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Old 07-13-11, 09:26 PM   #1
rfomenko
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Cateye new tail light

http://www.cateye.com/en/news/detail/22/

Any thoughts?
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Old 07-14-11, 12:25 AM   #2
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I've got two.
They are very good.
Nice range of modes. OK runtimes.
Light and bright.
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Old 07-14-11, 01:05 PM   #3
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I see there's also a Rapid 1 and a Rapid 5.



I was pretty disappointed with the (lack of) brightness of my last Cateye "high-powered" taillight, the LD-560. How do these stack up to other common taillights, znomit or anyone?
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Old 07-14-11, 10:30 PM   #4
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The specs state that the LEDs are 0.5 Watts each, so it should be about the same as the Superflash. I am on never-ending quest to rid myself of the AAA battery plague & wonder if the next iterations of Radbot or Turbo Flash will have no choice but move to AAs because of more powerful LEDs... Some reviews here:

http://reviews.wiggle.co.uk/7867-en_...ws/reviews.htm

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Old 07-15-11, 12:13 AM   #5
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Its only a single AA so not much more power on hand than the PBSF. Thing is its regulated so brightness is constant as the battery runs down.
Its a little brighter than the Cateye LD1100 and Superflash and a bigger spot than both of them(this is with fresh batteries in the LD1100 and PBSF ). Doesn't have the side visibility of the LD1100.
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Old 07-15-11, 01:33 AM   #6
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Anyone used this one?

http://www.probikekit.com/us/lights-...cle-light.html

Is it possible to bolt it onto a rack?
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Old 07-20-11, 09:08 PM   #7
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One thing I noticed was the HUGE disparity between the constant and the flashing battery run times. Unless this is a typo:

Runtime: Approx 3hrs in constant, 80hrs in flashing, and 20hrs in rapid mode

Last edited by ccd rider; 07-20-11 at 09:11 PM.
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Old 07-21-11, 02:03 AM   #8
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One thing I noticed was the HUGE disparity between the constant and the flashing battery run times. Unless this is a typo:

Runtime: Approx 3hrs in constant, 80hrs in flashing, and 20hrs in rapid mode
Flashing uses much less power, only the outer LEDs blink slowly.
Rapid is very attention getting and its the mode I use.
Steady is very bright, hence the short run time.
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Old 07-22-11, 04:19 PM   #9
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Frankly, I do not understand the reason why the tail lights moved away from AAs to AAAs while increasing the output at the same time. I would rather have a light weighing 120 grams instead of 70 & which runs 8 hours in constant/ 50 hours in rapid modes instead. Having a tail light flashing is much more important than couple of grams of extra weight, IMHO.
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Old 07-22-11, 04:38 PM   #10
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Frankly, I do not understand the reason why the tail lights moved away from AAs to AAAs while increasing the output at the same time. I would rather have a light weighing 120 grams instead of 70 & which runs 8 hours in constant/ 50 hours in rapid modes instead. Having a tail light flashing is much more important than couple of grams of extra weight, IMHO.
AAAs are smaller/lighter and the lights look better in the shops.
Runtimes are ridiculously long because they keep counting until you can barely see the light. Should be done to 50% brightness.
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Old 08-17-11, 12:36 AM   #11
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I love the rapid 3 (in theory) and can't wait to buy one along with the saddle rail mount. My headlight is a single AA and I've been searching for a single AA tail light for a year. I hate having to carry two different sizes as backup batteries.
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Old 08-17-11, 08:52 AM   #12
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The Rapid 3 light is not as bright as newer models from other companies. Their using less then 1 watt total light output while there are other lights that use 1 and 2 watt led's.

I own a Blackburn Mars 4 and it uses a 1 watt main LED plus a regular LED on each side of the light for side illumination. This light is very bright and can be seen in broad daylight, but the battery life is way shorter then Blackburns claims...about 75% less! But I knew this buying it and knew that AAA bats were not going to power it for that long, so I carry spare bats just in case and use rechargeables for my main bats. This light is inexpensive at around $21.

The other even brighter light then my Mars 4 is a Cygolite Hotshot, this thing uses a 2 watt LED and comes with a rechargeable battery and charger, but it cost more at around $40. Side illumination is not as good as the Mars 4 but it's a lot brighter from the rear.
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Old 08-18-11, 03:10 AM   #13
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The Rapid 3 light is not as bright as newer models from other companies. Their using less then 1 watt total light output while there are other lights that use 1 and 2 watt led's.

I own a Blackburn Mars 4 and it uses a 1 watt main LED plus a regular LED on each side of the light for side illumination.
The Cateye is a little brighter than the Mars 4, and the flash pattern is more attention grabbing (I have both).
LED wattages and claimed runtimes are often quite optimistic.
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Old 08-18-11, 06:53 AM   #14
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The Cateye is a little brighter than the Mars 4, and the flash pattern is more attention grabbing (I have both).
LED wattages and claimed runtimes are often quite optimistic.
Well lets ponder this logically, If Mars 4 uses a ultrabright 1 watt bulb and the Cateye uses bulbs less then 1 watt total how is that going to be brighter then 1 watt? And neither would be brighter then 2 watts, so why spend the money for either if the Cygolite is the brightest of the 3?

