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Deal Extreme is currently a commercial sponsor on this forum and is offering one of their products free - in return for a review that will appear on BNA. We are searching for a reviewer who can provide an independent and truthful review for BNA.
How to Qualify
In order to qualify, we are asking for anyone interested to write 1 paragraph (post below) to explain how they would review this product. Sounds simple? We are looking for someone who can write well, someone who knows what they are talking about and also has good ideas. On BNA we pride ourself in writing comprehensive quality reviews, so it will be worth taking some time to check out some of our past reviews as an idea what works.
This is the product for review
Note: to qualify you are not reviewing or commenting now, rather describing your process and convincing me that you are the best!
- The review would appear on BNA plus Deal Extreme would be able to repost elsewhere
- In the review period allow ca. 4 weeks for testing/reviewing (followed by writing/editing)
- The best response will be selected, the reviewer will be able to keep the light.
- Any questions, just ask
- Applications close in one week
- This is not a competition as such however T&Cs apply
Total value: Aus $32.58
Start Date: May 28. 2013
End Date: June 4. 2013
I would use multiple real world scenarios, Commuting (early morning and after 6pm).
Trails and bike paths with little or no lights.
Take Photo's etc of beam spread and of the local possums . Review battery burn time and recharge time.
Compare to other lights on the market.
It takes more than brightness to make a light right for sight, day or night!
I need to know that it's easy to switch between my trusty two wheeled steeds, has a battery life that exceeds my typical weekly riding program, and that it provides value for money. The spread of light and multi modes for different riding scenarios is also important to give me confidence that this light will not only make it possible for me to see but also for me to be seen and therefore safer on the roads than without any light, and compared to my existing bike lights.
As the SingFire SF-539 is obviously targeted at the budget end of the bright light range the review needs to consider what separates it from the Magicshine MJ-808 that really kicked off this segment. Obviously it's priced lower and as per most of the current lights in this category claims to be 1000 Lumens compared to the 900 of the older Magicshine. The big difference I see it as claiming though is the "zooming" which I assume to mean the beam focus can be changed so you can adjust from a more focused, longer throw spot back to a wider and shorter flood. The review will need to consider how well this zooming works and whether the mechanism is likely to cause reliability issues. Two lights would be really nice to see if a combination of long and short throw could be used to provide superior overall coverage.
I also notice the battery appears to be the shrink wrapped style which tends to be the weakness in the water resistance of these types of lights. A serious wet weather ride (weather lately would have been perfect) is needed to see if this is going to be an issue. This will require opening the battery to check for any water ingress after the ride as the corrosion that ultimately leads to a failure may not become evident within the review period.
Charging time and run time on all modes will need to be measured. The description doesn't mention what battery level indications the light gives but whatever they are the run times to each point should be noted.
The light will need to be tested both handlebar mounted and with the included headband mount. The ease and security of mounting of both the light and battery will need to be reported as well as any observations on the overall build quality and durability.
While beam shots are nice I feel some footage with the Action Cam giving back to back comparisons of the MJ-808 and the SF-539 could be of more value. This footage will include some in car footage showing the lights as they allow the rider to be seen in daylight, low light and no light situations as well as on the bike footage including night time descent of Macquarie Pass, the freeway shoulder and some local firetrails and single track.
Who has gone over 1 paragraph? I like the thoughts though will comment of video footage - it is really difficult to present the light you actually see in the same way on film. General if a light has a nice spread, on video it will have a much sharper edge and strong contrasts as the video generally balances to the centre - so the darker areas would appear black. However - it can be tested - for example a camera in a stationary position and riding past with different lights - and seeing how well the footage can show differences in the way the light is spread as well as intensity.
Strange, but I got this light delivered this Monday.
So far I have not found the zoom lens any good, if you focus the light to a longer throw, the intensity significantly decreases.
The best and only setting is to have short throw.
1000 lumens? not really.
More like 500 lumens.Great for the price though.
Where to start? Ok, well, I ride before sunrise three to four times a week up in the Adelaide hills - the majority of which are unlit roads. In addition to that, I commute every day, and most weeks it's six days on the bike. I'm no fair weather rider either... it's rain, hail or shine for me. So as far as being a thorough and suitable test candidate, I think I've got that nailed.
I also know my way around a camera and have a hefty array of camera equipment, so shooting photos for the article would be no hassle at all. I'd essentially be taking a bunch of 'riding photos' and then could easily set up an objective test against some other comparable lights.
Add to that I can write a coherent, structured sentence... what more can I say? I'm your guy!
(I know you said one 'paragraph' but I think it reads nicer if I space my thoughts out. Instead of one paragraph talking about three ideas.)
At the beginning of last winter I thought (like all cyclists) that I had sufficient lighting on the bike (front and back) then I got wiped out by a car that just did not see me...so now I look like a mac truck coming down the road.
Lighting is a very important aspect of winter/night time cycling and I am astounded at the number of cyclists that ride in the dark with little or no lighting... I am a conservative road cyclist doing an avg 150k/week so feel well qualified to review this product.
By the way I was lucky enough not to break any bones last winter....
