Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 105
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874

    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    738
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874
    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 09:35 AM.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    32
    gloworm X2 - almost the same size as a Piko, but 1200 lumens - bloody brilliant, im well chuffed with mine

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874
    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 ?

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    32
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Cat-man-do's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    3,651
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: gticlay's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    6,590
    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
    TCW
    TCW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    472
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    1,602
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874
    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
    TCW
    TCW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    472
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874
    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
    TCW
    TCW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    472
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Cat-man-do's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    3,651
    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
    just a Newbie
    Reputation: colleen c's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    252
    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
    RIDE...
    Reputation: MarcoL's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    411
    Wich piko? 750 lumen or 900 lumen?

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    221
    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
    TCW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    472
    The Gloworm looks impressive. With the optic choices and lower price, compared to Olympia, seems like a no brainer.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    150
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Rakuman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    717
    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.


    Photobucket
    Photobucket
    I always type in bold cuz I'm blind as a bat
    For the Rich there is therapy!!!! for the rest of us we have Mountain Biking


  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Cat-man-do's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    3,651
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: androgen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    874
    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
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Cat-man-do's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    3,651
    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 04:10 AM.

Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •