2013 Mtbr Lights Shootout

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  • 12-09-2012
    Burnt-Orange
    that light and motion seca 1700 enduro has me excited
    I am thinking of running it on my bars with the cygolite tridenx 750 xtra on my helmet
    nothing like a good 3 hour night ride
    just need to pull the trigger


    Sj
  • 12-10-2012
    MK96
    Apart of that you can buy separate head and other way, way better battery. Then I think it is not that dangerous with great performance but most of time stupid UI.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by gticlay View Post
    They are so cheap the batteries have been known to catch on fire. Really, not worth the risk. You way, way better off buying a Xera or X1 for not-much-more money.

  • 12-10-2012
    gticlay
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MK96 View Post
    Apart of that you can buy separate head and other way, way better battery. Then I think it is not that dangerous with great performance but most of time stupid UI.

    Yes you can do that but by the time you've purchased the battery and charger, the xera/X2 and others like them, it's probably a better deal as a kit.
  • 12-15-2012
    neninja
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by varider View Post
    Just registered to say thank you to Francois and the mtbr team. The light shootouts are invaluable and a better resource than any magazine.

    I was playing around with the spreadsheet and I sorted it lumens per $. That to me is the best indicator for value.

    The top 5 are:

    Code:

                                        Price        Lumens        Lumens per $
    Magicshine MJ-872                      $130          1226        9.43
    Magicshine MJ-808                      $95            648                6.82
    Lumintrek TrailBlazer 1600              $170            859                5.05
    Gemini Olympia                              $300            1467        4.89
    Gemini Duo                              $230            1091        4.74



    The winner is the Magicshine MJ-872, which is also the fifth cheapest light in the test. The MJ-808 is the second cheapest light. Magishine is a Chinese company, so you expect them to be cheap, perhaps at the cost of less reliability. There are a few USA based distributors that offer a warranty. Outside of the top 5, the lights only offer a 4.54 to 1.23 lumens to dollar ratio. That is less than half of the MJ-872. Maybe next year they will break the 10 lumens/dollar ratio.

    Obviously there are other factors to consider in a light, such as warranty, beam shape, runtime, water resistance, etc.

    I see the lumens figures are in for the Gloworm X2 - 1148 lumens in the integrating sphere test. That puts it straight into 3rd place on the lumens per $ chart with a result of 5.24
  • 12-16-2012
    neninja
    It would be great to see a photo of all the lights together, in alphabetical order, so that people can judge their comparitive size. It's not always easy to tell in standalone shots.
  • 12-16-2012
    getbusyliving
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by francois View Post
    Man, no one made me any graphs? Am to figure out Excel myself??

    Here's the spreadsheet download file.

    https://docs.google.com/a/invenda.co...9ia2tpY0E/edit

    Hey Francois---Do you have an updated version of this spreadsheet you can post, that includes the latest lights (especially Niterider)? I can't find it anywhere and it is really helpful to see all the data points in one sheet like this. Thanks!
  • 12-17-2012
    fc
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by getbusyliving View Post
    Hey Francois---Do you have an updated version of this spreadsheet you can post, that includes the latest lights (especially Niterider)? I can't find it anywhere and it is really helpful to see all the data points in one sheet like this. Thanks!

    The latest spreadsheet is here:
    https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B0i...1JwdFJ3ZkpVZEE

    Guys, make me some cool graphs.

    fc

    p.s. The Magicshine 872 has been downgraded to 920 lumens instead of 1200. After further testing, it would drop precipitously to 920 lumens. No amount of high speed fan could get the output back up. It does seem like they are overboosting the light for the first 30 seconds to make it look good in photos and measurements.
  • 12-17-2012
    blackbean
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by francois View Post
    The latest spreadsheet is here:
    ....
    p.s. The Magicshine 872 has been downgraded to 920 lumens instead of 1200. After further testing, it would drop precipitously to 920 lumens. No amount of high speed fan could get the output back up. It does seem like they are overboosting the light for the first 30 seconds to make it look good in photos and measurements.

