Looking at buying a BT21 and either a BT40s or BT70- Help- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Looking at buying a BT21 and either a BT40s or BT70- Help

    I am looking into getting some lights to ride single tracks at night. I know I want a BT21 for my helmet, and either a BT40s or BT70 for my bars. Should I get the BT40s or spend the money for the BT70? I have no lights right now, this will be my first light purchase.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
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    I would have to say the BT40S would be my choice. I own both the 40 and the 70.
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  3. #3
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    Looking at this too. After ramping up with night rides, I am realizing the cool white lights are not giving me enough definition. Love my XT40/Yinding combo, but looking at neutral color lights now. I have a ton of battery packs, so really don't want to go the 70 route and spend more money on a new battery.

    Seems like a 21/40 combo would be a very nice option, and then add some 10 degree spot optics for the 21? If that is the case, is there any modifications that need to be done on the optics, or do they just drop in?

  4. #4
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    My buddy just received his BT21 tonight from GB...holy cow...v. high quality unit/case for ~$50. He is using it as a bar light to run with his SSX2 on the helmet. I would be all over this if I needed new lights. Seems like the BT21 on the helmet would work well with the multi-LED deals like the 40 or 70.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dawgman25 View Post
    ...Seems like a 21/40 combo would be a very nice option, and then add some 10 degree spot optics for the 21? If that is the case, is there any modifications that need to be done on the optics, or do they just drop in?
    Go to the review thread for the BT21. A discussion on optic replacement is there. I replaced one of the optics on mine with a more spot optic from an older D/X lamp. Not an exact fit. I had to remove the O-ring in front of the original optic so the front of lamp will close. Likely other optics are the same. This of course means that the lamp will likely loose some of it's water repellency. If you were going to use the lamp on the helmet I would think it might be a good idea to replace both optics with more of a spot/spot optic setup.

  6. #6
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    I'll take a look, thanks. It would be for the helmet with a 40 or 70 on the bars, so I would want 2 spots. From your initial comments, it doesn't sound like there is a simple matching optic that doesn't require modification.

  7. #7
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    I bet you find that the BT21 (it looks like the same set up as a Yinding) would be fine on the helmet as-is.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dawgman25 View Post
    I'll take a look, thanks. It would be for the helmet with a 40 or 70 on the bars, so I would want 2 spots. From your initial comments, it doesn't sound like there is a simple matching optic that doesn't require modification.
    Gloworm XS spot optics will fit with no other modification than deleting the rubber o-ring seal that comes stock. They also provide the most measured lux on a light meter (bounce test) of any optic I've tested. I have a set of the 10 that seem to be the new rage on order and will post lux readings when I receive them.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dawgman25 View Post
    I'll take a look, thanks. It would be for the helmet with a 40 or 70 on the bars, so I would want 2 spots. From your initial comments, it doesn't sound like there is a simple matching optic that doesn't require modification.
    The original optics have a small lip on them that provides seating for the small o-ring. Replacements tend to be a bit taller. Some people said the Gloworm spot optics were the best but there are some who like the LEDDNA optics ( 10 ). I don't have any of these myself but will order some just out of curiosity. Of course depend on preference you may like a 15 optic better.

    The BT21 on turbo is really bright. With the right optics you should be able to harness the output for some more usable throw. Optics usually aren't too expensive so you should be able to buy a couple sets and then use what works best. Some might require minor modifications to fit properly though. Read through the discussions on this thread starting here. As you continue to read more options seem to work.

  10. #10
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    This is the same set up it looks like I'm going to go with too. I'm grabbing a BT70 kit, and a BT21 lone head. I'm going to use the awesome battery that comes with the BT70 kit to run the BT21, and I'm in the process if figuring out a good battery pack to run the 70 with.

  11. #11
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    Why not use the awesome battery on the BT70 since it is a good one and matched for that light? You only need a 4 cell for the BT21 and there are tons of options.

  12. #12
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    If he's going to get a 6cell Panasonic for the bt70 hell be in really good shape. That was our only complaint with the bt70, 4 cell instead of 6cell battery pack for it.

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    Ok, my apologies. I thought the battery that came with it was a 6 cell. Carry on.

  14. #14
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    Ya we all wish with that. Honestly a 4 cell is plenty unless your one of those people that hasn't realized more light isn't always better. Because high mode is still alot of light. I can't even ride my trails with a bt70 on turbo, too much glare from the undergrowth.

