Lights - front
If you're looking for an all-rounder light that will cut it both on and off road without breaking the bank then the Gemini Xera is definitely worth a look. Gemini are a fast-growing Canadian outfit and the Xera, a single LED light with a 2 or 4-cell battery is their first foray in to the UK market. I've have been testing the 4-cell version and I'm impressed, possibly even dazzled, by the combination of power, run time and value for money on offer.
If you're familiar with Cateye's excellent Loop Light then these lights from Nite Ize will look pretty familiar. Nite Ize make the Loop light for Cateye, and this is their version, which is a bit different and just as good.
Electron's Micro 1W light is a commuter light with, as the name implies, a single 1W LED. This puts it at the being seen rather than the seeing by end of the bike light spectrum, even so it does provide a degree of road illumination, as our light data shows; enough for badly lit urban streets.
This good quality Ixon LED from Busch + Muller gives a beam that'll get you seen around town and provides enough illumination for journeys on unlit roads as long as you're prepared to squint a bit.
The light patch on the ground is rectangular. That's because Busch & Muller are a German brand and the Ixon IQ is designed to comply with German road lighting regulations that limit the amount of the beam that's allowed to land anywhere but on the road.
Knog's cheeky, no-nonsense approach to LEDs made a splash when they hit the UK a few years back with the Frog. The Aussie company had solved the problem of complicated fixings and brackets to keep your light and bicycle in happy attachment. Plus, they were fun and simple.
Since then Knog have developed their product range impressively. These Knog Frog Strobes - arriving at road.cc in front-and-rear tag team - are an evolution of the original Knog Frogs, the small single LEDs encased in stretchy, easy-to-attach silicone that were the company's first hit.
The Silva Singletrack light is designed as a do-it-all option for keen all-round cyclists and adventure runners; it has a separate battery pack and comes with a handlebar mount, a helmet mount for off-road riding and a head harness for trail running. At 1,030 lumens (claimed), it chucks out an enormous amount of light and those lumens are used to the maximum effect thanks to Silva's intelligent light technology giving focus both deep and wide. It's about as close as you'll get to riding in daylight when it's dark outside.
BBB's Ultrabeam is a useful light but it has to be said the design is starting to show its age, looking frumpy alongside the latest generation of super bright rechargeables. On the other hand, it's an honest to goodness compact companion great for occasional scoots round town or cosying up to old school dynamos.
Build quality and side-visibility have been greatly improved and the highest setting is just about good enough for navigating suburban cycle paths while a deluxe USB chargeable AAA variant is also available should you prefer.
The LED4Si is Lumicycle's flagship road light. It's not as powerful as Lumicycle's MTB-oriented XPG systems – a claimed 1120 lumens against 1500 for the XPG – but the 4Si is designed for the road and has a tighter beam, so it can get away with less total output and get better battery life. And 1120 lumens is still a lot...
Exposure's range of lights and the Joystick in particular have been the weapon of choice for spendy MAMILs for some years now. Combining light weight, high power and smart design Exposure's lights have pretty much defined the template for all-in-one lights.