Baja Designs Stealth Lightbar Review
LED lighting has brought big changes in the design of lightbars for 4wd vehicles, and the Baja Stealth series have taken full advantage of the technology. California-based Baja Designs didn’t just take an existing lightbar design and jam some LEDs in; it looks like they’ve had a serious think about what’s possible and come up with a completely new design.
In a lot of ways the Stealth series looks like the SR Series from Rigid Industries. Like the SR it uses a single row of large high-performance LEDs, giving it a very low profile. It also has some very interesting features that are only possible because of LED technology. This is a high end lightbar with a price to match, but if you’re looking for a real quality piece of kit you need to check it out.
Unpacking the Stealth bar, you find an extremely slim unit. It’s about the same site as the SR Series – the bar itself is only an inch and a half high. It has a streamlined profile that will help with your vehicle’s aerodynamics for road driving – not that this is going to make a lot of difference if you have a big roof rack on. On the other hand when you’re off road or driving down overgrown trails a low profile light is a lot less likely to get damaged by branches. There’s less chance of flying stones scoring a direct hit, too.
That said, we think it might take quite a lot to do the Stealth any real damage. The casing is an aluminium extrusion, ribbed along the back to help with cooling, with very neatly cut end panels. The front lens is tough polycarbonate with an extra hard protective coating and the whole unit seems very well put together. It’s rated to IP69K, which is a German standard showing that it goes beyond the top IP68 standard; an IP69K rated device will survive a high pressure, high temperature washdown. In fact the Stealth goes even further than that and has a MIL-STD810G rating as well. This is a US military standard, and it involves some pretty tough testing. Overall the Stealth is maybe the toughest light we’ve seen; it should survive pretty much anything you throw at it.
As well as excellent build quality there are some very interesting features. The front optics can be changed by the user to switch between spot and flood illumination. This makes it possible to set the bar up as either flood or spot, or combine both in a single unit. The microprocessor-controlled LEDs also have multiple modes – as well as standard illumination you can switch to strobe mode or a dimmed option for driving in dust or fog. You can also choose amber optics. The lightbar itself is available with either a black or camouflage finish.
Overall this is an extremely high quality lightbar. It’s available in five lengths – 10, 20, 30, 40 or 50 incles – and each 10 inch section puts out a very impressive 4,200 lumens. Combine that with the overall quality and extreme toughness and we’d say Baja Designs are on to a real winner.