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  1. #1
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    Helmet lights to outperform Piko

    so i'm debating what to do with Piko. it was supposed to be the be all end all helmet light ... but nothing about it is particularly impressive and the output is south of budget chinese lights unless you're willing to run it so hot that you almost can't touch it. the only impressive part about it was how quickly gretnabikes delivered it - the next day to be exact. but now i am thinking about returning it.

    so i would like something that will put out 1000+ lumens without getting very hot, and obviously something with a good helmet mount.

    so far i only have 1 candidate to replace the Piko - Dinotte XML-3. it costs less than Piko, has 3 XMLs instead of 2 and has about 3 times the aluminum surface area to sink all the heat. plus my Dinotte 300R is amazing so that is encouraging.

    what i do NOT like about it is that the pattern is not as focused as i would like on the helmet ( i would like a pattern similar to 16 degree Betty, because i already have a wide flood on handlebars ) and also there aren't any reviews except the MTBR one ?

    can you suggest any other lights ? i would like somewhere in the 2 to 4 XLMs and somewhere between 1,000 and 2,500 lumens, and with a beam between about 15 and 25 degrees.

    16 degree Betty would be perfect in terms of performance, but i would like to get something closer to the Piko price point.

  2. #2
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    I have the XML-3 and it makes a fantastic helmet light. Some people even run them on the bars. Great light for the price. Dinotte makes quality as well.

    Yes it is not a super tight spot, but it has no hot spots and has plenty of punch to reach past a floody bar light.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by rideitall View Post
    I have the XML-3 and it makes a fantastic helmet light. Some people even run them on the bars. Great light for the price. Dinotte makes quality as well.

    Yes it is not a super tight spot, but it has no hot spots and has plenty of punch to reach past a floody bar light.
    nice.
    Last edited by androgen; 10-03-2012 at 10:35 AM.

  4. #4
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    gloworm X2 - almost the same size as a Piko, but 1200 lumens - bloody brilliant, im well chuffed with mine

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by M6TTF View Post
    gloworm X2 - almost the same size as a Piko, but 1200 lumens - bloody brilliant, im well chuffed with mine
    why does it have a remote switch ? is it so you don't burn your fingers or something ?

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    the remote is actually really handy. bar mounted you can flick between modes/brightness without taking your hands of the bars - head mounted i just run the swtich above my ear, dead easy to find.

  7. #7
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    androgen, I think the problem you have is that you have the brightest lamp made mounted on the bars. You are going to find it very difficult to find a lamp bright enough to compliment the lamp you are using on the bars. The XML-3. Gloworm X2, Gemini Duo all of these might work but chances are your Niterider 3600 is going to over power them.. You might have to consider a custom helmet set up. I'd look at the "Troutie Lights" or start asking questions over on the DIY forum. Maybe someone there might be able to give you some better ideas. I do know a while back that someone over on CPF was selling a six-up DIY host designed for XP-G. Getting something like that but fit with the newer XP-E2 might yield a 6-up lamp with awesome throw. Maybe as much as 1600-1700 lumen OTF. The set-up I'm talking about is duel triples and looks small enough to make a good helmet lamp. I'd probably buy one myself but I'm not ready to go there yet.

  8. #8
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    I'm running a Troutie 7-up on my bars that I assembled myself so I know how difficult it can be to find a helmet light to work with a bright bar light. I'd suggest building a quazzle true 1440 lumen 3-up XPG with the easy2led body. It's extremely small, reliable, inexpensive, and will run off all those geomangear batteries floating around. Plus it's enough to roll with a real bright bar light. Actually, I was thinking of selling my 1100 lumen version (as bright as the chinese "1800 or 2000" lumen cheapos and waaaaaaaay brighter than the 1400 lumen 4 xpg magicshine) if anyone is interested in that and I'll just build up a 1440 for myself
    "It looks flexy"

  9. #9
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    What about the Gemini Olympia? Anyone compare it with the Gloworm X2 or other mentioned above? It's small and bright, costs quite a bit more than an X2, however.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    androgen, I think the problem you have is that you have the brightest lamp made mounted on the bars. You are going to find it very difficult to find a lamp bright enough to compliment the lamp you are using on the bars. The XML-3. Gloworm X2, Gemini Duo all of these might work but chances are your Niterider 3600 is going to over power them.. You might have to consider a custom helmet set up. I'd look at the "Troutie Lights" or start asking questions over on the DIY forum. Maybe someone there might be able to give you some better ideas. I do know a while back that someone over on CPF was selling a six-up DIY host designed for XP-G. Getting something like that but fit with the newer XP-E2 might yield a 6-up lamp with awesome throw. Maybe as much as 1600-1700 lumen OTF. The set-up I'm talking about is duel triples and looks small enough to make a good helmet lamp. I'd probably buy one myself but I'm not ready to go there yet.
    Furthermore, comparing Lupine's rating of lumens to those of the Chinese lights is silly. Lupine is pretty accurate in their measurement of actual light OTF (out the front). The majority of Chinese light lumens are more theoretical maximums of the LED (or worse) with no accounting of lens or reflector impacts. In general and in a practical sense, they are all over the map but probably in the 50% range or so.

