Home
Verdict: 
Top quality light matched by top quality safety camera better than the original but also more expensive
Weight: 
117g
Contact: 
Fly6 Mk2
8 10

After reviewing the original Fly6 and subsequently substituting my old light for it, the mark 2 has arrived and I wanted to see if they had developed on the initial backlight/camera combo. The short answer is 'yes'.

When first opening the box the first thing that you notice about the latest Fly6 is that it is considerably smaller than the previous model, coming in at just over 7cm compared to the previous model's 10. So before I've even turned it on one of the only issues that I had with the previous model (not being able to to comfortably fit it underneath a saddlebag) is fixed.

The attachment to the seat post uses the same system as previously, with rubber straps attaching to a plastic bracket with rubber spacers behind to make sure that the camera sits straight and that it doesn't damage the seat post. One of the slight problems with the last model was that it was very difficult to remove just the light from the bike, but this has been solved with this version. In fact, I had become so used to the immovable aspect of the mark 1 that I was nervous about the light jumping out of the bracket. However, my fears proved to be unfounded as it stayed in place through rough roads and driving rain.

One surprising aspect of the new Fly6 is that despite it being smaller, it is fractionally heavier. However we really are talking fractions here, at a touch over 4g more than the previous mode - even weight weenies shouldn't be troubled by that.

The changes to this model are not huge but they have improved aspects that are important to the overall performance.

For instance the battery on the previous was good, but the battery on this version is better, lasting for around 6 hours compared to the 5 in the last.

There is also an improvement in the light output from 15 lumens to 30. I was worried that this could cause burnout with the imaging of the camera, as brighter lights would cause more flare, but in reality the opposite is true.

In the previous model, it is possible to see that there is a light around the edges of the picture, whilst in this one, you can't see it at all. In fact when I look at the imaging, the only reason you know that it is on a backlight is because of the red light reflecting from the number plates of cars and the reflective jackets of cyclists behind me.

The image and sound quality are both slightly improved from the last model too. Although the mark 1 provided good quality imaging, this one goes slightly better. It is not the 1080 HD recording that you get from Go Pros or similar, but it is not designed to be an action cam in the same way, despite it still managing to be effective for that use.

The other major change to this version of the camera is the location of the USB and memory card slots, moving from the bottom of the unit to the right hand side. The previous location of these wasn't an issue for me in the several months that I used it, but if it was being used on a particularly wet day, without using any mud guards, I can see how some may have been wary of its positioning.

In terms of operation, it maintains the one button on each side for operation. The right button acting as the on/off switch and the left button varying the flash pattern from full 30 lumen output to just the LEDs around the camera (these show when it is in operation). The battery life uses the same beep orientated monitoring system, with each beep representing 25% of battery life remaining. It also emits three extended beeps when the battery needs charging, but runs for 90 mins as a light alone, allowing you to get home with a rear light.

My favourite aspect of the Fly6 is the recording functionality that I noted with the last model. Unlike other action cams, this records in loops meaning that when the memory has been depleted, it simply records over the oldest file. The device also has a safety feature to make sure that any footage that may have been taken in a crash is not recorded over. When the camera is horizontal for 4 seconds, it will keep recording but not delete the footage from the minutes leading up to or after that point.

The unit is more expensive than the previous version, and more expensive than the combination of separate camera (say the Dogcam Bullet R) and light that you would need to do the same job. On the other hand the Fly6 is actually purpose built for the job and does it really well. So it is not only an investment in a light and a camera though, it exists as a protection in case something did happen while you were cycling. In fact, now I get the same feeling as driving a car without a seatbelt if I don't have it on my seat post whilst cycling.

Overall, I have been very impressed by both units and once you start using them it is hard to go back to a regular light. In terms of cycling safety, these two units could be revolutionary. We have seen through videos where people have been using one that they can make a significant difference when the worst does happen (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLoz3zUVKPY), poor driving needs to be flagged up (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1vVvkqMrc3E) or when somebody sat on your wheel does something embarrassing (http://vimeo.com/109523905).

Verdict

Top quality light matched by top quality safety camera

road.cc test report

Make and model: Fly6 The New Fly6

Size tested: n/a

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

It is aimed at both the safety conscious commuter and the avid cyclist who wants to record their rides without having a camera attached to his or her helmet.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

VIDEO

Resolution 1280 x 720

Frames per second 30

Video File Format AVI

Video Encoding/compression (codec) H.264

Time Stamp YYYY/DD/MM HH:MM:SS

Sensor viewing angle wide - 100 degrees

File Sizes 10 minutes or around 650MB

AUDIO

Compression 16bit PCM/mono/32KHz

WEIGHT

4oz (113g)

PORTS

Charging Mini USB (USB2.0)

Connecting to computer Mini USB (USB2.0)

Memory Card MicroSD

BATTERY

Capacity 2600 mAh

Voltage 3.7V

Battery runtime up to 6 hours

Battery runtime may vary based on settings and environmental conditions

Battery life diminishes over time

MICRO SD CARD

8GB class 10 microSDHC card

DIMMING SETTINGS

4 options from 100% through to off

LIGHTING SEQUENCES

2 flashing options and solid on mode

LIGHT OUTPUT

Up to 30 Lumens

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10

The one issue from the last product that I had has been solved (the bracket attachment). Light feels solid and reliable, with no issues in any weather conditions found.

