the rain. Like others, I need to know: "What's the minimum adequate setup for commuting like this?"

    Please include a section on rear / safety light options too.

    Currently I'm leaning toward the Niterider MiNewt 600 Cordless for this job. I want to see it compared with others, esp. the L&Ms, as the 600 seems pretty bright. Want to know if I'm on the right track.

    Many thanks!

  40. #40
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by a.k.a. View Post
    Francois, your tests are the BEST!

    I have to say, as someone building up a rig from good components, I had sticker shock.

    To second what some others have urged, it would be more useful than anything else if you could write up a section in the shootout that targets commuting / lower-priced setups. This fall, I've got a 10-mile commute up winding, unlit, bumpy 2-lane roads -- in the rain. Like others, I need to know: "What's the minimum adequate setup for commuting like this?"

    Please include a section on rear / safety light options too.

    Currently I'm leaning toward the Niterider MiNewt 600 Cordless for this job. I want to see it compared with others, esp. the L&Ms, as the 600 seems pretty bright. Want to know if I'm on the right track.

    Many thanks!

    There will definitely be a commuter section. Maybe tail lights too.

    fc

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by francois View Post
    There will definitely be a commuter section. Maybe tail lights too.

    fc
    Dear Ultralord Francois,

    Two things: would you do me a favor and PM me your shipping address - I can't find your card. Secondly I am curious about the tail lights too, I look forward to that!

    Thanks,

    Shannon

  42. #42
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    The way I did my 20m light fall off meter test was to use a timber paling fence. I set up a hairline cross target on the fence with tape and taped marks 1 and 2m from the target either side. Light meter was hand held against the fence. With the light on using the meter I would find the spot with with highest lux reading and the light head would then be adjusted until this spot was in the middle of the hairline cross target. This worked on the single led lights I was tested, may be hard to align multi led lights
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    I'm looking forward to your review, too. How do you define commuter lights? Will that only be lights that have only less lumen, with a special beam throw or long lasting?

    +1 for tail lights...

  44. #44
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    Any idea on when it will be done?

  45. #45
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    Everyone is signing up for the lights shootout now!!! I still don't have Cygolite and Dinotte.


    For interbike, Exposure and Lupine sponsored our presence. Please thank them for me. Here's a couple videos we shot of their line.




  46. #46
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    Interesting that the lupine video did not make any mention to the Betty TL. Has it been delayed?

  47. #47
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    Tail lights really worth reviewing:

    Cygolite Hotshot 2W
    DesignShine DS-500
    DiNotte 140
    DiNotte 300
    Magicshine MJ-818
    NiteFLUX RedZone 4
    Planet Bike Super Flash Turbo
    Portland Design Works Danger Zone

    Side-visible models:

    Bike Brightz
    Cateye TL-LD1100
    Cateye Orbits
    Down Low Glow Dual Tube [discontinued]
    Fibre Flare
    MonkeyLectric
    NiteFLUX RedZone 4
    Nite Ize Spokelit
    Trek Beacon Bar End Light
    Last edited by a.k.a.; 09-22-2011 at 10:44 PM.

  48. #48
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by cue003 View Post
    Interesting that the lupine video did not make any mention to the Betty TL. Has it been delayed?
    It is alive and well. It is a fearsome weapon like the old maglite. But instead of blunt force, you can defend yourself with light force

    I had fun with it as I put the Wilma battery on it. It small and hideously bright.

    fc
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2012 Mtbr Lights Shootout.-dsc_0104.jpg  


  49. #49
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    I think it may be too late, but when possible, I'd like to hear your opinion of long-term durability based on your riding experiences and that of your friends & peers. I don't want to save $100 on a light i'll need to replace in a year. Also, similarly, appreciate hearing your thoughts on warranties, customer support and your interactions with the company reps & owners.

  50. #50
    fc
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    Quote Originally Posted by RTM View Post
    I think it may be too late, but when possible, I'd like to hear your opinion of long-term durability based on your riding experiences and that of your friends & peers. I don't want to save $100 on a light i'll need to replace in a year. Also, similarly, appreciate hearing your thoughts on warranties, customer support and your interactions with the company reps & owners.
    It's never too late! This will take our collective efforts. I will link each editorial review to the user reviews section where there is a broad history of usage by mtbr members.

    You all have to remember that it is your duty to write reviews in our Lights user reviews section!

    Here's a photo of the current lights. There's more coming!!!

    fc
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2012 Mtbr Lights Shootout.-308098_10150326977518213_611473212_8033008_35621566_n.jpg  


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