    Francois

    Not that it really matters that much (since there are so many lights that you could test, especially cheap knock-offs) but maybe you can test the MJ-856. It is the same light as the MJ-872, but with improved heat-sinking. I have one and never experienced a power stepdown even during long rides.
  • 12-17-2012
    fc
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blackbean View Post
    Francois

    Not that it really matters that much (since there are so many lights that you could test, especially cheap knock-offs) but maybe you can test the MJ-856. It is the same light as the MJ-872, but with improved heat-sinking. I have one and never experienced a power stepdown even during long rides.

    Hey, I have one of those lights from two years ago. Light and Go Foride Bike Light Reviews | Mountain Bike Review

    I just tried it out and it does a lot better. It ran at about 117 lux without a fan and it dropped down to about a 104 lux after a couple of minutes. I then put a fan on it and it went back up to 112. So definitely this is a heat issue.

    fc
  • 12-18-2012
    TCW
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by francois View Post
    Hey, I have one of those lights from two years ago. Light and Go Foride Bike Light Reviews | Mountain Bike Review

    I just tried it out and it does a lot better. It ran at about 117 lux without a fan and it dropped down to about a 104 lux after a couple of minutes. I then put a fan on it and it went back up to 112. So definitely this is a heat issue.

    fc

    This is good news as I picked one of those up after your initial review. It's still going strong and works great as a bar light.
  • 12-27-2012
    skullcap
    3 Attachment(s)
    Here are a few charts generated from the updated spreadsheets.
  • 12-27-2012
    mdemm
    Excellent !!! You've done a very nice job, scullcap.
  • 12-28-2012
    Ian_C
    Francois, you have a bad piece of data for the CygoLite Expilion 350.

    On the main Shoot-Out page you list the price as $250. That price is also used in the spreadsheet, graphs etc.

    Clicking on the link takes us to the 2012 review, listing the price as $110.

    I don't know what the current price of the 350 is, but Canada's Mountain Equipment Co-op lists the Expilion 700 at $129. The 350 is no longer listed on Cygolite's product page, so I suspect it has been discontinued.

    Other CygoLite models in the 300-420 claimed lumen range are now at $50 to $70.
  • 12-28-2012
    cue003
    Thanks for the charts.
  • 12-31-2012
    fc
    Just got back in town Skullcap!! Great work. I'll integrate in the article.

    fc
  • 01-01-2013
    mdemm
    Hey Francois, Got a quick question for you. Are you planning on adding / reviewing additional lights to the database in the future, as they become available ? Reason being. It sure would nice to see how the Gloworm X1 with the new XML-U3, stacks up against the competition...
  • 01-02-2013
    skullcap
    You're welcome!
  • 01-02-2013
    crgmoto
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mdemm View Post
    Hey Francois, Got a quick question for you. Are you planning on adding / reviewing additional lights to the database in the future, as they become available ? Reason being. It sure would nice to see how the Gloworm X1 with the new XML-U3, stacks up against the competition...

    The Gloworm X1 has just arrived here - seriously impressive. In the past you needed a large reflector to get decent throw but the hotspot on the X1 is much stronger than a reflector based XM-L which I've wall tested it against.
  • 01-04-2013
    MK96
    I think you should test a czech made light - zora, Lupine Betty will be ashamed :thumbsup:
  • 01-17-2013
    Skyraider59
    Hi Guys , I am new to your forum and found this thread interesting as I do a lot of trails night riding, here in Sussex in England. I am surprised Francois not to see any of the Bikeray lights in your table. Quality/versus lumens/versus price is great.
    We have a lot of guys MTB section ridding with the RAY III or RAY IV
    Best
    SK59
  • 01-22-2013
    Enduro14
    Which is better headlamp or a handlebar mounted light?
  • 01-30-2013
    pabcor
    I like Light & Motion, and Lupine..
  • 06-06-2013
    haulinazz2112
    Francois,

