TrailLED Darkstar Lights

4.64/5 (11 Reviews)
MSRP : $420.00


Product Description

  • Cree MCE M bin LED X2.
  • Custom machined Aluminum housing from single block of 6061.
  • Sealed with IP67 rated switches and connectors.
  • Multiple configuration settings for high-low-on-off and voltage warning settings.
  • Approximately 1200 Lumens.
  • 3 hour run time on high with included 7.4V 6600MaH battery.
  • Approximately 50 mm W X 25.4 H X 38 MM L Weight of light head 80g.
  • Total weight (battery and light) approx 375g.

Mtbr Bike Lights Shootout - over 50 bike lights reviewed, photographed and measured here.

TrailLED Darkstar Lights Pro Review

The Trail LED Darkstar is a compact yet ultra powerful light unit meant to be mounted on the helmet. It features two LEDs that have a very wide beam. When used together, these two form a huge yet bright beam.Continue reading →



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Reviews 1 - 11 (11 Reviews Total)

User Reviews

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Earlybird Rider a Cross Country Rider from Bedford, NY

Date Reviewed: September 17, 2011

Strengths:    Value, Performance

Weaknesses:    Amateurish handlebar mount, poor customer service, long lead time for repairs, questionable warranty

Bottom Line:   
The Trail LED Darkstar may seem like a cost-effective way to enter the world of high-end lighting, but you will sacrifice customer service in the process and get what you pay for. I made the mistake of purchasing this light and now regret it.

The "Company" is incredibly slow in repairing defects, such as LEDs and in providing communications such as emails or phone calls. They set a new low for customer service. Although the light itself worked well at first, the poor service prompts me to recommend against purchasing this light.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Gypsey Trail

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $430.00

Purchased At:   Mail Order

Similar Products Used:   First high-powered light I have owned

Bike Setup:   Litespeed titanium, Dura-Ace

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by CliffordBRD a Cross Country Rider from Atlanta

Date Reviewed: January 5, 2010

Strengths:    Blistering bright
Ultra lite
Trail head appeal
Excellent price for superior performance


Weaknesses:    Helmet mount is simple and does not work for all helmet shapes. The rails on the light body enable the user to work with several different configurations so its not a real problem.

Bottom Line:   
Why the major names can't do what the independents can do is beyond me. This light is bright, lite, and durable. You can pay less for a light that doesn't work as well and will fail, or you can pay much more for a light that doesn't work as well. If you want the best and want to have money left over for bling on your ride, this is your light.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Dirt :)

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   in person

Similar Products Used:   NiteRider Storm and NiteRider Headtrip.

Bike Setup:   Carbon Giant XTC
Niner One9 SS

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by PBnJ a Racer from DFW, Texas, USA

Date Reviewed: January 4, 2010

Strengths:    Painfully bright
Choice of spot or flood lenses
Well designed, solidly built
Negligible weight
Custom batteries with great connector
Fully customizable driver
Great price and service
Sweet glow-in-the-dark lens glue!


Weaknesses:    The included helmet mount strap may need some help, depending on your helmet. Many people I know just velcro the light unit to their helmet, but my helmet has a pointy spot right where I need the light to sit. I solved this by removing the mounting pieces from a NR helmet mount and placing a velcro square there. Perfect solution for me.

Bottom Line:   
I'd heard a few people talk about these lights locally, but didn't realize how great they were until I organized a simple "light shoot-out" at a local trail with about 20 different lights. The Darkstar was the undisputed champion. It put my Niterider HIDs to shame in all ways: weight, brightness, burn time, etc., so I ordered one.

One of my LEDs proved to be defective during the first ride, but it was replaced at no charge. I decided to have him install 2 clear (spot) lenses at the time instead of the spot and diffuse (flood) lenses I had originally requested. The flood really gives a broad, even light, but I preferred the superior throw of two spots. The spot still has plenty of light spill to fill your peripheral vision. We are talking 1200 lumens, after all. This number seems to be fair and accurate, based on 3rd party lumen readings I've seen on the web.

I opted for 2 eight cell batteries, which I believe are rated at 4-5 hours each. I won't be able to test this until the next 12 hour race, coming up soon, but I have no doubts that they'll deliver. They're smaller and lighter than the NR NiMH batteries I was lugging around for my old HIDs.

The button is simple and easy to find and operate even with full-finger gloves on, and there's a 22 page manual for fiddling with the driver settings, if you're into that. The heat-sinking is effective, keeping the light cool at full brightness while moving. I have had it bump itself down once while I was off the bike for a few minutes, but turning it off and back on reset it with no problems.

