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Thread: Regrets

  1. #1
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    Regrets

    do you have any bike light related regrets ?

    i regret getting Light & Motion Seca in RACE version instead of Enduro. i was so out of shape at the time that i thought 1.5 hours on High is enough, and i wanted that cute 3-cell battery, but having used both the 3 cell and the 6 cell batteries from L&M they're both quite compact ( compared to say NiteRider batteries which are bulky ) and there isn't that much difference in size between them. there is a significant difference in price between Race and Enduro however ... even so, for helmet use the Enduro makes more sense. it doesn't make sense to put a big light on your helmet and then not run it at full power because you don't have enough battery life. on the bars you might as well use two Race lights because it's not much more $ than a single Enduro, but on the helmet having two Race lights ... which is what i have ... is pretty heavy. and i end up running them at 1/2 power to save battery which is reta4ded because if i had only a single Enduro i would have saved money AND weight and still have the same light output.

    i also regret getting Philips SafeRide instead of Ixon IQ Speed. for the same exact reason - not enough battery life. accordging to my math the output of Ixon IQ Speed with dual light heads is similar to Philips SafeRide but offers 5 hours burn time instead of 2 hours for Philips. another reason not to get philips is the light is too heavy for a self-contained light and doesn't stay put - constantly sags. Ixon IQ speed light heads are several times lighter because they are not made out of metal and don't have batteries inside them. of course Ixon IQ Speed is almost 3 times the price of SafeRide but i would suggest if you have the money it is probably worth it.

    the Ixon IQ Speed is basically what SafeRide should have been, and SafeRide is basically Ixon IQ Speed 3-part system ( 2 lights and 1 battery ) stuffed into a self-contained package with resulting compromises to both optics, battery and mounting. the only thing SafeRide didn't compromise was cooling - being entirely cast-aluminum ( including battery compartment cover door ) it certainly has no problems in that regard.

    another major downside to SafeRide is the beam pattern ( compared to Ixon IQ Speed ) has artifacts due to having two LEDs sharing the same reflector ( Ixon IQ speed has a separate reflector for each LED ). the pattern is also not symmetrical due to the light being mounted on one side and inability to level the light's flat beam pattern with the horizon - so it is a bit cocked to the side. the Ixon IQ Speed has same problem but it has 2 light heads ( 2nd is optional, but i wouldn't even consider the system without it ) that mount symmetrically and even each other out.

    the SafeRide certainly is leaps and bounds ahead of Ixon IQ Speed when it comes to value considering that it includes everything ( batteries and charger ) but if they fail you can use any Ni-Mh AA batteries and any USB charger with it instead. by contrast replacement battery and / or charger for Ixon IQ Speed will cost you a pretty penny on top of initial investment that is already almost 3X as much as Philips Saferide.

    so really the only thing comparable between these two lights is output - one is strictly value oriented and another strictly performance oriented. being as broke as i am i went for the value, and i regret it.

    my logic with Philips was "hey its Amazon - if i don't like it i will return it" but i missed the return period ...

    well there you go.

    do you have any regrets ?

  2. #2
    SpoK Werks Handmade Goods
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    Regrets

    I loved my DiNotte lights till I broke a bulb and needed service. From then on it was a two month, many email chaotic mess to get my light repaired and paid for. Sadly, I'll never buy one of their lights again. Also, who names very different lights (the AA vs battery pack versions) the same when they have very different light engines and burn times. Dumb!

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    I don't think Dinotte even makes a light with bulbs. They are all LED. Your comment doesn't make sense to me.

    J.

  4. #4
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    Regrets

    It's one of the 200 AA models and my bike fell over one night on the Tour Divide Race.... I heard a pop and my light quit working when I needed it most. DiNotte referred to it as the bulb when they replaced whatever they replaced.... That's all I know. In any case, it was more about the "service" than the light.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1 Speed View Post
    I loved my DiNotte lights till I broke a bulb and needed service. From then on it was a two month, many email chaotic mess to get my light repaired and paid for. Sadly, I'll never buy one of their lights again. Also, who names very different lights (the AA vs battery pack versions) the same when they have very different light engines and burn times. Dumb!
    haha yeah Dinotte is pretty dumb when it comes to customer service and documentation. they can't even get the lumen ratings right on their page. because they have so many lights with the same name ( 400R ) when ordering i made a note about lumens to make sure i get the right one and my order was put on hold. why ? because the lumen rating i referred to was put on the page by mistake and they thought it was *I* who made the mistake with my order ...

    they did fix the number by now. now 400R is listed as 240 lumens. when i ordered it it was listed as 400 lumens.

  6. #6
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    FWIW, I've had a bunch of Dinotte lights - 200's, 400, 600, 800 and the 400R and the 300R. I've found their customer service to be superb and their lights are tanks. Everyone screws up sooner or later and it's too bad it had to be you (and how many years ago was that???) but I feel your pain.

