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Old 08-06-11, 11:36 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
That would be great to find out how that light works. What tail light to you have now? Do a side by side comparison and let us know how the Cygolite fairs. I would assume with a full 2 watt LED instead of 1 watt of the Mars 4 or the Radbot 1000 it should be at least 50% brighter. Also let us know how the side illumination is, in other words if a car is approaching from your side how well can they see you. Side illumination is extremely important, that's one of the reasons I got the Mars 4 because they have two 1/2 watt leds (one on each side), and this thing is very visible from the side.

Thanks.
Unless Blackburn has changed the Mars 4, I don't think the side LEDs are anywhere near 1/2 watt. That would turn it into a 1 + 1/2 + 1/2 = 2W light, which would run the AAA cells dead extremely quickly.

I currently use a DiNotte 300R, a standard PBSF, or both at once. I'll definitely make some comparision photos, and will also try to get some daytime highway impressions at ~100-200 meters to see if these can force their way into peoples' attention.
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Old 08-07-11, 07:32 PM   #52
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Unless Blackburn has changed the Mars 4, I don't think the side LEDs are anywhere near 1/2 watt. That would turn it into a 1 + 1/2 + 1/2 = 2W light, which would run the AAA cells dead extremely quickly.

I currently use a DiNotte 300R, a standard PBSF, or both at once. I'll definitely make some comparision photos, and will also try to get some daytime highway impressions at ~100-200 meters to see if these can force their way into peoples' attention.
The Blackburn web site use to state they use two 1/2 watt led's for the sides, the new site with their newest models listed no longer stated the output of the side LED. BUT, their battery life statement is no where near accurate, I can get about 15 to 18 hours of flashing not the stated 150 hours...maybe they forgot the decimal point after the 5.

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Old 08-08-11, 10:15 PM   #53
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Cheap, well made and extremely strong and visible... Blackburn Mars 4. It's around $25 and with 1watt main led and 2 small Orange ones on the sides. Very nice and strong mount.
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Old 08-10-11, 07:56 AM   #54
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I do not have Mars 4 but if it's anyting compatible to Radbot 1000, it just doesn't stack up against the new Cygolite Hotshot which is going for $32. We now have a new king of highly visible, long lasting, miniature & affordable taillight for daylight.
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Old 08-10-11, 08:57 AM   #55
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I do not have Mars 4 but if it's anyting compatible to Radbot 1000, it just doesn't stack up against the new Cygolite Hotshot which is going for $32. We now have a new king of highly visible, long lasting, miniature & affordable taillight for daylight.
I think your probably right, the Cygolite has to be brighter due to having a 2 watt main LED instead of 1 watt like the Mars 4. I am really seriously thinking about getting the Cygolite and use the Mars for the helmet.
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Old 08-10-11, 09:38 AM   #56
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I think your probably right, the Cygolite has to be brighter due to having a 2 watt main LED instead of 1 watt like the Mars 4. I am really seriously thinking about getting the Cygolite and use the Mars for the helmet.
It's as bright as two Superflashes plus Radbot 1000 rolled into one. I have all of them & checked it out. Also, it has a reflector built in which the Superflash and Mars do not have. Radbot has one of course but it makes it twice as large as Cygolite while being half as powerful & almost as expensive. Also, Radbot's puny AAAs do not last more than 12 hours if you are lucky whereas Cygolite claims 28-29 hours. I am thinking about getting another one for my helmet. Finally, my search for a good inexpensive daytime taillight is over
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Old 08-10-11, 04:52 PM   #57
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Any suggestions where online to get this Cygolite Hotshot? That's assuming of course my LBS doesn't have it.
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Old 08-10-11, 05:07 PM   #58
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planet bike bike super flash
I got the Planet Bike front/rear combo package and run them during the day if I'm on the street. I think the headlight really helps with cars coming out of driveways/parking lots/etc.
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Old 08-10-11, 05:38 PM   #59
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Any suggestions where online to get this Cygolite Hotshot? That's assuming of course my LBS doesn't have it.
Here's a place: http://aebike.com/product/cygo-lite-...t7902-qc30.htm

Your LBS could also order one from J&B Importers, it's this SKU: http://www.jbimporters.com/web/check...t_number=97427

