The Broke Backpacker MPOWERD Luci Base Light Review

The Broke Backpacker MPOWERD Luci Base Light Review

So what is it about the Luci Base Light that makes it such a valuable asset to your packing list?

With so many lanterns, flashlights, and headlamps on the market, it may seem overkill to get yet another illumination device for traveling. However, the Luci Base Light has more than a few surprises – and if you are thinking about getting a solar lantern, this is the one you should get. Let’s find out why…


Left to right >> Low, Medium, and High settings. | Photo: Chris Lininger

The maximum light output of the Luci Base Light is 360 lumens. To put that in perspective, 100 lumens is considered bright enough for a typical walkway, and a lamp post is somewhere between 120 to 180 lumens.

While it’s not a security floodlight (around 1000 lumens), the Luci lamp still provides more than ample light to see clearly on any trail, rocky path, or winding cabin pathway.

On the highest 360 lumen setting, you’ll get about 2.5 hours of use from the lamp. However, since this is usually more than enough (and sometimes uncomfortably bright) light, there are three lower settings you can choose from.

When set to the lowest 20-lumen setting, which is an excellent level for in a tent or as a reading light in a bunk bed, you can get up to 50 hours of use from one battery charge.

With the various settings, you can go from using the Luci to illuminate an entire campsite by hanging it on a tree, to a non-obtrusive personal lamp in your own tent. Just be mindful that the higher the setting, the shorter the battery life, so if you’re on an extended camping trip, you’ll need to be careful about how long it’s left at high power.


My Luci Base Light went to seven countries last year. Seen here lighting up my tent in Pakistan. | Photo: Chris Lininger

A camping light is no good if it breaks the first time you drop it. You should always be careful with your gear, but some rough and tumble action is unavoidable with an adventurous lifestyle!

One of the most defining features of the Luci is the fact that it’s inflatable. Yes, you read that correctly; the Luci Base Light is an inflatable light. Not only does this make it super compact and easily packable, but it also reduces the risk of damage while in your backpack and on the go.

The adjustable base strap on the light makes it easy to secure it in a variety of locations, whether that’s from a tree branch, your backpack, or inside your tent. Even when inflated, you would have to try pretty hard to puncture the plastic around the body of the light, so unless you try stabbing it with a sharp object, there’s not much risk of damage.

Something else that your typical camping flashlight isn’t capable of is water submersion. The Luci Base Light has an IP6 waterproof rating, which means that it can be submerged up to one meter for no more than 30 minutes.

While it’s not recommended to dunk the light at every opportunity you have, the waterproof feature makes it an ideal light for boat trips and rainy conditions. If it’s raining at night and you need to light your way to the tent, no harm will come to the Luci Base Light.

The downside to the Luci is that it isn’t meant to withstand temperatures below 32 degrees Fahrenheit. If you’re planning on winter camping or desert camping when temperatures drop significantly at night, this may not be the best camping light for you.

Best Use

The Luci Base Light is super portable, so it can go anywhere you do.

The Luci Base Light is certainly designed for a variety of other situations and lifestyles. As it happens, I use this thing in my house on a daily basis. I also take it on just about every adventure I embark on.

Thanks to the small packing size, it’s an ideal light for backpackers and travelers. Whether you’re backpacking across Europe or on a weekend backpack camping trip, the Luci will easily fit into your pack without adding much weight or taking up precious space.

You don’t just have to use the light for camping either. It’s super convenient to have as a personal light when you’re staying at hostels, hotels, or bed & breakfasts when you need a personal reading light or to find something in your backpack in the middle of the night without disturbing other guests.

The Luci Base Light is also well suited for car camping and road trips. If you need to find something under your seat, you can turn up the light to a higher setting to illuminate the entire car or use it on a low setting to get from your car to your tent at night.

Thanks to the high and low light settings, the Luci Base light is great for solo travelers or groups. Everyone can sit around a camping table to play cards in the evening without needing to rely on personal headlamps to see the cards or playing board!

It works equally well for walks at night, whether you’re taking a midnight walk on the beach or finding your way along a forested path. You can adjust the brightness as needed to see properly, and attach the Luci to your backpack or shoulder strap if you want to keep your hands free.

There’s no reason why you couldn’t use it around the house, too, outside of camping trips and traveling. It would make a great light for a workshop, office, in your kid’s cardboard fort, or anywhere else you might want an ambient light source.

I consider the actual light that the Luci Base Light puts off to be soft. It does not have that fluorescent look of a doctors office that we all hate.