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What are the brightest taillights at reasonable price now?

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What are the brightest taillights at reasonable price now?

Old 10-21-21, 04:44 PM
  #51  
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I received a new PlanetBike (PB) 65 and a Cygolight Hotshot Pro 150. I currently use a Portland Design Works (PDW) Radbot1000 and several PB SuperFlashes (not Turbo).

Cygolight 150 ($36)
-Uses different clip size than PB and PDW eliminating interchangeability with my families 6 bikes. That is annoying.
-Has best solid beam pattern, similar to PB Superflash, but much brighter - a center filled moderately narrow beam that 100' back is still extremely wide, wider than needed.
-Has only 2hr battery life (per instructions) at full steady on full brightness. Brightness can be reduced, but there is no way to know how much battery life is gained and no way to get a repeatable (say 80%) brightness setting. This is a problem as my night rides are 3hr+ and this was to be my seatpost steady beam light.
-Despite interchangeability issue, short battery life and prior issues with Cygolights failing I'll probably keep it.

PB 65: ($26)
-Close up it is brighter than the old PB Superflash, but it has a weird and wide donut shape beam that is dark in the center with a thin ring - that ring 100' back is far wider than any road. At 20' back it is much dimmer than my old Superflash. It must go back as the Superflash is far better beam even if not as bright at 6" and saves a few bucks too. A PB Superflash Turbo is what I'll get instead. Not sure what PB was thinking with this light.
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Old 10-23-21, 11:19 AM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
I received a new PlanetBike (PB) 65 and a Cygolight Hotshot Pro 150. I currently use a Portland Design Works (PDW) Radbot1000 and several PB SuperFlashes (not Turbo).

Cygolight 150 ($36)
-Uses different clip size than PB and PDW eliminating interchangeability with my families 6 bikes. That is annoying.
-Has best solid beam pattern, similar to PB Superflash, but much brighter - a center filled moderately narrow beam that 100' back is still extremely wide, wider than needed.
-Has only 2hr battery life (per instructions) at full steady on full brightness. Brightness can be reduced, but there is no way to know how much battery life is gained and no way to get a repeatable (say 80%) brightness setting. This is a problem as my night rides are 3hr+ and this was to be my seatpost steady beam light.
-Despite interchangeability issue, short battery life and prior issues with Cygolights failing I'll probably keep it.
light.
I have the cygolite 200 and it operates very similarly to yours. Have you considered the steady along with the blink? I believe that extends the duration of the light for another hour or so. Not sure if the battery is the same on the 150 and 200. Agree with you though, these cygolites are amazing and happy with the output.
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Old 10-23-21, 11:26 AM
  #53  
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Originally Posted by vol View Post
And make mounting more flexible and secure, which really shouldn't be so hard.
I don't have trouble with taillights coming loose, but do think that a desire for easily-removed lights is at odds with secure mounting. Just commit!
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Old 10-23-21, 01:37 PM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by vascof1 View Post
I have the cygolite 200 and it operates very similarly to yours. Have you considered the steady along with the blink? I believe that extends the duration of the light for another hour or so. Not sure if the battery is the same on the 150 and 200. Agree with you though, these cygolites are amazing and happy with the output.
There is no mode that is steady w/flash.
I never said they were amazing. I have my fingers crossed as I had a cygo taillight fail and would constantly change modes and turn on/off by itself and a headlight that wouldn't' hold charge after a few months of use.
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Old 10-23-21, 03:04 PM
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Without seeing this thread I just did two days of research with a similar budget. LOTS of candidates. I am interested in daylight capability for one reason: I have a recumbent and I would like to avoid using a flag. I should imagine 100lm is ENOUGH to accomplish that. For years I have used PB Superflashes on upright bikes and inevitably they fail in some way after a few months. More than one has separated from itself because of a hard knock or bounced out of its clip.