    Here's a chart that an help realize that. L&M, Lupine, Lezyne are some that have taken pains to be accurate. Magicshine (for example) has not.

    Bike Lights Shootout Light Meter Measurements | Mountain Bike Review

    And I concur in the notion that a 900 lumen light is going to get clobbered by a 3600 lumen one. In general, I've found that having about half or more of the lumens of your bar light on your helmet is what works. A great combination, for example, was my Piko 750 lumen light with the 1500 lumen Wilma on the bars. The Piko had a tighter hot spot and it was about the same lumen density on the pavement 25' out from my handlebars as was the Wilma 1500. The two beams then added nicely when the hot spots overlapped with noticeable benefit. That is diminished with the newer 2400 lumen Wilma.

    J.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCW View Post
    What about the Gemini Olympia? Anyone compare it with the Gloworm X2 or other mentioned above? It's small and bright, costs quite a bit more than an X2, however.
    looks perfect on paper. what's the catch ? is it chinese lumens ?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    looks perfect on paper. what's the catch ? is it chinese lumens ?
    Hell I don't know? I want a new bad boy helmet light too. The Gloworm is mighty tempting especially with being around a hundred bucks cheaper than the Olympia. I could get the Gloworm and an extra battery for about th same price. But, if those lumens are legit then the Olympia might be a good choice. It's about the same weight as the X2. Hmmm...

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCW View Post
    Hell I don't know? I want a new bad boy helmet light too. The Gloworm is mighty tempting especially with being around a hundred bucks cheaper than the Olympia. I could get the Gloworm and an extra battery for about th same price. But, if those lumens are legit then the Olympia might be a good choice. It's about the same weight as the X2. Hmmm...
    the weight is outstanding, but the pattern:

    Speed II on helmet and Gemini Olympia on bar - YouTube

    is pretty horrible. i think i will pass.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    the weight is outstanding, but the pattern:

    Speed II on helmet and Gemini Olympia on bar - YouTube

    is pretty horrible. i think i will pass.
    Yuck, I hate youtube videos for lights, something about the camera not representing how they really look. The bike shootout pics seem to be much better with the camera settings mentioned on this site. Still, it might suck.

    The beam pics on the website look pretty nice. Do they represent the truth, I don't know. Seems like positive remarks on this website. I was a little sad to see the Olympia has gone up about a hundred bucks since they first started advertising. A couple X2s (one for me and the wife) and a couple extra batteries is tempting.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    ...And I concur in the notion that a 900 lumen light is going to get clobbered by a 3600 lumen one. In general, I've found that having about half or more of the lumens of your bar light on your helmet is what works. A great combination, for example, was my Piko 750 lumen light with the 1500 lumen Wilma on the bars. The Piko had a tighter hot spot and it was about the same lumen density on the pavement 25' out from my handlebars as was the Wilma 1500. The two beams then added nicely when the hot spots overlapped with noticeable benefit. That is diminished with the newer 2400 lumen Wilma.

    J.
    Thanks John, a perfect example of diminished returns. The brighter your bar lamp the harder it is to get a helmet lamp that truly compliments the bar lamp. Usually I like the helmet lamp to be brighter with longer throw but nowadays that's almost impossible without getting a custom build.

    In a nut shell I think you can sum this up by saying it's better to use a two lamp system that creates a combined 2000 lumen than to get one lamp that is over 2000 lumen.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    the weight is outstanding, but the pattern:

    Speed II on helmet and Gemini Olympia on bar - YouTube

    is pretty horrible. i think i will pass.
    The video was taken with a Contour HD. Since then I found out that the Contour is one of the worst low light video POV camera. I now use a Replay and that is so much better in low light video than the contour. If you want some better representation of the Olympia beam pattern, I have some taken from my older Fuji S5000 camera. Bottle on ground at 100ft, tree is about 185 ft.


    Sample of Olympia beamshot

    Control Shot is here

    I also have a new Gloworm beamshot that was taken with my new camera. The setting was set same as the older camera but the resolution is better. The Gloworm is here

    I can only imagine how much glare you will get back running 3600 lumens from your Niterider. The reflection of the photon slicing through the air and reflection back will only make it that much harder to find a strong thrower for helmet light. Personally I would rather run two 1800 lumens light on bar than one single 3600 lumens lighthead. Running two lights allow you to aim them outward for a wider beam and it also allow you to aim one higher and one lower.

