MTB Lights for Night Riding – $300 vs $18

Today we’ll be testing a really high end bike light, and a really low end bike light. Is it worth using a cheap one and just replacing it when it breaks? Is it worth paying for a high performance one? We test the bikes for run time, go to the mountain bike trails, and even dunk them in water.

For a transcript of this video, turn on closed captions.

Buster 200 (helmet light)
Buster 2000 (high end light)
Amazon Light

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Wesley Cardoso says:

any cheap aluminium torch “cree T6” chip with 18650 battery does it for me. Bad side is that the vibrations along 1 or 2 years of use makes bad connections between battery and flashlight. but for less than 10$ it is worth it.

crabtrap says:

the china light bad part is the baterries which can be replaced after they get trashed. the Sigma is using a specialized batt that when spent (duty cycle), you are going to pay big$$$ for. you can re-batt that china light with quality for about $20. the ACTUAL light of the china brand is very well made.

That guy who cannot abide says:

I have two of the Amazon lights (entire packages with the lights, battery packs, mounts, chargers) from the same company, but one is a larger single LED, while the other is the dual version tested here. I use them on the road bike riding roads. I ride at half-power, or with the light in flashing mode (this is draining on me, as a cyclist, on dark nights). I really cannot complain; I have a very well built, carbon-fiber-mounted and cased cycling light from about 2002, and it was awesome, but I didn’t feel that I needed to go that route this time.

Peter DiCapua says:

I ride quite a bit at night because of the bugs and temperature difference. Magic Shine make an excellent light for as little as 30$. I would say it lasts 3 hours easy. They are all over the net Alibaba and bang good. I got mine at bang good. Take your time and waterproof them yourself if you ride in the rain. I ride in the rain sometimes and they have no bad effects. The thing I don’t like about cheap lights is mounting. they basically hook around your bars with orings and hope the tension is enough to keep them from slipping but since the light is cantilevered way over they tend to sag/rotate over time. I 3d printed a custom mount and much better, unless you crash and snap them off…

Colin Winkelmann says:

Ive use cheap ass bike lights from walmart, they take 3 AAA and have been through snow, sleet, rain, sub zero weather, and at least one tornado with them and no complaints. I change the batteries when they get dull (about every 2 months) and never worry about recharging or all that other bs, just mount and go. No one has hit me yet

Jamie Owns says:

There is also a chinese company doing a china knockoff called ligma. Works well in salty and extreme conditions too.

José Hunter's EW&F Remixes says:

Son, you have a death wish riding singletrack at night at that kind of speed, you kamikaze gonzo-bonnet. I don’t give a fuck if Jesus himself is lighting the path in front of you with holy light, let along some authoritative $300 light. I bet it tells you when to turn it on and off, with a thick German accent.

OK, it was a fucking joke. Relax your innards

Kreture 73 says:

Bro, simple hack for most anything electronic that lacks the waterproof design is liquid tape for electrical applications. Mind yourself that you have to perform this upgrade to your device with a few days of work for reapplying your weather protection. Even when you have to upgrade cheap but reliable products for waterproof use this method is effective. In addition – repairs can be done by carefully shaving and cutting the rubber off. The seal of connections is made permanent and will be if you are willing to use several coats. On mechanical threads that tend to loosen up due to vibration it’s similar to lock tight glue but on the cheap . Best addition to your toolbox . Extra hack – use for smoothing sharp edges .

The Electrician says:

I have been caving a few times with a group of 10 people each time.. I couldn’t afford to buy high end headlamps along with other equipment for I bought nice headlamps for my wife and myself..the other lamps we’re Chinese knockoffs that we’re dirt cheap.. I had no issues with any of them failing..the cave is a very wet place.. the cheapest lights were and probably still are the best bargain

frissen peter says:

The rule is 1Watt max 100lux good best light at the moment with 2A

J## S#####r says:

I’ve been using the much higher quality (joking) $20 Amazon lights. I say light because I bought 3. I wrapped the battery-packs in rubber tape (it’s used on high voltage electric motors to seal the leads) And they have worked for years. I’d like the more expensive lights. But ehh. So far the cheap one has worked so good. I haven’t felt the need to upgrade.
And I’ve used the cheap lights in Pennsylvania and North Carolina (year round) And now am trying them in Arizona.

Naer Castro says:


C Warnock says:

This battery might even explode 4” from my crotch……… lol

Ethan Wulff says:

i think he meant LIGMA

chengs group25 says:

$300 cost more then my bicycle…also the lighter the light, the less it lasts

Fergus Lyons says:

This battery might even explode close to my crotch but that’s a risk in willing to take for 18$.


Andrew Zhu says:


Frewu says:

Just mount a boeing on your handlebar and you should be fine

Ryan Conway says:

I use a Fleshlight on my bike, it works really well but I don’t last very long.

these guys says:

Am i the only one that google went off on my phone at 55sec

Zorro Zalai says:

Chinese advanced mathematics: This bike light has 3 modes: low (1000 lumen), mid (2000 lumen), high (3000 lumen), so 6000 lumen in total.
Battery pack is 4×18650, so 4×1600 mAh in paralel, 4×4.2V is series, means 6400mAh x 16.8V in total.
At least they are cheap. I use them every day.

Jocke Fransson says:

you should try ledx a bit more expensive but light up much better at the 6500 lumens

Brian Wilson says:

Looked like in and out burger view of the plane

ReMixaTu` says:

This cost more than my bike =))))))))))))

Jonathan says:

$300 for a light? My MTB is only about $185. I’m so poor.

Nic Fernando says:

Hey Seth. I use a Convoy S2+ (USD 20.00 +/-) on my almost daily night ride. I made an aluminum mount. It’s up to close to 500 lumens (rated 1000 though I read somewhere it’s just 500). It’s comparable to stock car headlights. Really waterproof and good flood lights. I’ll send you a photo if you want, let me know where to send the photo. Medium setting lasts 4 hours, high setting a bit more than an hour. It’s like biking in daylight, man.

NRA Jesus says:

2000 lumens? Cripes I have a 300 lumen light and I think it’s too bright sometimes.

Kn P says:

The diffuser lens on the German light does help to spread the beam and get you better light. I personally have given up on these bike lights and instead am moving towards 30w LED light bars from ebay. Just mount them on the handlebars using gopro mounts and off you go with a 12volt battery.

Eddie Venom says:

We are VENOM

frissen peter says:

People the anser is so simpel by cheap amazon change cree xml2 inside with real one from Germany Osram 8eu only the led… factorie price so you now witch on is real Solder this one on the heatsink ad some heatsink grease for chips intel cooling computer 0,5 eu thicker copper wire on the heatsink will cool it down olso by real batterie 3350 ma Panasonic Sanyo 10A continius and you have a 300 dollar light verry small and bright….

Zach Poitras says:

Lots of creepy laughs and this video and you notice he says balls a lot in that one way

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