The Exposure Lights Joystick MaXx and Enduro MaXx are rechargeable lights with excellent versatility for multi-sport pursuits. Used when cycling, the combination is bright enough for high speed technical mountain bike night riding, matching the output of many bicycle HID light systems.
On its own, the Joystick MaXx is a very powerful flashlight for backpacking or mountaineering trips up to a week. In addition, it is a versatile light that performs equally well for bike commuting or when used as a helmet light for multi-light night mountain biking.
The Exposure Lights Joystick MaXx securely snaps into a helmet mount that screws into a helmet vent and is easily removable for non-cycling needs.
The Exposure Lights Joystick MaXx weighs only 2.8 ounces, is water-resistant, and very durable.
Typically when backpacking, I've only considered flashlights that use replaceable batteries, but the Exposure Joystick MaXx has changed my mind about rechargeable lights in the backcountry. When compared to my favorite bright headlamp, the Princeton Tec Eos, the Exposure light weighs less, has a longer lasting battery, is rechargeable, and is insanely brighter; for comparison, the stock Princeton Tec EOS is 25 lumens on high while the Joystick MaXx has a whopping 240 lumens on the MaXx setting - that's nearly ten times brighter!
In the field, I typically used the Joystick MaXx on the lowest setting most of the time, giving me about 25 hours of consistent light. This is plenty for week-long trips and when used sparingly would last for an even longer trip. When some extra power is needed, the 240 lumens is extremely bright and helped several times when night hiking. A downside, however, is that there isn't a brightness low enough for low-light tasks, such as reading - I recommend carrying a smaller LED light for tasks such as this. The brightness of the Joystick MaXx is best when used for navigation or hiking at night.
The one-ounce headstrap makes the Joystick MaXx a functional headlamp and is adjustable with Velcro.
A one-ounce headstrap turns the Joystick MaXx into a functional headlamp. It is a two-inch wide stretchy band with Velcro adjustability, and it holds the light securely at a usable angle. The angle is easily adjustable by repositioning the headstrap on your head. It also has a reflective rear logo for extra safety when walking or running near cars. While the headstrap adds a great deal of versatility to the light, it is overbuilt compared to other headlamp straps; I think it's easily possible to lighten up this piece.
Comparison: a modified Princeton Tec Eos (left- using a much brighter than stock Seoul LED) casts a very weak beam when compared to the Joystick MaXx (right).
For bicycle use, Joystick MaXx comes with mounts for both the handlebars and the helmet. Both attach very easily and the tiny light clips in securely. Even when taking hard crashes, the Joystick never came out of the helmet mount. For those that enjoy both cycling and backpacking, the Joystick MaXx can easily cross between both worlds - especially useful when bicycle touring or adventure racing.
Both Exposure Lights have three output settings - MaXx (left), Ride (middle), and Low (right) in addition to a flashing setting.
Both Exposure Lights have three output settings as well as a flashing setting. I found the manufacturer claim of three hours (MaXx setting), ten hours (Ride setting), and twenty-four hours (Low setting) to be a bit conservative; I managed to get between thirty and sixty minutes more in the MaXx setting and one to two hours more in the Low setting. Both lights are regulated and have a "reserve fuel tank" feature that automatically turns the lights to Low when the battery has only 5% remaining. At this point the light will dim gradually over a three-hour period, giving you an extra chance to get home or set up camp. I found it comforting to know that if I pushed the light too far, that there was always a bit extra to get me to camp or the car.
The Enduro MaXx has exactly three times the brightness of the Joystick MaXx but almost identical battery life, making the two an excellent pair for cycling.
While not my first choice for backpacking, the Enduro MaXx is a fantastic partner to the Joystick MaXx for technical night mountain biking. With the Joystick MaXx on the helmet and the Enduro MaXx on the handlebars, you have a veritable flood of light from the bar and additional lighting that goes wherever your eyes go. The combination is incredible when riding through dense woods, enabling speeds that nearly reach a daytime pace. The Enduro MaXx attaches to the bike handlebar with a quick release that is quite secure, but allows the light to be removed with a quick pull of the red release knob.
Combined, the Exposure MaXx and Joystick MaXx make create a lightweight, no-cable system that is excellent for night cycling.
While most lights with similar brightness require cables that connect to batteries attached elsewhere on the bike, all Exposure Lights have the batteries fully contained in the light. The result is not only simple, but extremely lightweight - 11.2 ounces for the whole package.
|Year/Model||2008 Exposure Lights Joystick MaXx|
|Features||CNC machined alloy weatherproof case, cable-free design, single Seoul LED emitter with collimated lens, "Dual Beam Optics" combination flood/spot pattern, light level indicator, "fuel gauge" battery life indicator, "reserve fuel tank"|
|Included||Light with integrated Lithium Ion battery, smart charger, helmet mount|
|Modes||Three brightness levels, one flash mode|
|Run Time||3.5 to 25 hrs measured (3 to 24 hrs claimed)|
|Output||240 lumens on highest MaXx setting|
|Dimensions||Cylinder is 1. in (25mm) wide, 4.1 in (104mm) long|
|Weight||2.8 oz (78 g), headstrap 1.0 oz (27 g), handlebar mount: 0.2 oz (7 g), helmet mount: 0.7 oz (21 g)|
|Options - Headstrap||$25 ($20 when purchased with a light), Piggyback batteries available- 1 cell: $69.99, 3 cell: $139.99
MaXx car charger: $34.99