    @androgen - the 400 and 400R are old lights (like 5+ years old). At that time, before some of the mfgs like L&M, Lezyne and Lupine started pushing true lumen ratings, the practice was to pretty much name them at the theoretical lumen rating or lumens at the LED (not OTF). There were also no really consistent testing processes either. The whole thing got ridiculous to the point where some of the Chinese knockoffs would have lumen claims inflated by 2 and 3X what they actually put out. For Dinotte, obviously it wouldn't make sense to go back and rename all their lights - and it's a testament to their lights that so many of their older models are still in demand. On the other hand, IIRC, you've bought and returned so many lights that I'm not sure you're the ideal customer either.

    J.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    the 400 and 400R are old lights (like 5+ years old). At that time, before some of the mfgs like L&M, Lezyne and Lupine started pushing true lumen ratings, the practice was to pretty much name them at the theoretical lumen rating or lumens at the LED (not OTF). There were also no really consistent testing processes either. The whole thing got ridiculous to the point where some of the Chinese knockoffs would have lumen claims inflated by 2 and 3X what they actually put out. For Dinotte, obviously it wouldn't make sense to go back and rename all their lights - and it's a testament to their lights that so many of their older models are still in demand. On the other hand, IIRC, you've bought and returned so many lights that I'm not sure you're the ideal customer either.

    J.
    obviously i still think Dinotte tail light is the best of what is available ( don't consider DesignShine DS-500 to be "available" ). i have few complaints about the light - it is very well made and accessorized and performs very well. but the company / website could be run a bit better - although it cold be worse as well.

    as for returning a lot of lights - i don't see any problem with doing this because i don't buy lights with the INTENTION of returning them. returning an inferior product and replacing it with a superior one rewards good manufacturers / designers and punishes bad ones which is how free market is supposed to work.

    if everybody settled for whatever trash they ended up buying whether it worked or not there would be very little incentive for manufacturers to deliver quality or performance. why reward sloppiness ? we should reward excellence and hard work.

    i do a lot of research before buying ANYTHING. i read reviews, browse forums, look at pictures, videos, try to understand how the product works etc. if after doing all this i still end up with a product that doesn't meet my needs i see no reason why i should be the one to bear the cost of this mistake when i had done everything i could to avoid it, while the manufacturer in most cases has done everything they could to CONCEAL any flaws of their product, and to make sure i do NOT figure out that their product is wrong for me.

    if the manufacturer begged me not to buy their product, and explained to me over and over that there are better products from other makers, and made dozens of videos and pictures and tests to prove to me that their product is INFERIOR to the competition, and i insisted that i want to buy it anyway THEN i would have no moral right to return it ...

  8. #8
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    How many lights have you bought in the last two years and then how many have you returned? Just curious, seems like a lot.

    Also might be a good metric on how effective your research is.


    J.

  9. #9
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    I have no light regrets, except not getting into it sooner.

    My Dinotte XML3 has taken way more abuse than it should be expected to.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    How many lights have you bought in the last two years and then how many have you returned? Just curious, seems like a lot.

    Also might be a good metric on how effective your research is.

    J.
    no it wouldn't be a good metric on effectiveness of my research. the price / performance ratio of the final result would be a good metric.

  11. #11
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    Well, if you can't buy a light and get it right 95% of the time, then why bother with your "research"?

    You never answered the other question about how many lights you bought and returned.

    J.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    Well, if you can't buy a light and get it right 95% of the time, then why bother with your "research"?

    You never answered the other question about how many lights you bought and returned.

    J.
    that's ridiculous. people change wives 2, 3, 4 times. you're telling me i can't change a light.

    even Apple doesn't hit a home run every time.

    companies like Google and Samsung only produce about 1 hit for every 10 products they make, and they're still market leaders.

    you're telling me i have to deliver on the dime 95 times out of 100 even when i don't really stand to lose anything by making a mistake ? if i could do that Apple should be knocking on my door with 500 million dollar check begging me to be their CEO.

    it is also impossible to make perfect decisions without experience. research cannot substitute for direct hands-on experience no matter how good it is. before i had hands-on experience with good lights my success rate was low. it is now much higher.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    Well, if you can't buy a light and get it right 95% of the time, then why bother with your "research"?

    You never answered the other question about how many lights you bought and returned.

    J.
    and to answer your question, last year i returned 3 out of 3 lights that i bought.

    this year i returned 1 and cancelled 2 more ( before they shipped ) out of 13, and kept 10. so i kept 10 out of 11 lights that were delivered to me, which is more than 90%.

    now if you add to this the Philips SafeRide and the two Seca 1700 Race that i *regret* ( but not returning for whatever reasons ) then my overall success rate this year is only 7 out of 11 lights, which is about two thirds.

    however i would not have made these mistakes if i was riding regularly. because i wasn't i had no way to estimate how much run time i would need from the batteries. after riding for only a few weeks my endurance improved a lot more than i expected which caused me to run out of battery life on all 3 of my headlights. of course you will say i should have expected this - but not really - because i have had so much bad luck with getting sidelined with injuries in the past few years that really there wasn't much reason for me to expect this.

    so far the only individual i can think of who i think is better at his lights purchases research than i am is mechBgon from another forum / youtube - and he is only better than me when it comes to rear visibility. and he has probably returned more of his lights than i have. we both returned our Dinotte 300R for example, although i read about him returning his before i bought mine, which i eventually returned myself - but for different reasons.

    yeah, so i don't know what your problem is but my research is awesome

  14. #14
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    Yikes! It's just not that hard to figure this out.