  17. #17
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    Wich piko? 750 lumen or 900 lumen?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcoL View Post
    Wich piko? 750 lumen or 900 lumen?
    I believe he has the Piko 3 (900 lumen) version.

  19. #19
    TCW
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    The Gloworm looks impressive. With the optic choices and lower price, compared to Olympia, seems like a no brainer.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    androgen, I think the problem you have is that you have the brightest lamp made mounted on the bars. You are going to find it very difficult to find a lamp bright enough to compliment the lamp you are using on the bars. The XML-3. Gloworm X2, Gemini Duo all of these might work but chances are your Niterider 3600 is going to over power them.. You might have to consider a custom helmet set up. I'd look at the "Troutie Lights" or start asking questions over on the DIY forum. Maybe someone there might be able to give you some better ideas. I do know a while back that someone over on CPF was selling a six-up DIY host designed for XP-G. Getting something like that but fit with the newer XP-E2 might yield a 6-up lamp with awesome throw. Maybe as much as 1600-1700 lumen OTF. The set-up I'm talking about is duel triples and looks small enough to make a good helmet lamp. I'd probably buy one myself but I'm not ready to go there yet.
    Hey Cat.
    Possibly the guy you are thinking of is Matt Malone. He is a member on these forums as well as CPF and goes by the name of "matthewm".
    The light you're thinking of is most likely his Gili 6.
    I own one and use it as my helmet light. It is still useful to have despite having approx 5000 real lumens on my bars by way of two x IBlaast IX's from Nightlightning (Nightlightning claim 3600 lumens per IBlaast IX).
    I only saw Matt the other day, and left my Gili 6 with him for an upgade. He's going to try both XPG-2 and XP-E2 for me and see which works the best.
    He still has some for sale too.

    Danger! This beast may burn your eyes. Literally! - Mtbr Forums

    FS; Double, Triple (or single) XP-G Host 2200 Lumen

  21. #21
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    I would look at the Gemini Duo that soon to be released it has more throw than the Olympia and it sounds like there are spot lenses in the works
    I have one ordered to use as a helmet light with a Olympia on the bars.


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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by colleen c View Post
    The video was taken with a Contour HD. Since then I found out that the Contour is one of the worst low light video POV camera. I now use a Replay and that is so much better in low light video than the contour. If you want some better representation of the Olympia beam pattern, I have some taken from my older Fuji S5000 camera. Bottle on ground at 100ft, tree is about 185 ft.


    Sample of Olympia beamshot
    damn that's a huge difference. it looks like a lazer ( or a Fenix flashlight if you will ) on your contour but actually looks wider than i would like on the Fuji. of course i am sure the Fuji is much closer to reality.

    Quote Originally Posted by colleen c View Post

    I also have a new Gloworm beamshot that was taken with my new camera. The setting was set same as the older camera but the resolution is better. The Gloworm is here
    i like the beam on the Gloworm better - it looks more "spot" with better throw - which i think is what you want on a helmet. but i don't really like the design of gloworm that much - i think the metal foot that connects only on one side is about as dumb as it gets. compared to piko that mount probably weighs 5 times as much and doesn't work half as well. don't know how to justify the switch.

    Quote Originally Posted by colleen c View Post
    Personally I would rather run two 1800 lumens light on bar than one single 3600 lumens lighthead. Running two lights allow you to aim them outward for a wider beam and it also allow you to aim one higher and one lower.
    well the 3600 sort of IS two lights. one reason i went for it is because the two lights comprising the 3600 are actually different - one is a hair wider and one a hair narrower - and what it does is it cancels out the rings that each individual light produces with its optics defects. on niterider 1800 beamshot you can see a ring, but because each side of 3600 produces different diameter ring they sort of cancel out and blend into a nice smooth spread.

    and with one light you only have to switch the levels on one button, and you only have to charge one battery.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldAusDigger View Post
    Hey Cat.
    Possibly the guy you are thinking of is Matt Malone. He is a member on these forums as well as CPF and goes by the name of "matthewm".
    The light you're thinking of is most likely his Gili 6.
    I own one and use it as my helmet light. It is still useful to have despite having approx 5000 real lumens on my bars by way of two x IBlaast IX's from Nightlightning (Nightlightning claim 3600 lumens per IBlaast IX).
    I only saw Matt the other day, and left my Gili 6 with him for an upgade. He's going to try both XPG-2 and XP-E2 for me and see which works the best.
    He still has some for sale too.

