MPOWERD Luci Aura solar lantern

MPOWERD Luci Aura solar lantern

Luci Aura by MPOWERD
Luci Aura by MPOWERD
  • $24.99
  • 9 colors (see below)
  • Weight: 4 oz.
  • 50 lumens
  • Lasts 6 hours on full charge
  • Full charge in 8 hours
  • Rated down to 15 degrees F
  • 1 year warranty

The first time I saw a Luci Aura I was on Aconcagua in January 2014.  My tent mate Bill pulled it out of a tiny pocket in his pack, blew it up, and changed the atmosphere in our tent immediately.  Unfortunately, the warm light couldn’t do anything to help the smell, but we can’t blame MPOWERD for that.

More than a year later, I was on my then-weekly trip to West Marine and recognized the Luci Aura on the shelf.  I didn’t hesitate to buy it, as I’d been looking for a nice light that wouldn’t drain Dira’s batteries when I was hanging out on her at the slip.  I live a 2 minute walk away from her, so I spend a lot of time on her in the slip, grilling and hanging with friends (I find I mostly hang it from the boom).  It would also be easy to store and charge during the day, and I’d seen how well it worked for almost a month in that tent.

$24.99 later, I had the Luci charging on my windowsill for the rest of the day.  The sunlight wasn’t direct, but it did the job, as I found out when I was playing around with it that night.

The Luci is inflatable, so it stores and/or charges flat, then blows up into a small cylinder (roughly coffee can sized) when you want to use it.  There’s nothing stopping you from turning it on when it’s not inflated, in case you were wondering.

An inflated Luci Aura solar lantern
Luci Aura inflated (mostly)

It’s got small straps on the top and bottom to hang it from something when lit or to hold it down while it’s charging.

The straps on Luci Aura
Strap for hanging or securing (same on bottom)

Do you know the headlamp in the Nalgene trick?   The effect is like that, but prettier and more efficient.

The green light thrown by Luci Aura
Luci Aura lighting an otherwise completely dark room

The material is tough enough that you don’t need to worry about babying it, either.  I can say that with confidence after a year of use.

The power button is on the bottom, press it once to get a nice red light.  Press it again to get another of 9 colors total.

  • red
  • green
  • blue
  • violet
  • yellow
  • light blue
  • orange
  • white
  • dark red
Luci Aura lit with red
Luci Aura – red
Luci Aura glowing green
Luci Aura – green

After the dark red, another press turns it off.

A double click tells it to cycle through the lights, with a nice fading effect from one to the other.

The different colors are nice, letting the lantern fit the mood of the night.  As far as “I’m using the stove and need to be able to see well”, green works best for me – but I still break out the headlamp when I need to see details.  This is usually only for a moment (think lighting a stove), and then my headlamp is off, happily saving its battery charge for later.

That’s one of the most valuable things about the Luci in my opinion – all the time your headlamp would have been on, but isn’t. That also goes for any other lantern that runs on replaceable batteries instead of a nice solar reachable setup like this.

Luci is not afraid of the water.  It floats (tested), and will do just fine if it starts raining heavily while it’s strapped to your pack to charge while hiking (tested).  I haven’t tested this aspect of it, but it’s billed as completely waterproof, which I have no reason to doubt.  It would require a lot of effort to get it to sink, anyway.

MPOWERD has a pretty cool mission – it’s worth checking out their site.  The Luci Aura is a great product for backpackers, campers and boaters, or anyone who hangs out in their yard or on their deck at night.  My friends’ children love it as well, and didn’t manage to break it while treating it like a beach ball.

Luci Aura casts blue light on a child
Baby bottom blue
Luci Aura casts violet light on a child
Baby bottom violet

This one is well worth the money and a good addition to your camping gear, your deck or your home.

Solar panels on the bottom of Luci Aura solar lantern
Luci Aura – solar panels (bottom)
Luci Aura deflated side view
Luci Aura – deflated, side

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