This product needs a regular rider...a commuter who rides daily in darkness, daytime, fog, rain and one who rides in both country and city environments. One who rides smooth and rough roads. One who is able to test a product to its full capabilities due to their wide range of environments and willingness to go that extra yard to ensure the most comprehensive report. This product, nae this company deserves more than a part time rider, a rider who could only ever expect to put the product through a limited testing phase. More importantly, potential customers, need to be able to relate to the person carrying out the testing and realise that the review is coming from the average rider, not a show pony, a sunshine rider, who only comes out when the sun is shining or the wind is blowing in their favour. Many will come and say that they should be the one who provides the review, but if we delve a little deeper, knock the shine off the top, we will come to the conclusion that these impostors would be more suited to Canberra and parliament and the smoke and mirrors going on there than reviewing a bike light. As one great man once said "ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for this bike light". PS: my current bike light is on its way out, so I would really appreciate it if I could get to review this light so that I get a light to ride in the darkness still, otherwise mummy said I can't go out and play anymore on my bike
+1 to gretaboy's comments
give it to gretaboy, or me, or TW. all weather commuters (Comedian is an all weather commuter as well but he's just bought ay-ups)
my current light is a DX jobbie. now in it's 3rd year. will replace battery cells after this winter
My regular night-time commuting would provide the perfect context for reviewing this light. I would be able to compare it with other lights that I have used over the years. My comparison would include how easy, and how many options there are, to install it. How bright is it? How wide does the light shine? Will it be good for both roads and shared paths? It is easy to remove when I have to lock my bike in a public place? Will the batteries last a decent amount of time, and will they die suddenly or give me some warning? Would it look good on my (and your) bike? I'll supply pictures of the light in and out of action. I'll do it!
Really enjoying the responses!
I am a road warrior. I didn't start out like this and I didn't want to be this way, but surviving on the open road can be a battle. While strongly waved fists and death stares are the few offensive weapons a cyclist has, it's the defensive armoury that makes the real difference. Bells and mirrors may help, but lights are what get you noticed at dusk; where shapes blend and bicycles seem to become invisible to the common motorist. So what light do you use and how good is it? Importantly, why did you buy it in the first place. Me? Well, my current light is rubbish. I love that it's so easily detachable and weighs almost nothing. It also charges via USB which saves on costs. The problem I have with it is the speed of loss of charge. Almost without warning, the light fades to nothing. Suddenly I am invisible, which simply isn't good enough. So, I need a new light. What better reason to apply to this posting? As a 100km+ per week cyclist, riding in all weather, I think I could give the light a vigorous real world testing and would be happy to write about it.
]i am currently in the market for an upgrade from the B&M light that was supplied as standard with my VWR. due to finances i'm not in a position to try out too many products.
i am a long term customer of deal extreme, and would be happy to test a product that they endorse,but any review by myself will be honestly based on my opinion of said product.
also i always have a passenger,so visibility and safety are my number 1 priority
I'd love to try it out. I'm a daily commuter, rain or shine (and hey it's Melbourne, it's dark and often raining at the moment) so it would get tested in all conditions. I'm always on a quest to find good lights; in the last 3 years of commuting I have had 6 different lighting setups. I'm an engineer and highly analytical, and I fully appreciate that good design and good engineering is all about the management of competing priorities (performance, size, weight, looks, cost, durability and so on). Some of my previous reviews on the topic can be found here: http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/sho ... 97B-review - which is a brief overview on an already technical forum hence not very wordy, and here: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=26723&p=863084#p863084 which was more in depth though done at short notice, hence the lack of pictures.
I don't need this light, but I love writing and think I could do this review justice. If it's good I keep it, if it's less than good it's free to a good home after the review.
This is now closed - tomorro I will announce the winner.
Thank you to everyone who has responded - generally a high quality response.
The best answer - for the purpose of this review is gretaboy.
Humerous and I liked the specific reference to the audience / reader.
I will also specifically commend sblack, boss, MattyK and TraceyG who all have very worthy answers - and I will be in direct contact.
Thank you everyone for your interest and participation.
Thankyou for putting the faith in me. First time I have "won" something in a long long time. Told the wife slipping that 50 on the side would help my chances
Wow, mummy will be pleased...so am I as I get to ride still.
I've been lucky enough to do my share of revviews, and it's been a great learning experience.
Be warned though, Chris is picky on the accompanying photos ....
Congratulations gretaboy, looking forward to reading the review.
If you have access to a magichsine I'd be interested in knowing if the battery connection are the same. If my misplaced magicshine doesn't turn up soon this light may be the one to replace it.
The review is now up on BNA: Budget Bike Light Review: SingFire SF-539 1000 Lumen
To make you a little curious how it all turned out - a few images from the review without comments.
Nice review gretaboy. The bit that actually surprised me is the last pic in Aubicycles post - one of the biggest criticisms of zooming lights is that the optics are not sufficiently well made for the zoom to have the desired effect. I know what causes the diamond shape & it requires fairly good optics. It would have been nice to see just how far it can project the diamond shape, but that would merely be distinguishing between good & brilliant optics.
Only two criticisms & they are of DX & not your review
Fair points - the Diamond is a cute effect though I can't see this being practical though got your point on the quality.
I had contact from DX who facilitated the review and they were sending the review criciticism to the manufacturer.
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