With most bike lights using quick release style mounts, they are easy to be stolen. That means if you park your bike outdoors, or, are just running into a shop to get a snack you need to either remove the lights from your bike or find a more secure way to mount them. With that in mind, the Orb Droid light set is designed to integrate with your bike with anti-theft bolts. Rather than using rubber straps, the headlight can be mounted directly to a 4 bolt stem (in place of the stem face) or by using a metal collar. The tail light mount uses a metal collar with special anti-theft M5 bolts for the headlight/taillight as well as stem pinch bolts and collar bolt. Priced at about $80, the Orb Droid light set features a bright 120 lumen headlight and taillight with a multi-LED design for distributed glow. Unlike most lights, the Droid is also designed to be fully serviceable with replaceable parts and battery to ensure it can be used for years to come.
The Orb Droid lightset is a bright 120 lumen headlight and taillight with a simple interface and anti-theft mounting design that keeps it safe from thieves.
|Measured Weight (in g)||72 (headlight) / 62 (taillight)|
|Likes||+ Anti-theft design|
+ USB Type-C charging
+ Unique flash output modes
– Cumbersome to charge lights on bike
– Bulky form factor for both lights
|Where to Buy (US)||Orb|
The Droid light set comes packed in a sleek white cardboard box with black graphics. It’s a tidy package with both the front and rear taillight tightly packed between all the accessories. Inside the box you’ll find:
- Droid front + rear light (27.2mm bracket attached)
- 3m USB Type-C charging cable
- 7x Anti-tamper M5 bolts for stem / seatpost
- 31.8mm bracket
- Allen key for anti-tamper bolts
The anti-theft bolts appear to be simply hex bolts with a raised center portion which means you’ll need to keep the allen key somewhere safe. If you lose bolts or the allen key the Orb can provide replacements at cost.
One of the key selling points for the Orb Droid lightset is the anti-theft mounting design. Special M5 bolts are used for the mounts that require a special tool to loosen or tighten. This means both the headlight and taillight forgo rubber straps or quick release mounts for robust metal designs. The front light can be mounted directly onto a 4-bolt stem by swapping out the faceplate for the light. This integrated approach offers a clean installation but can be partially obscured by computers mounted on out front mounts. The taillight uses a metal hinged collar that can be used on 27.2mm or 31.8mm seatposts with the two provided options using a single bolt.
Note, the headlight can also be mounted using the same collar if the extra collar is the appropriate size. With this more permanent mounting style, it’s easier to charge the lights by leaving them mounted on the bike with the provided extra long USB cable or power banks than removing the bolts to detach them each time. This isn’t as convenient as the battery-free Reelight CIO magnet powered lights though, as you have to remember to recharge the lights. However, at 120 lumens these lights are far brighter than magnetic lights. Also to note is that both the mounts don’t have any rubber pads which means you’ll need to be careful when installing to avoid scratching handlebars or seatposts.
FIT & FINISH
The Orb has chosen a simple rectangular design for both the headlight and taillight. Aside from the color of the lenses, the headlight and taillight are identical. While the lights aren’t that heavy, the aluminium housing is thicker than other lights with similar lumen output that we’ve used. On top of the housing you’ll find ‘ORB’ printed in white with their distinct fractal pattern (the same design found on the Orb Bicycle Bottle Light) overlaid, while the USB Type-C ports are on the other side. The fractal pattern can also be found on the lenses which are also slightly raised to provide 180 degree visibility. While the side visibility isn’t as impressive as lights like the NiteRider Bullet 200, it’s a nice feature that helps ensure you remain visible from multiple angles.
Both the headlight and taillight use a simple one-level menu with a rubber button located in the center of the lens. The button itself is large enough to be easily used with gloves and has positive feedback when pressed. A long press turns the light on or off, while a quick press cycles through the eight available modes. A small light behind the button illuminates while the lights are being charged to indicate the lights are receiving power. The same light is used for the low battery indicator, although we would have preferred a more detailed battery status indicator. There is also mode memory, which ensures the light always turns on in the same mode it was shut off on. Each of the modes are distinct making it easy to not get lost in the menu.
The Orb Droid light utilizes a multi LED design with 12 individual LEDs arranged in a grid on each light. This produces a smooth and uniform light that works well as a ‘be seen’ style light – something that is bright enough for other people to see you but not to illuminate the road. Both the lights feature the same eight modes: three constant options and five flash options. The constant options are low, medium, and high which are easy to visually differentiate. An additional three flash modes are low flash, medium flash, and high flash which we found more difficult to tell apart. Finally, there are two more creative flash options: snake (the LEDs illuminate individually in a circular pattern) and random (the LEDs illuminate in a randomized order).
The Orb Droid lights have runtimes that range from 6 hours for the high constant (at the full 120 lumen) and upto 40 hours in snake mode (~10 lumen) which is plenty to satisfy most cyclists. The light also even supports on-the-go charging which means they can be recharged on the run to extend their runtime by using a power bank. To improve side visibility, both the headlight and taillight have slightly raised lenses which produce a 180° visibility. It’s not as sleek as the semi-transparent sides of the Magicshine Seemee 180 lights (or the other Seemee variations) or as impressive as the 360° visibility of the NiteRider Bullet 200, the Droid still offers excellent visibility on the road.
Overall, we found the Orb Droid light set to be a well designed set that features anti-theft mounts and creative output modes. Designed to be a seamless mount on the bike, the headlight uses a mount that can replace the stem faceplate (or use the spare metal collar) while the taillight uses a metal collar. With the included anti-theft bolts for the stem and seatpost that means removing the stem or tail light requires a special tool or a more motivated thief. Both lights feature 120 lumen output and eight creative output modes to ensure you remain visible on the road. The lights are more expensive than other ‘be seen’ lights but the CNC construction, anti-theft hardware, and commitment to serviceability help justify the price. If you are looking for some bright ‘be seen’ style lights you can leave mounted on your bike the Orb Droid light set is a great option to consider.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Orb. 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.