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Old 08-02-11, 04:32 AM   #1
PrinceofParamus
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If I Was To Buy One Front Light

Good morning everyone,

Im a roadie who rides mostly for fitness. I live in New Jersey and ride thru the north Bergen boroughs. In the boroughs there are street lights and between them there are few. I ride mostly 20-25 mph. Im finding that Im leaving later in the evening or riding earlier in the morning. Im thinking about buying a bike light.

Do I need a flood or a beam the most? handlebar or helmet mounted?

If I was to buy one light which would be the best choice

BikeRay USA: BikeRay III

BikeRayUSA - BikeRay IV

Geoman - Magicshine XML 1000

Thanks in advance
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Old 08-02-11, 06:47 AM   #2
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Any of those lights should serve you well, even at 20-25mph.
I ride with the MS-900 which is rated lower than those lights and it does just fine at speeds beyond 30mph in the dark.
Handlebar or helmet? That's a preference thing; I prefer the light mounted on the bars as it keeps the light on the road in front of me. No ninja potholes/cracks/bumps/glass that way.

That being said though, Cygolite is coming out with their new model year versions shortly which are going to be brighter than their current ones (which are plenty bright). Price will be about the same to less than the lights you've listed, and they have models with integrated lithium ion batteries so no wires/battery pack to mount.

Last edited by ChrisO; 08-02-11 at 07:06 AM.
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Old 08-02-11, 07:46 AM   #3
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I own a BR IV and a Magicahine 808E XML from Bikempowerment. The difference between the Bikempowerment magicshine and Geoman MS XML is that the Geoman MS XML has a better tint and different mode. Both the BR IV and MS XML has it's good and bad.

MS XML

Pro:
Good throw.
Relative low price for a thrower.
Slightly less power draw than the BR IV.
Lighter if use as an helmet light.

Con

Lack of close range flood.
Tint is more toward a warm tint and not CW.
More noticeable hot spot at mid range.


BR IV

Pro
Tint is as white as it will get.
Flood at close range very good, good enough to see you are about to get door.
Flood at mid range is also good.
Sufficient throw for most use but not as good as MS XML


Con
The green indicator is super huge.
It takes more power.
There might be some issue with water resistant. (see the BR IV review at MTBr forum for more info)
Kinda pricey


It is a hard choice. If I had to only select one, it will be the BR IV. The higher price does leave you an second option. You can get a Geoman MS XML with a 6.0 battery and for slightly more cost than a BR IV, you can add on a MS900 lighthead only at $44 more plus a Y cable. This will give you two lighthead and one battery. The MS900 will give plenty of flood while the MS XML will cover the throw. Total cost is slightly more than a BR IV.

Only thing I am not totally sure of is if the 6.0 battery can handle the total current. I think it will. I do have a 6.0 Geoman battery and can test it for you if you are I interested or better yet, email Geoman before buying this combo from them for their assurance.

One final note. Somewhere here in the Electronic Forum, I have an outdoor beamshot comparison including the BR IV and MS XML. A search should locate it.
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Old 08-02-11, 05:55 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colleen c View Post
I own a BR IV and a Magicahine 808E XML from Bikempowerment. The difference between the Bikempowerment magicshine and Geoman MS XML is that the Geoman MS XML has a better tint and different mode. Both the BR IV and MS XML has it's good and bad.

MS XML

Pro:
Good throw.
Relative low price for a thrower.
Slightly less power draw than the BR IV.
Lighter if use as an helmet light.

Con

Lack of close range flood.
Tint is more toward a warm tint and not CW.
More noticeable hot spot at mid range.


BR IV

Pro
Tint is as white as it will get.
Flood at close range very good, good enough to see you are about to get door.
Flood at mid range is also good.
Sufficient throw for most use but not as good as MS XML


Con
The green indicator is super huge.
It takes more power.
There might be some issue with water resistant. (see the BR IV review at MTBr forum for more info)
Kinda pricey


It is a hard choice. If I had to only select one, it will be the BR IV. The higher price does leave you an second option. You can get a Geoman MS XML with a 6.0 battery and for slightly more cost than a BR IV, you can add on a MS900 lighthead only at $44 more plus a Y cable. This will give you two lighthead and one battery. The MS900 will give plenty of flood while the MS XML will cover the throw. Total cost is slightly more than a BR IV.

Only thing I am not totally sure of is if the 6.0 battery can handle the total current. I think it will. I do have a 6.0 Geoman battery and can test it for you if you are I interested or better yet, email Geoman before buying this combo from them for their assurance.

One final note. Somewhere here in the Electronic Forum, I have an outdoor beamshot comparison including the BR IV and MS XML. A search should locate it.
Thanks Colleen,
I did read your review and saw your pictures. Thats what got me thinking.
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Old 08-02-11, 06:04 PM   #5
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If you're only getting one light, I think
it's better to mount it on your helmet.