    Great wright up. Nice R&D. Talk about giving back to the community. In light of the Majic shine MJ872. Did you happen to know what battery pack utilized in any of your notes? I noticed the light now sells with a claimed improved battery pack... Currently, looking for a decent affordable light. I noticed there seemed to be a anomaly with this light.
  • 09-15-2013
    canuck_tacoma
    Francois, make sure you get your hands on the 2014 L&M's. I just got the Stella 500 and Seca 1500. The Seca is a workhorse and the Stella has such a nice even pattern.
  • 09-20-2013
    RSAmerica
    2013 Mtbr Lights Shootout
    Any test/review of Niterider Pro 1800 Race?
  • 09-30-2013
    Corbinworks
    Francois,
    What do you feel is the best bang for the buck, You were able to hold and see the quality of all the lights, Great, Ones brighter then the next for less money, But if it does not last & the battery blows then who cares, What would be your pick for your bike??

    Thanks -Paul
  • 10-11-2013
    Technician
    In my recent research on lights, I came across the 2013 shootout on MTBR; very helpful - thanks. A local outdoor outlet (MEC) is offering the Cygolite TridenX 1300, and this looks to me to be the best bang for the buck. Can anyone point out any weaknesses with this particular choice?

    After trying a demo light from a LBS last night, it seemed like having the light on my helmet was better than on the bars. Is that the general consensus for fairly hard-core off roading?
  • 10-11-2013
    indebt
    Very good bang for the buck, I had the old Triden X 600 lumens and loved it. It handled all the crappy winter wet weather Squamish BC could throw at it. Back then MEC charged $399+tax so $229 I think is a great deal. They still are on back order though along with the Centauri 1700 lumen and a couple others.

    If you don't want to wait, Dunbar bike shop's on line store has the new Gemini Duo 1500 lumen set up in stock for about the same price. I have last years model and really think it's a good product. Free shipping over $200 as well. Cheers!!
  • 10-11-2013
    Technician
    Thanks; yes that Gemini Duo 1500 looks like an even better deal - lighter, more lumens, slightly less cake!
  • 10-11-2013
    indebt
    Can I suggest that you should make sure and have a back up light of some sort. For fairly hard core off roading I strongly recommend finding a way to have both bar/helmet set ups. Cheers!
  • 10-11-2013
    indebt
    Hey Francois,,, just wondering if there is an ETA on test results on lights received?? Thanx!!
  • 10-11-2013
    fc
    2013 Mtbr Lights Shootout
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by indebt View Post
    Hey Francois,,, just wondering if there is an ETA on test results on lights received?? Thanx!!

    Some should be ready by next week . I'm with the integrating sphere today

    Fc


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  • 10-11-2013
    indebt
    THAT'S GREAT!! Looking forward to the numbers all the XM-L2's will bring to the table as well as your reviews. Cheers!!
  • 10-11-2013
    pabcor
    Yeah!!, good notices.
    Will include new lights Magicshine MJ-808E 1200 lm and MJ-880 2200 lm with new LED XM-L2? and recent models MJ-886 550 lm and Eagle 600 also?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1h_dm4mF94
  • 10-17-2013
    pabcor
  • 11-03-2013
    indebt
    Thanx Francois for the reviews so far!! There is a fair bit of talk about the 2014 Gemini Olympia having only measured 12 more lumens over last years model. I know this is a busy time for you but can you confirm the light was at 100% output, or re-measure the Olympia. If posted lumens are confirmed as 100% output, then I guess Gemini has some explaining to do. Cheers!!
  • 11-03-2013
    stu06
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by indebt View Post
    Gemini has some explaining to do.

    So does Lupine, since the new Betty R measures 10% less than claimed. Interestingly, Lupine states in their website that they utilize a calibrated integrating sphere as well.
  • 11-03-2013
    indebt
    Yes true,,, however the Betty-R's 400 lumen shortfall is minor(9%) on a 4500 lumen claim in comparison to the 29% shortfall of the Olympia. Interesting fact though,,,,,, despite only approx. 450 more measured lumens of this years Betty-R , the lux measurement is way up disproportionally from 365lux to 440lux.
  • 11-03-2013
    pabcor
    1 Attachment(s)
    A good review of lots of front and rear lights

    Your guide to the best front lights for cycling | road.cc

    Attachment 844067