Very bad news on the light front (DX Bike light )- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Very bad news on the light front (DX Bike light )

    It is quite good


    This is my take on the DX bike light .
    A guy on the Singletrack forum bought one and kindly sent it to me to pull apart and give it the once over

    First up very nice box even with magnetic closures



    WEIGHTS AND SIZES
    I will let the pics tell this bit






    On Opening the box I was shocked a little on the actual size of the thing as I try to make my lights as small as possible , this is tiny .
    And looks on the outside to be a real nice product
    the battery is neat and well packaged with a good connector set
    I cant see any problems at all from the outside so time to have a look a little deeper.

    first before unscrewing the the bezel I did a very non techy test the seal
    this involved sucking with the whole bezel in my mouth to creat a vacuum and you can soon tell if it is sealed and it passed with flying colours no leaks there.

    I also did the same test on the switch end and that was good too .










    No real issues so far The alloy in side is very soft and poor quality but not a problem
    there were signs of small bits of swarfe around but so far not in any place to cause shorts.

    the first main niggle shows itself the screw holding the mount only 2 threads holding the thing together
    ok as the second pic shows it cannot be too long but a couple more threads would be better



    just prior to unscrewing the retainer ring I did notice this large piece of swarfe hiding there.
    the bits on the right are just stringy plastic







    Still nothing too bad found yet but was a bit concerned about the swarf inside with the driver board . I was just going to reassemble it as it belonged to some one else but after I saw the swarfe it need cleaning out so dismantled it and found that the P7 on its star was glued to the heatsink with a clear epoxy .

    So this was removed and the star glued back in with Arctic Alumina epoxy
    then it was just a reversal to reassemble

    some thermal past on the heatsink and screw threads of the retainer
    and some silicon round the cable . and I did put in a slightly longer screw to hold the bracket








    Ok so now some thoughts .

    When I first plugged it in the first thing I did was just sit it on the desk and wait to see how hot it got and how fast , now this is a rare sunny day in blighty with a nice 20 degree c ambient temp and after 7 minutes it was quite warm getting hotter than I would normally like so I ended the test and started the take down .

    I was quite pleased it was getting warm as this meant some transfer of heat was happening.
    The worrying thing about this is after the rebuild it got very hot real quickly like 3 minutes
    so in very high ambients it stands a good chance of overheating the led .

    Also I am just 1.5 hours in to a runtime test with a desk fan on full blowing over the light and is has stabilised at 35 degrees c so I dread to think what the internal temps could get to if I had not added the thermal epoxy and paste

    No beam shots to compare it with my other lights yet but will try and get some tonight

    so as it stands it looks like it will take quite a few sales away from the main light makers
    and also makes DIY seem a bit daft as there is no way you could build a light of this quality for the price . including battery and charger.

    The main failings I think will be the mount breaking as you stretch the oring round the bars or pulling the bolt out of the 2 threads holding it
    , possibly overheating issues in warmer climes than the uk if the user is not carefull to switch to low in times of low airflow

    also maybe the cable pulling out of the light when the mount breaks in a stack .

    I cannot comment ot the electronics as I know nothing about them suffice to say the quality is no where near Taskled stuff


    I would like to say it is rubbish dont buy it but Cant as I would buy one if I was in the market for a budget light .
    Last edited by troutie-mtb; 06-12-2009 at 07:23 AM.

  2. #2
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    I'm not sure why you'd consider it a bad thing for the bike light world.

    In my opinion any product that will get more people out and riding is a great thing. This will certainly also help riders everywhere be safer while riding out in the dark.

    This also won't kill off the DIYers. Believe me, those with the motivation to DIY will continue to do so
    If anything it provides a great housing for people to mod and help create their own one off lights from.

    I've built my own triple and double cree lights and the experience was a blast. That being said I purchased one of these Sunday and I'm anxiously awaiting its arrival!
    09 Giant Anthem X3
    07 IBEX Trophy Comp X7

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Popper252
    I'm not sure why you'd consider it a bad thing for the bike light world.

    In my opinion any product that will get more people out and riding is a great thing. This will certainly also help riders everywhere be safer while riding out in the dark.

    This also won't kill off the DIYers. Believe me, those with the motivation to DIY will continue to do so
    If anything it provides a great housing for people to mod and help create their own one off lights from.

    I've built my own triple and double cree lights and the experience was a blast. That being said I purchased one of these Sunday and I'm anxiously awaiting its arrival!

    Sorry popper that is the Yorkshire sarcasm and irony .

    It is bad news for the main light makers it is good news as you say as it will get more folks into it it does make diy seem daft if you were doing it for money saving reasons

  4. #4
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    You've pretty much summarized my findings with the lights. Pretty much ends my DIYing days. Only a few thing left to do on this light :
    1. Strip down and clean up any swarf
    2. Lap the Led and the heat sink - then tap a couple of screws with thermal compound or AA.
    3. Replace the screw with one a bit longer.

    I feel kinda sorry for all the folks I just built lights for. Typically my costs were 30-50% more than the DX light, although I did have better chargers and we ran better (taskled) drivers. But there was no way my housing could match in finishing. I do believe my heatsinking is better though.

  5. #5
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    I've had this light for around a week now,and have only ran into one problem. It seems every time I would hit a bump it would turn off. I isolated the problem in the battery pack,and proceeded to take it apart. The first thing I noticed was a loosely soldered wire connecting the top of the board. A quick soldering and some vinyl electric tape seems to have eliminated any turning off issues. I rode last night on very rough terrain just to make sure that I won't have this issue later on.

    When I got home I put my bike in the basement and forgot that I had left the light on. 2 hours later I noticed a light was on in the basement and realized I had left the light on medium. I felt the light and it was only warm to the touch. It still appeared to have lots of juice left in it.

    For the price I paid,I'm very happy with this light so far. Here is a pic of the wire I soldered.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #6
    Candlestick Maker
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    Quote Originally Posted by WindWithMe
    Here is a pic of the wire I soldered.
    Excellent that you solved the problem! Thanks for the pic.
    baker

  7. #7
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    +1 on general consensus of this light.
    Good light if you disassemble it, clean, AAA the star, and thermal grease it.
    Cost is excellent.
    The removal and then AAA 'ing of the star into place is going to be the most difficult part of the process. Easy enough if you build your own. I truly worry about how long the P7 would last without a better thermal path. I was shocked when I removed the star and saw that a little splotch of green glue held the star to the heat sink.
    I put a D bin P7 in one of the lights. Better color rendition. Whiter light and less green. Consider ordering a D bin star when you order your lights.
    I put a MC-E in another of the lights. Beam does not focus at all with the included reflector. Nothing surprising about that really.
    No other reflectors here to experiment with for the MC-E.
    Not sure who out there might have a box full of spare bits to experiment (ahem....Troutie) with.......

  8. #8
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    I just did this little test to see how fast the temp ramps up




    This was after the mods to it , now I wish I had done it before
    the probe was right next to the dome with a little blob of compound to help the connection
    the case was at 30 degrees at the 2 minute mark and I believe the dies will be a good deal hotter than the probe

  9. #9
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    the good news for the bike light industry is that I haven't been able to connect to deal extreme for a couple of days now. Not sure what is going on.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb
    Sorry popper that is the Yorkshire sarcasm and irony .

    It is bad news for the main light makers it is good news as you say as it will get more folks into it it does make diy seem daft if you were doing it for money saving reasons
    Sorry for the misunderstanding Sometimes the humor gets scrambled a bit while crossing the Atlantic

    Thanks for the great pics as well!
    09 Giant Anthem X3
    07 IBEX Trophy Comp X7

  11. #11
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    I wouldn't give up on DIY lights just yet. Whoever is making this light is not doing any QA (quality assurance) that I can see. All the aluminum pieces Troutie calls swarf are one example of that. I had lots of "extra" aluminum in my lite as well.

    They are also cutting corners on the electronics. The most flagrant example of that is the resistors labeled R03 and R04 on the "top" of the driver board. These are current sense resistors, and will have 2.4 amps running thru them when the light is on high. Look at how small they are. At least one of them will burn up before too long. The one with R100 printed on it has 2 amps running thru it when the lite is on high. It will need to dissipate almost half a watt and it is at most an eighth of a watt resistor. Sooner or later it will go poof, and your lite will either stop working, get very dim, or look like a short to the battery pack (which looks like it doesn't have a fuse, so it might go boom).

    I'm going to repeat Troutie's test with a fan, but I'll be measuring temps of parts on the driver. Pretty much any readings above 100C mean you will fry the part after a while. Seems silly to use a LED that can last 50000 hours and pair it with a driver that will last a few hundred hours.

    It might be possible to replace R03 and R04 with slightly larger resistors that are rated for more power. Even then a bit of AAA over the resistors and touching the edge of the housing wouldn't hurt. It would provide a thermal path to cool the resistors.

    So I don't have any trouble saying these are rubbish, and maybe even dangerous the way you get them from the factory.

    Too bad they look so nice. A lot of folks will be impressed by the bling and get one. But the stuff inside ...

    Mark

  12. #12
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    Cheers for that info Mark be interested in your findings .

    I finished the runtime test and it managed 3 hours 20 mins on full .

    Then put it on charge and 1 hour later the casing of the charger hit 51 degrees c
    again being an electronics numpty I dont know what to make of that but it seems a tad hot to me.

  13. #13
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    I just finished putting my charger back together. I'll post pictures of the innards later. I wasn't too impressed with what I found, but at least it has a fuse . I haven't run the light long enuff to try charging the batteries yet.

    You're right, 51C is a bit warm for what should be a switching supply. It is rated at 8.5 volts with 1.8 amps output. So if its 80% efficient it will need to dissipate 3 watts, which could make a housing that small get pretty warm. Given the internal construction of the charger, I would suspect some internal part (the transformer?) is getting really hot. 80% would be pretty good efficiency for a cheap switching power supply. If the efficiency was lower the case would heat up faster.

    How long did it take to fully charge the batteries? I would expect something like 2 hours. Or did you decide to let things cool off first?

    Mark

  14. #14
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    It is still chargeing and just about on the 2 hour mark now. so will keep my eye on it .
    in between drinking beer and BBQing some bits of animals.

  15. #15
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    On my board the part labeled R04 on the PCB, has R100 printed on it. It is a .1 ohm resistor. The part labeled R03 on the PCB has R500 printed on it. It is a .5 ohm resistor. I'll refer to these resistors as R100 and R500. The may be switched around on your board, but that won't matter, they are wired in parallel. The current sense voltage across these parts is .2 volts, according the the SM5241 driver chip data sheet. So R100 has .2 volts divided by .1 ohms of current running thru it (from the equation V = IR we get I = V/R), or 2 amps. 2 amps is a lot of current.

    It was hard to rig a setup where I blew air across my test LED and didn't blow air across the driver board. I found a setup that seemed to work. After 5 minutes R100 was up to 80C and still climbing. After 15 minutes it got up to around 91C. There may have been some cooling from stray air currents. It's hard to hold a thermocouple on tiny parts, and the driver's brass holder gets pretty darn warm (53C), so the whole thing was hard to hold. My readings may have been a bit on the low side. My guess is if you run the light long enuff on high, you will eventually fry R100, and the light will stop working.

    R500 was typically 10C cooler than R100. Most other parts on the board got warm, but not as warm as R100. The mosfet got to around 50C. The diode stayed below 60C. The inductor got up to around 55C. It's hard to tell how much of this heating was caused by power being dissipated in the part and how much was due to heat flowing along the PC board from R100. Sigh ... wish I had access to a nice FLIR camera. They make figuring out thermal flows on printed circuit boards easy.

    Running the light on low, R100 never seems to get above 50C. All other parts were pretty cool as well.

    There may be some thermal regulation built into the micro on the button side of the driver. I had a couple of instances where the light dimmed or shut off, or the red LED came on. I may have shorted something with my thermocouple, or it could be the dying gasps from the micro as it goes into thermal runaway mode . I'll have to dig up my oscilloscope and look at a few signals on the board before I'm sure what's going on.

