Just came across the review in a subscription. As I find more info, I’ll post here. It really looks impressive (IMPRESSIVE PRICE TOO!)
now someone make a budget one.
800$ for exactly what?
Even the best 60W COB doesn’t cost more than 50$ for the end-customer and a battery-pack doesn’t cost $700…
ANd like Pilotdog said, this thing produces only flood. Not what you need when you go downhill fast.
Just get an M43 Meteor and bike mount it. Sorted. $600 still in your pocket and a better light on your bike or in your hand.
I like the overall look but just too much on everything. Just don’t get why you’d need this when night riding and where are you riding your bikes, death valley? Forrest? Jungle? Reminds me of YouTube video of guy getting chased by bear while riding his bike on a trail.
Just some commentary and observations from a die hard night rider:
Ive been happily ridding along with an original SRK mounted on my bars for 3 years. Its been overhauled and modified several times throughout its exciting useful life. The mods now include a remote 1S18P x 18650 cell pack (50,400mAh), AR lens, RAM detachable/adjustable ball mounts, wire/resistance mods, driver mods and XML2’s on sinkpads. It puts out around 3900 lumens and serves fairly well as a cheap, high powered, long running bike light. Its main limitations stem from quickly overheating and not providing enough spill beam. Which means it sux in moderate to tight turns becasue it doesnt project downward or to the sides, which makes the area immediately around the rider completely dark. Of course, Ive gotten used to it and plan ahead before making the turn.
Without any ambient light in the areas I usually ride, the worst aspect of ridding any length of time (while at speed) with a light of this many lumens (equipped with a medium spot reflector like the SRK) is that it creates a tunnel vision effect that only gets worse over time. My rides usually last 1-3 hours. The eyes adjust to the hot spot ahead while remaining completely insensitive to the darkness or poorly lit areas that surround me. Ive almost ran over rabbits, cats, racoon, fox, coyotes, weasels and other animals several times that dart out just before I pass becasue they remain invisible unless they are caught in the spot beam. It scares the crap out of me every time when I think about how mangled Id be after trying to pick the angry fury mess out of my spokes! This isnt just a gripe, its a real danger youd probably have to experience to believe. Especially if your speeds average no less than 20 mph. Ive considered building a pair of cornering beams using 60 degree oval optics, but that would only add a clunky complexity to a system that already lacks in heat sinking and has an element of chunkiness. Weight isnt a major concern since its MTB and used only at night on smooth trails. I have a slick CF road bike and another MTB for the day time workouts.
The Cat Eye’s active cooled COB concept is directly on target for anyone who spends a great deal of time bicycle ridding in dark isolated environments. The large even spill beam and decent range would be a very welcome addition for someone like me. Im amazed at its tiny size and light weight; especially while being able to manage the amount of heat it must dispense. AND it can run at max output continuously! :bigsmile: While it may not produce the long beam range of my hot rodded SRK, I can’t run the SRK in turbo for more than 5 minutes without overheating, and thats while traveling 20+ MPH through cool night air. I doubt my car could overrun the SRK at normal freeway speeds, so its often a waste having such a beam on a bike that must be kept in a medium mode to prevent overheating. Well, at least the remote pack prevents it from cooking the cells… and it will run forever with the large pack.
I have long considered a 100 watt Bridgelux COB using one of their popular and efficient Vero29 arrays mounted on a computer heat sink, cobbled together with a nice large ledil medium spot reflector with lens cover. Max can sustain +20,000 lumens if the pack and driver can supply it. Maybe some day… but the Cat Eye does show what is possible, and IMO, extremely useful for those who need a bright wide spread blanked of light. What an awesome gorgeous beam!!! Too bad about the price and limited run time, but that could be overcome by those who enjoy cobbling and tinkering in their DIY builds. Drivers, arrays and heat sinks are already available off the shelf.
My choice, if the time arrives: Bridgelux Vero29 4K 127 lm/W (BXRC-40E10K0-L-03)
My best advice: for those who visit the isolated dark areas, remember to always ride/walk/hike with a good reliable backup light with a fully charged cell. My bar mounted Convoy C8 has saved my bacon more than once.
I respect cateye’s guts for going all out with this. It seems well designed given OUR standards. Personally, I don’t care for mules (all flood) even when on trail but it seems like the ultimate trend with the influential MTB community. The price is NOT budget however, it is comparable to brands like hope, lupine and the many others that have PREMIUM prices.
Flashpilot, I started type this before you posted so it has no connection at all to your comment
Do you think CW tint contributes to the tunnel vision effect?
Would a diffusing film (smoothing out the beam and spreading out the flood) be worth the loss of throw?