Those are both for the one with just a USB cable, but both places have the one with the wall charger too.
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Old 08-10-11, 05:59 PM   #60
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I got the Planet Bike front/rear combo package and run them during the day if I'm on the street. I think the headlight really helps with cars coming out of driveways/parking lots/etc.
Me too. Got a Planet Bike front light (the 2W version) on the handlebars which I run in the blinking mode during the day, steady at night. I also have Fenix L2D on my helmet. Both of them are "to see lights" at night and that makes them great "to be seen" lights during the day

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Old 08-10-11, 08:36 PM   #61
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It's as bright as two Superflashes plus Radbot 1000 rolled into one. I have all of them & checked it out. Also, it has a reflector built in which the Superflash and Mars do not have. Radbot has one of course but it makes it twice as large as Cygolite while being half as powerful & almost as expensive. Also, Radbot's puny AAAs do not last more than 12 hours if you are lucky whereas Cygolite claims 28-29 hours. I am thinking about getting another one for my helmet. Finally, my search for a good inexpensive daytime taillight is over
I've owned three Cygolites in my time, from a cheap Metro, a Expilion 350, to a MityCross 480 and their battery run time estimates have been spot on, unlike the Blackburn Mars 4 where the run time estimates were off by around 90%! Even Radbot run times are estimated at 30 hours which puts them off by 60%. Obviously neither Blackburn or Radbot ever tested their battery run times.
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Old 08-11-11, 06:12 AM   #62
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I am thinking about getting another one for my helmet.
Does the Hotshot have a clip similar to the Superflash?
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Old 08-11-11, 07:30 AM   #63
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Does the Hotshot have a clip similar to the Superflash?
It's similar but smaller so we're out of luck with this one. Check this thread:

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...able-taillight
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Old 08-11-11, 01:25 PM   #64
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Daytime Visible Taillights

Very enjoyable forum here...lots of good info. Here's my two cents worth after spending the last year researching, designing, building, and testing daytime visible taillights.

Although pure power numbers are a big factor, they are not the whole story. Beam angle is also VERY important for daytime use. Other influencing factors obviously include flashing characteristics, inclement weather, solo or group use, etc.

Any of the low-cost options in the 1/2 to 2 watt range are generally perfectly adequate for night time use. PlanetBike obviously revolutionized this market with the introduction of the Superflash (followed by all the other similar variants). These are great lights for night use. Given their cost, anyone who EVER rides trafficked roads at night should have one or two of these at a minimum. One solid and one flashing. One of the tricks that these lights use to squeeze longer run times out of the batteries is a VERY short flash pulse of the main LED during a single flash cycle. Consequently, the distance between the viewer and this type of "burst" strobe can be a bit difficult to judge at night, which is why it's nice to have a steady burn light in tandem with the flashing.

Along comes the onslaught of low cost, higher performance Chinese lights (aka Magicshine). Their taillight is a bump up in brightness from the 2 watt devices and has a fairly decent beam pattern. Only the center LED is high power and provides any daytime usefulness. The mounting system leaves a LOT to be desired and the circular ring turn-on mechanism is finicky at best and destructive at worst. Mine was fairly stiff to turn and was actually turning the entire mechanism inside the housing and broke off the power wire from the circuit card, which subsequently shorted to the case and killed the battery pack... nice. But, if you can overcome all that, two of them in tandem would be marginally OK in the daytime.

Then of course there is the venerable Dinotte, quietly ruling over all other taillights with regard to sheer performance. Their 140 and 400R offerings (120 and 240 lumens, respectively) make fine daytime taillights and really should be considered the gold standard, by all counts. If cost is no object, (and how do you really put a cost on added safety) then these are the taillights for you. If you ever see a taillight out in the daytime that causes you to say, "WHAT in the world kind of taillight is THAT?" 99 times out of 100 it'll be a Dinotte.

Now, if cost is REALLY no object, and you want to make all your buddies with 400Rs have buyers' remorse, AND if you like going with a DIYer such as myself, then you could try the DS-500. All your perceptions of what an effective daytime taillight should look like will go right out the window when you see this much power (500 lumens). Of course, at that brightness level, you'll be relegated to the back of the pack, or you'll have to turn it down closer to the Dinotte levels. BUT if you're riding solo, this will cut through just about anything (rain, sunglasses, curvy roads, cell phones, etc.) and alert approaching motorists to your presence WELL before they get to you. Of course, I have to disclaim this shameless plug, since I'm the builder , but finally, you can get some objective review from a "former" 400R user over at MTBR:

http://forums.mtbr.com/lights-night-...ow-726601.html

Last edited by Recumbentracer; 08-11-11 at 01:43 PM.
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Old 08-11-11, 09:21 PM   #65
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Originally Posted by rfomenko View Post
It's similar but smaller so we're out of luck with this one. Check this thread:

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...able-taillight
thanks...more good info from Mech.

