Review: NiteRider MiNewt Mini-USB Light

The NiteRider MiNewt Mini-USB Light is an ingenious little product despite it’s slightly clunky name. NiteRider, who has always produced high-quality lighting systems for bikes, has created a device that is great for the office commuter.

The highlights of the system are it’s easy mounting and removal from your bike — the battery mounts to the top tube via a velcro strap, and the light is secured to the handlebar with a rubber o-ring. (It can also be helmet mounted.) Where this gets interesting is the charger — plug the battery into a mini-USB cable (the same as your digital camera likely uses) and it’ll charge off of your laptop or desktop machine. The system also includes a “wall wart” that you can plug the USB cable into, should you live the computer-free life.

The performance of the light (110+ lumens) is admirable, and the battery life– about three hours — is equally impressive, given the size of the device. The beam is strong enough to illuminate signs 200 feet away, and there’s no doubt that cars will see you when you’re using this. It hasn’t got the strength of a car headlight, but at bicycle speeds and in urban/suburban areas, it will suffice to supplement existing lighting.