    For now I'd say if you don't want to replace R100 and R500 with something more reasonable (like 2 R180 resistors in a larger package perhaps), you are probably OK AAAing the crap out of the resistors, driver, LED, case etc. A blob of AAA that covered the R100 and R500 resistors and touched the driver's brass holder would help keep R100 cooler.

    If you don't want to put in new resistors, but are handy with a soldering iron, there is one thing you could do that might help R100 survive longer. Touch up each end of the resistor with some leaded solder. As the resistor heats up it expands, then contracts as it cools. The solder on my light looks lead free, and lead free solder isn't as flexible as solder based on lead.

    Mark

  16. #16
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    Troutie,

    Modded my board to use three .27 ohm resistors in parallel instead of the .1 (R100) and .5 (R500) in parallel. I desoldered the old resistors and then removed any remaining solder using solderwick. I laid 2 down flat where the old resistors were. I then soldered the third on top of the 2, sort of in the middle of them. I'll try to post a picture later.

    results:
    time, stock, modded
    5 min, 80, 70
    10 min, 85, 71
    15 min, 91, 71

    That seems like a pretty flat temperature curve compared to the stock setup. I'd probably feel pretty comfortable running this light on high for the 3+ hours you got, after I do all the heat sinking mods.

    I used 1/2 watt 1210 sized resistors like these: http://search.digikey.com/scripts/Dk...e=RHM.27SCT-ND

    Now my light will be a little less bright than a stock light. The new current sense resistor is .09 ohms vs. .0833 for the old setup. So my lite on high will pump about 10% less current thru the LED. I don't really care as I'm going to install a D bin P7 LED. That should make up the difference.

    My next mod will be to remove the tantalum cap that the power leads are soldered across. It's only rated at 10 volts. I want to replace it with something rated for 20 volts or more. Most of the rest of the parts on the board should be able to run up to 20 volts. That will let me run the light on the 9.6 volt nicad and 11.1 volt lipo batteries I have for most of my DIY lights. You might even be able to use a 14.8 volt li-ion battery with the light. The low battery LED won't work right for any other battery than the 8.4 volt li-ion that comes with the light, but it's nice to have options.

    I also want to change the power leads running into the light. They are only 22 guage and are kind of marginal for the 1+ amp of current they need to carry. I'll probably change the light to use some Tamiya or Dean connectors and 16 gauge silicone coated wire. The wire is much more flexible than the stock 22 gauge wire and should last longer. The Tamiya and Dean connectors are pretty common on RC battery packs.

    For DIYers this lite has potential as a decent backup light. Or one to help your friends fix up. It's not a great light, but for someone on a tight budget, with decent soldering skills, it's not a bad deal. I still think that as it's shipped from DX, it's garbage (what we call rubbish here across the pond).

    Hope your seared bits of dead animal flesh were tasty,

    Mark
    Last edited by [email protected]; 06-12-2009 at 03:44 PM.

  17. #17
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    he mark That is great I wish I had the electronic savvy to do stuff like that one small problem is my colour blindness does not help .
    which is why George`s products are so good for me.

    right Me and the little dog went for a late walk in the woods to get the beam shots
    I aint saying owt about them just posting them before ebaying all the tools in my garage.

    first up standard mtbr settings and same place as most of my others

    DX cheapo light on high and low







    and for a comparison a MCE with ledil Iris optic hi @ 700ma and bflex low so a tad lower than the DX




    Yes thanks the Bbq was a normal rainy affair over here but tasty .

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb

    first before unscrewing the the bezel I did a very non techy test the seal
    this involved sucking with the whole bezel in my mouth to creat a vacuum and you can soon tell if it is sealed and it passed with flying colours no leaks there.
    This quote is worthless without photos!

    JZ
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  19. #19
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    Troutie,

    Cheer up dude. I think your MCE with the Iris lens looks so much better than the DX lite. The color is warmer, the DX light looks very green (though you might not notice if colorblind). I wouldn't hock your machine shop just yet. And if you do, how much would it cost for shipping to the former colonies ? Probably too much. Your lathe looks pretty heavy.

    I think the way to beat the DX lights is to point out to people that their quality sucks. "Yep, go buy that $80 light, and next month, after it leaves you in total darkness on a fast hairy downhill 20 degree slope, full of sharp rocks and pungi sticks (what we call the small sharp tree stumps that are left over after trail building sometime), come back and talk to me about better equipment".

    The established bike light companies won't lower their price to compete with this garbage. I don't think us DIYers need to lower what we charge for the stuff we build. It's usually as good quality as what most of the big boys sell, uses the latest technology, and is way better quality than the DX lite.

    I messed around with the P7 for a while and eventually decided the MCE is a better solution. The drivers are way easier to design (which is what I enjoy doing), and the selection of optics is better.

    Keep building! If you stop, where will I get all my good optics info from?

    Mark

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by JimZinVT
    This quote is worthless without photos!

    JZ


    JZ
    thanks I just realised how daft that would look I will get the wife to do anymore suction tests


    Mark
    Cheers mate I was only joking about selling the tools , using tools is the only thing I am good at .


    Yes there will be a lot of sales based on the cheapness and probably a few failures
    already got one over here , a guy left if plugged in in his bag and it got switched on
    well it comes on on high with the first press so it got pretty hot .
    he wants me to repair it . do you think it will be the driver that dies first or the P7
    He says it comes on but very dim .

    Yes when I shone them side by side the MCE was a lot nicer and I could see the shade difference

    I also went back over my beam shots and the 6 XPE Troutlight just blows it out of the water

    Been fun testing it though
    and maybe DX should send me some empty cases as commision but I cant get a ledil iris in to it

  21. #21
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    Troutie, Thanks for the review and the beamshots. I can't say that I'm much impressed with the beam output from this light. The high is not too bad but like someone else said it looks greenish. I'm not sure just why that is but it might have something to do with maybe a cheaper bin run of the P-7's that SSC was trying to get rid of. So the consensus seems to be if you buy one of these you have to:
    1) remount the LED with thermal paste
    2) clean out any loose bits
    3) use a longer screw to hold the mount to the base. Some Locktite wouldn't hurt either.

    I think if I bought one of these I would almost surly replace the stock P-7 with a D-bin like
    mhahn suggested. Considering all you would have to do to make this a long running usable light I tend to think it just might be easier to buy a simple stock MTE P-7 torch of your choosing and then do a simple "dummy battery" mod to make it more longer running. I only say this because I've seen the output of the P-7 torches and they are pretty decent. In my book a MTE P-7 5-mode with Turboferret dummy battery and external battery upgrade mod would be the better way to go. I would like though to really see one of these new bike lights compared to the standard P-7 torches.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do
    Troutie, Thanks for the review and the beamshots. I can't say that I'm much impressed with the beam output from this light. The high is not too bad but like someone else said it looks greenish. I'm not sure just why that is but it might have something to do with maybe a cheaper bin run of the P-7's that SSC was trying to get rid of. So the consensus seems to be if you buy one of these you have to:
    1) remount the LED with thermal paste
    2) clean out any loose bits
    3) use a longer screw to hold the mount to the base. Some Locktite wouldn't hurt either.

    I think if I bought one of these I would almost surly replace the stock P-7 with a D-bin like
    mhahn suggested. Considering all you would have to do to make this a long running usable light I tend to think it just might be easier to buy a simple stock MTE P-7 torch of your choosing and then do a simple "dummy battery" mod to make it more longer running. I only say this because I've seen the output of the P-7 torches and they are pretty decent. In my book a MTE P-7 5-mode with Turboferret dummy battery and external battery upgrade mod would be the better way to go. I would like though to really see one of these new bike lights compared to the standard P-7 torches.
    I have to agree totally with you, i have already emailed troutie about some of these issues.

    I have a turboferret setup but the driver is a bit poor so isn't even as bright as this light.

    Can anyone recommend a good 3-4.5v ish input single sided, 17mm driver for my turboferret setup? That has good (read useful) modes. e.g 700, 1400, 2800.

  23. #23
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    Troutie,

    On the lite that ran too long on high: my guess is the P7 is toast. It'd be easy enuff to test, just install a new P7 (unless this one was held down with AAA). If the lite is still dim, the driver is dead. If the driver died, I'd bet one of my homemade MCE drivers to one one of your MCE iris housings that it's the resistor with R100 printed on it that burned up. It would be pretty easy to replace R100 (and R500) with a couple of R180s (.18 ohms) in a 1210 smd package (smd = surface mount device). Just requires decent soldering skills, some solderwick, and a jewler's loupe or very young eyes (me I have a jeweler's loupe). Of course if R100 shorted, it might have burned up the mosfet as well, so you may have to replace more than just R100.

    Well this failure shows I don't need to do any further testing to see if the micro is smart enuff to turn down the light when it gets hot. It's just has a simple program that monitors the switch and sets the pwm duty cycle on the driver chip to high, low, and flashing. The battery monitoring is done by a separate voltage level monitor IC. It's what lights up the green LED if your battery is OK, and that's why the green LED stays on even after you turn the lite "off". Means you need to unplug it or you'll drain down the battery in a few days.

    Glad to hear you're not planning on selling the shop.

    Mark

    PS one last question (well 2 actually). Do you remove the housing for the lens when you use the iris? What's the diameter of the lens itself?

  24. #24
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    If anything it provides a great housing for people to mod and help create their own one off lights from.
    Not really, IMO

    I have been staring at this housing for a few days now and cannot come up with any easy way to modify it.

    The main problem is the housing depth and that short squatty reflector.
    I stock two reflectors that throw out much nicer beam shapes, but they will not fit into the housing and still have room for switches and electronics.

    If you can live with the light the way it is, then you are good to go.
    I blew mine up and so I am trying to figure out a way to wedge in new electonics, but looks like I will have to cut a custom circuit board on my CNC to git-r-done.

    Here's some more beam shot comparisions also in case someone missed my post about this light.
    https://www.el34world.com/Misc/bike/BeamShots1.htm

    And more photos of the guts here.
    https://www.el34world.com/Misc/bike/BikesLights35.htm


  25. #25
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    Troutie and Mark,

    Thanks for the in-depth review and electrical analysis! The driver component concerns really makes me feel better about sticking to the TaskLED stuff.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]
    Troutie,

    On the lite that ran too long on high: my guess is the P7 is toast. It'd be easy enuff to test, just install a new P7 (unless this one was held down with AAA). If the lite is still dim, the driver is dead. If the driver died, I'd bet one of my homemade MCE drivers to one one of your MCE iris housings that it's the resistor with R100 printed on it that burned up. It would be pretty easy to replace R100 (and R500) with a couple of R180s (.18 ohms) in a 1210 smd package (smd = surface mount device). Just requires decent soldering skills, some solderwick, and a jewler's loupe or very young eyes (me I have a jeweler's loupe). Of course if R100 shorted, it might have burned up the mosfet as well, so you may have to replace more than just R100.

    Well this failure shows I don't need to do any further testing to see if the micro is smart enuff to turn down the light when it gets hot. It's just has a simple program that monitors the switch and sets the pwm duty cycle on the driver chip to high, low, and flashing. The battery monitoring is done by a separate voltage level monitor IC. It's what lights up the green LED if your battery is OK, and that's why the green LED stays on even after you turn the lite "off". Means you need to unplug it or you'll drain down the battery in a few days.

    Glad to hear you're not planning on selling the shop.

    Mark

    PS one last question (well 2 actually). Do you remove the housing for the lens when you use the iris? What's the diameter of the lens itself?




    Thanks Mark You may have a few mails when the guy sends his light and I might try the replacing of smd stuff with a powerfull magnifier ( old eyes too ) .

    I found the iris was quite sensative to position on the led and the best position was in the holder so I think it is best left in it holder it is a knob hair under 35 mm out of the holder
    so would fit MR11 stuff
    but again the height over the led was sensative and resting on the led is out


    I agree with EL34 about the modding potential in my opinion it would be easier to make a housing than a heatsink and bits to fit in
    the front bezel is pretty good though

  27. #27
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    Another problem, besides the housing being so short, front to back, is that it really does need to be disassembled to clean up all those metal machining bits.