    Still if you want to match run times (and get 3hrs+ for each light) 4 cell pack from the bt70 being used on the bt21 is 3hrs on turbo, 5 on high. A 6 cell 10000mah on bt70 will do about the same and the load of the bt70 on turbo wont overwork the cells constantly or risk tripping protection if the driver has a brief spike.

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    Thanks for the breakdown tigris, that sounds perfect. I'm sure turbo will be fun and useful when the time is right (like if we stop to drink and need to light up a park for a couple 100 people haha) but I'm most interested in being able to go out all night long on a reasonable setting and not have to worry about running out of juice. I used to go for rides to the city at night that would go 5 hours easy so this would be great.

    So is Panasonic definitely a better battery brand than Samsung? I was looking at the options over at mtbrevolution with the Xeccons, prices seems to agree with that idea. 7800 means it wouldn't run as long as the 10200 I'm assuming that's the capacity.

    Looking between these two, should I definitely go with the panasonic?

    6 cell Samsung 7800 in hard and soft shell variations

    6 cell high-end Panasonic 10,200mAh soft shells


    Oh yeah, and as far as Hunk Lee goes, he's 100% on ebay right, no online store front?

  16. #16
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    There's alot more to cells than im going to try and get into but mah(capacity) is your run time basically.

    But each brand has cells that are better for high discharge rates. Panasonic is just the best of the common cells used for these packs. Samsung and such are good, but the commonly available cells and used in these pre built packs, Panasonic is the "best".

    Iirc its eBay only. If you need a pouch to hold the pack to your frame. xeccon is going to be a better price as packs include the pouch and their top quality just like hunk lee. Hunk lee is better price if you just need a pack and nothing else.

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    Cool thanks a lot. I haven't messed with ebay in like 10 years anyway so that works for me. Hopefully it's a warm winter and I can use this stuff for a while. I'm just waiting to see if I can get a price match on a light then I can order.

    There are tons of deer in the suburban area where I live, chasing them around on the bike is crazy fun but my gopro kinda sucks for very low light. Like I get really close to them, (not sure if they think we're playing or I'm going to eat them, but they seem to let me keep up lol). I'm really looking forward to getting some awesome deer videos with this set up.
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  18. #18
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    Price match??? On which light? Gearbest has a facebook page now that has a code for the bt21 light head, gets it down to $25, but I wouldn't rid buying any nitfighter lights offered cheaper elseware, risk not getting the same as we reviewed, unless from nitefighter directly via eBay. Already seeing a clone on amazon of the bt40s...

  19. #19
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    On the BT70 kit, it's like $75 at Deals Machine so I'm trying to see if GB will match their shipped price, around $92 (Which I think I read was about how much GB was selling them for in the first place, so I'm thinking they might go for it).

    DealsMachine: Nitefighter BT70 7 x Cree XP - G2 Rechargeable Neutral White LED Bike Light ( 2800Lm 6 Modes Full Package )

    Last I looked on GB the BT21 head was already listed for just under $25. That price was slightly cheaper than DMs too.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by JediMindTrixR4Kidz View Post
    Thanks for the breakdown tigris, that sounds perfect. I'm sure turbo will be fun and useful when the time is right (like if we stop to drink and need to light up a park for a couple 100 people haha) but I'm most interested in being able to go out all night long on a reasonable setting and not have to worry about running out of juice. I used to go for rides to the city at night that would go 5 hours easy so this would be great.

    So is Panasonic definitely a better battery brand than Samsung? I was looking at the options over at mtbrevolution with the Xeccons, prices seems to agree with that idea. 7800 means it wouldn't run as long as the 10200 I'm assuming that's the capacity.

    Looking between these two, should I definitely go with the panasonic?

    6 cell Samsung 7800 in hard and soft shell variations

    6 cell high-end Panasonic 10,200mAh soft shells


    Oh yeah, and as far as Hunk Lee goes, he's 100% on ebay right, no online store front?
    I know you addressed this post to tigris but I'd thought I'd add my $0.02 worth to the mix. If you're looking for a bar lamp / battery set-up to get you through longer rides >5 hrs, I think you would be better served using a lamp with lower output modes. A BT40S on the lowest mode provides a great amount of light and still conserves a lot of power. I have torches that use just a single 18650 cell and on medium they supply enough power to see well and still run more than three hrs. I figure a good dedicated bike light with good "useable" low and medium modes will run nearly 10-12 hrs ( at those levels ) assuming you have a battery with very good capacity
    ( = or > 6000mah ).