What else is there to say? The unit seems indestructible, made by a great guy, for a fair (cheap?) price, and is at the top of the ladder of brightness. He even said upgrades can be made in the future when brighter (?!) LEDs come out (for a price, of course). Wonder what 2000 lumens will look like?

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Porcupine Rim

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   in person

Similar Products Used:   Owned: Niterider HIDs (2), Light & Motion HID (1), old halogens back in the day.

Tested: Several. See my review here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=124629&id=643883144&l=cfb010d78f


Bike Setup:   Dirty.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by kjw6 a Cross Country Rider from Texas

Date Reviewed: January 4, 2010

Strengths:    -Uber Bright
-Customized for your needs (Running a flood and spot combo)
-Light weight
-Quality construction


Weaknesses:    -non adjustable helmet mount

Bottom Line:   
The light is SUPER bright. I actually have to run it on the low setting on my group road rides b/c when it is on high the shadow it casts from other riders is to much and they can not see. Customer service was great. I do not think you can get a product at this price point that can compare. If the trails will ever dry up I can try this on a night mt bike ride.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $420.00

Purchased At:   Direct

Similar Products Used:   -Nite Rider lights

Bike Setup:   Run this light both on my road bikes and mt bikes.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by RobbieG a Weekend Warrior from Victoria, B.C.

Date Reviewed: December 30, 2009

Strengths:    - insanely bright
- light weight
- quality construction


Weaknesses:    - helmet mount

Bottom Line:   
This light kicks ass when compared to anything you can get off the shelf from the bigger brands such as Niterider, Light and Motion, Lupine, etc... This much light output at this low weight is unmatched by any other model on the market...

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Seven Summits

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $420.00

Purchased At:   TRAILLED.COM

Similar Products Used:   - Lupine Tesla, Cygolite Tridenx, Magicshine, Niteride HID, etc...

Bike Setup:   - Titus El Guapo

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by SPINSTOKED a Cross Country Rider from Half Moon Bay, CA

Date Reviewed: December 23, 2009

Strengths:    Bright, simple and light.

Weaknesses:    Mounting the light on the helmet is so simple you think there is a better way. But it works fine, so is it a weakness?

Bottom Line:   
Great light purchased directly from the maker in Texas. What could be better than supporting a service orientated American based entrepreneur with a great product.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   on line


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by traildust13 a Racer from Frisco, TX

Date Reviewed: December 23, 2009

Strengths:    Price, build quality, size, light output, customization. TrailLED will customize the battery which allowed me to make this a 100% helmet mount solution. I don't use any straps...just velcro I attached to helmet, battery, and light.

Weaknesses:    No on-the-fly adjustment mount for helmet. Not a big deal but it may take a couple rides to get your optimal beam direction. Actually prefer it this way to reduce height.

Bottom Line:   
Night and day difference when compared to my old halogen setup. Dollar per lumen and quality made this an easy decision and I no longer have to lug around a heavy battery or worry about outrunning the light.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $420.00

Purchased At:   TrailLED.com

Bike Setup:   Yes

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by roady a Racer from dfw TEXAS

Date Reviewed: December 22, 2009

Strengths:    small,lightweight,rugged,serviceable,bright,bright light

Weaknesses:    none so far

Bottom Line:   
Mine is one of the first couple built,1 spot,1 flood setup. mounted vertically in the air vent to keep it even lower for clearance. you cant do this with most other lights. its also a custom battery so it will run for over 5 hours on high(so far) without dimming or warning. its on an extended cord and is carried in a camel back.
It is by far the brightest light on the trail here locally and has been appreciated by many riders in front of me with poor lights, and cursed by cars when riding the road.
If your going to run only a helmet light, this is the one you want. Its even better, when running another 500L or equivalent on the bars too, theres nothing you cant see with this setup.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   local? Tyler

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Purchased At:   in person

Similar Products Used:   tri-newt,turbocats,mi-newts, homebuilts

Bike Setup:   Niner air9
GF SS
specialized s works e5-tarmac

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by jimcrjfo a Cross Country Rider from North Carolina

Date Reviewed: December 22, 2009

Strengths:    
Blistering bright beam, light compact light unit, light compact battery pack




Weaknesses:    haven't noted any

Bottom Line:   
First off, I got lucky at bought the DarkStar at the intro price...secondly, I'd pay the extra 100 bones for this bad boy, no doubt about it!