I never used the clip on the Superflash on a mount. I always clipped it to the strap on the back of my helmet. After looking at that thread, the Hotshot could do the same.
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Old 08-12-11, 08:32 AM   #66
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Daytime Visible Taillights

Very enjoyable forum here...lots of good info. Here's my two cents worth after spending the last year researching, designing, building, and testing daytime visible taillights.

Although pure power numbers are a big factor, they are not the whole story. Beam angle is also VERY important for daytime use. Other influencing factors obviously include flashing characteristics, inclement weather, solo or group use, etc.

Any of the low-cost options in the 1/2 to 2 watt range are generally perfectly adequate for night time use. PlanetBike obviously revolutionized this market with the introduction of the Superflash (followed by all the other similar variants). These are great lights for night use. Given their cost, anyone who EVER rides trafficked roads at night should have one or two of these at a minimum. One solid and one flashing. One of the tricks that these lights use to squeeze longer run times out of the batteries is a VERY short flash pulse of the main LED during a single flash cycle. Consequently, the distance between the viewer and this type of "burst" strobe can be a bit difficult to judge at night, which is why it's nice to have a steady burn light in tandem with the flashing.

Along comes the onslaught of low cost, higher performance Chinese lights (aka Magicshine). Their taillight is a bump up in brightness from the 2 watt devices and has a fairly decent beam pattern. Only the center LED is high power and provides any daytime usefulness. The mounting system leaves a LOT to be desired and the circular ring turn-on mechanism is finicky at best and destructive at worst. Mine was fairly stiff to turn and was actually turning the entire mechanism inside the housing and broke off the power wire from the circuit card, which subsequently shorted to the case and killed the battery pack... nice. But, if you can overcome all that, two of them in tandem would be marginally OK in the daytime.

Then of course there is the venerable Dinotte, quietly ruling over all other taillights with regard to sheer performance. Their 140 and 400R offerings (120 and 240 lumens, respectively) make fine daytime taillights and really should be considered the gold standard, by all counts. If cost is no object, (and how do you really put a cost on added safety) then these are the taillights for you. If you ever see a taillight out in the daytime that causes you to say, "WHAT in the world kind of taillight is THAT?" 99 times out of 100 it'll be a Dinotte.

Now, if cost is REALLY no object, and you want to make all your buddies with 400Rs have buyers' remorse, AND if you like going with a DIYer such as myself, then you could try the DS-500. All your perceptions of what an effective daytime taillight should look like will go right out the window when you see this much power (500 lumens). Of course, at that brightness level, you'll be relegated to the back of the pack, or you'll have to turn it down closer to the Dinotte levels. BUT if you're riding solo, this will cut through just about anything (rain, sunglasses, curvy roads, cell phones, etc.) and alert approaching motorists to your presence WELL before they get to you. Of course, I have to disclaim this shameless plug, since I'm the builder , but finally, you can get some objective review from a "former" 400R user over at MTBR:

http://forums.mtbr.com/lights-night-...ow-726601.html
With all due respect man, where would one use you lights? Airport on the landing strip? Nascar? Autobahn? I wrote somewhere lately that no one is paranoid enough put a red filter on Lupine Betty & use it as a tail light. I was wrong
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Old 08-12-11, 10:00 AM   #67
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With all due respect man, where would one use you lights? Airport on the landing strip? Nascar? Autobahn? I wrote somewhere lately that no one is paranoid enough put a red filter on Lupine Betty & use it as a tail light. I was wrong
I think in regards to the lights flashing vs steady vs having one steady and other flashing (which is the way I do as I posted earlier) is correct. The question does become though in relation to brightness is how much is too much. I've found that my Mars 4 is plenty bright enough and can be seen in daylight, I've had drivers tell me they could see it daylight and from a distance. I don't think you want to be brighter then a standard automotive tail light though, this may piss off some drivers and could cause more problems then it solves...but having never tested something brighter then a car tail light I could be wrong. But you do want to be seen, thus is why I use the Mars 4 on steady at night and the barend lights and rear helmet light on flashing.
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Old 08-12-11, 10:07 AM   #68
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Dinottes will blind you in broad daylight. I do run a blinkie and a dyno taillight at all times, even during the day. Can't hurt.
This is true. A friend of mine has one and they'll make one see spots they're so bright. I run a Nightrider Universal TL and a Sette 'PB Superflash' knock-off for my commute. Have owned PBSF and find the Sette just as good for 1/3 the money, so I bought 1/2 dozen of them. Same w/a dual mode headlight. While I run a NR Trailrat 2.0 for dark riding the Sette Glo works very well as a blinking front light. And it's bright enough for night use in case of emergency. The Sette line is available @ http://www.pricepoint.com. They're 9.00 per light.
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Old 08-12-11, 10:20 AM   #69
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With all due respect man, where would one use you lights? Airport on the landing strip? Nascar? Autobahn? I wrote somewhere lately that no one is paranoid enough put a red filter on Lupine Betty & use it as a tail light. I was wrong
I'm not sure where you're riding, man, but there are some places around here where a nice BRIGHT taillight would help a bit. Of course, just because your taillight goes up to 11 doesn't mean you should turn it up all the time! I could see myself using that on the flat rural roads in the central valley where mirages and heat distortions can obscure a cyclist from the view of drivers moving way faster than they are allowed.
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Old 08-12-11, 10:34 AM   #70
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I'm not sure where you're riding, man, but there are some places around here where a nice BRIGHT taillight would help a bit. Of course, just because your taillight goes up to 11 doesn't mean you should turn it up all the time! I could see myself using that on the flat rural roads in the central valley where mirages and heat distortions can obscure a cyclist from the view of drivers moving way faster than they are allowed.
I ride in and around NYC where this new Cygo Hotshot will be more than enough. But your point is taken. I'm adding the flat rural roads to my original list
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Old 08-12-11, 10:46 AM   #71
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With all due respect man, where would one use you lights? Airport on the landing strip? Nascar? Autobahn? I wrote somewhere lately that no one is paranoid enough put a red filter on Lupine Betty & use it as a tail light. I was wrong
Exactly. Just FYI, the light is being driven by the very capable MaxFlex controller and has 5 selectable power levels. It's SUPER efficient at the low power levels. Same intensity as the magicshine taillight, with twice the surface area and 1/3 the power consumption. Efficiency obviously falls off as you go up in power, but still, you can get over 6 hours flashing at full power off of the small battery pack (2800 mAH).

Just for record:
level 1 = 69 lumens at 1 watt (magicshine equivalent at one third the power)
level 2 = 149 lumens at 2.35 watts (slightly more than the Dinotte 140, with twice the surface area)
level 3 = 235 lumens at 3.92 watts (Dinotte 400R equivalent)
level 4 = 324 lumens at 5.87 watts
level 5 = 497 lumens at 10.28 watts (Surface of the sun )

These lights certainly aren't for everyone, but if you ever saw one on a bike riding in full sunlight from a half mile away, I think you'd wholeheartedly agree that this level of maximum brightness is totally appropriate. Just wish I could figure out a way to make them less expensive...

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Old 08-12-11, 02:51 PM   #72
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With all due respect man, where would one use you lights? Airport on the landing strip? Nascar? Autobahn? I wrote somewhere lately that no one is paranoid enough put a red filter on Lupine Betty & use it as a tail light. I was wrong
400 lumen headlights, with red filters - http://www.ayup-lights.com/technical/saxon-cap-fitting/
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Old 08-12-11, 03:25 PM   #73
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400 lumen headlights, with red filters - http://www.ayup-lights.com/technical/saxon-cap-fitting/
Not knocking the ay ups... they're great lights, but
Just for information's sake:

400 lumen cool white + red_filter

does NOT equal 400 red lumens. Probably more like 120 to 180 red lumens, but still dang bright, and a very clever design. Not quite as much wide angle coverage as the Dinotte 140, but similar intensity straight back.
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Old 08-12-11, 03:54 PM   #74
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Somehow my preference is for single piece units with no external packs and connecting wires. Much less of a chance of water getting in & corrupting the contacts or wires getting pulled. Also, they allow much "cleaner" look & can be taken off the bike to be used as regular flashlights in case of the front lights....
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