    I haven't gotten the BT70 yet. On the lowest mode God knows how long it might run but with a 6-cell battery it should run a very long time. When LED's are run on low current they are VERY efficient. I don't know how bright low is on the BT70 but I think medium is 600 lumen (?)..( someone correct me if I'm wrong on that ) and that is more than enough light coming off the bars for most terrain. With a 6-cell 7800mAh ( Samsung )battery using medium setting most of the time..I bet the BT70 would last more than 10 hrs. Of course once you start using the higher settings all bets are off...BUT, on the high setting ( not boost ) I bet you get between 5-6 hrs ( as long as you use boost only for short periods. ) Of course the higher the capacity of each cell, the more potential run time you'll get. If you are planning 5hr rides or plan running boost on that half hour downhill I'd go with the higher capacity Panasonic cells.

    About the battery "brand" question: without getting too technical, just look for either Samsung or Panasonic and you're going to be fine. Sanyo, also a good brand was bought out by Panasonic. Other notable brands worth mentioning are BAK and LG but Panasonic and Samsung are looked at as the top tier.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat-man-do View Post
    ... When LED's are run on low current they are VERY efficient.....
    This is relatively correct. More precise would be: When LED's are run on low current they are MORE efficient than at higher current ..... Efficiency depends also of the technology used.

    Yet with our PWM based lights efficiency is better only because of less heat on lower modes and not because of lower current. The current on PWM lights is allways 100%. It is just the shorter time (Pulse) which makes you feel the current is lower. Our DMMs can't sample that fast and shows us an average reading. You would need osciloscope to see it.

    So (exluding heating factor) efficiency on PWM lights is the same as you would run it at highest mode all the time. If we would have drivers with different current modes the efficiency would be better at lower currents, that's true.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Desert Runner View Post
    I would have to say the BT40S would be my choice. I own both the 40 and the 70.
    Could you please explain why you prefer the 40 over the 70.

  23. #23
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    I'll help out on this one too:

    First the bt70 is huge!!! For a bike light anyway, ita big and heavy. I can't stand having something that big on my bars.

    Secondly unless you rise dh courses at night you dont need that much light. For god sakes let your eyes adjust to the low light and all of the sudden you can still see perfectly fine. You dont need a motorcycle headlight on a mountain bike

    Thad my opinion, the bt40s is plenty for most except for the guys that ride DH or more extreme trail riding where the extra light is needed. But most of us honestly do not. I ride fast but sometimes rough XC trails and I can ride at the same speed at night as during the day without a problem.

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    Thanks for the .02 Cat. I'm still waiting to see if I get that price match. A big reason I want to have that turbo around is for trying to film the deer around here, it could be over kill and over expose but the gopro doesn't seem too great at night video as it is so I'll give it a try. The more background I can light up for the shots the better. And I could probably use it to melt snow in the driveway this winter. The 21 will make a great back up to bring along or share with a friend if the helmet idea ends up over kill.
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  25. #25
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    Actually for the turbo use you want itll do well, cameras will adapter well. My videos are done with cheap Chinese gopro clones and they do fine with lights I use. A gopro and bt70 you'll be able to film quite well, but the heat will trip the thermal protection quickly in warm outside temps unless its breezy or your moving.

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    Nice The moving shots chasing them around is what I'm most looking forward too lol I don't imagine they'll stick around too long once that thing fires up. (Or it could completely stun them? This will be interesting) I'm in NY so even in summer there aren't too many warm nights, this could work out pretty good.
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  27. #27
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    Well think of the saying "deer in headlights" lol. But be careful, can get game warden/dnr (whatever they call it) all up your orifices over it. Whatever you do dont get caught lighting up deer with it unless its attached to your bike. Here they call it "spotlighting game animals" as the sudden brightness stuns and confuses them long enough for an easy shot. Big a** fine and such if caught. I never even leave home to test lights without my bike at least with me and always close by.

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    Definitely no hunting allowed around here so I'm not sure it would even be a crime. (I should prooobably look that one up though, thanks!) It's a suburban area that is infested with the things haha With the 29er you can follow them pretty well. I ride almost every night for at least an hour and I see them all over the place, they're really used to people. I had 7 on one lawn the other night, some laying down, some wandering about. Hung out trying to take pictures for like 15 minutes before they decided to move along. The most fun is riding along with / chasing em around across lawns haha they seem to let me keep pretty close
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  29. #29
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    Ya we get that here too in the Midwest, deer everywhere. Some could care less about humans, some are skittish. Just watch messing with them if there is a buck around, good way to get tore up lol.