    Danger! This beast may burn your eyes. Literally! - Mtbr Forums



    FS; Double, Triple (or single) XP-G Host 2200 Lumen
    Big time thanks on that Diggs. Let me know how it all works out. I'm betting the XPG-2 will be brighter but that the XPE-2 will look better as a helmet lamp with a more intense center area.

    Thanks for the links, I'll be saving those.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldAusDigger View Post
    Hey Cat.
    Possibly the guy you are thinking of is Matt Malone. He is a member on these forums as well as CPF and goes by the name of "matthewm".
    The light you're thinking of is most likely his Gili 6.
    I own one and use it as my helmet light. It is still useful to have despite having approx 5000 real lumens on my bars by way of two x IBlaast IX's from Nightlightning (Nightlightning claim 3600 lumens per IBlaast IX).
    I only saw Matt the other day, and left my Gili 6 with him for an upgade. He's going to try both XPG-2 and XP-E2 for me and see which works the best.
    He still has some for sale too.

    Danger! This beast may burn your eyes. Literally! - Mtbr Forums

    FS; Double, Triple (or single) XP-G Host 2200 Lumen
    those look awesome but honestly i'm not going to buy a DIY light. for the price of toyota camry you can buy a couple years old ford mustang twin turboed to horsepower beyond any Ferrari ... but you would be a moron if you bought it. the "performance" of a camry may be nonexistent but it works, it is safe, reliable and comes with warranty. with a 700 hp mustang however within a month most likely either it either will not run, or you will have killed yourself.

    i just don't see the point of taking the risk.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    ....I like the beam on the Gloworm better - it looks more "spot" with better throw - which i think is what you want on a helmet. but i don't really like the design of gloworm that much - i think the metal foot that connects only on one side is about as dumb as it gets. compared to piko that mount probably weighs 5 times as much and doesn't work half as well. don't know how to justify the switch.
    Actually the helmet mount on the Gloworm works rather well. The "one strut" approach works fine. I have no idea why you would think it to weigh 5x as much. They both look to be about the same size. The Piko helmet mount base uses two struts and has a cut-out on the base. The Gloworm helmet mount has only one strut and no *cut-out. If there's a weight difference it would have to be in single digit gms. ( *Heck drill a couple holes on the base if it make that much difference. )

    The Piko mount looks nice. I'm sure it works fine. Looks like it has a nice strap. The Gloworm uses only a Velco strap. The new versions are including a velcro strap with buckle which should be easier to work with.

    Like you I wondered how a remote switch would work on the helmet. Actually I find it works rather well, better than I thought it would. The advantage of the remote is that you don't have to worry about knocking the aim of the lamp off when changing modes as you never have to touch the lamp head if you don't want to. On the down side setting it up takes a couple minutes longer. Not a big issue as I see it.

    Can't wait to see what optics the Gemini people offer on their Duo model.

    Androgen...I think you can order that double/triple set-up pre-built and ready to go. ( **If I'm wrong about that someone correct me ) You even get to chose what LED tint or bin you want. These are really nice lamps with well thought out heat sinking and reliable high power drivers. I'm sure the builder offers some guarantee cause if he didn't he would quickly lose his reputation on CPF if there were problems with the build. As far as I know anyone that bought one loved it.
    Last edited by Cat-man-do; 10-04-2012 at 05:10 AM.

  26. #26
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    A real world non biased shoot out (actual riding use test) between the Piko (German), Gemini duo (Canadian), and gloworm x2 (New Zealand) would be nice to see. All the new 2013 models of these lights. They are all roughly about the same size from pictures outputs at 900, 1400, 1200 lumens respectively so it would be interesting to see who would win and why.

    Piko head: 55g
    Gemini duo head: 63g
    Gloworm x2 head: 80g

    Piko : factory pre determined output levels (user picks from a couple diff factory settings)
    Gemini : user selectable output levels in any order from 10-100% in 10% increments.
    Gemini : user selectable brightness for flash as well
    Gloworm: factory pre determined output levels (user picks from a couple diff factory settings)

    Piko : pre determined beam pattern 22 degrees
    Gemini : pre determined beam pattern 15 degrees
    Gloworm : 2 lens system. Spot/flood. User selectable.

    Hmmm..... If I had the funds I would most likely conduct this comparo.
    Last edited by cue003; 10-04-2012 at 06:05 AM.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    Actually the helmet mount on the Gloworm works rather well. The "one strut" approach works fine. I have no idea why you would think it to weigh 5x as much. They both look to be about the same size. The Piko helmet mount base uses two struts and has a cut-out on the base. The Gloworm helmet mount has only one strut and no *cut-out. If there's a weight difference it would have to be in single digit gms. ( *Heck drill a couple holes on the base if it make that much difference. )

    The Piko mount looks nice. I'm sure it works fine. Looks like it has a nice strap. The Gloworm uses only a Velco strap. The new versions are including a velcro strap with buckle which should be easier to work with.

