3-light level electronic smart switch, 12w light is ideal for most riding conditions or commuting, 20w light is ideal for technical off road terrain or for those users who want HID brightness at a more affordable price, 13.2v 3800 mah NiMH canister battery with IP-68 rated thread lock connector, aim-as-you-ride helmet mount with safety breakaway, and 5 hr fast charger.
Mtbr Bike Lights Shootout - over 50 bike lights reviewed, photographed and measured here.
by now there are lighter battery packs on the market, but none have the sturdiness of this kit, WITH battery gauge. the light can be easily mounted on either helmet or bar and changed very quickly. the amount of light put out by either 12w spot or 25w flood is amazing. all metal bar mount will not break easily, unlike plastic clips and rubber bands of other brands. customer support is top notch - i needed a shim 3 years later and they shipped it to me for free. i wouldn't bother looking at any other light brand.
a Cross Country Rider
from Pocatello, ID.
Date Reviewed: October 25, 2008
Strengths: Quality of construction, great value.
I have had this light for 3 years and use it nightly on my commute to work. This light just works period. I have never had a single problem at all. What more could you ask for in any product. Stop looking and buy a Jet light.
Eric Deore (like XT only not as good)
from Miami, FL
Date Reviewed: November 29, 2007
Strengths: Awesome design, great re-charge, durable construction, precise electrical connection, great helmet mount, etc, etc.
Weaknesses: The Halogen bulb gets hot but the same is true for and Halogen light
I am a rider/racer/trail volunteer living in Miami, FL and I wanted to give mad props for this product.
I originally bought the light last year for (race promoter) Gone Riding's January 12 hours of Oleta which served myself and my teamate well.
Since then I have been granted permission to hold monthly night rides at Miami's Oleta River State Park, and have seen the various problems with every other light but folks who use Jet lites. We have been caught in huge tropical storms with high winds and torrential rain and the light still works great. Even though in Miami, our trails at Oleta are some of the most technical, twisty, rooty/rocky trails that punish equiptment
The big thing that stands out is that the owner of Jet Lites is involved with the operation so closely which seems to make all the difference (he answers the phone and Emails).
Bike Setup: 2005 Super Heckler-Halloween powdercoat,Raceface cranks,2.3 Tioga tires, Hope Hubs, 2008 Fox TALAS R 32, Shimano XTR
from Scottsdale, AZ
Date Reviewed: September 14, 2007
Strengths: Sturdy, powerful beam, smart switch, lights up where I turn my head, can see road conditions and debris very well
Weaknesses: cost, weight- but worth every penny and ounce!
Used on my road bike and this thing is great. Tried all three light intensities and they all work well. I could see road conditions w/o difficulty. Although the power cord was not in the way, I could see how it can flop over. I'll probably try a Velcro tie of some sort to route the wire. I'm very impressed and am grateful I didn't have to go through a bunch of other lights to learn this is the one.
Similar Products Used: Don't remember the name, it was a loaner, but it was color of the light was too yellow and was not very bright.
Bike Setup: 2004 Gary Fisher Tassajara
a Weekend Warrior
from fort worth,tx
Date Reviewed: June 27, 2007
Strengths: Built for rider's, by a rider. Fast Charge Rugged construction GREAT customer service. Bright light, even at the lowest setting. Low peripheral vision loss. Great for trail and road.
Weaknesses: None so far.......
Long Lasting Battery, easy to use, can mount on handle or helmet, the width of the lighting pattern reduces tunnel vision and doesn't seem to effect peripheral vision. I have 3 friends that bought this light after I let them use mine. They said this light was superior to any light system they had used before. Since this is the only system I have used and will use I cannot compare to others. This is a well built and great priced product. I recommend this to anybody.
Similar Products Used: n/a, when I did my research this was the obvious answer.
Bike Setup: Kona, kikapu Deluxe.
a Weekend Warrior
from Thousand Oaks, CA
Date Reviewed: December 14, 2006
Strengths: Quality of light. Robust connectors. Aim on the fly light head. Very smart charger.
