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Headlight?

Old 01-14-20, 05:10 AM
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Lrdchaos
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Headlight?

Im in the process of looking for a decent headlight for early morning/late night rides. I plan to use this light on both my mountain and road bike. What do you recommend? I would really like to find something with a rechargeable internal battery for compactness.

Last edited by Lrdchaos; 01-14-20 at 05:21 AM.
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Old 01-14-20, 05:21 AM
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Budget?
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Old 01-14-20, 06:15 AM
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250ish....
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Old 01-14-20, 06:22 AM
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Old 01-14-20, 06:47 AM
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Lots of options.

Here is a good recent video with some.

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Old 01-14-20, 07:28 AM
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Thread moved from General Cycling to Electronics.
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Old 01-14-20, 02:16 PM
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Personally, I think these are currently the most technologicaslly advanced and best rechargable lights currently available that I am aware of: https://www.outboundlighting.com/
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Old 01-14-20, 02:31 PM
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I posted here a nice overview covering all available high-end glare free lights. In addition to these lights with very clear cut-off features you could look into the Raveman PR series, which has a (not so distinct) cut-off beam and a high beam function in one lamp.
In case you prefer the torch style lights (and you don't care about cut-off light design), there are tons of options...

Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
Personally, I think these are currently the most technologicaslly advanced and best rechargable lights currently available that I am aware of: https://www.outboundlighting.com/
Initially i perceived you of being quite sceptical when it comes to cut-off lights, it seems you like those kind of lights now

Last edited by polyphrast; 01-15-20 at 11:47 AM.
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Old 01-14-20, 03:01 PM
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Ditto, Outbound Lighting and similar lights, especially for off-road nighttime riding. I'm considering those myself. For a few years I've mounted two headlights on my handlebar for a broader beam so I can see rural highway road sides at night -- lots of deer and other critters. But a single light with broader beam would be better.

A single really good light also saves cockpit space for a bike computer, video camera, and my hands. I run video front and rear on every ride now. And a small bike computer with basic GPS and data. It's cramped on long climbs when I want to put my hands on the top of the drop bars near the stem.

For compact single lights, they're all pretty much the same -- basically flashlights designed for bikes. I have Light & Motion Urban 500 and Rando 500, NiteRider 750 Micro Lumina, and Serfas lights. There isn't that much difference in beam pattern. Biggest difference is in runtime per battery charge and discharge characteristics. Some lights, like the NiteRider Micro Lumina, claim a very bright maximum output but that's basically a turbo or WEP mode (for fans of WWII aerial combat SIMs). My NR 750 Lumina Micro puts out 750 lumens for only a few minutes. It drops rapidly, with a discharge arc like a softball. The L&M Urban and Rando 500 produce a more steady output and tend to fizzle out rapidly rather than slowly dimming over 60-90 minutes.

And get more light than you think you'll need. 500 lumens is plenty bright enough for most conditions. But a 1,000 lumen light will run longer at medium output than a 500 lumen light on maximum brightness. I've made that mistake trying to save a few bucks. Now I need to buy lights all over again, or limit my night rides to only an hour or 90 minutes. I tend to ride a lot at night because it's cooler in Texas summer and less traffic year 'round.
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Old 01-14-20, 03:05 PM
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Old 01-14-20, 03:54 PM
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I think you'll get more horsepower w/ an external battery
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Old 01-14-20, 05:13 PM
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Really depends on the type of riding your doing. If your riding really is separate, you may want to consider a more basic commuter bike light and a more extreme mountain biking light. Most bike lights in the US don't have good beam cutoffs, so your choices are a lot more limited. If you separate the lights, you can get an affordable commuting light and a high-powered mountain biking light.

That said, I personally really like the Magicshine Eagle F3 currently, it has nice beam optics and not power without blinding people. Otherwise you can get the higher powered Magicshine 906 and 908 lights for high powered night time riding off road. I have a number of reviews on my website in the signature if you want to see the beam patterns and specs.
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Old 01-14-20, 08:26 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by polyphrast View Post
I posted here a nice overview over all high-end glare free lights. In addition to these lights with very clear cut-off features you could look into the Raveman PR series, which has a cut-off beam and a high beam function in one lamp.

In case you prefer the torch style lights (and you don't care about cut-off light design), there are tons of options...


Initially i perceived you of being quite sceptical when it comes to cut-off lights, it seems you like those kind of lights now
And I thank you for sending me off to read about all this! I really appreciate that.
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Old 01-14-20, 10:04 PM
  #14  
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Beware the maximum lumen rating as they are measured at peak performance (just after startup) which in virtually all light doesn't last more than a few minutes before it begins to drop. You 2000 lumen light could become 1500 lumen within 5 minutes after you've turned it on.

A better measurement would be the average peak performance. Although there is no standard so each manufacture gets to make up his own rating.