    J.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJ80 View Post
    Yikes! It's just not that hard to figure this out.

    J.
    the problem will appear as simple as the mind contemplating it ...

    you have my official permission not to respond to my posts in the future.

  16. #16
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    Actually, the converse is true.

    J.

  17. #17
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    Since you are unable to manually keep your opinion to yourself i am adding you to ignore list.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    Since you are unable to manually keep your opinion to yourself i am adding you to ignore list.
    Sorry to upset you. The whole purpose of forums is to share opinions. Maybe you missed that.

    J.

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    I accidently pulled the cord out of the back of my Dinotte XML-3. I have the dual. It was over a year old. I sent it in and even told them I did it but by accident. I expected to be charged something. I got it back and pretty fast w/ no charge, under warranty repair.

    I have cheap Chinese lights as well as most of you too. Had numerous cheap lights. They last about a year to 2 years and if your lucky you get a 3rd season. The batteries either give out or the wires fray inside and short. The light heads have actually been pretty good.

    My point is you'll more than likely be riding w/ your Dinotte or other upper end light for a long time w/o any issues. Yeah, at some point all batteries give out but it's nice and comforting to know I have a light set that will not fail in the dark 2 hrs away from anything.

    MB

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    Just got a 800 Seca.....wish it was brighter but it has a good run time. If I went to a brighter light then I would need the larger battery.

    There's no one perfect solution, it's always a compromise.

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    One of the big advantages to Dinotte is their batteries. They've been using the same batteries forever, no changes in the connectors. Their batteries are a great value compared to batteries of others (i.e. Lupine, for example). It's hard to go wrong with Dinotte.

    J.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by canuck_tacoma View Post
    Just got a 800 Seca.....wish it was brighter but it has a good run time. If I went to a brighter light then I would need the larger battery.

    There's no one perfect solution, it's always a compromise.
    newer lights are more efficient, so you can get more run time with less battery at any given output level. how much more i don't know because i don't have specs for Seca 800 but i know that even my Seca 1700 is significantly less efficient than the new Seca 2000 and i know that Seca 1400 ( which i tried ) is significantly less efficient than Seca 1700, and i can only assume Seca 800 is even less efficient.

    most of the output gain from 800 to 1400 to 1700 to 2000 has been from LED efficiency, not increasing power draw. if you got Seca 2000 and used it at half power you would have more light and significantly longer run time from same battery size at the same time. of course it would cost double.

    my choice was Seca 1700 for $319 or Seca 2000 for $499. i considered both the difference in output and the difference in efficiency, but in the end the improvement just wasn't enough to justify the price difference.

    if cost was no object i would have gotten two Seca 2000 Enduros, unfortunately that would have worked out to as much $ as a Lupine Betty. i would prefer two Seca 2000 Enduros to a single Lupine Betty 4500 Lumen however.

  23. #23
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    well i just placed an order on a 6 cell battery for the Seca, plus an extra Light & Motion charger.

    this will convert one of my two Seca Race lights into a Seca Enduro, while my Second Seca Race will get a spare 3 cell battery with its own charger.

    in other words i will need to switch the battery on one of the lights exactly mid-way through the ride, then i will have 3 hour run time on both lights.

    having one 6 cell battery and two 3 cell batteries is obviously not ideal - would have been much better to simply have two 6 cell batteries ... oh well.

    also i think the Enduro isn't just a Race with a bigger battery, i believe it also has a bigger charger.

    the chargers that came with the Race model are tiny and not rated to charge the 6 cell battery, which is one reason i had to buy an extra charger. i suppose it would probably work anyway but i decided not to push it and ordered a L&M charger designed for the 6 cell battery ( it can also charge the 3 cell ).

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by androgen View Post
    newer lights are more efficient, so you can get more run time with less battery at any given output level.
    Yes,

    When I was originally looking, I got confused/missled, the L&M Website says the Seca 1500 comes with the 6cell and I didnt want the added weight. So I thought that the 800 was just as efficient with the stated runtimes with 3 cell.

    I'm going to try the 1500 out and see...Thanks for the help.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by canuck_tacoma View Post
    Yes,

    When I was originally looking, I got confused/missled, the L&M Website says the Seca 1500 comes with the 6cell and I didnt want the added weight. So I thought that the 800 was just as efficient with the stated runtimes with 3 cell.

    I'm going to try the 1500 out and see...Thanks for the help.
    as far as i know the 1400 ( older light ) comes with 6 cell. the 1500 ( 2014 ) comes with 3 cell, but still manages about the same run time, due to higher efficiency.

    if later on you decide you need to double your run time you would have to get a second 6 cell if you are using 1400 but you would only need to get a second 3 cell for the 1500 so in this way efficiency would save you both weight AND money.

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