I have the 20W beam with smart switch (15 and 10W settings). The beam pattern is nice and wide and smooth and not harsh (over bright). The 15W setting is very useful. The 10W setting is a bit dingy but good for slow climbs to conserve battery power. The ability to aim the light head on the fly is a nice feature you may not consider until you can do so. The friction does hold the light head on rough trails. You may have to tighten the friction adjustment from the factory delivered setting. The HID light on the head is a bit too spotty and harsh (over bright) for my taste. It can wash our terrain features. Never the case with the halogen. Runtime is 1:30 at full brightness and drops to 50% intensity by 2hrs. I mostly run at 15W (10W on slow climbs) and only use 20W on fast descents or very tech stuff. I have a Jet bar light and helmet light setup. Value is down one due to price.
a Weekend Warrior
from Lac-Beauport, Québec, Canada
Date Reviewed: September 27, 2006
Strengths: - Very powerful light (20w) - Very nice flood patern for technical trails - Light headlamp that you don't feel on the helmet - Smart Switch is a must : 10-15-20 watts to modulate your power & increase battery life for a 3 hrs ride at night
Weaknesses: - Expensive for a halogen light ??? (but well worth it)
OK, I have just been using this lamp for less than a month but I can tell you that this IS the lamp. I don't agree with another reviewer that the peripheral vision is not important. When you ride on technical donwhill you need the flood patern this light provide. It is not like commuting on well paved roads. Performance wise, the light is bright and powerful and last at least 2 hours depending on the power output you use. Yes the battery is a bit heavy, but what did you expect ? I put it in the very bottom of my Camelback and that's it. I wanted to buy an HID light at first, but after reading strong reviews for Jet Lites products (and bad ones for NiteRider) and seeing the kind of light a Topeak Moonshine HID provide, my choice was clear. If you read carefully the minimalistic owner manual and apply the advice mentionned there, I don't see why you would have problem with this product. If you want a light that will not let you down, and that will turn your riding partners jealous, buy this one with the Smart switch.
a Cross Country Rider
from Columbia, MO, USA
Date Reviewed: September 13, 2006
Strengths: Clean, bright white light while first charged. Reliable cable connection system. Plenty of room for growth for the amateur looking to move up.
Weaknesses: Light quality decreases significantly after the first 1.5 hours. Gasket used to seal lamp housing does not completely seal the housing (either the gasket needs to be thicker, or the house needs to be molded to higher tolerances so there is no warping of the plastic). Weight of battery. Not a Li-Ion battery. Price.
The 20w bulb is overkill for straight and flat trails (the added peripheral vision isn't needed). The amount of light provided by this bulb is ample enough to allow the amateur night rider plenty of room for growth before needing a more powerful light.
I'm not positive, but I believe the battery used by this lamp will work with the HID lamp that JetLites makes. If this is in fact the case, then an amateur ride could buy into this system and then upgrade to the HID for approx. $135 MSRP.
You can read more about my experiences with this lamp at http://joelsommer.com/tags/jetlite/default.aspx
a Cross Country Rider
from Kings Beach, Ca.
Date Reviewed: September 10, 2006
Strengths: Solid screw together connection. No flickering and blackouts like the Night Sun. Pivot would not stay steady at first but is easy to tighten on the light with a tiny allen wrench.
Weaknesses: Fuel gauge never worked. Velcro straps did not fit my helmet. I mounted it on an old helmet with zip ties.
This light has been great so far. It is well built and does not weigh heavily on the helmet. The only complaint is that I paid more to have the fuel gauge and it never worked. I talked to the owner just after I bought it and complained about the fuel gauge and he said he would get back to me when the new ones that worked came in. He said there was a bad batch of batteries with faulty fuel gauges. I wanted the fuel gauge because I use the light to skijor at night with. I also use it on rough singletrack trails on my bike. I often am out for hours going at high speeds. I need a light that is bright on the descents because I am often on marginal trails. The gauge I thought would be nice because I would know how much run time I had left. The owner never did reply back. Now I am going into my second winter with an older battery and I am not very confident. I have used Night Sun lights before and they were awful. The connection was a bad design and I would often experience flickering and blackouts at high speed. That was very unsettling. The customer service was also surly and personally insulting. The ratings are low because the customer service dropped the ball and because of the faulty fuel gauge.
Strengths: Decent light, not as bright as a HID Could be good for commuting and non-race environments.
Weaknesses: Not an HID, customer service from Jet.
We rented these lights from Jet for an overnight race. They seemed to work OK, but got washed out by HID's, and we had multiple equipment problems with this system. They don't mention that the batteries may not be charged when you get them. We checked and charged the 3 systems before the race. Then a battery failed during one of our teams laps. I ride a good bit at night in the winter on the MTB with different lights, and have never seen the amount of equipment problems we had with this bunch.
We talked to Jet about the battery going dead and were told by Jim (supposedly one of the owners) in tone and words: "You're an idiot and we don't charge the batteries before they go out. You didn't charge the battery." This could have been handled much better. I don't know for sure that we didn't mix up some of the batteries, but the tone sure doesn't make me want to keep him in business. Good luck Jet, I won't be buying a single thing from this company.
