Commuting - Inova 24/7 vs Cateye TL-LD1000 rear lights
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10-05-06, 06:14 AM
Hi, I am almost ready to get a Cateye Tl-LD1000 rear light for daylight commuting, but I saw a inova 24/7 light right yesterday (http://www.inovalight.com/site.html?247-ov). WIll the Cateye be more visible from any angle considering that it will be placed on my messenger bag? Does it have leds on its sides?
The cateye has LEDs on the sides, so yes, it'll probably be more visible and better suited to what you're using it for. Beside, you'll probably be able to buy four LD1000s for the price of a single Inova 24/7...
10-05-06, 06:57 AM
Thanks for your help. As you say, the Inova might be more visible from a front and aligned position, as it seems to be more powerful. But it is true that the Cateye is more visible as it has two 5 leds lines and it is built in a translucid red case. The inova is more attractive and not so expensive.
Thanks again, jeff.
10-05-06, 09:20 AM
The LD1000 is very directional. If you clip it to your bag, it might be highly visible to aircraft and people in tall buildings. For a clip-on light, I'd probably use Planet Bike Blinky 5's. They're still directional, but the whole lens lights up better from an angle. For a couple small example pics, hit http://www.mechbgon.com/visibility/active.html. And they're less than half the cost of the LD1000.
mechBgo, the site you linked to specifically says that the LD1000 has six rear-facing LEDs, and two on either side. This would make it easier to see from the sides than any light that has only rear-facing LEDs.
10-05-06, 09:46 AM
mechBgo, the site you linked to specifically says that the LD1000 has six rear-facing LEDs, and two on either side. This would make it easier to see from the sides than any light that has only rear-facing LEDs.Have you seen an LD1000 in person? They're really focused. If the light is clipped onto a bag and not precisely aimed (which is sort of the nature of a clipped-on light) then most of the side lighting could be aimed at the ground or the sky. The side "hot spots" are not large. If I had to pick a blinkie to be viewable from random angles, I'd go with the Blinky 5 over the LD1000.
LD1000's are at their best when rigidly mounted to the bike, so you can aim the power where it'll do the most good. Is that an option for you, cristobal41?
10-05-06, 10:03 AM
I use a 24/7 and wouldn't ever bike without it! I've actually had police compliment me on the "flash" pattern, saying they could see it from quite a ways away, and it definitely is safe.
All the cateye lights I've seen have underwhelmed me, but when I eventually get a rack I'll mount one to it, while keeping the 24/7 on my helmet.
Were it me, I'd go with the 24/7. It's awesome, and can come in handy for other uses (unclip it and do repairs, or use it as a backup headlamp!).
10-05-06, 02:02 PM
I haven't seen the LD1000 from Cateye lighting in my hand, Mech, so I must also respect the not so viewable from a facing position opinion. I cannot get the Planet bike light here in Spain, so I must discard it.
About the Inova 24/7, bdinger, is it also moderatedly viewable from sideways? I guess not, but it is trusty for me. Further more, and if you allow me, it is extremely cool.
My head says LD1000 and my heart says to my head Inova.
10-05-06, 02:06 PM
I must confess that the Nova Bull light is the best for me, but I need something more operative as it will be holded to my messenger or back pack and it is more difficult when hauling the battery.
10-05-06, 09:12 PM
I haven't seen the Inova 24/7, but from the picture, I think it behaves a bit like the BLT Rear Flare (http://blt-lights.com/rearflaredx.htm) taillight.
If that's so, it is bright on axis, but also at about 20 degrees off axis. Past that point, brightness decreases and there is a significant drop in brightness at 40-45 degrees. And there is absolutely no light visible from the sides. I found that such a light is good on a rack or seatpost, but also on relatively stable items like a pannier. Like all LEDs, using it on a backpack is not a bright idea.
Compared to that, the LD1000 is very bright on axis, but full brightness exists only at ±5 or 10°. So it is well seen by motorists as they approach from afar, yet it's not blinding to cyclists who are following you. But because it's so directional, attaching it on a pannier decreases its usefulness significantly. And if you want to use it on a back pack, you might as well remove the batteries (well, almost).
Regarding the number of LEDs (to clarify another post):
There are two rows of LEDs. Each row has one LED facing left, one LED facing right and three LEDs facing the rear.
As an a parte, I tried a few BLTs and liked very much their output and light pattern. However, their design is not rugged enough. I modified two to bolt them on my bike. I didn't loose any, but one cracked around a bolt and a significant amount of water went in. Most importantly, the lights had the nasty habit of turning themselves off – sometimes – if the ride was too bumpy. Light output on axis was on par with the LD1000, but only for one hour or so; after that, output decreased rather rapidly.
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