The Strike 760 from BBB has been around for some time and has improved over the years with a great design, good output for its size and decent battery life, but it's not without its flaws.
- Pros: Great design, good battery life, light weight
- Cons: Limited features, cycles through 'off', outdated USB port and fiddly cover
Out of the packaging I thought two things: one, it's a good looking light (if that's your thing), and two, it's really light.
I like the overall design a lot – very ray-gun looking with the exposed aluminium cooling fins and detailing around the lamp head.
The clamp itself is a fairly usual plastic affair, but a nice touch is that rather than mess about with rubber inserts, it has two holes on the strap, one for standard size bars and one further out for oversize. Fitting is a doddle, though it does require the use of an Allen key to tighten the bolt. You can get a snug fit, and it isn't going to move accidentally once done up tight, but is a slight pain if you have more than one bike and want to move it around.
The light fits to the clamp by sliding on to the mount and locking into place. There's a good amount of rotation on the mount head, meaning you can focus the beam where you want it wherever the clamp is mounted on the bar. Release is via a button on the side, which is easily operated with gloves on.
To switch on, a press of the rubberised button on top is all that's needed, no long press required except to turn it off. The button is pretty stiff to push, but I would still be a little concerned about accidental switching on when in a pocket or bag.
In operation the light has five modes: four steady brightness levels at 760, 488, 228 and 106 lumens, with a flashing mode set at the full 760. Bizarrely, though, and still unaltered from the unit Jez tested last year, you have to cycle through 'off' when changing modes, leaving you in the dark briefly.
There's still no memory either, so you start from scratch each time you turn it on.
The lower modes were fine for low-light commutes or peace of mind during the daytime, and as night fell the two brightest modes worked nicely on darker and unlit roads and trails. The beam is fairly focused but does give a nice even spread of light, highlighting most of the details you need for seeing where you're going. On pitch black lanes the 760lm output is good enough to rattle along at a good pace without needing to adjust your speed too much, but off-road on the cyclo-cross bike it wasn't quite strong enough to inspire confidence when on a narrow trail or descending. I would prefer a much bigger output for that.
Other features the light does have are thermal protection, reducing the output if it gets too hot, and a sort of get-you-home mode where again it will lower the output when the battery is low.
Battery life is very good for the size of the unit, with the full 760lm lasting a snip over 2 hours, and up to 15 hours on the lowest setting. The flashing mode is a little disappointing at just 5.5 hours, because it uses the full 760 output. A further flashing mode using the 228 output would be good and would see you through a few days or a couple of long day rides. I personally like to use a pulse mode during the day and at dawn and dusk, something this light misses out too.
Charging time is stated at 4 hours and it did indeed take around that, in line with most modern lights. Charging is via a USB port on the underside which has a thin and very fiddly rubber cover that's a pain to get seated correctly. Also slightly annoying is the mini-USB port itself – just about everything USB nowadays uses the micro-USB standard, which means keeping the cable handy instead of just grabbing the nearest phone charger.
When fully charged the button on top lights up blue, and changes to red when 50% charge is left. An added bonus is that the battery pack, which is good for a whopping 300 times, is replaceable, increasing the longevity of the unit.
Lastly there is the cost. At just under £100 it's an expensive light and not the best value: there are a lot of cheaper, including the recently reviewed NiteRider Lumina 900 Boost, which is £15 less, more powerful and packs more features, and more powerful ones for the same price, such as the Cygolite Metro Pro 1100 USB.
A smart looking light with good output and battery life, but lacks features and is costly against competitors
road.cc test report
Make and model: BBB Strike 760
Size tested: 112x35x40mm
Tell us what the light is for
General purpose light for both road and mountain biking, complete with handlebar mount and can be helmet mounted with separately available mount.
Distributor Windwave says: "The Strike 760 produces a powerful round beam which is designed for use on both a road an mountainbike. Install it on helmet or handlebar. Powered by an internal battery."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the light?
760 Lumen XML CREE LED.
5 Modes: super beam, high beam, standard beam, low beam and flash beam.
Exchangeable internal EnergyBar battery pack (BLS-93).
Samsung lithium ion battery (2600mAh, 3.7V).
Tightfix handlebar bracket included (BLS-94).
Mini-USB cable included.
Weight: 127 grams (include bracket).
Size: 112 x 35 x 40 mm.
The two-piece case is made from a tough plastic with a smooth but durable feel. The head unit is neatly joined to the main body visibly with stainless Allen screws, the Cree LED cooled by aluminium fins.
A very 1950s ray-gun look with the exposed cooling fins and peak over the LED itself.
One button controls the light and the limited modes simplify the process. However, cycling through the modes includes the 'off' setting, which is far from ideal in the dark.
The clamp is simple and sturdy, fixing to standard and oversize bars with ease. The clamp is held with an Allen bolt, so easy to fit and solid once on – though not so easy to transfer between bikes. The clamp also allows a fair bit of rotation to swing the light where you want the beam to project and a simple button press to release the unit.
The light unit itself seems to stand up to the weather well, my only concern being the rubber flap on the underside covering the USB port – the same concern Jez had when he tested this light last year.
At its highest (760-lumen) setting the light will run for just over two hours, while in the lowest setting (106 lumens) it will run for 15 hours, but at that level only a 'be seen' option. Flashing mode will only net you 5 1/2 hours as it runs at a non-adjustable full 760 lumens. Charge time via USB is around 4 hours from flat.
Performance for the output is very good – the battery lasted as long as stated and is pretty bright and well placed at the top setting. Beware those exposed fins, though, they can get really hot when you're moving slowly and can burn bare skin if you're not careful.
Seemingly good so far, no water ingress and the finish is holding up well for a combination of being out in the open or stuffed in a bag or pocket. That tough outer plastic should handle a few gentle knocks.
It's small and, unsurprisingly, not heavy: 108g is pretty good for a higher output light with good battery life. It would make a good helmet-mounted option.
Here's where it falls down. It's been priced at £99.95 for years, from a little research, and light technology has moved on quite a bit. It might have improved over the years, but it's still a lot of money for a fairly basic unit.
Tell us how the light performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Out on the road it did a good job, the lower outputs were ideal in the early mornings or dusk, while the highest setting was good enough for unlit lanes without having to reduce speed too much. On light trails it was fine when on the flat or climbing but I found it a little lacking when descending, the constant jolting and 760-lumen output not enough to inspre absolute confidence.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the light
I think it looks great, and its light weight is a bonus, along with a stable and usable clamp. The replaceable battery pack will add longevity.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the light
The clamp, to a small degree – like a lot of keen cyclists I own a few bikes and having to dig tools out for a bike change isn't too user-friendly. The fact that it cycles through 'off' is also a flaw; if you are on a lower setting and ride into a dark area, cycling to a brighter option means being left unlit, if only for a second or two. The use of mini-USB seems a bit outdated too, meaning you need to keep the specific cable around, while everything else uses micro-USB.
Did you enjoy using the light? Yes
Would you consider buying the light? No
Would you recommend the light to a friend? No
Use this box to explain your overall score
A well-made and technically competent unit is let down by a lack of features, outdated USB standards and 'quirky' mode use.
About the tester
I usually ride: Boardman AirPro Di2 My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, club rides, sportives