Highlights

- Weatherproof
- USB Charger
- 30 Hours of Light
- High and power low setting
- $39.99
- http://www.mrbeams.com/mb480-mr-beams-portable-led-lantern-with-usb-charger.html

What It Is

The name really does say it all. The "Mr Beams UltraBright LED Lantern with USB Charger" is a battery powered LED lantern with a USB charging port. But even with a very thorough name, there is plenty that is not covered in title alone.

The Mr Beams LED lantern uses 4 D-cell batteries to produce 260 lumens. It is weather-proof and boats 30 hours of battery life. It is able to hang both right-side-up and upside down making it perfect for any dark situation you may need to shed some light on. It features a 260-lumen setting as well as low power 20-lumen setting for the times when you might need less light/ wish to conserve your battery. One of the best features of the Mr Beams LED lantern is the USB port. There is a good chance that should you find yourself in a situation that requires a lantern, you will also be in need of a plug for charging electronics. The Mr Beams LED lantern has your solution for both.


What I Think

From the beginning I was a bit skeptical of a battery powered lantern. I have owned a few in the past and have been disappointed. As soon as the batteries were in the Mr Beams LED lantern I knew this was going to be different, and at this point I was still in my living room! Even in the darkness of my living room the Mr Beams LED lantern was almost hard to look at directly. The bright white center of the lantern was so bright it actually made it hard to find the off switch.

Before we dive into how bright for how long I want to take some time to talk about the downsides. This going to be a short section because there is very little I would change. As with all clear plastics, the cover of my lantern has acquired a few scratches in the past few months. Also my "low battery" light has been flashing for the last 4-hours of use. I appreciate that it is trying to warn me of an approaching total black out, but it would be nice to have a slightly more accurate gauge. 4+ hours of "low battery" will eventually cause me to replace the batteries sooner than I have to which means throwing away batteries that could possibly have hours of light-giving life left. But all in all the positives far outweigh the negatives.

For proper testing of the Mr Beams LED lantern I went right to the experts. Who knows more about camping, the dark, and lanterns in general than the Boy Scouts? I went camping with Venture Crew 134 from Lakewood California in Joshua Tree National Park to put the Mr Beams LED lantern to the ultimate field test. As with the short experience I had in my living room, it didn't take long for the Mr Beams to impress.


We literally relied upon the lantern for everything from setting up tents, to cooking and there was never a shortage of light. The USB port was able to charge my iPhone from 0 to 100% in just over 3 hours, all while the lantern was on, which is pretty comparable to a wall charger. The Mr Beams LED lantern outperformed every other battery powered lantern I have ever used, and has earned a place on all of my future camping trips.

It fits well in Camelbacks and provides valuable peace of mind to any rider who fears potentially getting caught out after dark. It's every bit as treasured for the rider who plans on getting some camping in as well. Highly recommended!