    Then you run into the problem that I had and someone else here had. The dang wires are soldered very poorly to the driver board and they break off easily.

    Then you have to resolder them properly, all the while making sure you are very carefull not to damage anything else so you can get it back together and have a light that will function properly.

    My advice on this light would be, do not go out with just this one light.
    Take two lights so you don't get stranded.
    A helmet and bar light should do the trick.
    Ya know how Murhpy's law works.

  28. #28
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    Originally Posted by El34
    My advice on this light would be, do not go out with just this one light.
    Take two lights so you don't get stranded.
    A helmet and bar light should do the trick.
    Ya know how Murhpy's law works.
    According to Murphy, both your lites will die. While your going down a steep hill. Very fast. There are lots of turns. And big drop-offs on one or maybe both sides.

    But if you patch the DX lite up, it might be OK as a backup lite.

    Troutie,

    On the Ledil Iris, is it possible to remove just the upper part of the holder, and still have the lower part position the lens correctly. I know it probably won't hold it very well, but I'll deal with that.

    I've been building MCE lights with 1.5 inch tubing (which just happens to have a smidge over 35 mm for an inside diameter), so you can probably see where I'm going with this.

    Does anybody know of a Ledil dealer that carries the Iris here in the former colonies? I've got nothing against Cutter, they were kind of slow with my first order, but the second was fast enough for traveling halfway across the world. I'd just rather get one or two locally if I can.

    Mark

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    The Holy Grail (Monty Python style)

    Hello to one and all in this very interesting thread, [email protected] and troutie-mtb you guys seem to have this light thing dialed in so here are a couple of stupid questions that need a couple of brilliant answers. But perhaps some background first.......

    Once upon a time in a land far far (and I mean the far from everything type of far) away (New Zealand) there lived a knight who was very unhappy. The reason for his gloom was the fact that his trusty stead (Fred the Epic Comp) was afraid of the dark. Now our MTB rider was a handy sort of fellow so he decided that a set of lights would solve this most vexing issue and thereupon produced a 35w helmet mounted halogen light complete with 450 kilogram battery. Now after competing in his first tournament with other brave knights in the kingdom of Rotorua he realized that he was riding in the dark with what could be likened to a kerosene lamp. Upon this realization he asked another good knight "from where doth thou purchase such lights that shine like dragons eyes" and he replied "What??"
    After a period of time had passed and the question finally understood he then replied "You must travel to a distant land known as MTBR Forums, there you will find knights with wisdom in the ways of the dragons eyes" Upon his arrival at this land he found that as wise as these knights may be then could not tell him directly what was the best type of dragons eyes, and that he must choose his own path. upon receiving this information he thought "Bugger!!"

    And here we end up at question time

    At the moment I ride with a DX MTE 2 mode https://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.12623 that I think is great but I would like to build something using a P7 and a bigger battery pack. I have manufactured UHMW battery packs to take 2 and 4 x 18650 batteries for friends building their own lights but they don't know much about P7s.

    1 - How can I build or where can I buy a good driver for a P7 that will give a high and low mode?

    2 - Could I just run a battery pack to the torch that I am using and not blow it to bits?

    Manufacturing the bits and pieces for housings and adaptors is no problem its just the electronics that have me stumped.

  30. #30
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    Kaidomain has a three output level driver that works fairly well. I have built around a dozen lights with this driver and all are working fine. I do re-solder all wires since the provided ones are very thin and the soldering is coarse.
    Have also built 8 direct drive P7 D bins, LEDs from Kaidomain as well. All are working fine. They can only handle a 2 cell parallel 18650 battery. The three cell packs always cause the LEDs to flash and turn off. Too many amps??? Not sure, but only the one or two cell packs work on my Direct Drive P7's.
    Hope that helps.
    Personally I don't do any building with the P7 anymore. Small reflector and lens ,sub 20 mm, options sort of suck for the P7. This light with its 37 mm reflector does work well though.
    The XP-E LED and lenses from http://Cutter.com.au rock.. Set those up with a maxflex or fatman from Taskled.com and you will always have more light than you need.

  31. #31
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    According to Murphy, both your lites will die
    What's the other one, can't remember it exactly.
    According to O'Tools law Murphy was an optomist?

    Searhtime, If you are handy at building from scratch, check out my High-Low P7 driver mod here. It uses a mofified switch and two 1.4amp current limiting boards.

    You run your battery packs as 3.6 volt.
    I ususlly solder together 4 x 18650's in parallel which has been working out great, but you can solder any number of 18650's together to make your run time longer or shorter.
    http://www.el34world.com/Misc/bike/BikesLights26.htm

  32. #32
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    Great work trout, and digging on all the tech talk that's bouncing around. Makes this engineer at heart feel at home.

    My take is pretty simple ...you obviously get what you pay for. It's cheap, and performs like it. Not the first to state this either.

    And from those beam shots was expecting leprechauns to leap from the bushes to steal me lucky charms; what a fugly tint. Haven't seen neon greens like that since college.

    Temp is way way too high, which is huge deal. That heatsink base the LED is mounted to is total junk. I mean come on ...there is a big hole right under the LED where all the heat is being produced. There is no cross section for the heat to transfer through either. Plain stupid design; not to mention the epoxy deal. I bet the led die temp is off the charts!! ...poor little guy. Maybe that was why it was soo green; the green flash of a slow painful death.

    Means the usable life of the led will suffer big time, flux will constantly decline with use due to continued high temp exposure, as well as severely lackluster "true" output all along due to high temp flux dropoff affects. ROFL, 900 lumens, yeaaaah fricken right. That's the best part to me. Sad thing is that many will believe it.

    BTW, Trout, your light was better by a HUGE margin. I personally would pay more for that.

    And obviously assembled poorly; do I need to even go there. But cost is soo cheap, what can you honestly expect.

    All insults aside, this light is great though. Will get people riding more ...and the people who want the best will still spend their money for the real thing. And like Mark pointed out, if anything, longterm it will make more believers of us DIYer's who are truly pushing tech well past the OEM levels.

    Anyway ...feel better after finally reading through the post ...was really worried at first glance Since just starting to get my own light thing rolling.

    Will still DX for the little gagets that beak after the first day of playing and prodding though. Love that place.

    Rant rant rant...

    ~Chris

    Random, any of you from San Diego, CA?

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by sdnative
    My take is pretty simple ...you obviously get what you pay for. It's cheap, and performs like it. Not the first to state this either.
    ...

    do I need to even go there. But cost is soo cheap, what can you honestly expect.
    ...

    All insults aside, this light is great though. Will get people riding more ...and the people who want the best will still spend their money for the real thing.
    In a thread 1-2 years ago on CPF we discussed how cheap a bike light could be and when the prices would come down dramatically. Here we are.

    So what are we looking at, another 30$ for some quality control, better led and driver, customer service?

    This will get more people riding, but its a little cheap at 80$ (selling for 130US$ here in NZ)... it would be good if it came in a kit with a helmet torch/mount so at least people would be able to get home, and not kill themselves when the light goes out bombing down a hill.

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]


    Troutie,

    On the Ledil Iris, is it possible to remove just the upper part of the holder, and still have the lower part position the lens correctly. I know it probably won't hold it very well, but I'll deal with that.

    I've been building MCE lights with 1.5 inch tubing (which just happens to have a smidge over 35 mm for an inside diameter), so you can probably see where I'm going with this.


    Mark



    It would not be possible to remove the top and just leave the base as the optic clips in to the top of the holder and so the 2 bits would just be flapping about .

    Acouple of pics to help out





    it does have a 1 mm lip round the edge which could be usefull for mounting
    doesnt show up to well as the camera struggled to find a focus
    now I have had a real close up looksee I have a real stupid/ or fantastic but aint telling yet.

  35. #35
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    New question here. Possible upgrade

    Hi Guys,

    I too have ordered some of these lights, but on further investigation these appear to have been 'inspired' not by Lupine's Tesla, but rather the Korean "onethelight marrow".

    This light (based on its specs) is configured with the SSC P7 D bin - so maybe better at reaching the claimed 900 Lumen?????

    Link: http://wonderbike.co.kr/shop/shop/item.php?it_id=1240825535

    English Link: http://wonderbike.co.kr/shop/shop/largeimage.php?it_id=1240825535&img=1240825535_l1

    QUESTION - ASSISTANCE REQUIRED

    Based on the above, I have ordered SSC P7 D bin stars to retrofit on the DX magic light, but the star has 2 +ive and 2 - ive terminals to which one can connect to the driver.


    Which terminals do I solder to????
    Attached Images Attached Images

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fury25
    the star has 2 +ive and 2 - ive terminals to which one can connect to the driver.


    Which terminals do I solder to????
    one of each....your choice.

    JZ
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  37. #37
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    Fury,

    You need to connect the red wire to either of the pads labeled + and the black wire to either of the pads labeled -. Clean the pads and apply a little flux before soldering. Use a lead based solder if you can get one. Hopefully your light will have red and black wires like mine did. If your star looks like the one in your picture, you may need to do a bit of filing to get things to fit. The star in the light is round.

    The Wonderbike onethelight looks very interesting and like it might be better built. If nothing else in comes with a warranty. The price looks a bit more reasonable (to compete against), as of today, it sells for about $142 (of 87 pounds for Troutie). Probably a bit more with shipping, etc. The onethelight sounds like it doesn't have any thermal regulation, and has the same silly user interface that makes you turn the light off to switch back to high mode. I like a user interface that cycles between high and low (like a car's highbeam switch).

    The design of the DX lite is very similar, but you can tell just from the pictures there are some differences.

    Anybody speak Korean, It might be interesting to order one of these.

    I also found out something else about the DX lite that makes me want to lower my rating of it from "buy if you know how to fix it" to "probably best to stay away from".

    The marking on the charger looks like a European CE marking. This would imply that it had passed some kind of safety review of its design. For those in the former colonies this is like a UL rating, except the CE rating is required in European countries.

    On careful comparison with the official CE logo I found the DX lite CE logo on the charger is a bit off.



    Hmmm ... looks bogus to me. The red logo is the one off the charger. The Black logo below it is the official CE mark layout.

    I also found an interesting reference to bogus CE markings on wikipedia:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CE_mark...using_CE_marks

    My guess would be that the charger and battery pack in this light have not been reviewed by any safety organization at all. Li-Ion batteries have been known to explode. and/or burn.

    Based on trouties experience with the charger running hot, I will be recharging my light out of doors. In a metal bucket. On a 50 ft extension cord, stretched as far from the house as possible .

    Mark

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb
    I just did this little test to see how fast the temp ramps up CUT
    Thankyou troutie for this great review and all those tech suggestion.

  39. #39
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    Troutie I am a little concerned about what I read in your first post.

    Where on earth did you get the idea of putting something hard, warm, and that diameter in your mouth and start sucking?

    what is the world coming to

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by troutie-mtb
    It is quite good



    Still nothing too bad found yet but was a bit concerned about the swarf inside with the driver board . I was just going to reassemble it as it belonged to some one else but after I saw the swarfe it need cleaning out so dismantled it and found that the P7 on its star was glued to the heatsink with a clear epoxy .

    So this was removed and the star glued back in with Arctic Alumina epoxy
    then it was just a reversal to reassemble

    some thermal past on the heatsink and screw threads of the retainer
    and some silicon round the cable . and I did put in a slightly longer screw to hold the bracket

    Troutie, how did you disassemble parts to this point? I've managed to dismount the thing, but stopped one pictur before the one I quote here. I'm a total zero in electronics, but I'd like to try to improve the DX light

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]
    I also found out something else about the DX lite that makes me want to lower my rating of it from "buy if you know how to fix it" to "probably best to stay away from".

    The marking on the charger looks like a European CE marking. This would imply that it had passed some kind of safety review of its design. For those in the former colonies this is like a UL rating, except the CE rating is required in European countries.