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    yeah I should probably figure out when breeding season is, I've seen some decent size racks around I wouldn't want trying to knock me off my ride
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  31. #31
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    October thru December. Also if they have a fawn in the group, immediately go the other way. Moms get PISSED.



    Most of the time your fine, but during rut season or near small fawns is when you need to just back away and leave them be. Bright light is actually your ally here if you come up on the wrong group at the wrong time. Gives you time to back away, their eyes can't focus in your direction so they will be confused. But push the matter instead of backing away you'll be visiting the ER lol. Dont try to play the "nice deer" and get closer lol.

    Ive had a couple close calls with deer, the first was on tight single track, almost got a face full of deer rear end coming out of a fast corner. They ran down the trail, gave them a minute to get away and went about my ride. Not sure who was more in shock, me or the deer cause if it farted it would have been about a foot from my face lol.

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    lol good times. Earlier this season I was riding down the middle of a street and two smaller deer crossed in front of me, right to left, 20 yards ahead and I slowed down to admire. Then I heard tapping on pavement behind my right shoulder and that bastard flew right passed me within a few feet and crossed the street to join his friends before I could register what I was even hearing haha

    I have a friend I need to copy your post to, he's got a weird deer phobia of even the little ones hehe

    Glad you told me about the breeding time that is quickly approaching
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by tigris99 View Post
    I'll help out on this one too:

    First the bt70 is huge!!! For a bike light anyway, ita big and heavy. I can't stand having something that big on my bars.

    Secondly unless you rise dh courses at night you dont need that much light. For god sakes let your eyes adjust to the low light and all of the sudden you can still see perfectly fine. You dont need a motorcycle headlight on a mountain bike

    Thad my opinion, the bt40s is plenty for most except for the guys that ride DH or more extreme trail riding where the extra light is needed. But most of us honestly do not. I ride fast but sometimes rough XC trails and I can ride at the same speed at night as during the day without a problem.
    Thanks for your summary. I should note that I will be riding DH trails at night. Some villages in the Alps have no access roads or streets and can only be accessed by a cable car which runs until 11P.M Sometimes even up until midnight! But once the white stuff starts falling then its all over until spring. Normal years we can ride these trails until late November/December and start again as early as March due to these trails being in the lower elevation. My front door trail is normally ridable the whole year as snow rarely stays around for more than a few days. But my front door trail is more XC than DH so the 40 sounds perfect for that. Still interested in the 70. I want both BUT my wife says we need to reduce our spending at the moment so I can only sneak one past her but not two. I will have to wait a bit for the second light (70) and new battery pack. I already have a spare pack for the 40 so thats the easiest one to sneak past the budget defense. lol

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swissam View Post
    Could you please explain why you prefer the 40 over the 70.
    Personalty the 70 on single track to me puts out to much light. LOL. The 40 puts out the right amount for narrow single track. If I'm going to ride fire roads or a wide enough trail I use my 70.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JediMindTrixR4Kidz View Post
    lol good times. Earlier this season I was riding down the middle of a street and two smaller deer crossed in front of me, right to left, 20 yards ahead and I slowed down to admire. Then I heard tapping on pavement behind my right shoulder and that bastard flew right passed me within a few feet and crossed the street to join his friends before I could register what I was even hearing haha

    I have a friend I need to copy your post to, he's got a weird deer phobia of even the little ones hehe

    Glad you told me about the breeding time that is quickly approaching

    So on the deer subject, went for a ride a couple hours ago, mid day..... Come flying around a long turn with tall grass in both sides......doe's head wasn't barely as tall as my bars. Stopped in time but really close call from a rear end collision with a young doe.

    AND I HAVE IT ALL ON VIDEO!!!!! but no promises ill be able to get it loaded to YouTube till I get home from vacation. Even talked to her, my presence didn't barely phase her even as close as I was.