    Like you I wondered how a remote switch would work on the helmet. Actually I find it works rather well, better than I thought it would. The advantage of the remote is that you don't have to worry about knocking the aim of the lamp off when changing modes as you never have to touch the lamp head if you don't want to. On the down side setting it up takes a couple minutes longer. Not a big issue as I see it.

    Can't wait to see what optics the Gemini people offer on their Duo model.

    Androgen...I think you can order that double/triple set-up pre-built and ready to go. ( **If I'm wrong about that someone correct me ) You even get to chose what LED tint or bin you want. These are really nice lamps with well thought out heat sinking and reliable high power drivers. I'm sure the builder offers some guarantee cause if he didn't he would quickly lose his reputation on CPF if there were problems with the build. As far as I know anyone that bought one loved it.
    i guess remote switch is not a bad idea. for one thing the lamp can get hot, and also obviously i don't want to move the lamp. good points.

    i still think the mount is crap. diffference may be in single grams, but it is probably triple the weight anyway.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by cue003 View Post
    A real world non biased shoot out (actual riding use test) between the Piko (German), Gemini duo (Canadian), and gloworm x2 (New Zealand) would be nice to see. All the new 2013 models of these lights. They are all roughly about the same size from pictures outputs at 900, 1400, 1200 lumens respectively so it would be interesting to see who would win and why.

    Piko head: 55g
    Gemini duo head: 63g
    Gloworm x2 head: 80g

    Piko : factory pre determined output levels
    Gemini : user selectable output levels in any order from 10-100% in 10% increments.
    Gemini : user selectable brightness for flash as well
    Gloworm: factory pre determined output levels

    Piko : pre determined beam pattern 22 degrees
    Gemini : pre determined beam pattern 15 degrees
    Gloworm : 2 lens system. Spot/flood. User selectable.

    Hmmm..... If I had the funds I would most likely conduct this comparo.
    i think you can chagne output level modes on piko - but i haven't tried it. it is so weak i would always run it at maximum level on which it won't overheat.

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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    i think you can chagne output level modes on piko - but i haven't tried it. it is so weak i would always run it at maximum level on which it won't overheat.

    You are correct. You can change output on the Piko. I meant you cant change it to exactly what an individual wants. They must select from what the factory prederterminded was acceptable levels and go with that.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by cue003 View Post
    You are correct. You can change output on the Piko. I meant you cant change it to exactly what an individual wants. They must select from what the factory prederterminded was acceptable levels and go with that.
    no i believe you can change different programs - you can have 3 level, 4 level etc. in niterider you can select between 1 factory and 4 custom programs. not sure how it works in piko.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    those look awesome but honestly i'm not going to buy a DIY light. for the price of toyota camry you can buy a couple years old ford mustang twin turboed to horsepower beyond any Ferrari ... but you would be a moron if you bought it. the "performance" of a camry may be nonexistent but it works, it is safe, reliable and comes with warranty. with a 700 hp mustang however within a month most likely either it either will not run, or you will have killed yourself.

    i just don't see the point of taking the risk.
    That might be the worst comparison I've ever read on mtbr.
    "It looks flexy"

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    Androgen, I can understand why you would have doubts about the helmet light that CatManDo and I were talking about. But I sincerely believe that it is by far the best option for you out of all of the lights mentioned in this thread.
    I believe this for several reasons:
    1) The lumen output is much higher. Even running XPG R5's and a Maxflex, like my one was, it will exeed all the others mentioned already easily. You can also run Quazzles XPG modules in this housing which equates to approx 1400 lumens per triple. And with the newer emitters like Matt will be trying in mine, it will only be better again.
    2) It is not a DIY kit only. Matt will sell you a comlete system ready to go if you want. He did this for me and charged me an extra $30 AUD for this service (approx $32 US). You can spec what you want in regard to connecters, batteries, optics etc.
    3) Hand assembled quality. He is a one man show and needs to get it right first time. Little things like the quality of his soldering to how the thermal paste is applied all add up to ensure a very good product.
    4) The actual housing is a standout feature. Designed by Matt but machined by a third party, it really is superb. It is comprehensively intelligent in regard to thermal management.
    5) And you know it's not going to be assembled in a Third World country, but the price doesn't reflect this.
    6) Yes you will get a warranty. Absolutely anything you're not happy with he will fix for you. And yes he is based in Australia, but I can't see that being a deal breaker for people in the Northern Hemisphere - it just means you'll have to wait a couple of extra days for shipping in the unlikely event you'll need to return the light for any repairs.

