Guee's COB-X LED Light Set is a relatively potent pairing of safety lights that combine decent output and run times with surprisingly quick charging. The outer silicone monocoque shell is available in no fewer than six colours, and entertains the usual diameters and even some unexpected hosts.
The light itself features a curved rubberised texture which also seems readily accommodating of round and aero tubing alike. Cutesy looks and convenience aside, this protective blanket also shields the delicate circuitry, charge port and lithium polymer cell from water ingress.
Guee states IPX4 conformity, which means they're water-resistant in the everyday sense, not submersible. I've subjected ours to three minutes sustained tickling from my high pressure garden hose without any problems, so haven't been surprised that they've never missed a beat in 30 miles or so of torrential rain.
In terms of tech, the lenses direct and optimise the diode outputs, which employ the increasingly popular COB (Chips On Board technology). This crams diodes in sardine-fashion for a uniformly bright and powerful pattern of light, while still allowing them sufficient room to counter overheating and, theoretically, premature expiry.
Even mounted horizontally, their small, pimple type switches are surprisingly easy to locate and engage in winter weight gloves, though still require a deliberate prod – so unless you've buried them in the bottom of a saddlebag or pannier (guilty as charged) accidental engagements are pretty rare.
Slow flash/strobe (depending on your perception) is the default on both units – a warm rather than retina-tickling glow that still nails the attention of other traffic. Unlike some competitors I've tested recently, both are relatively tame on grey afternoons.
The rear is visible to 200m on a clear night, dipping to 175 in built-up areas with competing neon. The front is feistier: 230 and 185m. Both maintain their brightness right until reserves are exhausted – 14hrs 52mins, 8 minutes short of ideal world conditions. Yes, some rechargeable models will hit 17hrs plus and deliver more punch, but this is good enough for longer distance commuting and easier on riding companions' retinas.
An orange light kicks in once reserves dip below 30 minutes, which gives all but the most careless/forgetful a sporting chance of making it home.
Fast flash has considerably more bite but is also sensibly delivered. You'll be seen from a good 230m or so along unlit B roads, but it's assertive rather than aggressive so won't dazzle or alienate your riding companions. Economy dips quite a bit – ours returned 8hrs 51mins (curiously, the rear bettered this by 3 minutes) against an optimal 9 hours, but this should be adequate for most general riding contexts.
Despite the relatively narrow lenses, peripheral bleed is better than profiles might suggest – especially when mounted vertically – when those silicone straps come into their own.
Thanks to the quality of output, constant is good enough for scooting home with if your main system has gone pop or you've had one coffee and tall tale too many at the café. Intensity is superior to some low-rent commuter lamps and will deliver the seen-by goods for 4hrs 27mins.
Summing up, these are surprisingly competent safety lights that, in my opinion, are well suited to most types of riding. They're small enough for clutter-phobic best bikes and feathery TT missiles, and their combination of fast charging, power and economy lends them to audax and similar endurance duties too.
Simple safety lights with decent output and rapid charging times
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Guee COB-X LED Light Set
Size tested: n/a
Tell us what the light set 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?
Guee says: "Tool free fitting, built-in rechargeable battery and, 1.8hr quick charge through micro USB, the COB-X is convenient, economical and a top performer."
Generally very good for a slimline design.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the light set?
Super Bright 'COB' L.E.D provides ultimate visibility
- 1.8 hour quick charge - ideal for riders in a rush!
- Micro USB Rechargeable Li-Poly battery
- Battery power indicator
- Multi-fit, tool-free fitting
- 160 degree wide visility
- Tool Free Mounting Bracket range at Φ 22.2mm-33mm
- Light source:High Brightness white LED
- Battery:3.7V Li-Poly rechargeable battery 260 mAh
- Charge:Micro USB supply 5V
- Charge time (approx):1.5 hours
- Burn time (approx):15hrs (flash)/9hrs (strobe)/4.5hrs(constant)
- Mount size:Ø12~35mm
- Water Resistant:YES/IPX4
Versatile – fits to a variety of places, including racks, and slimline profile means the rear is very unobtrusive when mounted low on the seatstays.
Quick charging and frugal.
Simple but effective three modes that cater for most contexts and charge quickly.
Well sealed from the elements in the everyday sense.
Good, but competition is extremely fierce at this price point.
Tell us how the lights performed overall when used for their designed purpose
Overall, this is a versatile safety pairing that works very nicely alongside main systems. Presence is also impressive given their low profiles and thanks in part to the COB technology, trumps some budget LED town lamps.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the lights
Simple, user friendly design with decent output.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the lights
Nothing given the design brief.
Did you enjoy using the lights? Yes
Would you consider buying the lights? Possibly
Would you recommend the lights to a friend? Well worth a look if they wanted a set of discreet but fairly powerful safety lights.
Use this box to explain your score
Another decent pairing but a fiercely competitive market means they're on par with, rather than markedly better than, others commanding similar cash.
About the tester
I usually ride: Rough stuff tourer based around 4130 Univega mountain bike frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo-cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)