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review

Moon Nebula Rechargeable Rear Bike Light

7
£44.99

VERDICT:

7
10
Sturdy, bright rear light with multiple mounts included – a really solid option
Good battery life
Bright with decent side visibility
Simple to use
Multiple mounts supplied
Will charge while in use
Old-school micro-USB port
Slightly fiddly mount attachment
Weight: 
59g

At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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The Moon Nebula Rechargeable Rear Bike Light is large, sturdy, highly visible, and comes well-equipped with a variety of mounts. Not a huge amount has changed since we reviewed the last version, though it's lighter and has gone up 10% in price. While the mounts are incredibly secure, the locking system can become a little stiff when dirt dries into the mechanism – and the micro-USB charging port isn't the latest version.

Check out our rear light buyer's guide for the best alternatives you can currently buy.

The plastic square jutting out of the back slides into any of the three included mounts: a rubber strap for tubes, a saddle-rail clamp (adjustable for angle), and a backpack clip. It's great to have these options included, and they all work well.

Once slotted in, the light is going nowhere – it's very secure, and as it's square it works with the lamp either in portrait or landscape orientation. However, to remove it again you must pull down on a short plastic lever while pushing on the opposite side of the light. Almost without fail, the light suddenly moves and bashes into my thumb. I've used Moon lights before, and it's always been a bit of a bugbear, as dirt ingress only makes the mount stiffer.

2023 Moon Nebula Rechargeable Rear Bike Light - mount.jpg

You cycle through the different modes using the front button, and the unit will remember your last setting. A double tap switches between flashing and solid modes. There are four solid modes and four flashing modes, with the max output being 200 lumens.

Even the lowest flashing setting (20 lumens) provides decent visibility in the daytime, while at night the light was visible hundreds of metres away. Up close, the highest setting is frankly dazzling, and I found myself prefering the Steady Flash mode, which provides a constant 100 lumen with a brighter pulse over the top.

I was also pleased that I was able to charge the light while using it. Charging is pretty quick, despite this lacking the more up-to-date USB-C connection. Run times were from just over an hour on the brighest full setting, through to 25 hours on the lowest flash. This kept me going for over a week on normal commuting duties, though it is less than some lights at a similar price.

2023 Moon Nebula Rechargeable Rear Bike Light - USb port.jpg

There are 'low battery', 'charging' and 'fully charged' light indicators, though obviously the light is behind you so you can easily not notice the low battery light when riding.

Value

At £44.99 this is pretty mid-market, and reasonably priced for its quality and performance.

When Steve Williams reviewed the Lezyne Zecto Drive Max 250 in 2021, he wondered whether anyone even needed 250 lumens throbbing out of their rear end... though it's safe to say he didn't phrase it like that at all. The throbbing rear end is all mine. These days the Zecto Drive Max is even more throbby at a pummeling 400 lumens, and £52.

Its slight premium over this Moon gets you 70 hours of runtime in a 5-lumen flash mode, USB-C charging, and IPX7 waterproofing. It's a little heavier, though.

The Magicshine Seemee 200 Version 2 costs £39.99 and Shaun Audane scored it highly. It's a third lighter at 40g, can create a floodlight effect on the road around you, provides 200 lumens and has a smart-braking mode. It will kick out 50 hours on its group ride setting.

Stu Kerton was impressed with the Knog Blinder Link – Saddle's ability to withstand road filth, and while it costs more at £56.99 it includes a super-versatile seat mount and puts out 100 lumens; that's plenty for most riders.

If you just want cheap, something like the Prime 360 Super Bright Rear Light is just £19.99 and only 25g, though don't go expecting actualy super-brightness – it's actually only 50 lumens. Despite this, reviewer Shaun was happy with the range of options.

Overall

Apart from minor gripes with the locking system, I thoroughly enjoyed using the Moon Nebula. The brightness is more than sufficient, the included mounts mean you don't have to instantly spend more money on extra bits, and it can put up with being dropped and bashed around. It has a good selection of modes, too. It's a solidly good light.

Verdict

Sturdy, bright rear light with multiple mounts included – a really solid option

road.cc test report

Make and model: Moon Nebula Rechargeable Rear Bike Light

Size tested: 200 lumens

Tell us what the light is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Moon doesn't say much beyond listing the specs, which is probably reasonable; it's a 200 lumen rear light, aimed at road and mountain bike use.

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

From Moon:

4 steady modes, 4 flashing modes

CNC Aluminum heat sink casing

Day flash mode

Mode memory function

Auto safe mode

Quick release universal bracket fits all round and AERO style bars

Low battery, charging and fully charged indicator

Automatic fully charged cut-off system

Side visibility

Water resistance (IPX 4)

RUNTIMES

Mode 1 – 20lm – 5.30hr

Mode 2 – 40lm – 2.50hr

Mode 3 – 60lm – 1.50hr

Mode 4 – 100lm – 1.10hr

FL1 – 20lm – 25.00hr

FL2 – 50lm – 11.00hr

FL3 – 100lm – 12.00hr

Day FL – 200lm – 14.00hr

Rate the light for quality of construction:
 
9/10

Strong and sturdy, with a nicely integrated port and button.

Rate the light for design and ease of use. How simple was the light to use?
 
9/10

It's all very intuitive, and the USB port is positioned such that you can charge while you ride very easily.

Rate the light for the design and usability of the clamping system/s
 
7/10
Rate the light for waterproofing. How did it stand up to the elements?
 
7/10

IPX4 withstands splashes and light rain. I had no problems on reasonably wet days.

Rate the light for battery life. How long did it last? How long did it take to recharge?
 
8/10

14 hours of flash at 200 lumens is very good going.

Rate the light for performance:
 
8/10

Had me covered for every eventuality, and 270 degree design means decent side visibility.

Rate the light for durability:
 
8/10

No issues. Dropped and bashed around plenty without many bruises.

Rate the light for weight:
 
7/10

59g is pretty middle of the road.

Rate the light for value:
 
5/10

I think this is good value. It isn't the cheapest but it feels very well made and does everything I want.

Tell us how the light performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Works perfectly for commuting and longer rides, and on flashing mode it can last a whole week's riding.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the light

The 'steady flash' mode that combines solid light with brighter flashes, and the variety of mounts.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the light

Grit and mud can make the mount stiff.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

It's pretty firmly mid-market.

Did you enjoy using the light? Yes

Would you consider buying the light? Yes - especially at 50% off, as it was at the time of writing

Would you recommend the light to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

Apart from the slightly fiddly locking system, there aren't many flaws to the Moon Nebula. It's good for everything from short commutes through to multi-day adventures.

Overall rating: 7/10

About the tester

Age: 34  Height: 187cm  Weight: 80kg

I usually ride: Pearson Hammerandtongs  My best bike is:

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

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, Ultra endurance

Add new comment

4 comments

Avatar
squired | 5 months ago
1 like

It is a good light, but I've had two now where the battery has completely failed.  I've not had any other light do that to me, so despite liking them I wouldn't get one again.

Avatar
ktache | 5 months ago
0 likes

Kind of wanted one of these, for an extra extra light on my RHS seatstay (16mm), but the info, even on the Moon website, had stopped mentioning the multiple "o" rings like they used to.
Then the low IPX 4 settled it, that it probably wasn't for me.

Avatar
Sriracha | 5 months ago
1 like

Looks like the light I bought from Aldi many moons ago. Nice enough, at Aldi prices.

Avatar
wtjs replied to Sriracha | 5 months ago
0 likes

Yes, that's Last Gen Aldi rear

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