The Magicshine MJ-900 bike headlight is one of the most affordable light models in the MJ series of wired bike lights. The main reasons the MJ-900 and the entire MJ series have been so popular are the competitive pricing and bright output which make them an easy choice for mountain bikers, road cyclists, and even commuters. With Magicshine’s release of the updated MJ-90XS series, all the headlights have upgraded output and new features. In this review, we’ll specifically be looking at the new MJ-900S which is now rated for 1500 lumen and has an integrated DRL for improved visibility. The headlight also utilizes a Garmin style mount which allows it to be used on a variety of mounts. New for the MJ-900S is the compact MJ-6112 battery pack which utilizes two non-replaceable 18650 Li-on cells for a combined 2.6Ah capacity.
With 1500 lumen output the Magicshine MJ-900S offers impressive output with competitive features such as a Garmin style mount and built in DRLs
|Measured Weight (in g)||66 (Headlight) / 166 (MJ-6112 Battery) / 16 (Handlebar Mount)|
|Likes||+ Integrated DRL|
+ Garmin compatible mount design
+ Compatible with E-Bikes
|Dislikes||– Basic handlebar mount|
– Only a 3-level battery status indicator
– Remote switch not available for helmet mounting
|Where to Buy (US)||Magicshine |
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The light is shipped in a simple black cardboard box with glossy graphics and bright orange print. A foam cutout in the box keeps the light and battery secure while all the accessories are in a separate box. Inside the box you’ll find:
- MJ 900S headlight
- MJ-6112C 7.2V 2.6Ah battery pack w/ Velcro straps
- Micro USB to USB charging cable
- Handlebar mount + multiple length straps
- Allen key
- Instruction manual
- GoPro-to-Garmin adapter
We’d recommend keeping the original packaging, as it is great for storing or traveling with the light.
One of the biggest improvements of the MJ series lights are the Garmin compatible mounts molded directly onto the base of the headlights which means you can use the lights with a variety of aftermarket mounts instead of having to use proprietary mounts or adapters. With the MJ-900S, Magicshine includes their basic strap style handlebar mount. This mount is shared with the Allty commuter lights and various other products. It’s one of our least favorite designs as it requires an allen wrench and can be tedious to install. We’d highly recommend using an out-front mount such as Magicshine’s TTA mount or third party equivalents for a cleaner setup. Also, while you can run the light upside down, it’s not recommended as the lens’s horizontal deflectors are designed to work upright.
One downside to the wired design of the MJ lights is that a separate battery pack has to be attached to your bike with cables routed to it. With the MJ-900S, the battery pack is surprisingly compact as the MJ-6112 battery pack is only slightly larger than the two 18650 Li-on cells it contains. It’s nearly half the size of the MJ-902S / MJ-906S battery packs and only uses a single velcro strap to install. Rubber pads on the inside of the battery pack prevent any damage to your frame, and the velcro strap holds the battery securely. The strap slides through an integrated slot in the battery pack housing and holds the battery firmly even on rough terrain. The combined size of the headlight and battery pack is slightly larger than Magicshine‘s larger all-in-one style commuter lights, but with the wired design, it is easy to swap out or replace the battery making the MJ lights more future-proof.
FIT & FINISH
With the updated MJ-90XS series of headlights, Magicshine has adopted a more modern and premium design. The lights all have a flat black finish instead of a multi-color design with aluminium lens housing and fin construction that feels well-built. Especially compared to plastic lights in this price range such as the Kryptonite Incite X8, the MJ-900S feels more expensive than the retail price would suggest. With the MJ-900S being the most affordable option, the headlight uses a single LED with a DRL placed above it (the MJ-902S / MJ-906S use a dual LED design). The combination is very similar to the Allty 1000 and even has the same style side cutout on the lens to improve site visibility.
The other impressive feature with the updated MJ lights is the fact that they are now E-bike compatible. By purchasing a separate cable, the lights can be wired directly to most mainstream Bosch, Brose, Shimano, and Yamaha E-bike systems. The headlight output automatically adjusts based on the input voltage, a clever solution that makes the MJ lights easy to swap between an E-bike or standard bike. Entering and exiting the E-bike mode is as simple as holding the power button for eight seconds.
As with the previous generation of the MJ lights, the MJ-900S uses a simple one button interface. It’s a large grippy rubber button that has good feedback and is also back illuminated. The button turns red or flashing red as the battery level drops. While we would have preferred a more detailed battery indicator or runtime display, it works well enough at this price point. Similar to the MOH 55, Magicshine has opted for a simple two-level interface. A long hold turns the light on or off while mode memory remembers what mode you were in last. Double press will switch between flash or constant output modes, while a single press cycles through the mode options. With only three constant modes and two flash modes, it’s easy to know what mode you are in. Thanks to the two-level design, you also don’t have to cycle through the flash modes when adjusting the light intensity which can be very distracting.
Note, the battery pack can also be used as power banks to charge other devices. The MJ-6112 battery pack has a simple USB port that allows you to connect other devices. With only 2.6Ah capacity, the battery pack isn’t as useful as dedicated power banks but does allow you to get more functionality out of the light even when you aren’t riding. We also like the detachable battery cable design which makes the battery pack more compact when being used as a powerbank and feels more robust than previous generation battery packs. The only downside we’ve found is that you’ll need to keep track of the rubber gasket to protect the battery cable attachment point when it isn’t attached.
The MJ-900S has a total of five output mode options: three constant and two flash modes. Compared to the confusing 15 modes available in the MJ-902S / MJ-906S, each mode is distinct and offers enough variety for most riders. The three constant modes are: low (500 lumen + 5 hr runtime), medium (1000 lumen + 2:12 hr runtime) and high (1500 lumen + 1:30 hr runtime). With the large jumps between the modes, it’s easy to know which setting you’re in, and even medium is bright enough for dark trails. The two flash modes are: flash 1 (0-500 lumen + 9:30 hr runtime) and flash 2 (0-1000 lumen + 5 hr runtime). Both flash modes are standard on/off patterns and are bright enough for daytime use.
We were surprised to find that the simple two LED setup of the headlights resulted in more of a spot beam than a flood beam. The beam pattern is more focused and brighter in the center (not as uniform as other Magicshine lights such as the MOH 55) but still provides a good balance on the road. Riding on trails we mostly rode in medium constant mode as it has a good balance between intensity and runtime. The horizontal lens deflectors also help produce a soft beam cut-off and a ‘dual-beam’ shape as there is a dimmer second beam closer to the bike. While it’s not as effective as a true beam cut-off, it is a simple and effective feature that helps focus more light on the road.
Overall, we found the Magicshine MJ-900S to be an affordable and bright bike light setup. At only $69.99, the MJ-900S offers an impressive 1500 lumen output which is more than enough for night time riding. While the wired setup is less convenient than all-in-one commuter style lights, it results in a more compact headlight with a versatile battery pack. The MJ-6112 battery pack has robust connector designs as well power bank functionality for charging other devices. With this updated design, we’re also happy to see the Garmin style mount and integrated DRLs that allow the light to be used in the daytime. Compared to the previous generation, the MJ-900S is an excellent upgrade that brings brighter output and modern features.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Magicshine. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.
2 Replies to “The most affordable light in the MJ series”
Really would like to know can the battery recharge whilst the light is on, please answer this in all reviews. You were very clear and it was an enjoyable review to listen to. Thanks
Good point, we’ll try to include that in our future reviews. Most of the Magicshine lights do actually support on-the-go charging now so you can keep riding while charging.