Lights - front
The Exposure Strada is a serious light for road riding, putting in a strong performance across the board. It's a serious price too, but one that's justified if you do a lot of road riding out beyond the street lights.
Niterider's MiNewt 600 cordless is a compact and elegant light that packs plenty of punch, and is small enough - just - to go on your helmet as well as your bars. With good build quality and a super-simple clamp, it's a very good option for all your riding, so long as you don't want to pull an all-nighter.
Hope's Vision 1 LED has been around for a while now. Running off four AA batteries the whole thing is contained in a beautifully machined aluminium can. It looks lovely and quite frankly, anyone who doesn't automatically pick it up and enjoy the way their fingers fit the grooves isn't worth knowing (crikey! - ed). It's a bit hefty though, despite coming with a helmet mount, so perching it on top of your magic hat isn't ideal.
RSP, Raleigh's product arm, make some very decent lights. Star among them is the excellent Asteri 3 so we were hoping the Asteri 6 would be twice as good. It's not though: the build quality lets it down a bit but the major problem is the beam pattern.
The RSP Steradian gets its name from the Greek for ‘solid beam’. It uses a single-watt LED that seems a lot brighter thanks to clever collimator lens technology, which is traditionally used to guide lasers. You get a very crisp, solid beam that’s good enough in high power mode for shorter journeys in pitch darkness.
Topeak's Highlite Combo II lightset has taken me by surprise with its blend of sleek styling and sensible ninety-odd hour output (flashing)-perfect for uncluttered, dynamo equipped sportives or those early season rides that just slip past dusk.
Available in three classic colours, BBB's High Integrate LED towers over the single watt seen-by competition in aesthetic terms courtesy of graceful flowing contours that complement pretty much any genre of machine from town hack to titanium trophy. Similarly, the lens generous surface area projects a broad arc of light for maximum exposure.
This light is tough, waterproof and highly effective, with enough runtime that you won't get caught out even on longer night-time rides.
So far as I can tell, this is a rebadged version of the RSP Asteri 3 that Big Dave tested back in March. He gave it the thumbs up and who am I to argue with a man who has been through more lights than Blackpool Illuminations?
Blackburn’s Voyager 2.0 is a lightweight LED lamp that’s useful as a be-seen light around town or as a backup to a dynamo system. It offers long, battery-sipping burn times, great peripheral visibility, and excellent build quality.
This Onethelight 900-lumen headlight from Spokeshirts is a very bright light, and not an expensive one either. If you're just looking for bangs per buck, then it should be up there on your wishlist. It's not perfect and there are little niggles, but overall it's a good performer for the money.