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Old 08-02-11, 06:23 PM   #6
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I much prefer the light on the handlebars, so it points where the bike is going. The best reason for a helmet light is to flash-signal drivers at intersections, parking lot exits, etc.
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Old 08-02-11, 06:33 PM   #7
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Do I need a flood or a beam the most?
For headlight I would go for flood.
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Old 08-02-11, 06:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1nterceptor View Post
If you're only getting one light, I think
it's better to mount it on your helmet.

That was a good video; Thanks
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Old 08-02-11, 07:29 PM   #9
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You're welcome. Most of those clips were shot in Hudson county, NJ.
The one with the yellow cabs was shot in New York city.
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Old 08-03-11, 04:20 AM   #10
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Wink

I found the MJ-816 on Amazon. It seems to have a beam and floods in one package,
Has has anyone tried on of these? They say its 1400 lumens


Last edited by PrinceofParamus; 08-03-11 at 05:50 PM.
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Old 08-03-11, 04:27 AM   #11
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MJ-872 1600 Lumens, digital battery back. I havent seen this one before




After reading about that battery pack fiasco and Geoman (and maybe Magic Shine USA) being slow with the battery exchanges Im reluctant to buy from them. At least on Amazon if you have a problem there is some recourse.

Last edited by PrinceofParamus; 08-03-11 at 04:37 AM.
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Old 08-03-11, 06:27 AM   #12
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I just got the NiteRider Minewt 600 cordless; I ride similar to you and I do not think that I will need another light. I have tried both bar and helmet mount and the helmet mount works best for me. I like the light throw that it affords and the ability to direct the beam at a particular driver if needed. Also, I only run it on medium which is rated at 400 lumens.
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Old 08-03-11, 04:02 PM   #13
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Quote:
The best reason for a helmet light is to flash-signal drivers at intersections, parking lot exits, etc.
I totally disagree - a helmet mounted light will point where you need it - when you need it.

If this thread about using a single light at speeds over 20mph - then there is little choice but a head/helmet mounting. The same amount of power on a handlebar mount will never "reach around" the corner of a road or spot the dog running out from the yard. Any experienced rider will tell you that there are plenty of reasons a helmet light is more beneficial.

I just returned from an all night right and needed my helmet light to find gravel on the corners of two-lane back roads. The light also saved me from hitting a skunk last week.
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Old 08-03-11, 04:26 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Richard Cranium View Post
I totally disagree - a helmet mounted light will point where you need it - when you need it.

If this thread about using a single light at speeds over 20mph - then there is little choice but a head/helmet mounting. The same amount of power on a handlebar mount will never "reach around" the corner of a road or spot the dog running out from the yard. Any experienced rider will tell you that there are plenty of reasons a helmet light is more beneficial.

I just returned from an all night right and needed my helmet light to find gravel on the corners of two-lane back roads. The light also saved me from hitting a skunk last week.
I'll keep that in mind, and agree to disagree.

Last edited by dahut; 08-03-11 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 08-03-11, 07:25 PM   #15
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I ordered the Bikeray I&II special from Bikeray USA for $140. Both are 900 lumens each. One is a throw and one is a flood so I can use one for my helmet and one on the bars or maybe both on the bars since it some with a 'Y" connector.
Im really looking forward to trying these when they arrive. I would have ridden last night if I had lights.

http://www.bikerayusa.com/super-savings.html
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Old 08-03-11, 08:32 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrinceofParamus View Post
I ordered the Bikeray I&II special from Bikeray USA for $140. Both are 900 lumens each. One is a throw and one is a flood so I can use one for my helmet and one on the bars or maybe both on the bars since it some with a 'Y" connector.
Im really looking forward to trying these when they arrive. I would have ridden last night if I had lights.

http://www.bikerayusa.com/super-savings.html
That's the fun part with lights. I find myself enjoying my night ride much more not long after I replaced my Cygolite 150 with a Magicshine 900. Since then, I upgrade several times and each time it gets more fun.
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Old 08-03-11, 10:46 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrinceofParamus View Post
I ordered the Bikeray I&II special from Bikeray USA for $140. Both are 900 lumens each. One is a throw and one is a flood so I can use one for my helmet and one on the bars or maybe both on the bars since it some with a 'Y" connector.
Im really looking forward to trying these when they arrive. I would have ridden last night if I had lights.

http://www.bikerayusa.com/super-savings.html
That's a good call. I feel safest with one high beam on the bars and one flashing on the helmet.
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Old 08-04-11, 08:18 AM   #18
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If this thread about using a single light at speeds over 20mph - then there is little choice but a head/helmet mounting. The same amount of power on a handlebar mount will never "reach around" the corner of a road or spot the dog running out from the yard. Any experienced rider will tell you that there are plenty of reasons a helmet light is more beneficial.
said RC previously.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dahut View Post
I'll keep that in mind, and agree to disagree.
This guy set up the thread to ask about lighting for what I consider "high speeds." My experience suggests that when riding at that speed or faster that it is more important to search out obstacles and a good line (using a head lamp) than to flood any straight forward area.

