Lights under $100

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Lights under $100

Postby boss » Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:34 am

Hi all,

I've been considering purchasing some lights to upgrade from my Bontrager Glo/Ember lightset ( http://bontrager.com/model/08919 ). They are obviously better than nothing, and very small, but seem to be designed for very very light commuting.

So. I'm looking to get a front (and hopefully rear) light for under $100 that will do a reasonable job of lighting the road as well as making sure I'm seen.

I don't often do night riding but 1-2 times a fortnight I'm up 5am-ish so wouldn't mind a little bit of extra visibility from my light.

I've been looking at the Lezyne Macro Front (300 Lumen) + Micro Rear (70 Lumen) and they come in a few shades under $100. (Front light http://www.wiggle.co.uk/lezyne-macro-dr ... ront-light , rear light http://www.wiggle.co.uk/lezyne-micro-dr ... ear-light/ )

Does anyone have any suggestions other than the Lezyne for a great bang for buck light set?

Cheers!
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by BNA » Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:40 am

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Re: Lights under $100

Postby jacks1071 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:40 am

Lights arn't something to go "cheap" on - I use and recommend Ayup. Given that they are so well built and last almost indefinitely they are well worth the cost.
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby boss » Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:54 am

Typically I'm the type of person who lives by the rule 'buy nice or buy twice' so I can understand/appreciate your sentiments - but right now budget is a short term issue (next couple of months) but I still need better lights than what I've got on my bike, and need them sooner rather than later.
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby Ozkaban » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:14 pm

jimboss wrote:Typically I'm the type of person who lives by the rule 'buy nice or buy twice' so I can understand/appreciate your sentiments - but right now budget is a short term issue (next couple of months) but I still need better lights than what I've got on my bike, and need them sooner rather than later.


I bought one of those 900 lumen ones from cell bikes for about $80 (I think!). Extremely bright (as in you can ride full speed at night and see where you're going), pretty good battery but the mount and the battery holder were a bit below par. The mount (one of those rubber band jobs) broke while I was putting the light on for a 4:30am start the next day - the actual mount broke away from the light. My fault in from the amount of force I was using but it still broke and I was reduced to using a double-AA light and tailing a friend with the 900 lumen light in the rain until the sun came up. It lasted about a year, I think.

I have since bought an Ayup set. Not cheap, but to me it was worth it. They really are well built.

I think the 900 lumen ones are ok, though there are several different ones out there with varying quality mounts, batteries and chargers. The cell bikes one was one of the more expensive and better quality ones I've come across. They will be ok if you need a bright enough light to see by, are pretty careful with the mount and don't mind them moving a bit when you hit bumps.

I'm also a fan of most things Lezyne - I own their pumps, saddle bags, tools, etc. I've read some not-too-flattering reviews of their lights though. The design seems to have gotten in the way of performance, though someone who has bought one may have more reliable info.
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby Philipthelam » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:19 pm

what about the Moon light XP 500

http://www.bikeexchange.com.au/bike_acc ... /102083221


Seems like a good deal and it has got pretty good reviews online
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby jasonc » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:50 pm

I bought a 900-lumen light from dealextreme. it came with a much better protected battery pack. 2 winters so far. will comfortably get another one before I think about replacing the cells.. my light was $80. if it lasts me 3 years, replacement battery cells (i'd replace the individual cells, not the pack as it's a good pack) may cost be $20. so we'll say $100 for 6 years. for $280 i'd get around 30 years of use.
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Owned both MagicShine and Lezyne

Postby Byke » Mon Nov 12, 2012 1:25 pm

jimboss,

If you haven't already come across it check out the brilliant road.cc light comparison test. It lets you compare light outputs under controlled conditions with a really clean interface. Compare the Lezyne Macro Drive v the more expensive Lezyne Power Drive before you go down your proposed route!

Basically I'd suggest perhaps trying to find a bit more funding for the front light, and teaming it up with a cheaper, but still very effective, Smart Lunar R1 rear light.

On a personal note I've got the 2012 Lezyne Super Drive - it got superseded in the week between me ordering it and it arriving from the UK. It replaced a MagicShine from DealExtreme like a couple of others have mentioned. The MagicShine was a bit cheaper and a bit brighter than the Lezyne, but because it was a much bulkier and fiddlier light-and-separate-battery-pack design it was usually sitting on the shelf in the garage when I needed it. The Lezyne is small enough to grab if there's even the slightest possibility I might still be out when it gets dark, and it's plenty bright enough to light up a pitch-black road and make some pedestrians shield their eyes.

Two mates were so impressed with my light that they've bought the replacement Lezyne Super Drive XL. One was coming from cheap commuter lights, the other from a four year old Exposure he'd paid $400 for which had given up the ghost.
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Re: Owned both MagicShine and Lezyne

Postby jasonc » Mon Nov 12, 2012 1:51 pm



cool site
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby jaseyjase » Mon Nov 12, 2012 2:28 pm

Front - Xtar B01
Rear - Smart Lunar R2
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby george-bob » Mon Nov 12, 2012 2:50 pm

check out the cygolite 350 ( http://www.cellbikes.com.au/Cygolite-Expilion-350 ) i have the 150 and it is fantastic! tiny, light and extremely rugged. battery life is tops and apparently their warranty is top notch too.
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby tallywhacker » Mon Nov 12, 2012 2:52 pm

2 of these on the front in winter (flash and steady), one in summer and a cygolite hotshot on the back. The dx lights have lasted about 4 years so far
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby Ozkaban » Mon Nov 12, 2012 4:00 pm

Byke wrote:jimboss,

If you haven't already come across it check out the brilliant road.cc light comparison test. It lets you compare light outputs under controlled conditions with a really clean interface. Compare the Lezyne Macro Drive v the more expensive Lezyne Power Drive before you go down your proposed route!