No offense taken, and thank you for your kind thoughts. Its great that so many inexpensive lighting options are available to please so many of us. And to think how far we’ve come in the past 5 years. I wasn’t a fan of high lumen flood beams until I modified my pickup truck mounted Hella 9” cornering lights from 100 watt halogen to 100 watt HID. They are so bright now that they completely blot out the factory high beams where they cant be detected if they are on or off. :bigsmile: Now I can see waaaaay off to the side of the road as I drive. They provide a wide 160 degree field of view, long range, and I can see everything for several hundreds of feet in every direction. Others are simply astounded and they never fails to amaze. This is just a hint as to what could be available in a DIY bike light.
A wide beam COB would require far higher lumens and range than the Cat Eye to suit my requirements, and at 1/5 - 1/8th the price. In my DIY build, Id probably want to have other uses to justify such a large cell pack to power a Vero29 @100W, but that may also soon be in the works. Perhaps a portable/mountable 100 watt COB cage-light.
This guy has the right idea but the wrong emitter and needs a real reflector (the cheap glass optic is a huge lumen killer):
As time marches forward, our unscrupulous Chinese copy cats should easily be able to replicate the cat eye or similar, and at a small fraction of the cost. I bet its only a matter of time…
Ive tried 3C tint and found that it doesnt provide the much needed contrast of 1A/1C/2B while moving. My eyes strain more to make out the details illuminated by neutral tints, but only while moving along at a decent speed. White beams offer a higher contrast, which is an advantage in interpreting the path ahead. I also swapped the reflector for 45 degree optics at one point. While they provided an improvement in the spill beam, the radiation pattern out the front still didnt illuminate objects and scenery off to the sides. A 150-160 degree beam would be a welcome addition… or perhaps I’ll rethink a pair of cornering beams, aux helmet flood light or the Vero29 mish-mash. I didnt try diffusing film yet because I dont think the beam cut-off angle is wide enough to offer a distinct advantage. I’ll mark off a section of garage door and give it a try!
The tunnel vision effect can be offset by deliberately looking around and not focusing on the path directly ahead, but it is a nuisance Ive never experienced before in any lighting induced situation. It can also persist for an hour after a 3 hour long ride! :Sp
There is no replacement for displacement!
I really liked that oval reflector, very cool (or should I say very HOT!)
Maybe we will see MT-G2 Bike lights now?
A couple weeks ago I did a 6 hr night ride (road). At 12:30 am, some dogs materialized out of no where and scared the hell out of me!! I let out a combination of a growl and Aaaa! and did a 180 to face them. lol. (Was going up hill so couldn’t sprint away.) The tunnel vision and lack of sleep felt pretty close to riding drunk… make that tipsy.
Personally I find the glare of cool white lights a little blinding so prefer warmer tints. For slow to moderate speeds, warm is good, while for faster speeds, more light is better to see further away so I tend to drift towards NW like 3C or 3D. I honestly don’t do much trail rides but FlashPilot’s logic with having light for periphery sounds good especially when animals cross your path regularly.
Idea. what do you think of bar end mules? Lets say two XML2s (one at each end) running at about 2A? (aluminium handlebars of course.) just a random though.
The best ultra budget quality lighting system Ive come across are 2 x Convoy C8’s on the handlebars with a pair of spare 18650’s in the saddle bag. You can remove one in a moments notice to spot wild animals, etc., and have complete redundancy if one fails. OP reflectors are an option.
That is exactly what I have on my Long distance bike. single mode that way no road bumps causing auto mode changes.
I prefer the main light on my head however, it is a pain in a heavy shower. Lol. My most recent build is an xhp50 in a convoy c8 as host. External battery. Ugly switch. Lol. Still have to test it out! (yes, there is annoying doughnut. I’ll see how it fares in practice.
30 miles a night. Wash/flood on the bars. I cover it with my hand when others approach/get mad. Semi-thrower on the helmet. I use a heavily modded warrior. Makes a bicycle helmet feel like a full-face but you get used to it. Adjust brightness to taste/speed. I do believe Flash Pilot and I cross paths every once-in-a-while. :bigsmile: -Matt
You obviously know from experience. Not a talker, but a “do-er”. By comparison, the C8 Convoy completely stomps most non-highly modified “bike lights” (including cheap C8’s) deep into the ground. Not only in quality, but also in reliability and sheer performance, with a beam profile that practically lends itself to hard core bicyclists who easily overrun the beam of small reflectored lights and Chinese TIR optic/remote pack junk. Ive destroyed several battery protection circuits through impact bumps before transitioning to stiff tail springs, unprotected cells and shimming the cell with paper and magnets (if necessary) to prevent movement.
Along those lines, my SRK remote 18 x 18650 tail pack was wire soldered, then tightly taped together before cramming it into a small tail bag. Removing the cells will be very difficult when the time comes… oh well! :bigsmile:
|( At least mine remains on my bars and appears more like a coward who fears the darkness. With that mega-monster strapped to your head, you’re sure to scare the living crap out of most people who are unfortunate enough to even sneak a gimps! …peddling along with your huge headlight on a swivel, like youre looking for zombies to blow away from a mile out…
You’re a very sick flashaholic! :bigsmile: