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Verdict: 
Fab front light with simple setup and enough lighting performance to satisfy even the fastest road riders
Weight: 
147g

ETC is cycle distributor Moore Large's own brand of lighting and, if this Kochab model is anything to go by, the company could be onto a winner. It's simple, straightforward, nicely made and does the job superbly. At 1,000 lumens, there's more than enough power for every type of night-time road ride as well as being a fairly effective 'always-on' daytime running light.

  • Pros: Excellent full power performance, simple to fit and use, good daytime running light, can cycle through modes without switching on flash
  • Cons: Instructions are a little light on details, not programmable, run-times aren't huge

> Buy this online here

Build and fitting

Although Moore Large has few technical specifics about the Kochab either online or in the very wee instruction booklet, it feels sturdy in the hand with the light body made from aluminium. It's IPX6 waterproof – a shower test confirmed it'll stand up to the weather – and at 147g, it's hardly overweight.

There's no excess or confusion in the selection of run modes, either, with six on offer: high (1,000 lumens/claimed 1.8 hours run-time); medium (500 lumens/4 hours), low (250 lumens/12.5 hours), daylight running (28.5 hours), quick flash (3 hours) and slow-flash (7.2 hours). Claimed run-times are pretty accurate too – on full power it lasted 1 hour 48 mins, for example.

Officially, charging takes 4.5 hours, although in my experience it was nearer 5 hours via a micro-USB port, which is rubber-bunged for weatherproofing underneath the light body.

ETC Kochab 1000 Lumen Front Light - USB port.jpg

Charge status is shown by the colour of the single illuminated on/off/mode button.

Attaching the light mount to your handlebar is simple. You hook one end of the mount strap (the box comes with two straps, one for normal bars, one for aero bars) into the mount body, wrap the strap round your bar, then the other end has a small nut that the mount's hex bolt screws into to tighten. There's a hex key in the box for just this job. The light body itself then clamps onto the mount with a Garmin-like twist.

ETC Kochab 1000 Lumen Front Light - bar mount.jpg

As with the rest of the light, it's a good step above being basic but its simplicity is a definite attraction.

Performance

ETC places great stock in the light's daylight running function and the Kochab actually has two sources of illumination – the main beam and an additional bar-shaped light above it purely for daytime. This works well and comes on in addition to the main beam in all light modes, or simply by itself in daytime running mode. I would say, to make your mark in daytime you may want to use one of the two flashing modes – which can only be accessed by giving the on/off/mode button a double tap. Incidentally, the fact that you can cycle through normal light modes without switching on flash will be a welcome feature to many.

ETC Kochab 1000 Lumen Front Light - top.jpg

Head into darkness and the Kochab's full power mode is really impressive. In pitch black conditions it lights the way ahead very effectively to well over 100 feet. In fact, tested alongside its more powerful sibling, the more expensive and more complicated 2,000-lumen ETC Mizar Combo lightset (full review to come), there's very little to tell between them. As far as fast road riding is concerned, the Kochab's performance is superb.

On lower power settings there's almost as much to appreciate. The Mid, half-power setting is equivalent to a 500-lumen light, will last around four hours, and is perfect for commuting.

> Buyer's Guide: The best 2019/2020 front lights for cycling

Beam pattern is very good, too, with a concentrated but wide central circle, with luminescence tailing off gradually towards its outer edges. Essentially, it's a very easy shape to position and use. Meanwhile, slim exposed lens sections on the side help to make you more visible to traffic at 90 degrees.

Few things in life are perfect and the Kochab does have some downsides, such as not boasting any programmable potential, so you have to cycle through all four lighting modes to find the one you want. But the button's right there, next to your hand, so it's hardly a chore and, as I mentioned, even this has the upside of avoiding flash modes.

Value

In terms of value, the Kochab is pretty good: just a fiver more than the Kryptonite F800 and the Ravemen PR800, both of which offer similar kinds of performance, if slightly down on all-out lighting power. That said, the F800 has some added tech, such as auto-economy mode, while the Ravemen has a remote control and the ability to charge USB accessories. What value you place on that is a personal decision – I'm quite happy with the Kochab being a very competent bike light.