    On careful comparison with the official CE logo I found the DX lite CE logo on the charger is a bit off.



    Hmmm ... looks bogus to me. The red logo is the one off the charger. The Black logo below it is the official CE mark layout.

    I also found an interesting reference to bogus CE markings on wikipedia:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CE_mark...using_CE_marks

    My guess would be that the charger and battery pack in this light have not been reviewed by any safety organization at all. Li-Ion batteries have been known to explode. and/or burn.

    Based on trouties experience with the charger running hot, I will be recharging my light out of doors. In a metal bucket. On a 50 ft extension cord, stretched as far from the house as possible .

    Mark
    I charge my lipo batteries in the fireplace. Still would be quite an event if one was to go thermal. Your link to wikipedia doesn't work. Is your assertion that the device couldn't get a CE stamp if the label doesn't match the dimensions of the official CE stamp? Seems like a stretch. It would be nice if there was a searchable database of CE/UL certifications like the FCC has.

  42. #42
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    unterhausen,

    Wikipedia must have changed the link, try this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ce_mark...using_CE_marks

    or just read the entry for CE mark:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ce_mark

    The point I was making is not about sloppy printing. A lot of Chinese companies put a mark on their products that looks a lot like the European CE mark (claiming it stands for China Export). The European CE mark is only allowed on products that have passed rigid safety, health, and environmental requirements. It is required thru-out most of Europe. It is quite expensive to test a product to meet CE requirements.

    The Chinese CE mark is in my opinion deceptive. As far as I know, there is no testing to put the Chinese CE mark on a product. It looks a lot like the European one (see picture in an earlier post). It could lead unwary consumers to buy a product assuming it was safe. It seems pretty sleazy to me when you put this mark on a poorly built product that has potentially explosive li-ion batteries in it.

    Mark

  43. #43
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    Hi, anyone know any driver how of the pic, with the switch solder in the middle??



    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

    Easy DIY led light1
    Easy DIY led light2

    The Beast!!!

  44. #44

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    Well, I just came back from a shortened night ride and I'm quite disappointed.

    I received my DX Bike Light a few days ago, and after it was fully charged, tested it out the first night with just a quick ride up and down the street and for less than a few minutes, while holding it in my hand without moving.

    I don't have any experience with the P7 flash lights, but coming from a "120 lumens" LED flashlight I got from Sam's Club that I've been temporarily using as my bike light, I was pretty happy with the huge improvement. I also liked the beam pattern, as it was not too spotty and not too floody, and there wasn't a dark spot. From the packaging to the exterior build quality, it feels and looks pretty nice. There are no instructions or anything inside the packaging though.

    I was really excited to finally get a chance to test it out on a night ride tonight, but about 10 minutes into my ride, the light quit working. While playing around with it I was able to get it to come on once but that was it. At this point it appears dead to me. The green light comes on when the battery pack is connected, but I also noticed that a couple of times that light was not coming on, despite it still being connected.

    I have a feeling we're going to see a huge defective rate with these units. At $80, I feel like I just got duped considering this didn't even last more than 15 mins. I really know nothing about LEDs and while I'm a DIYer for some kind of projects, I really do not feel like brushing up on my weak electronics knowledge and learning more than I want JUST to make this light work.

    I purchased this knowing that it probably wouldn't last me very long but it would last long enough where I felt I got my $80 worth. I didn't expect it to die 10 mins into my ride. Thank god I was riding in the city and not going fast on a dark, downhill ride.

    So my advice is: If you don't know how to fix this when it goes out, DO NOT waste your $80.

  45. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rezzerected
    Well, I just came back from a shortened night ride and I'm quite disappointed.

    I received my DX Bike Light a few days ago, and after it was fully charged, tested it out the first night with just a quick ride up and down the street and for less than a few minutes, while holding it in my hand without moving.

    I don't have any experience with the P7 flash lights, but coming from a "120 lumens" LED flashlight I got from Sam's Club that I've been temporarily using as my bike light, I was pretty happy with the huge improvement. I also liked the beam pattern, as it was not too spotty and not too floody, and there wasn't a dark spot. From the packaging to the exterior build quality, it feels and looks pretty nice. There are no instructions or anything inside the packaging though.

    I was really excited to finally get a chance to test it out on a night ride tonight, but about 10 minutes into my ride, the light quit working. While playing around with it I was able to get it to come on once but that was it. At this point it appears dead to me. The green light comes on when the battery pack is connected, but I also noticed that a couple of times that light was not coming on, despite it still being connected.

    I have a feeling we're going to see a huge defective rate with these units. At $80, I feel like I just got duped considering this didn't even last more than 15 mins. I really know nothing about LEDs and while I'm a DIYer for some kind of projects, I really do not feel like brushing up on my weak electronics knowledge and learning more than I want JUST to make this light work.

    I purchased this knowing that it probably wouldn't last me very long but it would last long enough where I felt I got my $80 worth. I didn't expect it to die 10 mins into my ride. Thank god I was riding in the city and not going fast on a dark, downhill ride.

    So my advice is: If you don't know how to fix this when it goes out, DO NOT waste your $80.
    Hi, I think that the problem is the poor quality of the driver. The problem could are that some component it have disolder. Dismantle the light and check with the picture of troutie-mtb are equal and don't missing some component.

    Greetings - Saludos

    msxtr
    Warning!!! my english is very very bad, sorry.

    Easy DIY led light1
    Easy DIY led light2

    The Beast!!!

  46. #46
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    I was really excited to finally get a chance to test it out on a night ride tonight, but about 10 minutes into my ride, the light quit working. While playing around with it I was able to get it to come on once but that was it. At this point it appears dead to me.
    It is looking like this DX light is "very bad news" It pisses me off when poorly designed products like this are sold.

    Sorry to hear of your troubles, Rezz. It sounds like a bad connection/solder joint maybe. If you open it up and poke around a bit you might be able to locate it....might not be too big a hassle to fix. I think there has been mention of some specific connections people have found to be bad, somewhere up above in this thread. One was in the battey pack, i believe.

    I guess I will not be recommending this thing to folks wanting to get into night riding cheaply.

    JZ
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  47. #47
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    I think if you read this thread you'll find enuff info to attempt to repair your light.

    First, the good news. If the green led comes on every time you plug the battery in, then your battery is probably OK. The green led is driven by a voltage detector chip.

    I'd open it the lite up, and look for little bits of aluminum all over the driver board. Remove those if you find them, an old toothbrush and rubbing alcohol work pretty well. If you find much there, the driver may be toast, but it's worth cleaning it up and seeing if it works. The brass ring the driver is soldered to comes out with a fair amount of force. You'll need to take it out to get at both sides of the driver. I popped it out using a flat blade screwdriver wedged in the slot the power wires come out thru.

    If it still doesn't work, make sure the wires to the P7 are still soldered in place. Some folks have reported them coming loose.

    If you have a fine tip soldering iron, you could try touching up the solder conenctions you can get to easily.

    If you are feeling ambitious, and have some experience soldering surface mount parts, you could try replacing the resistors I did (see my earlier posts in this thread).

    Good luck,

    Mark

  48. #48
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    Our club has ordered 5 of these lights. After reading these reviews, I have done some basic clean up of the lights by adding thermal compound and blasting these with compressed air to clear up any swarf. Each light has about 10 hrs total run time now. The longest ride has been about 3 hrs running 50/50 high and low. Mostly mountain biking.
    0 failures/issues to date.
    We are pleased with the light and have just ordered another 10 for other riders.
    My diy cutters triple q5/r2 at 700ma are slightly brighter with more throw. But for a handle bar light - the spread is fine.

  49. #49
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    Yeah, I agree that the main issue seems to be the amount of aluminum shavings, next is the weak solder joints on the LED wires.

    Mine died a horrible death on the bench, but it did work for a while.
    Hard to say what it was because I had been inside it a few times and resoldered several items.

    That's ok, it's going to get an upgrade when I get a bit of time to work on it.

  50. #50
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    Our club has ordered 5 of these lights. After reading these reviews, I have done some basic clean up of the lights by adding thermal compound and blasting these with compressed air to clear up any swarf. Each light has about 10 hrs total run time now. The longest ride has been about 3 hrs running 50/50 high and low. Mostly mountain biking.
    0 failures/issues to date.
    We are pleased with the light and have just ordered another 10 for other riders.
    My diy cutters triple q5/r2 at 700ma are slightly brighter with a throw. But for a handle bar light - the spread is fine.

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by heatstroke
    Our club has ordered 5 of these lights. After reading these reviews, I have done some basic clean up of the lights by adding thermal compound and blasting these with compressed air to clear up any swarf. Each light has about 10 hrs total run time now. The longest ride has been about 3 hrs running 50/50 high and low. Mostly mountain biking.
    0 failures/issues to date.
    We are pleased with the light and have just ordered another 10 for other riders.
    My diy cutters triple q5/r2 at 700ma are slightly brighter with a throw. But for a handle bar light - the spread is fine.
    heatstroke, does that mean that this light will not be as bright as a cutter XR-E R2 quad at1 amp with medium optic(my DIY light I use the most)? Both use 4 dies just in a different package so I thought there wouldn't be much in it.

  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by yetibetty
    heatstroke, does that mean that this light will not be as bright as a cutter XR-E R2 quad at1 amp with medium optic(my DIY light I use the most)? Both use 4 dies just in a different package so I thought there wouldn't be much in it.
    Your XR-E light is pushing 1000ma and the P7 is only speced for 700ma.

  53. #53
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    P7 is only speced for 700ma.
    700ma per die x 4 = 2800ma total

  54. #54
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    Will a hip CC or hipflex board fit inside this light head in place of the bad dx board.

  55. #55
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    certainly not a hipflex Be a waste of a great driver too

    you would get a B/Max flex in but then it would be no good with the P7

    there is really not a problem can the busted ones not be replaced by DX s warranty
    or am I just an optimist

  56. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikerjay
    Will a hip CC or hipflex board fit inside this light head in place of the bad dx board.
    I have read several successful reports about usage of this driver: KD Super Output SSC P7 LED Driver Board (Low/High/Middle,5.5V~15V) SKU: S005296.

  57. #57

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    Hey guys,

    First of all, I'd like to ask for everyone's forgiveness for a question that's probably very noobish to most of you LOL.

    I haven't heard great things about DX's customer service and I'd like to resolve the issue if I can so I don't have to eat up return shipping. I'd like to open this up to clean up the metal shavings and possibly see if I have a connection that came undone. I don't have the greatest soldering skills, but I feel comfortable enough soldering a wire back on if I have to. Soldering on a new resistor, that's a whole other thing and I'd have to feel a lot more secure about my skills before I attempt that.

    But I feel dumb as heck at the moment because I don't know how to get the LED and its components outside of the housing. Basically I have the lens cover and reflector off but I'm not sure as to how I should go about removing the rest out of the housing without damaging it. Please help me get past my first hurdle! Thanks in advance!

  58. #58
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    Definately not as bright, I believe the SSCP7 typical numbers are 700lumens when driven at 2800ma (the quoted number is maximum). The DX light is driven at about 2.4 amps(if I am not mistaken) , so it is outputting about 600 lumens based on the spec sheets.
    Your 4xR2 at 1000ma is churning out about 880 lumens

  59. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by heatstroke
    Your 4xR2 at 1000ma is churning out about 880 lumens
    An XR-E R2 LED is rated at 250 lumens when driven at 1A, which makes 1000 lumens.
    However, that it then drawing 4A which means shorter runtimes and more heat
    There is a balance in all things

  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rezzerected
    I haven't heard great things about DX's customer service and I'd like to resolve the issue if I can so I don't have to eat up return shipping.
    Rezz, I've never dealt with their customer service, but in a post a while back from (I think) RandyBoy regarding the DX tr-801 torches he mentioned that DX has a return center in Miami FL. so maybe the shipping $ won't be too much. Unfortunately it took him many e-mails and phone calls and many weeks to get the issue corrected. He did get what he wanted eventually. I believe the way to start the process is to open a return ticket somewhere on the DX website. Good luck, and let us know how it works out!