    On top of all this, you'll find Matt to be very honest and easy to deal with. He will jump through hoops to make sure you get what you want. And he's a guy who has a degree in engineering, so he knows his stuff.

    Androgen, you seem like you have very high expectations from your bike lights (as do I). You wont be dissapointed if you go down the path of the Gili 6

    PM me if you want the contact details for Matt.

    Cheers,

    Digger.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldAusDigger View Post
    Androgen, I can understand why you would have doubts about the helmet light that CatManDo and I were talking about. But I sincerely believe that it is by far the best option for you out of all of the lights mentioned in this thread.
    I believe this for several reasons:
    1) The lumen output is much higher. Even running XPG R5's and a Maxflex, like my one was, it will exeed all the others mentioned already easily. You can also run Quazzles XPG modules in this housing which equates to approx 1400 lumens per triple. And with the newer emitters like Matt will be trying in mine, it will only be better again.
    2) It is not a DIY kit only. Matt will sell you a comlete system ready to go if you want. He did this for me and charged me an extra $30 AUD for this service (approx $32 US). You can spec what you want in regard to connecters, batteries, optics etc.
    3) Hand assembled quality. He is a one man show and needs to get it right first time. Little things like the quality of his soldering to how the thermal paste is applied all add up to ensure a very good product.
    4) The actual housing is a standout feature. Designed by Matt but machined by a third party, it really is superb. It is comprehensively intelligent in regard to thermal management.
    5) And you know it's not going to be assembled in a Third World country, but the price doesn't reflect this.
    6) Yes you will get a warranty. Absolutely anything you're not happy with he will fix for you. And yes he is based in Australia, but I can't see that being a deal breaker for people in the Northern Hemisphere - it just means you'll have to wait a couple of extra days for shipping in the unlikely event you'll need to return the light for any repairs.

    On top of all this, you'll find Matt to be very honest and easy to deal with. He will jump through hoops to make sure you get what you want. And he's a guy who has a degree in engineering, so he knows his stuff.

    Androgen, you seem like you have very high expectations from your bike lights (as do I). You wont be dissapointed if you go down the path of the Gili 6

    PM me if you want the contact details for Matt.

    Cheers,

    Digger.
    well for $270 i can have a 1800 lumen Niterider. that would be a system complete with all the accessories you might want - battery, charger, bar and helmet mounts, extension cord etc. it would also have nice touches like battery level indicator. it would also have something else that is infinitely valuable - tons of unbiased user reviews all over the net. if a DIY light can have a couple more lumens for a couple less bucks - really does not matter.

    you go DIY when you want to build something that is impossible to buy anywhere at any price. some people build horn subwoofers that weigh 400 pounds and hit 20hz @ 140 decibels. some people build cars that have 1,500 horsepower and hit quarter mile in 7 seconds. some people build bike lights with 49 water cooled XML LEDs and half a kilowatt of power. but what would be the point of building your own product ( or buying an assembled DIY kit ) that is not significantly different from affordable commercial offerings ? sorry - makes no sense to me.

    i want something that is tried and true, has user reviews, independent lumen / lux measurements and independently taken beam pattern shots.

    ultimately if all else fails there is always Wilma. if for some reason i determine that i can't live without 2,000 lumens on my head i would rather go Wilma than a DIY product.

  34. #34
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    No worries. Just trying to give my honest opinion based on my honest experience.

    Have you not heard much negitive press about Niterider?
    They may have first rate products now in 2012 - I don't know. But I'm fairly sure in the past I've read about some Niterider failures on this forum. Enough for me to lock in some doubts about the brand deep in my memory bank somewhere anyway.
    You seem to have a different approach in deciding what to purchase from what I do.
    I'll often go for a limited run item or a custom product (providing I can afford it) to a massed produced item. Even if the product hasn't yet been proven to be superior, I'll consider all the pros & cons and if looks good I'll give it a shot.

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    Thanks John, a perfect example of diminished returns. The brighter your bar lamp the harder it is to get a helmet lamp that truly compliments the bar lamp. Usually I like the helmet lamp to be brighter with longer throw but nowadays that's almost impossible without getting a custom build.

    In a nut shell I think you can sum this up by saying it's better to use a two lamp system that creates a combined 2000 lumen than to get one lamp that is over 2000 lumen.
    Actually, I think what it gets down to is what is the lumen density per square area of the beam hot spot (i.e. lux). For example, if I had a 500 lumen light where all 500 lumens are in the 1 meter square hot spot that would appear brighter in that place than say may 2400 lumen Wilma that might have a bright spot that is 10 meters square. That's why the 750 lumen Piko is a nice complement to the 1500 Wilma.

