MTB Batteries Lumenator 17 review

A great-quality light that shines bright

BikeRadar score4/5

As the name suggests, MTB Batteries started off by making reliable replacement batteries, salvaging ropey eBay ‘bargains’ or other lights. It still does that too, but for the past few years it's also used its experience and expertise to produce its own branded lights as well.

Like most budget lights, the claimed 2,200 lumens is a theoretical best-case number and it produces a beam more like 12-1,500 lumen lights on the trail. Limited distance reach makes flat-out blind trail riding a gamble.

Usefully, broad coverage from front wheel upwards is great for close-combat singletrack or slower, more technical trails. The smoothly progressive edge is easy on the eyes, and there’s no strobe effect in your peripheral if you're flying through trees.

In terms of hardware, the small two-LED head can be ordered with a luminous O-ring (useful if you drop it in the dark when you’re fitting/removing the lamp) or a GoPro mount, and there’s a double-sided Garmin Outreach option as well.

Upcoming changes split the three solid light options (press and hold for strobe/flash) and on/off duties between the two back switches, so there’s no illumination interruption on the trail.

You can run it full bore for a decent two-hour ride even in cold conditions

Six top-quality Panasonic battery cells in a metal case give an impressive run-time, which makes the lack of a life-indicator less troubling. It also offsets the lower power, as you can run it full bore for a decent two-hour ride even in cold conditions (lower temperatures always reduce effective battery life) and still have plenty in reserve in case of any problems.

The stretchy, neoprene battery bag mounts easily and securely to most frames too.

Excellent reliability/peace of mind and direct back-up makes the already good price a real bargain. Also available are combo deals including the Lumenator 17 and Lumen 800 helmet light for £155. 

Just make sure you get proper MTB Batteries lights (genuine ones are engraved) as there are lookalike units being offered online, which even falsely use high-scoring magazine reviews awarded for the genuine article.

  • Weight: 360g
  • Run time (max power): 3hrs 10 mins

This article was originally published in Mountain Biking UK magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK
Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.
  • Age: 45
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster than the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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