    JZ
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  61. #61
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    Rezz, here's the thread I mentioned above.

    JZ
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  62. #62
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    Funny this should pop up, that's what I am doing right now.

    I have dealt with DX customer service several times.
    The overall experience has not been very good.

    They kept sending the wrong reflectors, even though they knew they were wrong.
    I sent one batch back to Miami.
    They said they got the return and would credit me the shipping cost and then send the correct reflectors.

    I never recived the correct ones or the credit on the shipping. That was over a month ago.

    When you go to the customer service web site and create a ticket, someone will handle that claim. The girl I have dealt with several times seems nice, but her replies are always like something she is reading off a stock reply form.

    Once the rep contacts you and you reply to the customer service rep, you will not be able to contact them again.
    You can only contact them if they contact you first and then a link will appear that you can click on and continue the dialog.

    Just a heads up on what possibly to expect.
    Your mileage may vary.

    Back to contacting Dx to get this mess straightned out.
    see ya

  63. #63
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    With Randy's difficulties with DX, the refund didn't come through until he got PayPal involved

    JZ.
    It's not about speed, it's about lack of control.

  64. #64
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    Jim,
    Thanks for the tip, that's what I may end up having to do.

  65. #65
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    We've just received a new batch of lights (2nd batch of 5 lights). They have lengthened the screw a couple of mm. So now about 5 threads engage the body.

  66. #66
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    JBassett,
    Welcome to the Board. Following your posts over at CPF for a long time. Getting your technical expertise over here will be good for all of us.......

  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbassett
    An XR-E R2 LED is rated at 250 lumens when driven at 1A, which makes 1000 lumens.
    However, that it then drawing 4A which means shorter runtimes and more heat
    There is a balance in all things
    Cheers, I am aware of that, but more suprised that it isn't as bright as heatstrokes tripple running at 700ma.

  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by yetibetty
    Cheers, I am aware of that, but more suprised that it isn't as bright as heatstrokes tripple running at 700ma.
    Actually its 270lm @1A, so 880 for four is a reasonable estimate of output with optics losses included.

  69. #69
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    LOL ...I'm not at all surprised it's not as bright.

    It's cheap import junk; designed poorly on top of it.

  70. #70

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    gunna order me a 2nd DX light to get a total of 1200 min - 1800 max lumen for under $200 before they sell out completely. Both up front, 1 pointed straight for throw and wide + 1 angled down lower for seeing road-trail and wide.

    Then later may buy a 3rd as a rear light with some red automotive lens repair tape on it !! - should be good for the world's brightest rear light blowing the current DiNotte 200L = $229 ! OUCH !! out of the water .

    You can never have enough red rear light in the city IMHO.

    ps. i went to your site sdnative, and the lights and specs look impressive too, but when i click on buy = "under construction, come back soon"

  71. #71
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    Yep, still workin away. No buy page in the next week either; but will be one soon.

    I have a "DIY light build article" coming up with Mountain Bike Action Magazine, and am trying to finish the entire site up and other production details in prep for that, rather than focusing on selling kits right now.

    Can say though, I'm not planning on clearing the ankles with my pants in an attempt to compete w/DX. The low cost sprial of death; too much work and no $ in the pockets to show for it.

    I’m still of the feeling you get what you pay for. If you want the best it costs money; it's always been like that. Anyone can put a number like 900 on the box and get a few suckas. Even if they deliver lackluster performance in the end …for that cheap I don’t think I even would be pissed off.

    Anway… “check back soon”

  72. #72
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    Just a bit of info, but I have just noticed the thread on the "non diy" lights forum about the same DX light. Geoman is importing these lights and checking the quality before he sends them out.
    It may be a better option for some.

  73. #73
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    Yup, I just placed an order with him and I already have my Tracking Number. With DX it took a week just to ship it.

    I should have my light in a matter of days rather than weeks.

    Just a note, this is my second light One from DX and now one from Geo.
    09 Giant Anthem X3
    07 IBEX Trophy Comp X7

  74. #74
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    Its a good idea to buy a light that has been gone over and had all the loose ends tied up.

  75. #75
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    Another update :
    Out of 10 lights, no issues with the lights but we have an issue with 1 charger. It would quit charging after about 1/2 an hr.
    Not sure why, it is not the battery since we tested a different charger.
    Looks like the original charger was overheating and tripping - note that I dont know enough to know if the charger has thermal protection.

    But I tested it out of the housing and it charged the batt fully. So I drilled the charger housing and reassembles and it works.

  76. #76
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    Heatstroke,
    If you need another charger, PM me.

    I reconfigured my battery pack into a 3.6v parallel arrangement, and so I am not using my charger.

    I think I used it 2 or 3 times before my Dx light went kaboom.

  77. #77
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    Hello,
    my charger came "death on arrival"
    Can please somebody tell me colourcode or value for the burned resistor.It is the resistor behind the led, in the picture in the black circle :



    thanks

  78. #78
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    Hi, I can't help you with the codes, but if you live in the US and want my charger for $5, PM me.

    It will be about $5.00 to ship it to us addresses.

  79. #79
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    Sorry, i live in germany..but the charger is very easy to open, maybe you can take a look inside ?
    That would be great

  80. #80

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    I plan to buy one of these lights and mod as per previous threads, is it possible to swap for a better colour led that isn't so green? Can I swap for a http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.12721 as I have read these are good.

  81. #81
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    Looks like red yellow gold on mine (2.4 ohms?) with a gold precision band (5%)

    Mark

  82. #82

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    I can't see the posts in correct order, do I need to change some settings.

  83. #83
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    This obviously doesn't kill the DIY market....it's a "pre built" DIY light. You get one and fix it or enhance it.

    I just ordered one myself.

  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by [email protected]
    Looks like red yellow gold on mine (2.4 ohms?) with a gold precision band (5%)

    Mark
    Thank you Mark, i hope that i can replace the resistor.

    Thank you very much !

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr AB
    I can't see the posts in correct order, do I need to change some settings.
    open the thread .....
    ...... at the top of the thread is `Display Modes`
    click on the dropdown arrow
    select `switch to Linear Mode`

    ................ we`ve all been there!
    ...Scun.thorpe, UK

  86. #86
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    raid,

    Forgot to mention it's at least a 1 watt or maybe even 2 watt resistor (bigger than usual).

    Poke around on Digikey, you should be able to finding something up to 5 watts that you can make fit. Shipping to Europe will kill you, but you might be able to find a local source.

    I'll have to fire my charger up and see what parts gets hot. I've never really run the light on the battery pack for long. I've been having to many cheap 18650s go poof on me lately.

    Mark

  87. #87
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    Update on light 11-15.
    This is our 3 batch of lights...taking us to 15 lights.
    I tore apart the lights to QC and clean up :
    1. All lights were clean inside - no swarf
    2. Still using the longer screw on the mount .
    3. One light was missing the insulating plastic washer and the LED was not epoxied down properly - it was loose!. That would have fried the led pretty quick if the driver had not shorted out due to the wires shorting across reflector.

    You definately have to QC these lights...

    Quick update : Light 15 with the loose led died due to a bad solder joint on the led. This led was AA'ed in and the solder joint fixed . no Problems.
    Last edited by heatstroke; 07-07-2009 at 06:00 PM.

  88. #88
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    Sounds like they are doing a bit better, eh?

    That plastic washer was important on my light because they cut the hole in the reflector way too large.
    The fit around the LED lens was sloppy, which let the refelector drop down closer to the LED + and - connections.

    Any sort of reflector tilt side to side would short out the driver board.

    Which was exactly what happened to my light. (my fault)

    The washer was there to stop that from happening.

  89. #89
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    Update; light 16- 20 : Another batch of 5 lights.

    Again, 1 light with a loose led and missing plastic isolation washer.
    Needed AA and a bit of quick scissor work on a plastic card...

    No other issues with this batch - no swarf.

    Batch 5 on order ( no 21-25)

  90. #90
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    Great to hear that the Quality seems to bee a little better!

    Heatstroke where do you buy your batches? from DX or Geoman?

  91. #91
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    DX for their free shipping. I am in Malaysia and shipping direct from China makes more sense than the US

  92. #92

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    So i took my 1st tumble with these light - a light rain, a newly paved road, kinda of oily, and taking a turn and down i went.

    Anyways the 2 DX lights were working flawless b4 - during and after it, - even the o ring mounts held in place.

    Now my knee-hand-and shoulder didn't fair as well but nothing that should stop me from going out again tomorrow !

  93. #93
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    I just got mine, charged it. Ran it at full power for 3.5 hrs. Worked really well. Took it apart, added a little thermal paste to make it better.

    I do worry about how hot it gets. It cannot be touched after a couple of minutes. I devised a way to mount it on the helmet but wonder if this is a good idea as hot at it gets.....of course this was in my office and not moving, but still, it gets really hot.

  94. #94
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    Heatstroke, how long are you having to wait for your lights?
    I ordered 2 from DX a week ago and the status still says: Waiting for supplier

    Just wondering when I should expect to receive mine.
    Let's just say I'm a little excited to get them and use them.

    We have a weekly night race series starting tomorrow and I wanna know how many races I am gonna have to still ride with my old crappy lights.

  95. #95

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    Quote Originally Posted by lidarman
    I do worry about how hot it gets.
    I did some measured tests on mine and the temperature in static air is high, but well below the LEDs maximum rating. The chart attached is captured from a temperature sensor mounted in one of the recesses in the case at approximately the location of the LED in the case. After it stabilised on 'full' power I dropped it down to 'low' and let it stabilise again. I then swapped it to 'flash' but decided to stop at the point it wasn't increasing much as I had an early start the next day.

    One good thing is that at least the case is getting hot which means it must be well bonded (thermally) to the LED; I'd be much more concerned if it was only warm or cool.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbassett
    I did some measured tests on mine and the temperature in static air is high, but well below the LEDs maximum rating.
    Nice plot. Thanks for sharing that data.

    I was thinking of mounting mine to my helmet but worry that 90 C temps on a helmet near my head is not such a good idea. I figured the electronics would tolerate those temps.

    Do the commercial lights made by NiteRider, etc get this hot on the housing?

  97. #97
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    your scalp is safe. LOL

    We have been riding with very hot lights on our heads for many years.
    Halogens were riping hot.
    my HID's are way hot also

    Feels quite nice on the fingers when it's cold out.
    reach up and grab the light to warm up the hands a bit.

  98. #98
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    Thanks for the plot nice plot JB. A couple of thoughts:
    - what was the ambient air temperature? This helps with understanding the rise.
    - the outer fins on the case will not be anything even close to the junction temperature of the LED(s). Was this where the probe was?
    - the case eventually will get hot even with poor bonding (the heat has to get out, the internal temperature rises to make this happen...).

    Cheers

  99. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by El34
    your scalp is safe. LOL

    We have been riding with very hot lights on our heads for many years.
    Halogens were riping hot.
    my HID's are way hot also
    Really? I guess you have, I have not.

    My halogen never got this hot, neither does my HID.

    This is "I can't touch it" hot.

    Plus, I haven't studied the problem but that much heat on the foam of a helmet cannot be a good thing.



    90 C is near water boiling...very hot for organic life forms..Thus while boiled chicken is so yummy.

  100. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by bradjackson
    Heatstroke, how long are you having to wait for your lights?
    I ordered 2 from DX a week ago and the status still says: Waiting for supplier

    Just wondering when I should expect to receive mine.
    Let's just say I'm a little excited to get them and use them.

    We have a weekly night race series starting tomorrow and I wanna know how many races I am gonna have to still ride with my old crappy lights.
    I got mine last saturday after ordering it shortly before.

    Hmmmm..


    PS: If I was you, I would charge and test yours a full cycle anyhow before using it in a race given the QC issues described above.

    Use your reliable unit until then.

  101. #101

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    my 32 watt halogen is much hotter than this both stationary and in the wind.