Rate the product for performance:
 
9/10

Great quality video & audio combined with double the light output, and no flare on the videos, I am impressed.

Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10

Seems like a durable product that has taken everything I/nature has thrown at it.

Rate the product for weight, if applicable:
 
8/10
Rate the product for value:
 
6/10

The combination of upped spec and smaller size has increased the price and although I'd view it as an investment it's also true that the jump in price is going to prove a stumbling block for some. Also loses a mark as the older model is still available at a lower price.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Performed admirably, recorded audio video well in varied conditions and the light made me very visible.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

It is simple to use and once again the recording feature that allows older footage to be deleted is a brilliant idea.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

If I am going to be a stickler, maybe would have been good to see more changes?

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?

An upgrade on what was already a revolutionary product, once again I am impressed.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 27  Height: 6 ft  Weight:

I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Evo 6  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 5-10 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding,

 

George spends his days flitting between writing about data, running business magazines and writing about sports technology. The latter gave him the impetus (excuse) to get even further into the cycling world before taking the dive and starting his own cycling sites and writing for Road.cc. 

When he is not writing about cycling, he is either out on his bike cursing not living in the countryside or boring anybody who will listen about the latest pro peloton/cycling tech/cycling infrastructure projects.  

9 comments

Avatar
disco [34 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

Agreed, like my lid, I don't leave home without it.

However, with our pre-production model, there was image stability problems and secure mounting concerns. Cycliq (formerly Fly6) ensure us that this has been resolved with the shipped model.

It's all very well outlined above, but if you want a second opinion: http://baroudeurs.cc/2014/11/28/fly-my-pretties-fly-2/

Here's what we thought of the original, with footage:
http://baroudeurs.cc/2014/09/26/fly6-initialreview/

The good news is they've got a front-facing device scheduled for release in the new year, called the Fly12. Although, we know there's nothing to stop you simply using a Fly6 on camera-mode only, in the meantime, like in one of their video submissions: 'Oh Deer': http://cycliq.com/videos/104

Taking in everyone's input, we're still interested in what they plan to produce.

Hope these thoughts come in handy.  40

Avatar
Ginsterdrz [88 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

Much too expensive for what it is.

Go back and rethink your profit margin.

Avatar
andyp [1495 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

'LIGHTING SEQUENCES

...and solid on mode'

Hurrah! finally they've seen sense. I'll be getting one now that it's useable.

Avatar
mrchrispy [488 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

125ish would be about as much as I'd spend.
for that reason I am out  20

Avatar
dazzle [39 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

but don't try and buy it jeez, who sells them???

Avatar
fraggsta [2 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

A minor point perhaps, but aren't all of the videos linked to in the review from the old mk1 version?

This review mentions that the red lights aren't visible in video from the new version, yet the lights are clearly visible in the second video. Given that this is supposed to be a new, improved version of a rather expensive device, I would have liked to see some video from..errr...the new version, showing the improvements.

Avatar
fatbeggaronabike [849 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

Clicked on the link to buy one and in two days the price has gone up by £4 what price will it be in a fortnights time?

Avatar
KiwiMike [1286 posts] 2 years ago
0 likes

Can we please stop calling these 'safety cameras'? They do not make you safer. All they do is improve the chance of a successful prosecution after something bad has happened.

Maybe.

'In terms of cycling safety these...could be revolutionary'

Nope. CCTV doesn't stop thugs beating people up on trains or in town centres. Speed cameras don't stop people speeding. And they are signposted/visible/well-known about. A tiny camera on a bike, supposed to influence driver behaviour? Really?

Personally I would rather spend half the money on a Lezyne Micro Drive and have over twice the brightness for overshadowed roads in low sunlight. Now *that* is a safety benefit.

Avatar
Shades [327 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Just got one of these after the price drop; v impressed. Apart from my super bright pitch black winter cycle path front light, I don't switch lights between bikes so will have to change my routine as 'sods law' says that the short ride you don't bother with the Fly 6 is the one where you get knocked off. Have been using a bar mounted GoPro for commutes but it can be a bit of a 'faff' compared to something that clips off and on quickly, so will be looking at the Fly12 with interest.