It is hard to say that, Chinese are not creative, at every moment they are introducing changes to their products - often without informing the customer about that. You are ordering once, ordering twice and at the third time you can get something totally different :). Today I’m going to compare 3 powerful bike lamps, well known Magicshine MJ-808 Updated Version, it's younger sister Magicshine MJ-808E based on Cree XM-L led and Magicshine clone EastWard YJ-E02 it shall be on Cree MC-E led but this version most probably exists only on the paper.
Magicshine MJ-808 Updated Verion => 900 lumen - sku.44459 - 79,62$
The same set with another charger was reviewed earlier : Magicshine MJ-808 - magic of light and price.
Magicshine MJ-808E Cree XM-L => 1000 lumen - sku.57100 - 78,80$
Eastward YJ-E02 Cree MC-E => 800 lumen - sku.50946 - 56.60$
Magicshine - stand execution, everything well secured in the nice colorful box. A new version MJ-808E is simply MJ-808 with a new led and a new battery pack. Ewastward – it disappoints, small torch size, white box, some bubble wrap and xerox copy of a technical specification. In addition to that instead of the promised Cree MC-E led I get SSC P7 version (and not only me :P), but it costs 20$ less than Magicshine.
Magicshine’s are mounted to the handle bar by the o-ring, which allows quick and easy mount on the standard and oversize handlebars. Eastward have steel clamp in the standard size (25,4 mm) - it is certainly more reliable fastening than rubber one, but the assembly and disassembly takes more time.
Eastward is powered by 4, 18650 Li-ion cells, that should be put into battery pack. Magicshines have integrated battery packs containing four of such cells.
In terms of attachment of battery pack to the frame on the first place ranks plastic and aluminum version from the updated version - wide strap and layer of soft foam provide a very good fit and protect your frame from scratches. Second place for the package with the MJ-808E - two Velcro fasteners and cordura cover allow the fixing of the package to the frame or under the stem. Third for Estward YJ-E02 - the only good idea for fixing this battery-pack for putting it into water bottles filled with insulation foam otherwise it will be moving itself into all directions.
In terms of cells protection, the notes are a bit different - first place for the Eastward, there is no way something will happen to the cells in the sealed aluminum container - but there is a price of this solution, battery container with cells weighs 459g. Second place for the MJ-808 Updated - aluminum plastic-sealed package with the Voltage indicator - what more possibly you could want, but it weights 352g. Third place for Magicshine MJ-808E - here we have good progress, the old battery pack was wrapped in a rubber tee, which is far better to protect it from moisture, which was a big problem. Mechanically it is still a poor protection, but it is the lightest package - it weighs just 251g which is almost half of the eastward pack weight :).
Eastward doesn't have battery charger in the set, so it does not count here. Current magicshines have two chargers: bigger, stronger in the MJ-808E and smaller and weaker in MJ-808 Updated Version.
Nominally, they have exactly the same output parameters 8.4V and 1.8A - for me, the most interesting novelty is the serial number on the charger, it is an element in the "chineise" never seen before, could it be any plans for quality records and warranty?. The results for these chargers are also positive surprise:
Magicshine MJ-808E (big one ;)
voltage without load : 8,45V
current during charging : 1,93A at 7,7V that gives more than 14W !!
Magicshine MJ-808 Updated (small one ;)
voltage without load : 8,51V –a bit too high, because it will be the final voltage.
current during charging : 1,08A at 7,59V that gives 8W !!
Feeding the beast :).
To get these declared 800, 900 or 1,000 lumens of light you must feed them well with a large number of watts :-D. Summary of input current / voltage as follows:
Magicshine MJ-808 Updated Version SSC P7
high 1,58A 7,15V 11,29W
low 0,47A 7,37V 3,46W
Magicshine MJ-808E Cree XM-L
high 1,49A 7,17V 10,68W
low 0,45A 7,39V 3,32W
Eastward YJ-E02 SSC P7
high 2,37A 3,78V 8,95W
low 1,12A 3,97V 4,44W
How it light ?
Each of these lamps gives enough light to ride a bike at night - but it isn't sufficient information, when you want to select "the best one" ;).
Magicshine MJ-808 Updated Version SSC P7- High / Low
Magicshine MJ-808E Cree XM-L - High / Low
Eastward YJ-E02 SSC P7- High / Low
The choice seems to be quite simple - the use of Cree XM-L led (even without selection) reduces Magicshines insufficient range problem and increases the amount of light. In theory, the difference for the current 2.4A for the lowest bins is only about 60 lumens (XM Cree-L bin T - 733 lumens @ 2.4 A; SSC P7 C bin - 667 lumens @ 2.4 A), but most of the buyers know how Chinese select leds for these kind of products - they are buying the cheapest LEDs that are available:].
A weak side of the selection the new Magicshine MJ-808E is the battery, which is still not the best for the bike. The solution? To purchase Updated Version and replace SSC with the Cree XM-L U-bin in cool white or T5 in Neutral / Warm, whatever you want.
Eastward - apparently does not stand out in terms of light quantity from Magicshine Updated Version, which is quite a good result. However, the economic calculation of this light is not good enough my opinion => light 57$, charger 7$ (to charge all the cells in 3-4 hours would need to have 2), 4x 18650 cells from dealextreme $ 12 =>Total 76$ that's only 3$ less than the Magicshine... In total, it's only a cheaper alternative for the people who already have the charger and a lots of spare 18650 cells - something just right for the flashlights maniacs ;).