- 3.5 / 5 Bee's Knees -
In the Eagle lineup, the Eagle 700 sits at the very top, at least in some respects. With a claimed output of 700 lumens, this light is currently Magicshines brightest battery-in-unit light. One might expect it would therefore be the most expensive, however it is not and here’s why.
Pushing two Cree XM-G2 emitters, the 700 most closely resembles the Eagle 600 which shares the same emitters and possibly the same reflector/lens. While the output is significantly higher than the 300 and modestly higher than the 600, the 700 seems to have a beam pattern unique to itself. Though the 700 isn’t completely focused on a tight center spot, it is heavily weighted towards that with a fair amount of flood, but less than I would have expected. In fact, when comparing beam patterns, the 700 is noticeably more narrow or concentrated than the 600 which pushes two emitters—or so it seems to the naked eye. In a road environment, the 700 fairs quite well whereas in a MTB environment the width is a little unnerving on claustrophobic trails. If, in reality, the beam pattern does offer a fair amount of flood, the spot is intense enough to drown out that fill leaving you with the illusion of limited flood coverage.
Again compared to the 300, the 700 offers the same intuitive simplicity when it comes to the organization of output settings. Where the 300 has three settings, the 700 has four by adding flash. The charge indicator, large mode button and USB charging all function well as with the other models within the Eagle series.
Reiterating previous reviews, the mount system employed here is decent. For some Magicshine lights this bracket proves to be a bit undersized but for the Eagle series it is an appropriate size and the ease of use is promising. This mount can have a death grip on your handlebars if you so choose. Performance where the light meets the mount is about average. Having the mount as a somewhat universal design is nice for riders with multiple MS lights.
When reviewing lights in large batches, it is generally true that the further you step up in output, the greater the features and overall experience manufactures build into their products. Without diving into the full review of the Eagle 600, I think it is worth mentioning that I prefer the 600 over the 700 and that comes as a big surprise. Check out that review for more details. At a $10 premium, the 700 completely destroys Magicshines own Eagle 300, I chuckle because it seems as if they are competing with themselves regarding these two lights. Again, in a road environment, this light performs well and might be considered competitive with others. Riders who want a bit more versatility and features should look elsewhere—and that could be no further away than the Eagle 600, check out that review here.