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2009 LED Bike Lights Comprehensive Review - Intro
By James Sharp

It's time for our Fourth Annual LED Light Review. This year, we welcome back some old friends and take a look at some new ones. All but one of the lights has been updated, and some are entirely new. We've got lights from Light and Motion (who went all LED this year), NiteRider, Hope Technology, Ay-Up, Light On!, DiNotte Lighting, Lupine, Exposure Lights, and Princeton Tec.

Categorizing the lights up by number of LEDs doesn't really work this year, thanks to the Lupine Tesla. So, we'll be looking at Beginner, Sport and Expert. (Hey, USA Cycling doesn't want the terms for mountain biking, so we can use them!) Beginner lights are less than $200. Sport are $200 to $400 and Expert lights cost more than $400. I should point out that the average price was a mere $355. That's quite a bit less than last years average of $420. This year, the most expensive light is $590. Last year it was $995. This year the least expensive lights are $129, last year it was $179. There are many (7) this year that have 700 lumens or more. So what we are seeing is more light for less money. Also, all but one light uses Li-Ion (or Li-Poly) batteries. This is a great trend.

 

Beginner
NiteRider MiNewt Mini-USB Plus
Light and Motion Stella 120
Princeton Tec Switchback 1
Exposure Joystick MaXx

Sport
Hope Vision 4
Princeton Tec Switchback 3
DiNotte Lighting 400L
Ay-Up MTB Kit
Exposure MaXx-D

Expert
Lupine Tesla 4
Lupine Wilma 5
DiNotte Lighting 800L
Light On! 900
Light and Motion Seca 700 Race

 

2009 LED Lights Summary Chart
(click the image for a larger view)

 

Beginner
Sport
Expert

 

James Sharp is a contributing editor for GearReview.com. If you like lights, you'll like his blog -- Lactic Acid Threshold.


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