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    haha wow that's funny timing. Those buggers are all over the place. It surprises me how comfortable they can be with a human zipping around them on rolling metal.
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  37. #37
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    Well I need to remember one point for referencing distance on stuff like this, we focus well out in front of us while riding so things seem much closer than they are. She seemed right in front of me but she was several feet in front of me, and the encounter didn't last as long as it seemed. I went through the video on both cameras im doing a side by side comparison on. Still she wasn't much taller than my handlebars, so pretty small. Getting harassed now by the inlaws for trying to run over Bambi with my mountain bike lol.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swissam View Post
    Thanks for your summary. I should note that I will be riding DH trails at night. Some villages in the Alps have no access roads or streets and can only be accessed by a cable car which runs until 11P.M Sometimes even up until midnight! But once the white stuff starts falling then its all over until spring. Normal years we can ride these trails until late November/December and start again as early as March due to these trails being in the lower elevation. My front door trail is normally ridable the whole year as snow rarely stays around for more than a few days. But my front door trail is more XC than DH so the 40 sounds perfect for that. Still interested in the 70. I want both BUT my wife says we need to reduce our spending at the moment so I can only sneak one past her but not two. I will have to wait a bit for the second light (70) and new battery pack. I already have a spare pack for the 40 so thats the easiest one to sneak past the budget defense. lol
    When I first saw this thread I was thinking that if your riding looked like the paved trail in tigris99's beam shot photos, then you would be okay, but based on your description of your trails you are going to have a hard time keeping all that mass sitting above the bars from wanting to rotate on the bars with the o-ring bar mount. Just a heads up


    ****

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by scar View Post
    When I first saw this thread I was thinking that if your riding looked like the paved trail in tigris99's beam shot photos, then you would be okay, but based on your description of your trails you are going to have a hard time keeping all that mass sitting above the bars from wanting to rotate on the bars with the o-ring bar mount. Just a heads up


    ****
    Yeah those O-ring mounts are pretty useless. I have a Hope universal bar mount that works great at holding my MJ clone nice and steady. I'm positive it will hold the 70 just fine but I was thinking of using my GoPro mount with one of those heat sink adapters. I'll use the Hope mount for the 40.......oz to freedom is the only chance I have to feel good even though I feel bad.

  40. #40
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    Just ordered the BT40s, I had to wait til the wife was in bed.
    She won't see the statement for three whole weeks. Enough time to sneak a 70 and a 6cell battery pack. Lol

  41. #41
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    Anyone ever have trouble ordering with GB? Just got an email saying order is on hold and they want me to send scanned images of ID and credit card.. That normal?

    I never had a paypal account to begin with I just did the quick pay through the site. GB is saying I need to verify the purchase through Paypal, so I signed up through the email and there's no record of a purchase to verify.
    Last edited by JediMindTrixR4Kidz; 09-06-2015 at 02:21 AM.
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  42. #42
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    If I'm understanding correctly....You tried to order without paypal (at first ) but they put the purchase on hold...that means you have to re-order and this time use paypal to pay when you get to the payment page. Of course if you want you can cancel the previous order if they gave you an order # but if they didn't I wouldn't worry about it. ( if you didn't do it with the first order it would be a good idea to go with the expedited shipping. You'll get the stuff much sooner. )

    Going forward; Paypal...the easiest, safest and best way to buy stuff from the Chinese. Oh yeah, I wouldn't give them a copy of your Drivers license or the card. Not a good idea. With Paypal the seller never gets to even see your credit card as Paypal acts as a third party to guarantee the purchase.

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    46
    Oh no, I mean I paid through paypal but the easy way where they don't make you sign up for a full account. GB had a problem with that in the end though because I don't have a verified account, so I tried to set up a paypal account to verify that transaction. I think the paypal site glitched while I was setting up the account. Like I had to go back and start over after the glitch, and the second time worked, but now it says the card is already registered to another account. I think it half set up an account for me or something the first time. I emailed paypal with the story and the Receipt No: for the purchase, should hear back in a day.

    *update* sounds like I'm all good to go with GB now. Service on a Sunday of a three day weekend! Points for working with China

    I ordered that nice 6 cell panasonic from mtbrevolution too. I cheaped out on the shipping for that figured no big rush, but GB is expedited so I'll get to report back maybe even this week on the lights.

    Thanks again to everyone for the help. When I started looking into this light idea before I started reading here, I had that "15,000 lumen" gold color light from amazon in a cart I think I'm going to be much happier with these.

    I have to figure out the mounting situation now.
    Last edited by JediMindTrixR4Kidz; 09-07-2015 at 03:35 AM.
    2010 Felt Nine Solo

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