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  1. #1
    Long Live the Gorn!
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    JetLites A-51 Review

    Well I finally got a chance to try out my new Jet Lites A-51. This is Jetlites entry into the LED market, and it is Made in the USA, 700 Lumens for $199 ...$229 if you want the most excellent Bar Mount which I purchased.
    http://www.jetlites.com/complete-systems-a-51/

    Specs from the web site.
    Light Head
    720 Lumen LED
    95g (3.3oz) Light Head
    Dimensions: 1.58"OD x 2.38"
    Beam color: 6500k/White

    Battery:
    7.4v Lithium Ion
    4400Mah
    250g (9oz) Battery
    IP-68 Rated thread lock waterproof connector
    *For use with A-51 Only
    Battery Run Times:
    Run Times: 3 Hours High, 5.5 Hours Low, >12 Hours Strobe

    So here is how it went.

    Experience:
    Charging was easy, safe and confidence inspiring. The charger shuts-off when the battery is completely charged. I disconnected and reconnected and after a minute or so it shut back off. The charger can get warm to the touch while charging but it never got "hot". The chargers LED indicator is pretty easy to follow as it is printed on the the charger itself but the documentation indicates a green LED which is not on the charger. Looks like the docs and final product are a bit out of sync.


    JetLites A-51 Review-img_1121-medium-.jpg

    Set up was pretty easy, the handle bar attachment is best I have seen, easy and secure on, centered and adjustable.


    JetLites A-51 Review-img_1116-medium-.jpg

    Interestingly it interfered a bit with my garmin (short Stem) but I just loosened it up and rotated it a bit forward and it was fine.

    JetLites A-51 Review-img_1118-medium-.jpg
    JetLites A-51 Review-img_1119-medium-.jpg

    I did have a small issue with the attaching the battery pack to the frame but I got it to work ok ... although not exactly the way I would want (of course my frame is Square which doesn't help so it is not most conducive), The velcro seemed a bit short but it was OK and will be fine when I put a bottle cage. It can also be setup up on the handlebar, but I am not a big fan of that. This could have all been pilot error. The documentation is sparse. NOTE : I did find the installation guide on line so kudos to that, but nothing in that about attaching the battery, I guess it is supposed to be idiot proof...what does that say about me.

    JetLites A-51 Review-img_1120-medium-.jpg

    The beam pattern is nice/difference a little less "hotspot / center" than the MagicShine , the center brightness is a little more spread out/smoother transition. It seems a little "Less Bright" than the MS, I think it is just the different beam pattern because according to the MTBR LUX test they are almost equal with the A-51 have a little more overall brightness. I know that is subjective, maybe I will get used to it. It did seem brighter than my TriNewt and size and weight wise the TriNewt is a beast compared to the A-51. I had no problem seeing the trail and I did feel that the periphery was fairly well lit.

    Here is the MTBR beam pattern shot :
    http://reviews.mtbr.com/blog/2011-bike-lights-shootout/


    Here are my beam shots (not professional, always hardest part)...looking down from the gate at the top of Blackstar (sorry probably not that helpful) I did not do a great test. I will say that there was *much* more flood/spread that shows up but I do think it shows the smooth spot area, instead of a real "hot spot" with a quick "roll off. I will try to take a better shot later / next time and update
    JetLites A-51 Review-img_1111-medium-.jpg


    Here is a much more representative shot Also from MTBR



    A few more Beam shots from an MTBR poster
    JetLites A-51, anyone get one yet?

    Conclusions:

    Pros:

    * Build Quality
    * Good Warranty
    * Great Connectors and Mounts, including the snap away helmet mount.
    * Sealed Battery
    * Lite Light Head
    * Smart Charger
    * Pretty light weight overall.
    * Price per Lumen at $199

    Areas for Improvement:


    * Battery Mount : Just Need more / longer Velcro for oversized or square tubing.
    * No Low Batter Indicator

    Subjective: Brightness and beam pattern
    Beam pattern is not the Hot Spot with faint flood, it is has a wider center spot with a more even transition. I am still getting used to that, it may take a few more rides.