    So that means it's much more complicated than just looking at the lumen rating. You really have to figure out how tight you want the beam to be on your helmet - and I'd recommend that it be noticeably tighter than the light on your bars.

    For just this reason, I'm going to be talking to Gretna today about the new Piko and it's beam width compared to the new Wilma. Right now, for kicks, I'm riding with twin Wilmas (one at 1500 on the helmet and one at 2400 on the bars in medium) but liked the combination of a Piko/Wilma better with one tighter on the helmet instead of two wider beams. If that's the case, I'll probably sell my 1500 lumen Wilma.

    J.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldAusDigger View Post
    No worries. Just trying to give my honest opinion based on my honest experience.

    Have you not heard much negitive press about Niterider?
    They may have first rate products now in 2012 - I don't know. But I'm fairly sure in the past I've read about some Niterider failures on this forum. Enough for me to lock in some doubts about the brand deep in my memory bank somewhere anyway.
    You seem to have a different approach in deciding what to purchase from what I do.
    I'll often go for a limited run item or a custom product (providing I can afford it) to a massed produced item. Even if the product hasn't yet been proven to be superior, I'll consider all the pros & cons and if looks good I'll give it a shot.
    yes i have seen negative reviews of niterider. but there are also negative reviews for porsches and bmws. i am not saying niterider is a top brand - not at all - just that some problems are to be expected. better the devil you know. i would rather buy a brand that is used by thousands and known to have some problems than a brand that is not known to have any problems because nobody has ever used it.

    the quality on my niterider 3600 is so-so. it is not in the same league as my Lupine and Dinotte, but also it is evident that Niterider did not want to cut corners on the product - with almost every part of the product they gave you MORE than they had to. it makes me feel good to own a product that i can tell the company tried to make as best as they could - even if their expertise was not quite on the level of the Germans.

    kinda like with food - better to eat something like steak which you know is not the healthiest thing, but people have been eating it for thousands of years, than take some miracle drug that is supposed to make you live forever except nobody has ever tested it.

    there is actually a product that i am DYING to try:

    bike after dark - fireball mark 2 - Mtbr Forums

    but i can't allow myself to do it, because it is not from a company that i have confidence in.
    Last edited by androgen; 10-04-2012 at 10:41 AM.

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldAusDigger View Post
    They may have first rate products now in 2012 - I don't know.
    i don't know either, but damn it looks cool. check out that mount, and those cooling fins - badass !

    that mount has centering offset, two joints on two axes, and a cleat release. lupine mount ? nothing. does it mean niterider mount is better ? no. it means they tried. but to me, that in itself is a good thing.

    also the rubber on niterider mount is not even like rubber - it is like glue - mega sticky - it holds in place even without tightening that huge bolt.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Helmet lights to outperform Piko-photo-1-.jpg  


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    what's the point on counting grams / weight ?
    if you want more lumens, it's going to be more weight,
    just with the batteries alone !

    most of the piko users, don't even run it at full power,
    since they don't want to buy another battery, or change it midway.
    and like the setup on the helmet. Usually have a handlebar light, sometimes
    another piko with larger battery for handlebar use.
    the gloworm mount is solid, it is not crap. it is metal, so it is heavier then plastic.
    my buddy, a road weight weenie , with a carbon fiber bike, rides a piko helmet, and gloworm handlebar on the road.
    off-road, most riders, don't want to carry or pay for a larger batterie pack.
    they do like to show off, mine is brighter than yours.
    but when it boils down to , .... they don't want to carry or pay for a larger batterie pack.
    ----
    since you are happy with a niterider, just get one for the helmet and be done with it.
    ---
    custom stuff is always going to be more expensive.
    but for a niterider, as soon, as it's out of production, and stock is gone,....
    you won't even get parts for it ..... thought it makes a neat paperweight
    already have a couple of paperweights, with the niterider label on it.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by rschultz101 View Post
    but for a niterider, as soon, as it's out of production, and stock is gone,....
    you won't even get parts for it ..... thought it makes a neat paperweight
    already have a couple of paperweights, with the niterider label on it.
    so what would you rather use - Lupine ? they seem to support their older products pretty well ? but i don't know how important that is or isn't. for example Lupine Charger ONE still supports Ni-MH batteries ... but why would you want to be riding with Ni-MH batteries in 2012 ? as well you can upgrade your old Betty to 2,200 lumens ... but why ? when you can just buy a new Wilma head ?

    also is it true that when you mount lupine on the handlebars you can't aim it left or right ? to me that seems to suggest that you would need two of them for symmetry.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    ....

    also is it true that when you mount lupine on the handlebars you can't aim it left or right ? to me that seems to suggest that you would need two of them for symmetry.
    You can adjust the Lupine lights left to right... But it depends on the mount you get. If you are using the mount that puts the light center in front of your stem (the rigid one) then why would you still need to adjust left or right? At that point you should look at the alignment of your stem/bars.