Basically I'd suggest perhaps trying to find a bit more funding for the front light, and teaming it up with a cheaper, but still very effective, Smart Lunar R1 rear light.

On a personal note I've got the 2012 Lezyne Super Drive - it got superseded in the week between me ordering it and it arriving from the UK. It replaced a MagicShine from DealExtreme like a couple of others have mentioned. The MagicShine was a bit cheaper and a bit brighter than the Lezyne, but because it was a much bulkier and fiddlier light-and-separate-battery-pack design it was usually sitting on the shelf in the garage when I needed it. The Lezyne is small enough to grab if there's even the slightest possibility I might still be out when it gets dark, and it's plenty bright enough to light up a pitch-black road and make some pedestrians shield their eyes.

Two mates were so impressed with my light that they've bought the replacement Lezyne Super Drive XL. One was coming from cheap commuter lights, the other from a four year old Exposure he'd paid $400 for which had given up the ghost.

I hadn't seen the XL. Looks nice...
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby wqlava1 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 4:33 pm

Best bang for $100 is about $40 for a 1200 to 1600 lumen (claimed, but the number is so big that even if they have exaggerated by 2x it's still very good) from this mob:
http://www.lt-box.com/bike-lights.html? ... &limit=all

and a Cateye TL-LD630-R off ebay. There will be a bit left over, but you will have reasonable quality and both see and be seen.
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby ldrcycles » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:17 pm

For a headlight http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/250667868319?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649

Tail light http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/251165893696?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649#ht_2532wt_1271

The headlight is listed as 1800 lumen but that's absolute nonsense, it's the same old 900 lumen Magicshine copy, i just got one of those for my brother for his birthday, quality looks fine and it works, i've had one the same for about 2 years and no issues. Once you've had 900 lumens you can't go back to weedy little 1W lights, being able to see where you're going is kind of important! I wouldn't mind Ay-ups for the helmet mounting, but with the amount of light you get with a Magicshine you don't need to point the thing unless you're off road.

As for the taillight, that one puts out a HEAP of light, lasts ages and no problems. The Tioga branded one i have had a rubbery mount that eventually let go, so i now use the ones i linked because they have a solid mount. I'm very happy with both of those lights.

All sorted for $62.50!
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Re: Owned both MagicShine and Lezyne

Postby boss » Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:27 pm

Byke wrote:jimboss,

If you haven't already come across it check out the brilliant road.cc light comparison test. It lets you compare light outputs under controlled conditions with a really clean interface. Compare the Lezyne Macro Drive v the more expensive Lezyne Power Drive before you go down your proposed route!

Basically I'd suggest perhaps trying to find a bit more funding for the front light, and teaming it up with a cheaper, but still very effective, Smart Lunar R1 rear light.

On a personal note I've got the 2012 Lezyne Super Drive - it got superseded in the week between me ordering it and it arriving from the UK. It replaced a MagicShine from DealExtreme like a couple of others have mentioned. The MagicShine was a bit cheaper and a bit brighter than the Lezyne, but because it was a much bulkier and fiddlier light-and-separate-battery-pack design it was usually sitting on the shelf in the garage when I needed it. The Lezyne is small enough to grab if there's even the slightest possibility I might still be out when it gets dark, and it's plenty bright enough to light up a pitch-black road and make some pedestrians shield their eyes.

Two mates were so impressed with my light that they've bought the replacement Lezyne Super Drive XL. One was coming from cheap commuter lights, the other from a four year old Exposure he'd paid $400 for which had given up the ghost.


Thanks for that.

I checked out that link and took your advice. Bought a Super Drive XL, and a Smart TwoEyes Rear light (couldn't find the R1 (AT) Cell). Got the pair from for a few dollars under $100.

In a couple of months I'll investigate Ay Ups, they look good if not a little cumbersome (as all light + battery setups seem to be). Does anyone here have a good photo or two of their bike with Ayups mounted?
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby msconfig » Mon Nov 12, 2012 10:06 pm

I've got the Lezyne Macro Drive front light and it seems fairly bright to me. I keep mine on 200 lumen and it's enough to light up the path in front of me + see the light reflecting off street signs 25+ metres away. My route is mostly a lit path though. If you've got any specific questions fire them my way
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Re: Lights under $100

Postby MattyK » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:47 am

If it's for road use, cough up a couple more dollars and get a Philips Saferide. Don't get something that blinds oncoming traffic (every symmetric beam). And don't get something cheap with cables - they will break. My full thoughts here: viewtopic.php?f=9&t=26723&start=225#p863084

For taillights, I'd also advocate the Philips - nice large distributed shape that isn't blinding/annoying to others, and gives a good sense of size and speed to those around you.
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