Moon X-Power 500 front light  £120.00

6/10

Well-designed light that is great for commuting and okay for some occasional training rides out into the darkness

Weight 112g   Contact  www.raleigh.co.uk

by David Arthur   November 7, 2012  

Moon X-Power 500

A good light is vital for commuting to work and evening training rides and the compact and keenly priced Moon X-Power 500 makes a very good argument for itself. It's plenty bright enough for all but the most demanding riders, and the beam pattern is a well rounded shape.

The Moon X-Power, as its name kind of gives away, produces 500 lumens from a single CREE XM-L (T6) LED. On overdrive mode (the highest) the beam throws out a good shape with a nice bright centre and a smooth reduction in brightness to the edge of the beam. There's good depth and at decent speeds there's a reasonable amount of light for showing you the way ahead.

For riding through suburbia and across town the light is going to get you spotted, and when you reach the city limits there's just enough light to illuminate your way through dark country lanes. It doesn't quite have enough punch for the darkest roads and can make spotting potholes and other hazards on training rides a little tense at times. For the occasional training ride it's sufficient.

Keep it on overdrive mode and you'll burn through the battery in about 1hr 40mins. The power button on top of the unit serves as a battery monitor and handily flashes when the battery is running low. It does give you plenty of warning; I noticed the warning light flashing before the hour was out, and duly switched to a lower mode to preserve the burn time.

There's a choice of five modes, including a flashing mode that's good for commuting. There's sufficient difference in the brightness between the modes, and the high mode in particular offers a good balance of burn time (claimed 2hr 30mins) and 380 lumen output.

Its sequence of modes sees the light initially power up into overdrive, and then cycles through high, medium, low, flashing and off. In reality you're going to be switching between the overdrive and high modes to extend the burn time on training rides, and having to turn it off before going back to overdrive isn't that helpful. Or safe.

Fitting the light to your handlebars couldn't be easier. An easy to use quick release clamp fits regular and oversize handlebars. There's also a helmet mount in the box. I had to trim the rubber band supplied that wraps between the handlebar and clamp a little, but after that it's a straightforward process.

The lamp unit is water resistant – I can vouch for that. It still worked after one very heavy downpour.

The quick release lever tightens from the front and, depending on the configuration of your outer cables, can be a little bit tricky to access, but isn't a problem really.

Once clamped into place the light stubbornly refuses to wobble or budge. Over rougher roads it remains firmly in place and even clouting one unseen pothole last night didn't see the clamp slipping.

Recharging the light couldn't really be simpler. Remove the light from the clamp and turning it upside down reveals a mini USB port protected under a well-fitting rubber flap. A cable and plug adaptor are supplied so you have the choice of charging from the mains or your laptop. Charge takes about 3 hours from empty.

Verdict

Well-designed light that is great for commuting and okay for some occasional training rides out into the darkness.

road.cc test report

Make and model: Moon X-Power 500 front light

Size tested: black

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the light?

1 pc CREE XM-L (T6) high brightness LED

- Quick release rechargeable lithium ion battery ( 3.7V 2300mAh)

- USB rechargeable

- Water resistant headlight with durable zinc alloy light cap

- 5 modes : Over drive / High / Standard / Low / Flashing

- Quick release handlebar mount (fits 22-31.8mm)

- Quick release helmet mount

- Low battery, charging and fully charged indicator

- Automatic fully charged cut-off system

- High precision optical lens

- Size:106 x 36.5 x 35.5 mm

Rate the light for quality of construction:
 
7/10

It's a compact and very solid light and stands up to abuse well, making it ideal for regular use.

It's easy to install and easy to use; its design is well thought out.

Rate the light for the design and usability of the clamping system/s
 
7/10

The clamp fits any size handlebar and the quick release is easy to operate, and once in place holds the light solidly in place.

Rate the light for waterproofing. How did it stand up to the elements?
 
7/10

It's not waterproof, but is water resistance and has proved fine in heavy downpours.

Rate the light for battery life. How long did it last? How long did it take to recharge?
 
6/10

I got a little under the quoted burn time, but not by very much. The five modes help you squeeze the most out of the battery.

Rate the light for performance:
 
7/10

Considering its price it's a cracking little light and is ideal for daily commuting and occasional training rides out into the sticks, but it's not quite got the punch for serious training rides into the darkness.

Rate the light for durability:
 
8/10

As with my comments about the construction, it has the feel of a light that will last several winters of hard riding without any problems.

Rate the light for weight:
 
7/10

It's as light as makes no difference on the handlebars

Rate the light for value:
 
6/10

Lighting technology has moved on since we reviewed the Moon almost a year ago, it either needs to be a bit cheaper or they need to increase the lumen output to make it a more serious contender

Tell us what you particularly liked about the light

It's well designed and looks good on the bike. The beam pattern is well considered with a nice even spread of light from the centre spot to the outer reaches.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the light

The sequence includes the off setting which is a shame. I'd prefer a press-and-hold to turn the light off after use.

Did you enjoy using the light? Yes.

Would you consider buying the light? Yes.

Would you recommend the light to a friend? Yes.

Overall rating: 6/10

About the tester

Age: 31  Height: 180  Weight: 67

I usually ride:   My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, mtb,

 

2 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Any update on the status of one of the obvious competitors to this light - the Lezyne Super Drive XL?

I notice it has disappeared from the list of lights available in the comparison. Am very keen to see if a second copy produces a better set of measurements.

(For those that don't know road.cc found the measured output from the one they tested was less than from the cheaper Leyzne Power Drive XL).

byke.com.au's picture

posted by byke.com.au [15 posts]
7th November 2012 - 13:42

like this
Like (12)

I use mine on the lowest setting for commutes, I use it on 380 lumens setting for darkest of country lanes & it is more then bright enough.Full power for night MTB rides & excellent lumination for the money. The beauty of this light is that the very small battery pack can be purchased separately (£10) so for through the night Audax you can take a recharged spare in your pocket. RRp might be £120 but you can pick these up for £80 at Amazon or Ebay, in fact the front and rear set is available on Ebay for £92........bargain.

posted by GodleySpinner [21 posts]
9th November 2012 - 11:11

like this
Like (15)

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