Initial thoughts on LED and the Dinotte 500L-
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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Initial thoughts on LED and the Dinotte 500L

    After some resistance over the price, I recently purchased the new Dinotte 500L. Before I start let me say I'm cheap and rarely buy into the cutting edge of technology. There are risks, such as premium pricing to support development costs and possible issues with product reliability, so it is better to wait a bit before embracing something new. But this time I needed a new light to replace my ailing Cygolite, which started working erratically in its second winter season. I commute yearround now and I'm doing a 24 hour mountain bike race this summer, so I had to buy something and I wanted a bright light to cover both uses (I also recently purchased a 3W Black Diamond headlamp for night skiing, so was intrigued by the new power of LED technology). I've had it out on a handful of test rides now and here are some initial reactions:

    - It's clear to me LED technology has surpassed halogen and HID lights. The new Dinotte setup, while expensive now, offers a bright light with great coverage, versatile lighting adjustability, light batteries and decent runtimes. If it also proves durable, then a light like this is to me much more desirable than a HID. Some HIDs may be brighter but the overall cost coupled with bulb replacement costs is a showstopper. There are mighty good halogen options out there for half this price, but the light output, quality and battey runtimes all offset against going halogen.

    - Unlike my old light, this product throws a broad beam that lights up what is in front of me and throws light out diagonally, lighting up the distance in turns. I'm impressed with the beam pattern for use both on and off road. In fact, I think I'll use this light alone for night trail riding - even the race - but am doing some more testing on this front. (I do plan to attach the 3W spotlight mentioned above to my helmet for use in clutch situations, but I don't think I need anything more).

    - The light is well-designed for commuting. I really like the flashing mode because it will deliver flashing bursts of light for dusk/dawn riding. The light also has three power settings, so you can set it to the conditions. Full power is more than enough for any road riding and may not be necessary in many conditions.

    - The light comes with everything one needs for both road and off-road use. Mounts for bars and helmet and 2 batteries, which is enough to get through a team 24 hour race without visiting a charging station. The batteries are also light enough that one can carry them both while commuting, so there's a backup power source at all times. Or conversely one battery can be charged while the other is in use if you are forgetful like me.

    Just some thoughts. I appreciate the other input people have provided here on a whole variety of lighting options and thought I'd share.

  2. #2

    Excellent Review

    Thanks for sharing your impressions of this light; as it's on my short list, it's good to hear that you are happy with it. I found your comments about its beam pattern most useful - cool that the spread is such that it helps with cornering.

  3. #3
    Gone riding
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Welcome to MTBR tnscoop, and thanks for the review!


  4. #4
    Lets have some Kool-aid!
    Reputation: kcreative's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    I also have a 500L on my bar and a 3W spot on my helmet and it works great. My light out shines all of my buddies who all have light envy.

    Living here in Phoenix the summers get hot so night riding is the way to go. I ride single track. I love riding out in the desert at night with mountains surrounding you. No people and all you can see are the stars. Every once in a while you will see some beady eyes in the horizon of a coyote, but they don't bother us.

    I would highly recommend the light to everyone. The service over at DiNotte is great. Another reason to get a great light.

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