However, the forums are for learning- and if you don't really know what I am talking about - then you should check it out.

I would dare anyone to try and keep up with me with a "fixed light" and ride the corners I ride in darkness. (no street lights)

But I digress - perhaps some $600 SECA or Dinotte or Nite Rider light "fixes" that problem - I wouldn't know.
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Old 08-05-11, 04:33 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PrinceofParamus View Post
I ordered the Bikeray I&II special from Bikeray USA for $140. Both are 900 lumens each. One is a throw and one is a flood so I can use one for my helmet and one on the bars or maybe both on the bars since it some with a 'Y" connector.
Im really looking forward to trying these when they arrive. I would have ridden last night if I had lights.

http://www.bikerayusa.com/super-savings.html
Please let us know how you like them!
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Old 08-05-11, 08:36 PM   #20
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said RC previously.


This guy set up the thread to ask about lighting for what I consider "high speeds." My experience suggests that when riding at that speed or faster that it is more important to search out obstacles and a good line (using a head lamp) than to flood any straight forward area.

However, the forums are for learning- and if you don't really know what I am talking about - then you should check it out.

I would dare anyone to try and keep up with me with a "fixed light" and ride the corners I ride in darkness. (no street lights)

But I digress - perhaps some $600 SECA or Dinotte or Nite Rider light "fixes" that problem - I wouldn't know.
Ahh, self realization - what a great thing. I like the way learning opportunities equate to doing what you deem best.
And while you're rocket-shot "Night Rider" abilities sound impressive, I have tried helmet lights. They just didn't impress me as much as they do you. Useful, yes. End all, no.
That's probably because I'm not in as big a hurry to burn up the corners as you are.
I'm content to get home, while enjoying the quiet of the country night along the way. To each his own.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:27 AM   #21
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I have tried helmet lights. They just didn't impress me as much as they do you. Useful, yes. End all, no.
Well, as the original post goes -

"IF" I was using only one light - and "IF" I say ride at speeds of 20-25mph - then mounting a light on a helmet is far more useful than a fixed mount.

If you are not "impressed" with helmet mounted lighting - then you must not need to "look around" when you ride. I guess that's possible for some situations.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:58 AM   #22
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...then you must not need to "look around" when you ride. I guess that's possible for some situations.
There isn't much to see - I ride mostly desolate back roads on my commute. Im more concerned with having puncture resistant tires than seeing what is around me. Looking around would let me see oh, well... trees, farm fields and maybe some road kill.
I can see where a helmet light would be useful if, say, I were rushed by a dog from the side... but that has never panned out.
I admit that I was concerned with this when I first commuted after dark, but dogs seems to change at night.
They appear to lack their normal daytime willingness to give chase.
Occasionally, a deer will be startled by my presence, too, but they don't do more than stand there or scamper off.

I find that once out in the inky black of the back-road night, almost any light will illuminate these things. I am looking around at a brighter bar light to replace the current one and am liking the BikeRay's. When I get my dedicated commuter bike completed, I will likely get one.

I do have a short city section of my ride, but there are street lights and other illumination along that section. I am content with the bar mounted light as my main source of illumination. As I said previously, I DO like the helmet light as a means to signal motorists, and they are useful for "looking around." But I ride the same road going and coming. I've already seen what is there to see, on my way in.

Last edited by dahut; 08-07-11 at 08:03 AM.
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Old 08-07-11, 11:03 AM   #23
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I am very interested also in learning more about the BikeRay.

I currently have a MagicShine900 that is working ok, battery controversy aside...so I will probably stick with it for the time being, but if it died I would probably go for the BikeRay.

Both of these lights are much better than my prior light, which was a Fenix L2DCEQ5 flashlight.

It's amazing how the LED light technology has improved just over the past 3-4 years.

Oh, and no way am I going into the "helmet versus bar" debate. Let those who ride decide.
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Old 08-07-11, 12:05 PM   #24
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I'm also a fitness rider from NJ -- albeit South Jersey. I'm sure my rides are a bit more rural, but the roads do have street lights and are fairly well lit. Most of my rides are done in the early morning and in the fall, I leave before sunrise. I used to ride with a L&M Arc HID. Except for a somewhat narrow beam resulting in a "tunnel effect", I never thought I needed a helmet mounted light. I recently purchased a CygoLite TridenX 750OSP which I will begin using in a few weeks on my bar. I'm hoping that it has the same, if not better throw, than the L&M, but with a wider beam. I'll post my results in a few weeks.
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Old 08-10-11, 10:01 AM   #25
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I just received my Bikeray III and it is on the charger. I will try it out tonight and report.
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