Moon X-Power 500 Review

Well isn’t that just typical? You wait for years for a well designed compact cordless rechargeable bike light bright enough for pitch-dark country lanes to appear on the market for a reasonable price, and then three turn up all at the same time! Here we look at the Moon X-Power 500, a light that offers very similar features, performance and price as the recently reviewed Lezyne Super Drive and NiteRider MiNewt 600 cordless LED lights.

Manufacturer Specifications

Brightness: 500 Lumens

Weight: 143.5g

Modes (Battery Life): Overdrive(1:40), High(2:20), Standard(4:00), Low(6:00), Flashing(4:30).

Moon X-Power 500 Design

This light is somewhat smaller and cuter than it appears in the photos and it has a solid and expensive feel. It’s half made of a tough plastic, but the business end that holds the lens and LED assembly is made of a cool zinc alloy.

It comes supplied with both a handlebar mount and a helmet mount. The handlebar mount uses a cam lever arrangement which may be operated without tools.  The helmet mount uses a velcro strap threaded through the helmet’s vents to hold it in place. The light fits to the bar or helmet mount with with an easy to operate quick release. Both mounts and the quick release work well.

The light is charged by USB and both a lead and a mains adapter is supplied in the package.

Sealing all round the light is very good and I have no worries using this in any weather. The USB socket underneath is covered by a rubber plug. Using the rubber plug is slightly fiddly and only attached with a very thin strand of rubber. Care must to be taken when removing the cable as I imagine it would be all too easy to accidentally grip the plug with the cable and rip it out.

Moon X-Power 500 with battery removedA groove is cut into the rear of the light. Inserting a pound coin and twisting anticlockwise releases the battery. This is a proprietary lithium Ion cell. Extra batteries are available to purchase so carrying extra cells to extend run time is an option. Interestingly the size of the battery is almost exactly the same size as an 18650 type and it wouldn’t surprise me if the plastic shell just contains such a battery.

A single push button is used to operate the light. One press of the button switches the light on in the highest brightness setting. Then subsequent presses switches the lights through the various brightness modes and flashing mode and then off.

The flashing mode has a flash rate of approx 3-4 flashes per second. I would say it is slightly more eye catching than the Lezyne without being overly irritating.

Moon X-Power bike lightThe button can be pressed reasonably easily when wearing gloves but I did find it tricky fumbling around for the switch to dim the light for oncoming traffic. In the end I found the best strategy was to keep the light on maximum brightness but point it slightly downwards to avoid dazzling motorists. (Actually the same was also true of the Lezyne light and NiteRider lights recently reviewed).

A cool blue indicator LED illuminates the switch surround. This is used to indicate charge status when charging and remaining battery when in use. This indicator flashes red when the batteries are running low.

In my battery life test on the highest power setting and following a full charge, the battery low power warning light started flashing after only about 45 minutes. But then it continued to run for a further hour before it started to dim noticeably. I ran it for a further 10 minutes (by which time it was getting quite dim) before I gave up waiting for it to run out and charged it up again. All in all very good battery life for such a small and bright light. Charge time using the supplied USB cable and mains adapter  is around 3 hours.

The light is bright in use with a similar but wider beam pattern to the Lezyne Super Drive. It’s a good all rounder suitable both for being seen in town (for which the low brightness mode is sufficient) and also for hurtling down country lanes.

And of course here’s the usual video:

 Conclusion

Overall I’m very impressed with this light. It has a great combination of low weight, sturdy build quality, excellent brightness with a good wide beam pattern, and all at a great price. I would happily use it for my daily commute and highly recommend it especially if you do a lot of riding on unlit roads.

The Moon XP-500 can be purchased from this store.

You can find the official manufacturers web page for this light here.

 

10 Replies to “Moon X-Power 500 Review”

  1. Thanks for the reviews!

    I’m deciding between the Moon XP-500 and the Lezyne Super Drive. I’d be interested to know why you prefer the Lezyne?

    They seem very similar, except the higher lumens on the Moon XP. It would be great to see a side by side comparison of their beam pattern.

    1. Hi Charlie,
      Thanks for your comment. The Moon and Lezyne lights are quite similar in terms of light output, features, battery life and beam pattern. The main reason for my slight preference is that the Lezyne uses a standard battery which means it should be easier to obtain a replacement when it eventually fails (though strictly speaking Lezyne say it should only be replaced by a Lezyne part).
      In my reviews the road beam pattern is taken with the same camera exposure settings so these photos may be used for comparison. Hope that helps,
      Paul

  2. Hello there! Thanks for all the reviews, very useful!
    About the Moon X-Power 500 in this review I wonder if you can let me know how you would change the battery. I’ve read in some reviews that although you can buy extra batteries, the light itself is a sealed unit, and I notice you’ve also said you guess what the battery is so you mustn’t be able to open the light either? All a bit confusing? Can the light be opened to replace the battery when out riding or not?
    Many many thanks!!

    1. Hi Rich,
      Sorry that my description wasn’t clear. The battery is removed as shown in the photo above. It is a part known as an XP-BATT and (if you can get hold of one) would be replaceable when out riding :
      http://moon-sport.com/product-detail.php?id=42
      What I was trying to say in my review is that it wouldn’t surprise me if this actually contained a standard 18650 cell (which would be more readily available) but it’s sealed within the XP-BATT so you can’t simply use one of those.
      Hope that’s more clear,
      Paul

  3. Hi I was thinking about the Moon XP500, but from the video it seemed that the Lezyne Super Drive gave a far better peripheral vision than the Moon ? The Moon has a central bright spot with much dimmer side lighting, whereas the Lezyne lit up the road verges and hedges much better ? What do you think ?

    1. Hi, I think your observation is correct but my memory from actually using the two lights was that there was very little to choose between them.
      (Note the Lezyne Super Drive has now been superseded by the Super Drive XL)

  4. My wife bought me the 500 in January 13 Ive used it for about 2 months and now when I am trying to charge it it wont charge. The blue light illuminates and whilst it is connected to the computer charging it will turn on but take it off the charger it wont? Any ideas anyone

  5. Interesting reviews in which you’ve obviously put considerable work. Thanks for that.

    However, in my view, you should be marking down poor beam shape a good deal harder than you do.

    The idea is to *evenly* illuminate the *road*, mostly, not the treetops and the surrounding countryside as well. The beam pattern of dipped car and motorcycle headlights is very far from circular.

    The circular beam pattern shown in your pictures for the Moon and the Lezyne wastes a lot of light in this way. The Exposure Strada (on dip setting) seems a lot better.

    A nice circular symmetrical beam is great for a torch, but for a cycle headlight, the only thing it’s good at is dazzling oncoming traffic (including other cyclists) and making us cyclists even more odious in the eyes of motorists than we already are. A recent photometric survey reported by the Sunday Times discovered that it was quite common to get many times the dazzle from the newer cycle lamps than from dipped car headlights.

    In this light (sorry!) have you considered reviewing the Philips Saferider headlight. A bright, budget lamp with a well-engineered beam.

    1. Hi Simon,
      You make an excellent point. I agree beam shape is something on which all manufacturers should be focussing rather than just trying to beat everyone else on the lumens number game. I was aware of the Philips light but haven’t written about them because they didn’t seem to be widely available in the UK. I see now though they are available here.

  6. I bought two of these units. The first one did not work straight out of the box and the second one failed to take a charge after only one use I note that there is a similar comment from Ash. Absolute junk. Stay away from this product.

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