LED commuter light
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.
Nite Rider’s MiNewt 150 cordless could be the ultimate commuter/training lamp for those wanting high power without the clutter and faff of external battery systems. Lifetime warranty covers mechanical defects while the lithium ion battery can be charged either from the computer USB or mains socket thanks to a sensible adaptor. That said the twin lamp MiNewt Cordless 250 comes with helmet mount as standard and has the edge if you’re looking for adventures sans asphalt.
You’re going to like these Magicshine lights, I did. I’m getting this test report out as quick as I can because, you might need to strike something off the Christmas list and convince yourself or your significant other, that you need a present just like this.
These little Backupz LEDs are brilliant if you are riding through town after the sun has disappeared. They are tiny, each the size of a key fob so you can easily stuff them safe in your pocket when you are nipping in to the to the pub for a refreshment break on your way back from work while your steed is locked up outside.
Kirk to Bridge… Err, perhaps I’ve been watching too many episodes of Star Trek but One23’s rear led is strangely reminiscent of the US Enterprise with a quaint profile and adjustable bracket but performance outstrips many twice the price. Simple, weatherproof and remarkably solid construction and with batteries available on pretty much every street corner it’s an absolute bargain but care is required when tensioning the universal mounting bracket to prevent it exploring strange new worlds…
The Blackburn Mars click is very hard to beat in terms of build quality, burn times, output relative to size and good old fashioned value for money.
Models with greater LEDs and larger surface areas are better choices for tag-alongs/trailers but prodigious peripheral visibility, brilliantly executed switch and universal bracket mean the Mars is a delight to use and won’t spoil the clean lines of sporty audax/winter training bikes.
No doubt about it, the Supernova Airstream is a classy looking light with a great beam pattern for road riding. The mount has its upsides and downsides, and side illumination isn't the best, but the overall impression is of a light that's superbly made and very useful. You pay for that quality though.
Blackburn’s Voyager front LED combines bold stylish design, brilliant optics and generous burn times in a package perfect for mile eaters needing a compact, capable companion nestling next to the dynamo. Sure, desk jockeys might prefer the convenience of USB charging and two modes won’t win bragging contests down at the clubhouse but the quality of light is adequate for tackling town centre traffic, mending roadside punctures and nursed us safely home when my old school Lead-Acid system unexpectedly ran out of juice.
Moon’s Gem 3.0 is intended as a get you home safely back up rear light or the sort of thing you might take along to the summer race meet. Light, discrete and boasting cutting edge design, but most importantly of all delivering as a reliable and very convenient extra light attached to luggage and clothing. However, impressive as the seven to eight lumens are, the tiny pronounced LEDS don’t have the same presence as a bigger light, which can prove crucial negotiating junctions in unlit areas.
Moon Gem’s imaginatively monikered 2.0 is a very capable emergency light, perfect for getting home safely from late summer/early autumn evening’s race meets/training runs. Reasonable output means it’s a great complement to dynamo and high power rechargeable systems too. However, while the power to weight ratio is impressive, burn times between charges are likely to frustrate tourists and long-haul audax aficionados.