This light is crazy bright, has superb beam throw (I got mine configured with a spot and what the builder calls a "medium optic"). My first couple of rides with the DS I only popped it on high for effect, but rode with it on low...I did a ride last week in rather crappy conditions...I was weak, couldn't hold a line to save my tail, fell way behind the main group and it was cold, add to that I was riding a newly cut trail that I'd never laid eyes on and I was floundering...but aha! I popped the DS on high and I felt like a new man!

I've not run the battery longer than 1.5 hours, so can't attest to run times. I can attest to a worry free charge though. Nice small compact battery and accompanying smart charger.

Haven't needed any warranty work but based on the responses I got from the builder when I was waiting for mine to ship, I feel confident that his customer service will be as sharp as his light is bright.

I've got no idea if the Star is putting out the advertised 1200 lumens on high, but I can say that I switched from a two lamp halogen bar light and single lamp halogen helmet light combo to the Dark Star and I've got light to spare!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $320.00

Purchased At:   direct

Similar Products Used:   are there any?

Bike Setup:   doesn't really apply

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Sasquatch a Cross Country Rider from Pacific Northwet

Date Reviewed: December 22, 2009

Strengths:    SUper bright light. Great beam, no tiny spot or washed out flood. Just a giant ball of bright light!
Super strong and durbale. It's nearly impossible to break


Weaknesses:    The bright bulbs use alot of energy, so the 3 hour battery isn't tiny. (It's still smaller than the battery on my HID light)

Bottom Line:   
The TrailLED lights are well built, bright and solid lights made by a Mountain biker to help support his passion. he has an awesome warranty, and stands behind his product. My light was an early model and he upgraded the plugs for me when he found better ones!

Have you seen the video of a car driving over the Darkstar light without damage? It's awesome!!!!

I ride alot in wet weather and have had no problems with the light. If you love to night ride, this will make you a better lover!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   the next one

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $420.00

Purchased At:   TrailLED

Similar Products Used:   Nightrider, Light and Motion, Amoeba.

Bike Setup:   2 wheels and handlebars. Oh yeah, it's got brakes also.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by hogprint a Cross Country Rider from Madison, WI, USA

Date Reviewed: December 22, 2009

Strengths:    Tremendous beam throw. Very nice beam width and a distinct cut off near your peripheral vision. I have a spot/flood combo mounted on my helmet as could not be happier. Build quality is top notch and robust. I am completely satisfied. Battery is extraordinarily small and light. Run time is over 3 hours on the high setting.

Weaknesses:    The mount is pretty basic, what amounts to a velcro watchband but is perfectly functional. I only mention this to have something in this box. There really aren't any weaknesses.

Bottom Line:   
The small niche manufacturers are far nimbler than the major manufacturers and can deliver real value. Could be happier.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Blue Mounds SP

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $320.00

Purchased At:   direct

Similar Products Used:   Turbo Cat S47

Bike Setup:   Niner RIP 9 custom build

Reviews 1 - 11 (11 Reviews Total)

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


DarkStar

I purchased a Darkstar last season and waited a while to get it and then the mount several weeks later. The light is compact and bright, but just not what I expected. I herniated a disk shortly after recieving it so I used it a few times in my neighborhood . I went to use it the other day and the o- ... Read More »

charge time for Darkstar

Using the included charger, what is the charge time for the 7.4V 6600MaH standard battery? mine is dead but charging and i'd like to know how long it will take before i get 80% or so in it so i can hopefully ride tonight. thanksRead More »

Darkstar design change

Been playing with this for a while, but think I finally got it working the way I want it:) [IMG]http://i205.photobucket.com/albums/bb215/g_pace1/web/watersideweb.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i205.photobucket.com/albums/bb215/g_pace1/web/watertopweb.jpg[/IMG] [IMG]http://i205.photobucket.com/albums ... Read More »

trail LED Darkstar review--updated with beam shots

I was recently convinced/coerced to participate on a 4 man team 12 hour overnight race called Pitch Black SIngle Track in Wisconsin. Since running from 8pm to 8am would require lights (obviously) I went on the hunt for a more modern solution to replace my 12 year old TurboCat S47. After a s ... Read More »

Darkstar CNC run

I am pleased to announce that due to demand from this board and many others I will be doing my first CNC run of the Darkstar in the coming month. :D I just wanted to say thanks to everyone that has ordered a light from me or helped me on this forum and would like to invite everyone else to check ... Read More »

Read More »



 

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