    The loop mount allows for adjustments left to right. Cause at that point they are designed from the standpoint that the light may not be mounted in the center of the bars but rather off to one side or the other.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by cue003 View Post
    You can adjust the Lupine lights left to right... But it depends on the mount you get. If you are using the mount that puts the light center in front of your stem (the rigid one) then why would you still need to adjust left or right? At that point you should look at the alignment of your stem/bars.

    The loop mount allows for adjustments left to right. Cause at that point they are designed from the standpoint that the light may not be mounted in the center of the bars but rather off to one side or the other.
    HOW does it adjust ? is there any video or diagram or picture ? from the looks of it - it would seem impossible.

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    so what would you rather use - Lupine ? they seem to support their older products pretty well ? but i don't know how important that is or isn't. for example Lupine Charger ONE still supports Ni-MH batteries ... but why would you want to be riding with Ni-MH batteries in 2012 ? as well you can upgrade your old Betty to 2,200 lumens ... but why ? when you can just buy a new Wilma head ?

    also is it true that when you mount lupine on the handlebars you can't aim it left or right ? to me that seems to suggest that you would need two of them for symmetry.
    You may be over-thinking the whole light thing.

    I think the upgrades may be coming to head pressed on one end by the rapid increase in LED efficiency and brightness and on the other end by sort of a top end need for lumens at around 3000 or so real OTF lumens.

    J.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    You may be over-thinking the whole light thing.

    I think the upgrades may be coming to head pressed on one end by the rapid increase in LED efficiency and brightness and on the other end by sort of a top end need for lumens at around 3000 or so real OTF lumens.

    J.
    ok, so what does that mean for Niterider and Lupine ?

    also, John, did you switch back to Piko from Wilma 1500 on your helmet ? and if so why ?

  44. #44
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    androgen, you seem to be too stuck up on "the brands" that equivalent/superior products pass you by and you'd ought not to know any better. Open up.

  45. #45
    TCW
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    I'm with androgen on the brands. Why, makers of the DIY lights I have are no more.

    I have a couple Niterider MiNewt 600s. I called Niterider the other day telling them the handlebar mounts suck. They sent two new mounts that got here in 3 days. So, I get the brands thing.

    I am still willing to give Gloworm and/or Gemini a go. Hope they don't cheese out.

  46. #46
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    Cool-blue Rhythm

    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    HOW does it adjust ? is there any video or diagram or picture ? from the looks of it - it would seem impossible.
    With the O-ring Lupine mounts there is a small amount of adjustment you can make by loosening the screw under the mount, adjusting left or right, then tightening the screw. This allows you to get the aim straight ahead. I use my Betty with the o-ring mount and switch between bikes easily. Once you adjust the mount there is no need to do any more adjusting as I always use it on the right side of my handlebars and it works on all 4 of my bikes this way just fine.

  47. #47
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    Cool-blue Rhythm

    Double post

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    ok, so what does that mean for Niterider and Lupine ?

    also, John, did you switch back to Piko from Wilma 1500 on your helmet ? and if so why ?
    I'm thinking about it. The Piko has a narrower beam (22 degrees) than the Wilma and it's likely that the lux on the ground is brighter than the 1500 lumen but 26 degree Wilma. I prefer a more concentrated beam and more throw on the helmet. I'm also investigating a 1200 lumen 16 degree older Wilma. Don't get me wrong, 3900 lumens of light is a lot of light.

    J.

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    the weight is outstanding, but the pattern:

    Speed II on helmet and Gemini Olympia on bar - YouTube

    is pretty horrible. i think i will pass.
    I have an olympia and that video doesn't accomplish anything. It looks like the olympia is focused about 10 feet front of the bike, which isn't ideal to say the least.

    The olympia has a great pattern. Its nice and wide with no hot spot.

  50. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by TCW View Post
    I'm with androgen on the brands. Why, makers of the DIY lights I have are no more.
    My bet is that within the next couple of years we see some big consolidation in this business and a drive towards cost reduction. The little guys will get bought up by the bigger guys and the hobbyists will disappear (i.e. DIY). The relatively high price of high performance LEDs and the relatively small market of very high performance very high cost lights to exist. That's all about to change especially since we're about to easily get to the lumens from dual car headlights.

    You can see the more consumerish companies like Cateye and Lezyne getting interested in this. When the cost comes down further, they'll be all over this because the pricing will get into the commuter/consumer range.

    That's the main reason to stick with the larger brands. They have a better chance of surviving this over the next couple of years. The door is closing very fast for other players to enter and grow organically.

    J.

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