    Either way, a light, be it Halogen, HID or LED, while on the helmet you also have the thickness of the helmet and it's rigid foam to give you insulation from the heat, imho.

    ps. i also like to warm up my fingers on the light on cold rides

  102. #102
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    ps. i also like to warm up my fingers on the light on cold rides
    If we stop, I'll have a hand wrapped around the helmet light and one on the bar light.
    Takes my hands about 20-30 minutes to warm up on cold winter rides rides.

  103. #103
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    Update2 of light 16-20
    One Battery charger has died. I've not stripped it down yet. It just shows the green light a few seconds after starting the charge. It may be the PCB as well on the light. I'll check and update later.

  104. #104
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    Update from me:

    I had one of the first ones, i ordered the day it came onto DX, done about 5 rides with it now. Last night was probably the wettest/nastiest ride i have ever been on and this light performed brilliantly and after inspecting it at home after the ride all was dry in the light, battery and connector. Where as my P7 torch on my bars had water on the reflector/under the glass. I have mounted mine on my head similar to the pic i have seen floating around using the o ring around the front opening. Very happy with it, especially after my leaving it on in my bag error!

  105. #105
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    Hi guys,
    Brand new here - First Post.

    I just received 2 of these lights. As per the recommendations both here and over on C.Pforums I had a look inside to check them out. Im not a complete newbie to electrical things but am still pretty green ! The inside of mine had no shavings and in addition, both LED lights appeared to be well glued down to the star with some kind of heat past. I was not expecting this as to date I don't think anyone has experienced anything but epoxy holding things in.
    One light had some frayed wire / rough solder job on the main power leads on the driver board - easily fixed. The other light was ok, except it was missing the plastic insulation ring which stops the reflector shorting out on the LED supply wires. Again, this was easily fixed by cutting a doughnut piece out of some clear plastic card.

    I then AAA'd the two resistors on the top side of the driver - I think this has been mentioned around the place a bit. The idea is to hopefully create a heat bridge across to the Brass Pill... Unsure how successful this mod will be. Finished off by using arctic alumina on everything else that pressed in or screwed together.

    Just how much longer these mods will make it last - who knows.

    I do have a question for those who are well versed in the electronics field... One of the lights , when plugged in, actually glows very slightly / dully. It is drawing current from somewhere and I can't figure it out. It is quite normal and is just as bright as the other light. There are no signs of problems... just that when you turn it off, hold it up close to your eye and cup your hands over it you can see the LED glowing slightly. Sometimes it even has a slight flicker but under a normal room light you would need to be very attentive to see the issue. In the dark it is quite obvious. Does anyone have any ideas what the issue may be? I can only think that the clicky switch is not really working that well and is leaking power?

  106. #106
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    Update3. Light 21-25,
    Looks like they have done another minor mod to the light. The mcpcb of the LED is now held in place by 2 small screws and the epoxy is replaced with thermal compound. Moving in hte right direction.

  107. #107
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    Cool, so they drilled and threaded a couple screw holes.

    Would like to see a pic of that if possible.

    Thanks
    Doug

  108. #108
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    Nice to hear that they are improving their light!!

    Looks like i will order one too soon (just waiting for further improvements )

    keep us updated!!!!!!!

  109. #109
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    Thanks heatstroke, that is good news.
    I am still waiting for my first 5 to arrive:
    2 ordered on 10 July & another 3 ordered on 16 July.

    My order status on DX's site still says "Waiting for supplier"
    Man these guys are slooooww!! But I guess that's the "price" we pay for free shipping!

  110. #110
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    Sorry, did not take photos, and all the lights are now with their new owners.
    There is nothing much to see, I suspect they used self tappers screws and did not tap the holes.

  111. #111
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    Which Light To Get

    posted in wrong area sorry

  112. #112
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    Recent P7 Modifications - Star Retained With New Screws

    Yuk - posting images is not working - I sort out what I've stuffed up...

  113. #113
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    Thanks heatstroke, was just curious.
    Not much to see I suppose.

  114. #114
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    OK - it was limitation of this site regarding size and number of photos. Here is a link to the content on the New Zealand Vorb mountain bike site. Sorry for the hassle: http://www.vorb.org.nz/building-nigh....html#p2126396

  115. #115

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    Marc2c you say on that other site - nice mods btw:
    "On a helmet they put my Lupine Wilma's 830 lumens to shame."

    wow - this is before and after the mods right?

    Lupine Wilma 6 defeated

  116. #116
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    Mark2c - GREAT PHOTOS of the new innards!!!!!!

    Still waiting on my 3 lights to arrive, message now changed to "Order received - In stock" so hopefully they'll arrive in a week or two. My Jet Lites bit the dust (along with me on a steep rocky plunge - ouch) a week ago, and I'm looking forward to the new lights.

    Question: with the apparent improvements (perhaps not quite complete "fixes") in the construction, are all your steps needed? Certainly opening up and cleaning the swarf and checking connections at a minimum seem warranted.

    - If they are using some thermal paste, why remove it and replace it with your own? Was it too thick, crap application, poor quality paste, or something other?

    - With the improved thermal transfer, even if I pull it apart to check the solder connections (EL34 and others had problems), is it necessary to replace the resistors? I am very uneducated in electronics, so forgive me if this a very pedestrian question. My electronics training is based mostly on me shoving paperclips into outlets and putting batteries on my tongue (no, not recently)

    - If I should solder two resistors together and replace for good reasons, where is the best place for me to source such specific pieces - a hobby shop, electronics store, other ideas?

    - Last question - I see you are using what I believe is conductive thermal paste, I only have non-conductive paste, is that a step backwards? Paste is cheap, and I can get some silver based paste easily. Again, electronics newbie here, hopefully not a totally stupid question.

  117. #117
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    The mods I've done don't change the light output or beam shape.

    Quote Originally Posted by wheeler26
    Marc2c you say on that other site - nice mods btw:
    "On a helmet they put my Lupine Wilma's 830 lumens to shame."
    wow - this is before and after the mods right?
    It is the beam shape, the Lupine does not have a hotspot which makes it great for the bar light.

    FDGB, yes the swarf could start conducting at an awkward moment. IMHO the heatsinking design is marginal, well less than ideal, so the poor goo they use conspires to reduce life etc (still way better than halogen...), but importantly the surface mount resistor will fail due to being underspecified for the job it is doing.

    Both the heatsink goo and the heatsink glue I use are not electrically conductive.

    The two resistors to buy from any electronics shop etc is: "0.2 Ohm, 0.6 Watt".
    Last edited by Mark2c; 07-23-2009 at 04:07 PM.

  118. #118
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    Going back to troutie-mtb post of June (first in this thread) the Chinese have been improving both the implementation and the assembly quality. It is probable they will get it sorted soon - which would be great for all of us! Consistently sorted - now that is another thing all together. I imagine the volumes being produced must be ramping up rapidly now.

  119. #119

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    a suit stopped me on the street today saying that he could see my bright light from blocks away down the street. Asked where he could buy it for his Motorcycle - i told him to look here.

  120. #120
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    Thanks geoman!

    I think we have to thank geoman for the infos he is giving to magicshine!!

    Look here: http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...0&postcount=67

  121. #121
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    Electronics question - my local electronics shop is great (the also online electronics plus store), did not have the 0.2 ohm 0.6 watt, but had 0.2 ohm 0.5 watt resistors. I picked a couple of those up for a whopping $.50 each. Will those do the trick, or will it ultimately be no improvement over the surface mount resistor? They willl be getting a new shipment in a few days, so if needed I can leave it as is for now and get them in a week.

    Is it more of a heat/surface mount or electronics improvement? Just curious.

    Thanks for all the TREMENDOUS photos and information. I'm glad you guys (and gals) have nothing better to do. (just kidding... sort of ).

  122. #122

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    I got a replacement DX bike light today and can confirm that the new light now uses heat compound and screws. The strobe mode doesn't seem that fast like some torches as I can count the flashes, was the original light fast?

  123. #123

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    I have just done a quick measurement of current being used and it appears to use 2.7 times less current in low mode.

  124. #124
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    how many milliamps did you measure in low mode?

  125. #125

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    The measurements I took were from a split battery lead using a clamp meter.
    I was only getting 1.2 Amps being drawn from the battery in high mode and 0.4 in low mode. I just though that this may help give a ratio of battery consumption in each mode.

  126. #126
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    ah ok, was just curious about an actual figure because I didn't have a high figure to do the math with.

    My DX light blew up before I was able to get good measurements and it supposedly was running 2.4 amps on high, not the full 2.8 amps.

  127. #127

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    Is the 1.2 Amps about right for an 8.4 volt battery in high mode?
    If so I guess the low mode is around 0.8 amps at the led?

  128. #128
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    FWIW - three lights received - two had the screws to fasten the star down, the third had the holes tapped and ready, but was completely missing the screws (great quality control - how'd they miss that). There were metal shavings in all three lights, so a high power vacuum or blower should be used at a minimum if you don't want to completely pop the brass fitting out. All had a reasonable amount of (hopefully) thermal paste in relevant areas, though far from perfect. So far, batteries and chargers are behaving normally.

    As far as soldering the replacement resistors in, you guys are nuts (and more power to those who made that mod)! That is a seriously small piece of work you've been able to accomplish, jeweler's loupe recommended indeed. I decided to leave it alone and see what happens.

    Two steps forward, one step back.

    I guess by the time these ~$80 lights puke out, I destroy them somehow, or they get permanently "borrowed" by my wife for her night riding escapades, they'll have these small issues resolved and the next set will be even better.

  129. #129

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    Good job!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark2c
    Thanks for the plot nice plot JB. A couple of thoughts:
    - what was the ambient air temperature? This helps with understanding the rise.
    - the outer fins on the case will not be anything even close to the junction temperature of the LED(s). Was this where the probe was?
    - the case eventually will get hot even with poor bonding (the heat has to get out, the internal temperature rises to make this happen...).

    Cheers
    Thanks Mark,

    The ambient temperature was 23°C.

    The sensor was connected in the base of the scallops where the fins are very short. An optical IR thermometer gave virtually the same readings. There will be a temperature gradient from the LED chip to the outer case, but it's difficult to quantify. Unfortuntely it is impossible to measure the junction temperature of the LED with destroying it; pity they don't build in a temperature sensor element. I do have a thermocouple that could be mounted to the LED's base, but even doing that would affect the temperature achieved as the case couldn't be closed properly.

    Agreed the case would eventually get hot, but the rate of rise suggests the bonding is pretty good; the rate of rise is as fast the MTE P7 torch I have and that's after optimising the heat flow from the LED to case.

    I'll see if I can get the themocouple onto the LED base without a significant impact to case integrity.

    Regards
    _ ___ _ Jan

  130. #130
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    My DX light go on 1.5A on hi mode at full charge batt, this was a little surprise for me I find that it pretty warm at "no riding mode" and when I ride the temperature is ok - not very hot, so I think that 1.5A set because of that reason, to against owerheating. Ha, I can imagine If it goes оn full power 2.8A, definetly big owerhiting.

  131. #131
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    Where do you measure the current - at the led or the battery.
    If it is at the battery then the total power is about 12.6W (your battery at full charge is 8.4V), assume 85% efficiency of the driver, then the LED is pulling about 2.8A.

  132. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by heatstroke
    Where do you measure the current - at the led or the battery.
    If it is at the battery then the total power is about 12.6W (your battery at full charge is 8.4V), assume 85% efficiency of the driver, then the LED is pulling about 2.8A.
    Between the batt and driver. Why do you taking the starting point is a power - 12.6W? (maybe I am understand you incorrect) The current is a primary and actual parameter, we can measure it and calculate the real power we have, but not to take the theoretical value of power and calculate the current and hope it be there.

