I just got a Nightrider Lumina Micro 250. It’s an amazing little light.
The purpose of this little lamp is to use it head mounted for night riding. I have a Nightrider Pro 1800 Race for my handlebars. I just need a crawler and a scouter. The crawler is a very low powered light that is used during climbing. We want the least amount of light possible for this so as to not give our position away to rangers. Just enough light to see what we are doing. Massive lumins broadcast positions to the rangers. The scouter function is simply the head mounted light that let’s me see around very tight switchbacks when my bar mounts black out. Not much power is needed here either. We just need to take the mystery out of what is there.
Handlebar main lights are always preferred when riding mountain bike as this increases the distance between your eyes and the light source. This gives you some slight shadowing which adds with depth perception. Mounting your main lights on your helmet leaves everything looking very flat. Often, that is a big problem.
Other than having just enough light and duration for crawling, and enough light and duration to scout, we want the lightest units we can. Heavy lights on helmets just suck. The weight causes the helmet to track with a mind of it’s own. I had previously had a Nightrider MiNewt 600 Cordless (essentially the Lumina origination) that I was using but the weight was an issue as well as pumping out too much light. The 600 weighs 163 g. whereas the 250 weighs 98 g. That’s 60% the weight. A big difference.
The MiNewt 600 puts out 600, 400, 275, and 40 lumins whereas the Lumina 250 puts out 250, 120, 80, and 20 lumins. Much better.
I figured as I had both in my hand that it would be fun to see what the few years and differing design goals looked like under the hood.
Nightrider and other light companies make a big deal out of using Cree LEDs at the front of their product. I have to do some research to find out if this is just marketing or if there is a real difference. I’m assuming that the chip used here is a Cree XLamp XT-E HVW LED Q5 type. Very cool stuff.
The Battery in the MiNewt is a Panasonic KP-18650-PAN29. 3.6v 2900mAh using a NCR18650 cell. It’s so awesome. You will find that the 18650 form factor is used in many EV applications and is very common. You’ll also find the 18650B cell packing a crazy 3350 mAh. These cells can be harvested from many places like laptop battery packs.
The Micro 250 uses a battery similar to a standard 9V but I didn’t un-tape it to get the numbers. I’m sure it’s a high performer. These batteries should have a protection circuit.
edit: 10/12/2018 – The unit died. Here we see two 3.7v 650mAH in parallel. So 3.7v 1.3AH.
Comparing the light from the two units, the Micro has a slightly blue hue versus the MiNewt being slightly yellow.