My Niteride Pro 1800 has 3 CREE LEDs that give a wide beam pattern and a spot light throw with no hot spots. Still, it could use some refinement. Despite the huge battery, the run time on this model at max illumination is only 90 minutes, and it takes a full 4 hours to recharge. I also wish the battery were removable so you could just drop in a another charged batter when one runs out.

The final negative is that its impossible to change mode while on the run. I wish all lights came with a solid click instead of these annoying push, hold and wait electronic switches. I've never used my light at full power on the road as it would be way too bright. Even at the lowest setting it still needs to aimed down towards the road to prevent the light from blinding oncoming motorist (remember bike lights sit a lot higher than a car headlamps).

Here's the Niterider 1800 Pro illumination in a near pitch black park. As you can see the cut off is pretty abrupt but the patter is very wide and covers more than twice the path.

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Old 01-15-20, 08:50 PM
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I have two of those cheap black aluminum lights available on Amazon for about $11. I already own 18650 batteries and chargers. They are no where near 1000 lumens but still bright. Been using both at the same time years on and off road in the winter. Aim one a little lower and wide, the other more direct and high, it mimics a high and a low beam. Only problem is tight turns. The only answer for that is a helmet light but any extra weight on my helmet is not comfortable so I just live with it. If i was doing routine MTB off road I'd get something better. I carry two extra batteries and swap about 90 minutes into my ride. If one were to fail during a ride, I still have the other one. I can put one in my mouth or use it as an area light while fixing a flat or whatever during the ride too. A lot of my riding is in pitch black rural areas where you literally can't see your hand in front of your face. I also use them around the house as... flashlights.

Not these exact ones but similar
https://www.amazon.com/Beike-Tactica.../dp/B07L9MP4SY

I have small pieces of reflective tape on my pump and multitool. Makes finding it easier or at least less chance of leaving it behind.

Last edited by u235; 01-15-20 at 09:11 PM.
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Old 01-16-20, 12:48 AM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by u235 View Post
I have two of those cheap black aluminum lights available on Amazon for about $11. I already own 18650 batteries and chargers. They are no where near 1000 lumens but still bright. Been using both at the same time years on and off road in the winter. Aim one a little lower and wide, the other more direct and high, it mimics a high and a low beam. Only problem is tight turns. The only answer for that is a helmet light but any extra weight on my helmet is not comfortable so I just live with it. If i was doing routine MTB off road I'd get something better. I carry two extra batteries and swap about 90 minutes into my ride. If one were to fail during a ride, I still have the other one. I can put one in my mouth or use it as an area light while fixing a flat or whatever during the ride too. A lot of my riding is in pitch black rural areas where you literally can't see your hand in front of your face. I also use them around the house as... flashlights.

Not these exact ones but similar
https://www.amazon.com/Beike-Tactica.../dp/B07L9MP4SY

I have small pieces of reflective tape on my pump and multitool. Makes finding it easier or at least less chance of leaving it behind.
I have used a helmet light for years in town. I recently bought a new headlight with a super wide beam pattern and I have found that it is lighting my way around sharp corners, due to its impressive width. So, that is always another potential possibility for you, as well.
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Old 01-17-20, 06:04 PM
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Not giving a specific recommendation, but a couple of places to do research:
  1. Bike Light Database -- Not completely exhaustive, but a good start.
  2. Road.cc headlight reviews -- Good reviews showing beam patterns and comparisons between lights.
If you haven't figured it out already, most lights put the number of lumens they purportedly throw right in their name, which makes it a little easier to sort through.
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Old 01-18-20, 02:36 AM
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Personally, I would pay far more attention to the lux measurement and the beam pattern than the claimed lumens. Companies use all kinds of BS tricks to jack their lumen claims--it may not mean a damn thing.
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Old 01-20-20, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by bpcyclist View Post
Personally, I would pay far more attention to the lux measurement and the beam pattern than the claimed lumens. Companies use all kinds of BS tricks to jack their lumen claims--it may not mean a damn thing.
I don't think there is a single light that has both a lux rating and a lumens rating. It's very unfortunate.
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Old 01-20-20, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
I don't think there is a single light that has both a lux rating and a lumens rating. It's very unfortunate.
Supernova gives both values for their high-end lights, see e.g. here. However unless you see the beam pattern against a wall, that lux value does not help much, as it is only measured at a single point.
For the B&M Ixon Space (and the IQ-XE) the lux value is given by the manufacturer (150 lx), the lumen value was measured for a test in a (german) bike magazin in a sphere (500 lm).
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Old 01-25-20, 10:16 AM
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https://reviews.mtbr.com/bike-lights...-light-for-you
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Old 01-26-20, 11:37 AM
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Lightbulb

Originally Posted by Lrdchaos View Post
Im in the process of looking for a decent headlight for early morning/late night rides. I plan to use this light on both my mountain and road bike. What do you recommend? I would really like to find something with a rechargeable internal battery for compactness.
Lupine SL AF
Supernova M99 Mini Pro B54
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