  133. #133

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    Quote Originally Posted by jetigm
    My DX light go on 1.5A on hi mode at full charge batt, this was a little surprise for me I find that it pretty warm at "no riding mode" and when I ride the temperature is ok - not very hot, so I think that 1.5A set because of that reason, to against owerheating. Ha, I can imagine If it goes оn full power 2.8A, definetly big owerhiting.

    at about 1.5 A then the light would only put out about 400 lumens - but this is brighter than that by at least a few hundred lumnes i think

  134. #134

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    Quote Originally Posted by wheeler26
    at about 1.5 A then the light would only put out about 400 lumens - but this is brighter than that by at least a few hundred lumnes i think
    The 1.5A is from the battery, not to the LED. The previous posts clearly state the LED is at probably at about 2.8A which will give the full (nominal) 700 lumens.

  135. #135
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    deleted due to duplication
    Last edited by heatstroke; 08-04-2009 at 07:41 PM.

  136. #136
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    Cause the LED maximum current is defined at LED and not at the battery . The P7 led is 2.8 Amps max. As you rely on drivers to regulate the current to the led, you will not be 100% sure what is drive current unless you know exactly the driver efficiency.

    Typical drivers are 80-90% efficient.
    So if you had measured 1.5A at the battery and you know your battery voltage then you can estimate the current at the LED.

    The DX lights battery is configured 2s2p (li-ions). Fully charged is 8.4V...... and this means about 2.8A at the led assuming 85% driver efficiency

  137. #137
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    Yes, I agre with you, but the "Driver to LED" current cant be higher of "Batt to Driver" current, so if I have the 1.5A between the batt and driver it only be the less current on led, that's what I am try to say previously.

  138. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetigm
    Yes, I agre with you, but the "Driver to LED" current cant be higher of "Batt to Driver" current, so if I have the 1.5A between the batt and driver it only be the less current on led, that's what I am try to say previously.
    You're incorrect on this point. The battery to driver current in a buck type (voltage reducing) driver will be lower than the driver to LED current when the battery voltage is higher than the LED Vf.

  139. #139

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    Vanvbiker is correct and that is the whole purpose of these drivers. A single LiPo cell can't always produce enough voltage to drive a P7 LED (or Cree XP-E, XR-E or MC-E LED for that matter) at full current; they can require 4.2V to achieve the rated current due to manufacturing tolerences. Using 2-cells in series allows the required voltage to be achieved without having to boost it, which is much more efficient.

    In simple terms these switch-mode drivers take in pulses of power and gives them back out again at the desired current. If the required voltage is less than the input then the output voltage is reduced, which requires less input current to give the same power. Obviously nothing is 100% efficient so more power has to be input than output, with the inefficiency being converted to heat by the driver.

  140. #140
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    What you are missing is power. Power (watts)=volts X amps. So, if the controller for the led is outputting 2.8 amps at 3.5 volts, this is 9.8 watts. The controller is about 90% efficient. So the controller draws 10.9 watts from the battery to input 9.8 watts into the led. Now if the battery voltage is 10.9 volts (keep the math easy)(10.9V X 1A = 10.9W), then 1 amp is drawn from the battery. If the battery is 5.45 volts, then 2 amps are drawn from battery. easypeasy James

  141. #141
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vancbiker
    You're incorrect on this point. The battery to driver current in a buck type (voltage reducing) driver will be lower than the driver to LED current when the battery voltage is higher than the LED Vf.
    YES, you right. Sorry for my incorrect post's at this point, i haven't much experience at step-down drivers yet. I thought about this and measure the driver to led current and it was 2.4A and batt to driver current was 1.5A.
    Thank's for an explanation.

  142. #142
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    Does anyone know what PWM controller is used in this driver?

  143. #143
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    The driver used is the SM5241. If you read Chinese: http://www.micro-bridge.com/data/semi-micro/SM5241.pdf

    Looks like an interesting chip. Wish there was an English translation for the pdf file.

    Mark

  144. #144
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    SM5241-2MHz, 36V, PWM control of high-power LED driver circuit
    Overview
    SM5241 is a continuous current mode step-down switch, constant
    Flow, high efficiency LED driver controller. Input Voltage 5.5V ~
    36V, particularly suitable for wide input voltage range applications. As a result of external
    MOSFET control, it can drive multiple or more series, in parallel
    High-power LED.
    SM5241 external circuit is very simple, just have to go through an external
    Resistors set the output current. SM5241 using current detection methods, the precision
    Reaches 5%, sufficient to meet the general brightness of the lighting display and the stability of
    Requirements. Up to 25W of output power.
    SM5241 hysteresis due to control of a load transient
    Have a very fast response speed of the input voltage with a high inhibition
    比. Inductor current ripple of 20%. Maximum operating frequency can be 2MHz.
    Features
    Operating frequency up to 2MHz
    5.5V to 36V input voltage
    Maximum luminance control frequency of 20KHz
    Hysteresis control: no compensation
    ± 5% current accuracy
    5V, 2mA-chip voltage regulator
    -40 To 125 degrees Operating Temperature Range
    Small SOT23-6 package
    Apply
    Construction, industry, environment lighting
    Automobile taillights, fog lamps
    MR-11, M-R16 and other LED lights
    Lights, emergency lights, advertising lights, decorative lights
    Typical applications map (350mA)

  145. #145
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    That's interesting, if I understand correctly, the driver could run 4S1P MC-E's with a 4 or 5 cell Li-ion. Wish DX would sell the can on its own.

  146. #146
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    Who know were to by this SM5241 with shipping to europe. Or maybe anyone suggest a same drivers by another vendors.

  147. #147
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    I FINALLY received my first 3 DX bike lights today!! Ordered on 16 July.

    I was so hoping to have them for last night's night race.
    The tracking records show that the parcel arrived at my local post office at 17:30. The race started at 18:00. Talk about close but no cigar!!

    Anyway I picked them up this morning and now I feel like a kid at Christmas time. Can't wait for it to get dark so I can see just how bright these things are.

    I've had some fun today at the office though, people seem to have a natural inclination to look into it and then turn it on. It's fun watching their reaction.
    Something like mosquitoes being drawn to those blue bug zapping lights. LOL

  148. #148

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    Has anyone identified whether the lights from DX show any of the modifications that Geoman has suggested and obtained from the manufacturer?

  149. #149

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    My recent light from DX has the thermal paste mod and the led screwed down. For the money they are great lights, I should of got 2. The only think going against them is the quality control but this can be easily rectified if you can inspect them before use.

  150. #150
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    Just wondering....Has there been any more reports of people buying these getting the "greenish" light tint that was reported with the early buyers? For me that was the deal killer. If the new ones are a nice bright white I just might have to reconsider getting one. Anyone out there have any photos of the new ones ( purchased in the last 30 days ) ??

  151. #151

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    I will post up a comparison shot between my fenix l2d q5 and the dx bike light, are white wall photos ok?

  152. #152
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    In the last two months I know of 5 of these delivered - none were green - all pure white.

  153. #153
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr AB
    I will post up a comparison shot between my fenix l2d q5 and the dx bike light, are white wall photos ok?
    Wall photos would be my last choice. In order to judge throw and beam pattern it really is best to do an outside photo, preferably over a natural surface in the 150 to 200ft range with some objects spaced out at different distances for reference. With a wall photo we might be able to discern tint..maybe. Anyway, you asked...

  154. #154

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    Havn't had chance to do any night photos but my friend got his dx light today.

    Mine is a warm white/slight yellow tint and his
    is a cooler white/blueish tint but seems brighter.

  155. #155
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr AB
    Havn't had chance to do any night photos but my friend got his dx light today.

    Mine is a warm white/slight yellow tint and his
    is a cooler white/blueish tint but seems brighter.
    You wasn't expecting consistency........ was you?

  156. #156

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr AB
    Havn't had chance to do any night photos but my friend got his dx light today.

    Mine is a warm white/slight yellow tint and his
    is a cooler white/blueish tint but seems brighter.
    i also find my 3rd latest dx light seems brighter overall, but when i look at them both head on they seem the same - either way it's good.

  157. #157
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    Better battery case?

    One area where this light system could stand some improvement is the battery pack. The current fabric case and velcro attachement leaves a lot to be desired. Last night whilst out testing this light for the first time the velcro gave way and ejected the battery, leaving it dangling by the cable. This was on a paved trail ride so I can't imagine this would hold up to any serious off-road riding.

    There are definitely some better attachment methods out there. In particular Dinotte seems to have one of the better ones with a hard shell case and strong velcro straps that provide a very solid attachement to the bike.

    Curious to hear if any of you have found better ways to mount the battey?

  158. #158

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    Did you not thread the square loop through the second square loop?

  159. #159
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr AB
    Did you not thread the square loop through the second square loop?
    Huh, is that even possible? It's defintely not obvious if that's what you're supposed to do, but I'll check that out when I get home.

  160. #160
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    Forty miles, four rides of single track and XC and no issues with the battery pack. The light slightly moves up down on rough terrain. No big deal, because the light is bright.

  161. #161
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    I have been threading the square loop through the other one, but I am not convinced that this will hold if the velcro comes loose.
    I think what will be best is another velcro strap to go around the whole battery & frame, just to be on the safe side.

  162. #162
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    Did our first 3hour plus ride last night- some impressions
    1) Wish I had a remote switch to move between modes- not a bad thing just a wish
    2) I use the Mawri offset mount I got from EI34- works great love it.
    3) Battery came with no velcro strap just the case- I use an old tennis elbow strap (2" wide) to hold to my stem- works great no issues
    4) Battery was good to go- half the ride or so on hi other half on low- took an hour and a half for it to charge this morning.

    Light is pretty white- at this price I might pick up a second light for the bars. For sure I will get a second battery for the real long epics (price is very good).

    Longevity will be the next test and for that ONLY time will tell.
    Last edited by mojojojoaf; 08-14-2009 at 11:29 AM.

  163. #163
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    Good report!

    Glad the DX to Marwi adapter is working out for you also.

  164. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by El34
    Good report!

    Glad the DX to Marwi adapter is working out for you also.
    I am really looking forward to getting the parts I ordered from you to finish those Mawri Conversions to P7.

    The DX works great- but I would like the option of a back up and helmet mount.

  165. #165
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    Every year older you get, your eyes gather less and less light.

    I am 50+

    I am up to the point where I am going to run 2 Marwi P7's on the handlebars and one on the helmet this fall and winter.

    I only need to run one of the Marwi's on low for the long uphill climbs.
    But on the decents, I will have all 3 Marwi P7's blazing baby.

    Probably see some fall leaves catch on fire after the bike rips past.

  166. #166
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    Anyone helmet mount these?

    Also looking for an option to mount one on either side of the chin bar of a full face. Two of these should light things up nicely for night time DH laps.

  167. #167
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    I am not familiar with how that chin bar works.
    Got some good pics of a helmet and how I could possibly get a Marwi to work with that?

    Cyclist, spelunkers, adventure racers, divers, hunters, gun mounted lights.

    I am up for all of that.

  168. #168

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    Excellent thread here guys, I just discovered it. FWIW, I ordered mine last week from GeoMan and got it in on Friday, and posted my stuff over on LiveJournal here:
    http://johnridley.livejournal.com/266955.html

    My stuff is not nearly as thorough as what's already on this thread, but it may show that the manufacturer has moved forward on having better QC and better assembly technique. I found no machining flecks or crud inside mine at all, and there was thermal paste everywhere that it should have been, in appropriate quantities.

    I have read that GeoMan has worked with the manufacturer on these points, so that could be why the quality has improved. Whatever the reason, I'm glad it got sorted before I bought mine to head into fall/winter commuting season, when I'll be running my lights 90 minutes a day.

  169. #169

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    ItsJustMe - nice review

    "What I'd like to see:
    I'd prefer that the cord was shorter, and that an extension cord was either included or made available for those wishing to helmet-mount. There's no earthly reason for the cord to be nearly this long except for helmet mounting.
    "

    Agreed !!



    "Took a little video of what my setup looks like from the side of the road. Even though in general the planet bike superflash is a pretty good taillight, in this video you can see that it's completely obliterated by the Dinotte."