And that, ultimately, is the beauty of the ETC Kochab. It's simply a very good, suitably powerful front bike light that will illuminate the way ahead for any kind of road rider on any kind of roads, and help to keep you safe during daylight. Really, what more could you ask for?

Verdict

Fab front light with simple setup and enough lighting performance to satisfy even the fastest road riders

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road.cc test report

Make and model: ETC Kochab 1000 Lumen Front Light

Size tested: 1000 Lumen

Tell us what the light 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's a 1,000-lumen front light aimed at any kind of road rider.

ETC/Moore Large has an 'overview' that lists:

1000 Lumen Front Light with Helmet Mount

Max Lumens:1000/ Working Mode:6

Flashing Mode: Yes

Day Running Light (DRL): Yes

LED: CREE XPL

Beam Angle: 20°

Battery: 3.6V 4000mAh

USB rechargeable / Charge Time: 4.5 hours

Burntime: 1.5 hours at max ouput

Waterproof: IPX6

Weight: 127 grams

Comes with handlebar and helmet mount brackets

Garmin Mount Bracket

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

Under 'spec', ETC/Moore Large lists:

Output: 1,000 lumens

Bulb: CREE LED

Battery: 3.6V 4000mAh

Charge Time: 4.5hrs

Fitment: Clamp

Power plug type: USB

Rechargeable: Yes

Colour: Black

Rate the light for quality of construction:
 
9/10

Feels sturdy and simple. Handlebar clamp is a good design.

Rate the light for design and ease of use. How simple was the light to use?
 
10/10

Could hardly be any easier. I really like the fact that you have to double tap the button to access flash modes.

Rate the light for the design and usability of the clamping system/s
 
9/10

Really good – simple and reliable.

Rate the light for waterproofing. How did it stand up to the elements?
 
9/10
Rate the light for battery life. How long did it last? How long did it take to recharge?
 
6/10

Not great, but it's not too bad for a relatively high-powered standalone front light, and it's in line with the claimed times. In lower power modes, battery life isn't bad.

Rate the light for performance:
 
9/10

Really good – it feels like it's using all of its 1,000 lumens effectively with excellent beam design.

Rate the light for durability:
 
9/10

Looks hardy and no problems so far.

Rate the light for weight:
 
8/10

About right for a light of this type.

Rate the light for value:
 
7/10

The Kochab is just a fiver more than the Kryptonite F800 and the Ravemen PR800, both of which offer similar kinds of performance, albeit with only 800 lumens of power. That said, the F800 has some added tech, such as auto-economy mode, while the Ravemen has a remote and the ability to charge USB accessories.

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

Really excellent – a fab front light for any road riding.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the light

Simplicity of design and lighting power.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the light

Nothing.

Did you enjoy using the light? Yes

Would you consider buying the light? Yes

Would you recommend the light to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

With excellent lighting power and a very simple setup, there's very little to complain about with the ETC Kochab. Other lights might have more functions and offer other possibilities – such as emergency USB power supply – but as a straightforward front light, this is hard to beat.

Overall rating: 9/10

About the tester

Age: 39  Height: 6'0  Weight: 16 stone

I usually ride: Islabikes Beinn 29  My best bike is: 25-year-old Dawes Galaxy

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: commuting, touring, sportives, general fitness riding, mountain biking, leisure

2 comments

Avatar
SteeveB [39 posts] 3 weeks ago
0 likes

Will it fit on a regular garmin outfront mount? Nice way to keep the bars uncluttered.

Avatar
Kendalred [403 posts] 3 weeks ago
1 like

This Magicshine light from Planet X is the same light, just branded differently (and currently £55):

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/LIMSALL1000/magicshine-allty-1000-lumen-le...

I have one, and yes, it does fit a normal Garmin out front mount. I have mine like this, with my Garmin on a stem-mount.

The three main light settings are ideal for me - low to get me out of town, medium for the majority of the ride, and high for a fast downhill on a narrow country lane. The only downside I have come across is you have to virtually plunge yourself into darkness to get from high to low (as the daytime 'bar shaped' light doesn't give any illumination in the dark. Other than that I am really pleased with it so far (two weeks in).