Cateye unveil new commuter lights for this year

Rapid series expands, Jido is born + Sumo offroader and the latest on the Inou GPS camera

by Dave Atkinson   June 27, 2011  

Cateye popped round the other day to show us some of the new lights they're working on for when the clocks go back, as well as a beefy new offroad-ready front unit and the latest on the much-anticipated Inou camera and GPS logger. Here's what they had in their briefcase...

One of the most interesting things that Cateye had to show us wasn't a light at all, but a bracket. Lack of mounting space has always been an issue on some frames, so why not hang the light from the saddle rails? That's exactly what this bracket does, with a rail clamp like you'll find on many seatpacks mated with Cateye's universal rear light mount. It's a real why-didn't-they-think-of-that-before product and it'll be yours for a tenner when it hits the shops. In the pic above it's sporting the new Rapid 3, which is a bit like a cut-down version of the 610 with a hi-power LED in the middle. That's already available to buy.

The Rapid 1 is a brand new light, using a single 0.2W high power LED in the rear and a similar emitter at the front. Both lights are USB-charegable from a port at the bottom of the case, and feature Cateye's jubilee-clip-esque FlexTight mounting bracket. They fall somewhere between the emergency lighting and fully-grown town lighting stalls, and they look like they'll be a good choice for city use.

The Rapid 5 looks like it might be a replacement for the much loved TL610, but Cateye are persevering with that light; if it ain't broke and that. The Rapid 5 uses a similar configuration – five LEDs in a row – but unlike the 610 you get a high-power LED in the centre surrounded by lower output units. The two LEDs on the shoulder are angled outwards at 50° for better peripheral vison, assuming you have the Rapid 5 mounted horizontally.

Also new is the Jido front light which features a five-LED lamp similar to, but more powerful than, the EL220 light in the current range. It has a trick up its sleeve too; Jido is Japanese for 'auto', we're reliably informed (although our cursory web translation check didn't confirm or deny that) and there's an auto switch on the bottom of the Jido that'll turn the light on when it's dark. There's a movement sensor too, so it won't carry on lighting your garage after you've gone to bed.

Cateye also showed us the Sumo 2, their new high-power LED unit. It sports two P7 LED emitters which are capable of 1,400 lumens although the Sumo runs at around 1,000 lumens, which should be enough for pretty much anything. You'll get an hour and a half of that from the four-cell Li-Ion battery, and there's two lower power settings (it's all relative though: medium is still 650 lumens) for longer run times. 'Chunky' is the word that springs to mind when you pick up the Sumo, it's a proper solid bit of kit, and more aimed at the off road market than the road. It'll be £300 when it's available.

We had a quick fondle of the Inou GPS camera too. Cateye have delayed the production of the unit a bit due to a few niggles, but the first cameras should be landing in the UK soon. The Inou can record either 640x480 video or still photographs at regular intervals, onto a micro SD card (a 1Gb card is supplied). It has an inbuilt GPS so it'll log your ride, and you can Geotag your images and video too. There's buttons on the top to stop/start the video and take a photograph as you're riding. The Inou runs on two AAA batteries and they're good for about nine hours of GPS logging or 5 hours of intermittent camera use. Cateye make syncing software for the Inou which uploads videos to YouTube and stills and ride logs to their own portal, Inou Atlas.

7 user comments

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I love Cateye lights, but hate their mounts. Best mounts I've used have been those on Bontrager lights - a stretchy (yet stiff) rubber strap that gives a tight grip very swiftly, and there's no play where the unit meets the strap. But the lights aren't so good. Looks like the typical Cateye mount on the Rapid 5. Shame. It's as if the boffins design their lights and the interns design their mounts.

simonmb's picture

posted by simonmb [360 posts]
27th June 2011 - 12:55

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Calling something INOU does not make it INOUvative. I can imagine that brainstorming session:

Eight hours of silence then...

Marketroid #1: Sod it, its innovative, let's call it the Innov
Marketroid #2: Someone's already trademarked that.
Marketroid #1: Inov?
Marketroid #2: Nope.
Marketroid #3: OK, call it the Inou.
Marketroid #1: Job done, I've earned my 60K salary today. Let's go down the pub.

Either that, or something like this.

posted by handlebarcam [527 posts]
27th June 2011 - 13:38

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Quote:
Lack of mounting space has always been an issue on some frames, so why not hang the light from the saddle rails? That's exactly what this bracket does

But surely the lack of space issue is due mainly to saddle bags? which is a problem this dosnt solve. Should prove usefull for those with ISP frames or Aero seatposts tho. See many TT riders riding home after mid-week 10's with no lights (not so much as issue now but was early in season).

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posted by STATO [411 posts]
27th June 2011 - 16:13

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Quote:
But surely the lack of space issue is due mainly to saddle bags? which is a problem this dosnt solve

You can fit the bracket above most saddle bags, Cateye tell us, on the angled section of the rails. It has an articulated joint int he middle so it doesn't need to be at right angles as shown

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posted by Dave Atkinson [7311 posts]
27th June 2011 - 16:57

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The seat rail mount has been a long time coming, well done Cateye.

For those with round seat posts and the so-called 'Flextight' universal bracket I advise you use the SP5 / 6 / 7 / 8 (which one depends on seat post diameter) in conjunction with Bracket #544-0980 (Wiggle link)

There are H-series brackets for front lights which also offer an improvement, particularly for the heavier units.

In this age of tiny lights with rechargeable or low-drain batteries (I really like my USB rechargeable Backupz) there is no good excuse for riding home without illumination.

Simon E's picture

posted by Simon E [1940 posts]
27th June 2011 - 19:32

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handlebarcam wrote:
Calling something INOU does not make it INOUvative. I can imagine that brainstorming session:

Eight hours of silence then...

Marketroid #1: Sod it, its innovative, let's call it the Innov
Marketroid #2: Someone's already trademarked that.
Marketroid #1: Inov?
Marketroid #2: Nope.
Marketroid #3: OK, call it the Inou.
Marketroid #1: Job done, I've earned my 60K salary today. Let's go down the pub.

Either that, or something like this.

The cateye man he say:

INOU comes from INOU TADATAKA, the first man to manually map Japan over 200 years ago. Nothing to do with Innovation more to do with mapping. looks a bit like this:

inou.png
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posted by Dave Atkinson [7311 posts]
28th June 2011 - 10:23

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I stand corrected. But my point, that marketing people are definitely "B" ark material, still stands.

posted by handlebarcam [527 posts]
29th June 2011 - 14:15

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