Similar Products Used: Nite Rider, Light and Motion, Sigma.
Bike Setup: Rocky Mountain Element XTR w/Chris King wheels from Dave Thomas.
a Cross Country Rider
from San Antonio, Texas!
Date Reviewed: April 8, 2006
Strengths: Works well. Seems quality built. No malfunctions of any kind. Like the connections and the smart charger. Three light levels allows matching the battery life to the ride or the terrain.
Weaknesses: Would like the wire to exit the light at the back instead of the side since it is a helemet mount. I have to tie it down in the rear or it drives me nuts.
One thing that influenced me was the high rating here, and the fact that I got a great price from Universal Cycles. Works well with no problems. For trail riding, helmet-mounted lights are the way to go. If I could afford it, I would mount one on the handlebars too for lighting at a different angle. I would get one again if needed.
Strengths: Intense, bright light, large illumination beam
Weaknesses: None - other than a longer (8-10 hour) burn time would be nice to have.
I use the Phantom Single beam light while night hiking the local trails throughout the year. The light is mounted on a headband with the battery stored in the top pouch of my backpack. The light has greatly exceeded my expectations. The brightness of the light coupled with the beam pattern makes this light well suited for lighting the trails. Many times I have had to help people who do not have any lights with them and are caught by dark while hiking. People who encountered me wearing the light at night have commented that it is like having a sudden sun burst hit them. During the winter months I use the light while partaking in night snowshoe clinics on the local mountains. The guides and many of the participants in the clinics are amazed at how much light the headlamp tosses. It has been very handy when ascending and descending the steeper parts of the trails and one needs lots of light to safely navigate the trickier sections of the trails. This light makes all other headlamps pale by comparison.
a Cross Country Rider
from Columbia, Md. USA
Date Reviewed: October 11, 2005
Strengths: EVERYTHING WORKS, great design, bright clean white light.
Weaknesses: The NiMH battery is somewhat heavy.
I purchased the version with the 13w spot beam. ( a 20w flood is also available )Compared to the Niterider 10W the Jet has a much brighter light and a wider beam. The helmet mount is well made, the best I've ever seen and the lighthead tilts which allows you to aim the beam just where you want. I was also pleased with the smart-switch on the Jet. It is totally self-contained within the lighthead and works very easily. All three of the light levels are usable although dimmer. There is no "yellowing" on the lower levels, just dimmer light. Connectors work great (they screw together!) The smart charger works great. All the run-times are as advertised. Now if Jet could only sell this with a lighter weigh battery they could corner the market on halogen lights! (However the 13.2V NiMH battery works great and can be used/converted with the newer Jet HID lighthead.)I dropped the value rating a bit because they have raised their price for this model. I've used this light on the toughest east coast single track and it rules.
Similar Products Used: Niterider 10w halogen, Marwi 12w halogen
Bike Setup: Trek 9800 H/T and Kona Kikapu Deluxe F/S
a Cross Country Rider
from Columbia, Md.
Date Reviewed: October 9, 2005
Strengths: EVERYTHING! design - GREAT! run time - GREAT!
Weaknesses: The 13.2V canister battery is a bit heavy
Everything about the Jet works! The design of this product was very much thought out. The helmet mount (system) is the best I've ever seen. There are two velco straps that secure the mount to the helmet. The lighthead itself tilts and has a break-away feature...just GREAT! The smart-switch on the lighthead works GREAT. AT THE 13w setting this thing lights up the trail! ( Note: you have a choice between 13watt bulb and 20 watt (flood) when you order...I chose the 13W spot beam.) Cycling though the power settings is a breeze. At power up a simple touch turns the light on, touch again and it powers down to the next (lower) setting. To turn off, press and hold (2 sec.) and light turns off. (Note; there are three settings) The NiMH battery I have has the five LED's to show how much run time is left...a great (optional) feature to have. Run time at the 13w (brightest) level is 3 hrs. If you use the lower levels you can extend your ride even more. Oh yeah, those lower levels work fine, not as bright but the light quality is still clean and white. The Achilles heal of this battery is that it is a bit heavy. It feels like a lead weight in your camelback. Over all this is one of the best halogen light systems made. IF JET EVER DECIDES TO USE LI-ION BATTERIES THEY ARE GOING TO CLEAN HOUSE! Oh did I mention Jet also sells a HID lighthead that will retro-fit with your 13.2V battery! JET, you got to luv um'. The only reason I didn't give um' five chilis was because of the battery weight.