    I also put one of these magic shines on the rear with a strip of red automotive lens repair tape over it and it will easily overpower the much more expensive Dinotte and super flash at the same time. I can see it light up stop signs blocks and blocks and blocks behind me ))

  170. #170
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    Quote Originally Posted by ItsJustMe
    Excellent thread here guys, I just discovered it. FWIW, I ordered mine last week from GeoMan and got it in on Friday, and posted my stuff over on LiveJournal here:
    http://johnridley.livejournal.com/266955.html

    My stuff is not nearly as thorough as what's already on this thread, but it may show that the manufacturer has moved forward on having better QC and better assembly technique. I found no machining flecks or crud inside mine at all, and there was thermal paste everywhere that it should have been, in appropriate quantities.

    I have read that GeoMan has worked with the manufacturer on these points, so that could be why the quality has improved. Whatever the reason, I'm glad it got sorted before I bought mine to head into fall/winter commuting season, when I'll be running my lights 90 minutes a day.
    I just checked out your Journal entry and I must say, you did a very good write up...photos look great as well..

  171. #171
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwarwick
    One area where this light system could stand some improvement is the battery pack. The current fabric case and velcro attachement leaves a lot to be desired. Last night whilst out testing this light for the first time the velcro gave way and ejected the battery, leaving it dangling by the cable. This was on a paved trail ride so I can't imagine this would hold up to any serious off-road riding.

    There are definitely some better attachment methods out there. In particular Dinotte seems to have one of the better ones with a hard shell case and strong velcro straps that provide a very solid attachement to the bike.

    Curious to hear if any of you have found better ways to mount the battey?
    I wrap a velcro strap around the entire battery and stem once on the bike. It hasn't come loose on me yet, but this is just a precaution.

    Something else I have done is to take a piece of old MTB tube the length of the battery and stretch it over the battery. This provides some protection should the battery ever fall out of its fabric pouch. It also gives the battery a tighter fit into the pouch, and will make it more waterproof.

  172. #172
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    Does anyone know if there is a possibility of running this light off of Dinotte batteries. I like the form factor of the Dinotte batts and they are weather sealed and come with a reliable charging system. From my eyes it looks like they use the same connectors, but I don't know the voltage output of either the Dinotte or the Magicshine.

    I have a 400L and an upgraded Minewt that I use, but think adding this as a bar mount and moving one of the lights to my helmet for ~800-1000 lumens.

  173. #173

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    Quote Originally Posted by hiroshima
    Does anyone know if there is a possibility of running this light off of Dinotte batteries. I like the form factor of the Dinotte batts and they are weather sealed and come with a reliable charging system. From my eyes it looks like they use the same connectors, but I don't know the voltage output of either the Dinotte or the Magicshine.

    I have a 400L and an upgraded Minewt that I use, but think adding this as a bar mount and moving one of the lights to my helmet for ~800-1000 lumens.
    All it really needs is something around 7-8 volts at 3 amps. You should be able to run it off of anything that can deliver that, all you need is the right connector, and it's a pretty standard looking connector.

    However, the connectors are not exactly the same. According to one source, the electrical part inside is the same (I can't verify) but if you look carefully, on the Dinotte, the male electrical part has a female waterproof surround. On the Magicshine, the male electrical part has a male waterproof surround.

    ASSUMING that the electrical part is the same, you could use these together but there would be no waterproofing at the electrical connection. You'd have electrical male to female, but waterproofing male to male and they would not overlap and provide any seal.

    Personally I'm just going to use some waterproofing tape on the Magicshine and call it good. Really, a baggie wrapped tight around the wire and zip tied with a little dob of silicone inside (if you're really paranoid about it) and then put into the carrier would do just fine too. I'd probably skip the silicone myself.

  174. #174
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    Based on the parts used in the driver for this light (at least the one I took apart), I would not use much beyond 8.2 volts as a battery source. This works fine with a couple of LiIon cells wired in series (or a 2s2p configuration). 6 NiMh cells wired in series should work as well. The input filtering capacitor (in the unit I dissected) is rated for 10 volts, so even something like a 9.6 NiMh battery (when fully charged, which can put out more than 10 volts) could blow the cap, and make your lite not work.

    The folks who manufacture these lights cut costs to the bone. If it's 1 cent cheaper to use a 10 volt rated cap vs a 16 volt cap, they choose whichever is cheaper. I can understand their desire to keep costs low, but it makes it hard for someone who wants to use different batteries.

    Note: a higher voltage battery may seem to work for a while. A cap rated at 10 volts can tolerate 16 volts for a while, and then suddenly go "zort" on a long, steep, very dark downhill. Don't assume that just because a battery you hook up to the light works in a short test it will continue to do so.

    Mark

  175. #175
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    If anyone interesting about rebuilding the electronic, I can post my experience (scheme, PCB, firmware). After upgrade I have "low"->"mid"->"Hihg" modes. Now I have more usability and reliabiliti. I throw away "computer" (one PCB side) and made my own which based on ATTINY13.
    Last edited by jetigm; 08-26-2009 at 04:27 AM.

  176. #176
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    Hi, you programmed the ATTiny13?

    I have been curious about that for a while.
    I looked into a while back, but never followed up.

    I would like to see your schematic, pcb and info please.
    Thanks,
    Doug

  177. #177
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetigm
    If anyone interesting about rebuilding the electronic, I can post my experience (scheme, PCB, firmware). After upgrade I have "low"->"mid"->"Hihg" modes. Now I have more usability and reliabiliti. I throw away "coputer" (one PCB side) and made my own which based on ATTINY13.
    would it be possible to offer these new drivers for others to upgrade?

    how much would that cost?

  178. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by El34
    Hi, you programmed the ATTiny13?

    I have been curious about that for a while.
    I looked into a while back, but never followed up.

    I would like to see your schematic, pcb and info please.
    Thanks,
    Doug
    Ok, soon I will post the info.

  179. #179
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whitedog1
    would it be possible to offer these new drivers for others to upgrade?

    how much would that cost?
    If you mean to by my upgraded drives? - no, but you can build your own if you have proper skills.

  180. #180
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    Ok!

    Hopefully someone with propper skills will build some for us guys who like to upgrade our dx p7 light!

    is it also possible to raise the drive current on high from 2.4 to 2.8A??

  181. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whitedog1
    Ok!

    Hopefully someone with propper skills will build some for us guys who like to upgrade our dx p7 light!

    is it also possible to raise the drive current on high from 2.4 to 2.8A??
    Yes, but in that case you have more heat and less non riding time with "on" light. Just put the lower risistors in driver side (inductor side) on the bard.

  182. #182
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    Ok, soon I will post the info.
    Ok, thanks, I'll check it out as soon as I see it posted

    Appreciate it

  183. #183
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  184. #184
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    What's the safe way to get your light disassembled past this point? It seems the two holes which are drilled into the inner silver ring play a key in this. Is it threaded or something? I tried to move it around with a small screw driver but didn't want to try with much force, as to not smoke the new light.

    I poped out that plastic insulator ring and tried loosening the two small #1 phillips screws in there, they were pretty damn loose. I don't even think they're threading up to whatever is back there, feels stripped out big time.

    Thanks for any assistance!




    PS: It took about two weeks from order to delivery for this light. It is a very nice white, no noticeable green tint. I fired the light for about 30 seconds to make sure it works.

  185. #185
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    Hi NT (neuro-transmitter), the aluminium is threaded. Info on how to deal with it is here: http://www.vorb.org.nz/building-nigh...ark2c#p2126396. Hope that it is helpful.

  186. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by serotonin
    What's the safe way to get your light disassembled past this point? It seems the two holes which are drilled into the inner silver ring play a key in this. Is it threaded or something? I tried to move it around with a small screw driver but didn't want to try with much force, as to not smoke the new light.

    I poped out that plastic insulator ring and tried loosening the two small #1 phillips screws in there, they were pretty damn loose. I don't even think they're threading up to whatever is back there, feels stripped out big time.

    Thanks for any assistance!




    PS: It took about two weeks from order to delivery for this light. It is a very nice white, no noticeable green tint. I fired the light for about 30 seconds to make sure it works.
    A pair of long nose pliers will do. Stick the points into the 2 holes on the aluminium ring and carefully turn it counter-clockwise.

  187. #187
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    Quote Originally Posted by El34
    Glad the DX to Marwi adapter is working out for you also.
    When you use that adapter with the DX light, are you able to adjust the angle up or down?
    On the bars this wouldn't be a concern obviously because you can just tilt the whole mount up or down, but on a helmet, I'd be limited to where I can place it (because of the helmet vents), so I'm wondering if I can just angle it up or down.

    From the pics on your site it looks like it can, by just loosening the big bolt, adjust angle and tighten bolt. Sound right?

  188. #188
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    Yes it allows for up and down adjustments

  189. #189
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    Update Light 20-25
    25 lights in total now with our club...
    2 failed this weekend. We get a green battery indicator when the lamp is plugged in to the battery but no power to the LED. I've checked the LEDS and they are still good. So it must be the driver board that has died.

    Hopefully this will not occur again with the others.

    Time to talk to DX.....

  190. #190
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    Suggest a check of the low ohm resistors - their rated power is being exceeded.

  191. #191
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    Mark2c, I assume you are replying to my 2 light failure. Anyway I checked both lights and the low Ohm resistor, and they seem good. My MM does not have the resolution to measure that low (min 0.1 ohm) but I do get continuity across the resistors. Any other ideas ?

  192. #192
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    Does anyone know what an equivalent replacement driver for this light would cost from DX?
    Which drivers would be compatible?

  193. #193
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    Quote Originally Posted by heatstroke
    Any other ideas ?
    Check the stabilizer "in" & "out" voltage.
    Check the pin 7 (PWM out) of SOIC8 controller. Logical "0" present cause the P7 off, two different types of PWM present cause the "mid" and "flash" mode. This is the final point to ensure that "computer" is work. So if after clicking the switch the status of PWM out pin would not change - the "computer" is not working.
    If "computer", current limiting resistors and P7 is OK it seemed to the PWM controller (on driver side) is not working.
    Check the switch also.

  194. #194
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    Switch is OK - I checked continuity through it. So on to Pin 7 Output.

    I plugged Pin 7 out into an exoquantum analizer and powered up throught the flux capacitor a nominal voltage of 3.3V. Pin 9 then gave up and went home for a beer.

    Sorry mate - what you wrote is pretty close to swahili to me. My electronic engineering is limited to V=IR and a few other simple equations.

    If someone can translate, it'd be much appreciated.
    Cheers
    Rich

  195. #195
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    Quote Originally Posted by heatstroke
    Switch is OK - I checked continuity through it. So on to Pin 7 Output.

    I plugged Pin 7 out into an exoquantum analizer and powered up throught the flux capacitor a nominal voltage of 3.3V. Pin 9 then gave up and went home for a beer.

    Sorry mate - what you wrote is pretty close to swahili to me. My electronic engineering is limited to V=IR and a few other simple equations.

    If someone can translate, it'd be much appreciated.

    Cheers
    Rich
    I'll take a stab at it...I think he is saying if pin 7 has no voltage ( during any of the mode changes ) ( Pin 7 being the PWM ( pulse width modulation ) output that controls the mode output of the LED ) THEN...something is wrong with the driver ( chip )

  196. #196
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    Anyone found a proper charger, other than the charger for the Canon BP-511? My charger was DOA. The charger led is always green.
    I emailed DX but they don't bother to answer, so I must find other way to charge the batt. pack.
    Do you think 4 18650 protected cells would power the light properly? That way I could charge them individually.

  197. #197
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    Geoman sells chargers for the DX light and he is state side.

  198. #198
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    tks, but I’m in Europe and was trying to find a something this side.

  199. #199
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    ooh yeah- sorry bro. good luck.

  200. #200
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    The battery pack has a single protector PCB and 4 x 18650 batteries. As such any standard 7.2V Li-ion charger will do the job.

    I've used a Kento charger and it works well (faster too, but not enough to cook the batteries).

    Don't use a fast battery charger (eg fast drill or RC) as these will be cheap slow charge cells.

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