Bike light Database

Maybe people just like to boast about how much they spent on their lights, but to me, the major brands are a waste of money. You can buy brighter lights at a fraction of the cost. They are just as reliable, and if you ever need to replace a battery or any other part, they are much cheaper too.

Below are a selection of lights from the top brands, and cheaper alternatives.
To enable direct comparison of brightness, all beam photographs on the road are taken at: 6400 iso, f2.8, 1/8 sec

New additions will be tested in an integrating sphere to measure the actual output and compare to the manufacturer's claims.

Click on the images to enlarge.

Cateye Uno - maximum lux at 1mt: 540

 










Very weak centre spot.
At around £15, a complete waste of money.



Exposure Flash - maximum lux at 1mt: 210






Very dim beam that spreads wide. 
At around £25 it may be bright enough to be noticed by other road users, but I wouldn't risk it. It doesn't put any light on the road.


Cateye EL135 - maximum lux at 1mt: 1,880
  



 






Very dim centre spot.
Save around £20 by not buying this light.


Knog Blinder Arc 1.7 - maximum lux at 1mt: 950

A fairly narrow beam with an even spread of light.
At around £25, it's an excellent commuter light and puts a reasonable amount of light on the road. 

Electron F-300 - maximum lux at 1mt: 3,240



A bright spot with no light in the wider areas.
At around £20, this is a good commuter light. It looks well short of the claimed 300 lumens, and won't illuminate your journey to any great extent.

  
Exposure Spark Mk3 - maximum lux at 1mt:  1,930

Centre spot with no light in the wider areas.
At around £60, you would be entitled to expect more. Ok as a commuter light, but limited for any other use.

Cateye Volt 300 - maximum lux at 1mt: 3,130



A large centre spot with little light in the wider areas.
At around £40, the design looks similar to other brands. But turn it on and it's a big disappointment. Bright enough to be seen by other road users, but not bright enough for unlit roads.



Lezyne Micro Drive 600XL - measured output: 681 lumens



It delivers the claimed 600 lumens with a bright centre area to the beam.
At around £45, the small size means a small battery, and a run time of less than an hour on the highest mode. An excellent commuter light if you don't mind frequent charging.



Torchy BK 650 - measured output: 656 lumens


 One spot beam and one wide beam make for an even spread of light with good forward throw.
At around £40, it maintains the 650 lumen output with good heat and power management .


Fluxient Elite S3 - measured output: 500.2 lumens


A large pool of very bright light with just enough light ahead of the front wheel.
At around £50, the Elite S3 is very much a light for the road, with a reflector designed to put all of the light on the road. Amnd a good job it does too, much better than the Specialized Flux.

Hope Vision R1 - maximum lux at 1mt: 4,471

A large centre spot with little light in the wider areas.
At around  £100, I would want to add another light to illuminate ahead of my front wheel and in the wider areas.

  
Gemini Xera (flashlight) - Measured output - 1042 lumens

 

Small light that is initially very bright.
However, at around  £60, this light is a waste of money. The output drops from the moment the light is switched on, and was down to 541 lumens after 5 minutes. The bar mount comes with cable ties to secure it - you don't have to be a genius to realise this will never work. Switching modes is achieved by slightly unscrewing the two halves of the light then tightening again Impossible to do while moving as it needs two hands. Do not buy one of these lights.

Gemini Xera - Measured output - 1046 lumens



Suffers from the same heat management issues as the flashlight version with an initial 1046 lumens dropping to 126 lumens after 5 minutes as the light dropped to the lowest mode.
At around $79.99, the beam is very narrow ,better as a helmet light with another light on the bars.

 
Bikehut 1000 - measured output: 1187 lumens
A good spread of light and good distance.
At around £40, it suffers from the output dropping as it heats up, but should give around 800 lumens in use. For the money, you get a lot of light.

Bikehut 1600 - measured output: 1928 lumens





Nice spread and forward illumination. Starts out well above the claimed output, but poor heat management sees this drop to 800 lumens after 10 minutes. However, that's enclosed in an integrating sphere. I reckon in use with an air flow to help with cooling you can expect around 1000 lumens.

At around £50, you are still getting a lot of light for a reasonable price.


Moon Meteor 2000 - measured output:  1694 lumens

Bright centre with moderate light to the wide areas.
At around £80, the Moom Meteor Storm Pro 2000 puts out a decent beam bright enough for fast road use. May not be a wide enough beam for off roaders.



Magicshine Monteer 1400 - measured output:  1743 lumens

A wide spread of light and good illumination well up the road.
At around £60, the output was over 1700 lumens initially, however this had dropped to just under 950 lumens after 10 minutes. However, that was enclosed in an integrating sphere, it shouldn't drop so much on the bike with a flow of air to help keep it cool.

Specialized Flux Expert - maximum lux at 1mt:7380





 
A wide even spread of light.
At around £200, it's supposed to direct the light down and forward, but doesn't quite succeed in contrilling the beam as well as the Fluxient Elite S3. Disappointing brightness and run time considering the price.

M-Tigersports Theia - measured output: 4211 lumens




Very small and very bright. Far exceeds the claimed 3000 lumen output.
At around £100, the Theia produces a good spread of light in the near to mid distance and illuminates well up the road. My fovourite of the new M-Tigersports lights.

Boruit 6L2 - maximum lux at 1mt: 6200

A very large hot spot blends well with the excellent illumination in the wider areas.
At around £60, this tiny light produces an impressive amount of light, which almost seamlessly covers the near wide areas to the far distance with good levels of illumination.
  
 

VicMax A8 - maximum lux at 1mt:8500
Very even illumination across the beam.
At around £80, the beam is ideal for off road, wide and even but bright enough to throw well ahead.
 

M-Tigersports Hyperion - Measured output: 5749 lumens


A wide beam, a spot beam and two medium beams give even illumination from the front wheel to the far distance.
At around £150, it puts out as much light as you need and spreads it wide as well as far ahead.

  

Hope Vision R8 - maximum lux at 1mt:20,800


Wide spread of light with brighter centre area.
At around £250, it's as bright as anyone should need. Plenty of light in all areas.

Exposure Six Pack Mk10 - measured output: 6120 lumens




Medium wide beam with very large bright centre area
At around £350, it puts out a lot of light and it's well distributed, and the good news is Exposure are improving their lights without raising prices. The Mk10 costs about the same as the Mk6 did.

    
Cateye Volt 6000 - measured output: 7353 lumens



The good news is the output exceeds the claimed 6000 lumens, and the built in fan does a good job of controlling the heat. The output remained above 7000 lumens even after 20 minutes inside the integrating sphere. 

At around £500, the bad news is there is no attempt to focus the light. The beam is very bright and very wide, but doesn't shine very far ahead. The light on the ground a few meters ahead is so bright, it produces a snow blind effect and it takes a few moments for the eyes to adjust to the relatively dark distance. There are much better lights for less than half the price.

M-Tigersports Superion - measured output: 8589 lumens




 At over 8500 measured lumens, this is the brightest bike light I have come across. 
Costing around £250.00, one flood beam, three wide beams and three spot beams produce an amazingly bright light that reaches as far ahead as you would want while giving great near and wide coverage. The lowest setting still gives out just over 1500 lumens. It could maybe even do with a lower setting.