It would be interesting to see a You Tube video on the Cateye and compare it with the Mars 4 but so far it's not available.
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Old 08-18-11, 10:49 AM   #15
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And neither would be brighter then 2 watts, so why spend the money for either if the Cygolite is the brightest of the 3?
Because the Mars has the "side visibility" which is "very important" and Cygolite doesn't.
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Old 08-18-11, 12:03 PM   #16
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If you don't have 2 watts - well you don't have a really, really bright light.
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Old 08-18-11, 01:30 PM   #17
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Well lets ponder this logically, If Mars 4 uses a ultrabright 1 watt bulb and the Cateye uses bulbs less then 1 watt total how is that going to be brighter then 1 watt? And neither would be brighter then 2 watts, so why spend the money for either if the Cygolite is the brightest of the 3?

It would be interesting to see a You Tube video on the Cateye and compare it with the Mars 4 but so far it's not available.
Keep in mind that the wattage rating isn't the last word. Take a 1-watt LED from three years ago, and a 1-watt LED from the latest generation. The new ones put out much more light per watt. Equally important: how is the light dispersed, is the flash pattern good at grabbing the viewer's attention, and is the LED actually being driven at the rated wattage or not.

This is where some hands-on testing and observation can give surprising results... for example, the classic SuperFlash has a good attention-grabbing pattern and even though its main emitter only fires in very brief bursts, they're very strong. Compare it against a Princeton Tec Swerve, which has two 1/2-watt LEDs (twice as good, right?) but uses them in a lame fashion:

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Old 08-18-11, 08:30 PM   #18
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Because the Mars has the "side visibility" which is "very important" and Cygolite doesn't.
Ahh, but that's me, that's not you!!
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Old 08-19-11, 12:02 AM   #19
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Well lets ponder this logically, If Mars 4 uses a ultrabright 1 watt bulb and the Cateye uses bulbs less then 1 watt total how is that going to be brighter then 1 watt? And neither would be brighter then 2 watts, so why spend the money for either if the Cygolite is the brightest of the 3?

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Old 08-19-11, 01:00 AM   #20
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Well lets ponder this logically, If Mars 4 uses a ultrabright 1 watt bulb and the Cateye uses bulbs less then 1 watt total how is that going to be brighter then 1 watt?
Ponder this, they both have about the same battery power (1AA = 2AAA) but the Mars runs 50hrs and the cateye 4hrs.

The Mars is currently my favorite light. Mainly because on the weekend I got lost in the bush, ended up swimming down a river with the bike, and the I had to use the mars to find my way down the river and out through the forest.
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Old 08-19-11, 01:19 AM   #21
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Ponder this, they both have about the same battery power (1AA = 2AAA) but the Mars runs 50hrs and the cateye 4hrs.
That's not how it works. Since it is in a series (At least this is what it looks like given the 1 page manual) the capacity is the same at whatever the AAA's are rated at but the voltage is doubled. 2 AAA's in a series would pump about 3v vs 1 AA cell which would be 1.5v. The AA cell would have the better capacity (runtimes) in this situation, given the same load is put on the two units. You cannot tell which is better really, unless you have a multimeter and check amps to see usage.
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Old 08-19-11, 08:17 AM   #22
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Ponder this, they both have about the same battery power (1AA = 2AAA) but the Mars runs 50hrs and the cateye 4hrs.

The Mars is currently my favorite light. Mainly because on the weekend I got lost in the bush, ended up swimming down a river with the bike, and the I had to use the mars to find my way down the river and out through the forest.
The Mars will not run 50 hours, it's closer to about 8 to 10 hours on constant. Blackburn lied big time about their battery run times. They were about 80% off on their estimates. I have a Cateye LD600 and that thing lasts about 20% longer then Cateye estimated; whereas with Cygolite (at least their headlight burn times) have been very accurate for the 3 models that I own. So I'm not sure if any advertised run times by any manufacture is a indication of much of anything.

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Old 08-22-11, 04:06 AM   #23
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That's not how it works. Since it is in a series (At least this is what it looks like given the 1 page manual) the capacity is the same at whatever the AAA's are rated at but the voltage is doubled. 2 AAA's in a series would pump about 3v vs 1 AA cell which would be 1.5v. The AA cell would have the better capacity (runtimes) in this situation, given the same load is put on the two units. You cannot tell which is better really, unless you have a multimeter and check amps to see usage.
I measured the power draws today.
BattV Wmars Wcateye

0.7 0.0 0.1
0.9 0.02 0.2
1.1 0.1 0.3
1.3 0.3 0.5
1.5 0.5 0.3

Both max around 0.5W power draw, LED power will be lower.
Cateye stays quite bright for its entire runtime, and visually its brighter than the Mars with fresh NiMH batteries.
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Old 08-22-11, 04:21 PM   #24
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It's all well & good, but with the arrival of 2W Cateye Hotshot at $35-40, there is no reason to buy any of those lights anymore...

Last edited by rfomenko; 08-22-11 at 04:33 PM.
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Old 08-22-11, 07:11 PM   #25
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Someone could buy the Cateye Hotshot and then add two Cateye LD630's one on each stay and have a blazing bright tail light configuration. I did something like that a couple of years ago with the SuperFlash as my seatpost light and 2 Cateye LD600's and it worked good...until the SP broke after just a few months.
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