Baja ONX LED Lightbar Review
There’s no better way to add some extra lighting to your 4wd vehicle than a good quality lightbar, and the growth of LED technology has made these better than ever. Now manufacturers are taking advantage of what LEDs can do to add new features, making lightbars even more versatile. We just took a look at the OnX range from Baja Designs, which is a great example of what can be done with a little imagination and some outstanding design.
The OnX lightbars are similar to Baja’s excellent Stealth models, in that they’re single row bars. This gives them a neat, low profile – the bars are just over two inches high – without compromising their light output. In fact a ten inch section puts out 4300 lumens, and with up to 50 inches available you can get all the illumination you need. The standard OnX is available in 8, 20, 30, 40 and 50 inch lengths, so there’s a model to suit anyone.
Like the Stealth, the OnX has an extremely nice aluminium casing, anodised black and decorated with crisply laser-etched logos. As well as cooling fins built into the rear of the casing the OnX also has a copper thermal core, letting the LEDs dump heat even more quickly and maximising their lifespan. The lenses are unbreakable polycarbonate with a hard anti-scratch coating, and their modular design lets you swap them yourself. This allows each section of the bar to be set up for either spot or flood illumination, and coloured filters are also available.
When we tested the Baja Stealth we were impressed with just how indestructible it was, and the OnX meets the same standards. The casing is rated to IP69K for ingress protection, meaning it’s completely dustproof, can resist high pressure and high temperature washdowns and can be indefinitely submerged under 3 metres of water without leaking. It’s also tested to MIL-STD810G against thermal shocks, mechanical shock and random vibration. You really won’t find any lights tougher than this, unless you work for NASA.
The actual LEDs here are top of the range Cree XM-L2 units, which produce an excellent white light with a colour temperature of 5000K. That means the illumination is almost exactly like natural daylight, giving you an outstandingly clear view. The bar can be switched between normal, strobe and medium modes, with the medium one designed for driving through dust, mist or heavy rain without dazzling yourself on the reflections. There’s also the option of a dual controlled bar, which can be operated as two independent sections with all three modes available on each. We’d just like to note that an OnX set up as a spotlight performed as well as an 8 inch Xenon spot, which from an LED bar is pretty impressive.
The Baja OnX is certainly not the cheapest lightbar you’ll find, but if you want performance and extreme ruggedness it’s definitely hard to beat. The flexibility of the series is also amazing. It really doesn’t matter what you want to do with a lightbar; you can do it with this one.