    Summary:
    Overall the A-51 is a 4 out of 5 particularly Price ($199) per Performance per Quality. I do think however I was looking for a little more "Umph" maybe I should have bought a brighter light? Maybe My eyes are getting old, but for the price, I think it would be hard to beat.

    With that said I survived just fine on my Blackstar ride, I felt like I could see pretty well, I did not over run the light and I was flowing pretty good but I am not a night speed demon (although I did hit speeds between 20-25mph) and maybe after a while I got a little more used to the "smoother center beam". I will add for completeness sake I also used my MiNewt Helmet light combined as I always do in conjunction with my bar light. The duo together made a fine combination.

    I didn't really miss the low battery indicator as I usually climb on medium and switch to High on descents, plus my night rides are usually less than 3 hours. I was out for 2:40 on the ride, some on medium, no sense of battery life issues.

    It is so well constructed and lightweight that its a keeper for sure, and if I end up getting a brighter bar lite, I believe it will become my powerhouse Helmet light with its awesome helmet mount.

    POST NOTE: JetLites contacted me about the "Small Filing Needed" (see Here) on the mount, I noticed that but I just thought that is was a really tight secure fit. I filed it, works great and they sent me a new "chute" since I scuffed mine up a bit, very cool upfront and proactive, so they get "insta-kudos" for customer service.

    And JFTR : I am not affiliated with any product or retailer company, just a Joe Mtn Biker.
    Last edited by bvader; 12-05-2010 at 07:20 PM.

  2. #2
    Do It Yourself
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    Welcome to MTBR. Awesome first post and great review. Thanks!
    Long Live Long Rides

  3. #3
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    Nice review. When the battery run down, what happens? Does the light cut off? Any warning such as the light blinking or anything?

  4. #4
    Long Live the Gorn!
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    Quote Originally Posted by MtbMacgyver
    Nice review. When the battery run down, what happens? Does the light cut off? Any warning such as the light blinking or anything?
    Didn't get there yet, they do not recommend running the light for more than 10 minutes without airflow, so I guess some day I am going to just have to bring along another light, and ride more than 3 hours, and see what happens. I will sent support an email to ask what the "expected behavior" is.

  5. #5
    Long Live the Gorn!
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    Quote Originally Posted by bvader
    Didn't get there yet, they do not recommend running the light for more than 10 minutes without airflow, so I guess some day I am going to just have to bring along another light, and ride more than 3 hours, and see what happens. I will sent support an email to ask what the "expected behavior" is.
    From JetLites the expected behavior is "The Light Shuts Off when the battery reaches its cutoff point". I will be Riding Luge tomorrow night will see how it performs on the twisty bumpy ST.

  6. #6
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    Heh, my first time riding the Luge was at night with the crew from the Bike Company. I rode it a few days later in the day and was kinda freaked out that I had ridden it at night. That's a pretty intense trail to do for the first time at night. Fun though.

  7. #7
    Long Live the Gorn!
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    Ohhh...I have ridden The Luge many times day and night...just meant first time with the A-51. Of course now that I have said that I will be sure to take a header!

  8. #8
    you said.. Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by bvader
    Ohhh...I have ridden The Luge many times day and night...just meant first time with the A-51. Of course now that I have said that I will be sure to take a header!
    How was The Luge with the A-51? That is an awesome trail and I want to get a light. Did it work as advertised?
    This is my signature. There are many like it but this one is mine.

  9. #9
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    I would like to hear a review after some hours with it as well, I was thinking about ordering one but went on there site and seems they raised the price to $229 for the basic kit so it would be $259 with handlebar mount and i think that is pushing my limit.

  10. #10
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    That's probably because there were selling out in a couple weeks everytime they built up a quantity of them. When I got mine, they went through three months inventory in two weeks. Raising the price in those circumstances only makes sense.

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