Horizontal clips are very useful. I have an Ascent commuter headlight/tailight combo that has a horizontal clip for the taillight but it is not meant for performance. I have the light but not its clip. What I have bought was Portland Design Works's 'Danger Zone' twin (0.5W) LED flasher. $30 and free shipping because I bought a couple of other things. The horizontal clip was $6.00. PDW and Planet Bike mounting hardware tends to be compatible. FWIW.

BTW I've always favored MagicShine headlights, but the next time I am in the market I plan to look at the Cygolite 800lm offering. If Cygolites are winding up in landfill's so are Lupine Tesla's and Busch and Mueller whatevers. Nothing is immune from failure and it is what it is. I'm not going to be shamed into buying crazy expensive European lighting equipment because it really isn't all that much better as to justify the outlier pricing.
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Old 10-24-21, 07:17 AM
  #56  
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the Cygolite Hotshot is effective. Some improvements I'd prefer to see with it are more durable & assorted mounting options, 4x battery life, type C charge port, wireless remote switch or BT syncing for on/off, & the ability to preset the setting for turn on illumination. If that means a bigger device, so be it. I'm not going to fret the weight if I am using a light during a ride. If I don't want the weight, I'd remove the accessories.
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Old 10-24-21, 08:29 AM
  #57  
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Without seeing this thread I just did two days of research with a similar budget. LOTS of candidates. I am interested in daylight capability for one reason: I have a recumbent and I would like to avoid using a flag. I should imagine 100lm is ENOUGH to accomplish that. For years I have used PB Superflashes on upright bikes and inevitably they fail in some way after a few months. More than one has separated from itself because of a hard knock or bounced out of its clip.

Horizontal clips are very useful. I have an Ascent commuter headlight/tailight combo that has a horizontal clip for the taillight but it is not meant for performance. I have the light but not its clip. What I have bought was Portland Design Works's 'Danger Zone' twin (0.5W) LED flasher. $30 and free shipping because I bought a couple of other things. The horizontal clip was $6.00. PDW and Planet Bike mounting hardware tends to be compatible. FWIW.

BTW I've always favored MagicShine headlights, but the next time I am in the market I plan to look at the Cygolite 800lm offering. If Cygolites are winding up in landfill's so are Lupine Tesla's and Busch and Mueller whatevers. Nothing is immune from failure and it is what it is. I'm not going to be shamed into buying crazy expensive European lighting equipment because it really isn't all that much better as to justify the outlier pricing.
No flag on a ‘bent is gutsy…or foolish. Depends on where you ride, I reckon, but if I were raking one on the road, I’d be inclined to put daybright lights on the flag pole.

Anecdotally, I have a Cygolite Expilion 700 headlamp which is around 15 years old, easily, and it’s still working great. I’d never heard of Cygolite being problematic before this thread, and I’m not inclined to believe it.

Lastly, the Euro gear is not higher priced because the lighting is better, it’s because the firms operate in Europe where labor and physical plant costs are much higher due to a number of benefits relating to environmental quality, quality of life, and market dynamics.
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Old 10-24-21, 09:38 AM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
No flag on a ‘bent is gutsy…or foolish.
Neither. I don't drive daily, but I can, and do, drive from time to time. I know as well as any of you here what can, and cannot, be seen from the operator chair of road legal motor vehicles. A flagless recumbent is visible enough to not be hit, and the daybright flasher should be just the extra insurance necessary if it comes to anything legal. I'm sure flag waving 'bents get hit, and even flagpoles with lights don't protect against a cager bent (ha) on ruining your day. In most things I try not to cross the line where additional effort, money, or concern, does not pay back any additional time on the planet.
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Old 10-24-21, 10:49 AM
  #59  
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Neither. I don't drive daily, but I can, and do, drive from time to time. I know as well as any of you here what can, and cannot, be seen from the operator chair of road legal motor vehicles. A flagless recumbent is visible enough to not be hit, and the daybright flasher should be just the extra insurance necessary if it comes to anything legal. I'm sure flag waving 'bents get hit, and even flagpoles with lights don't protect against a cager bent (ha) on ruining your day. In most things I try not to cross the line where additional effort, money, or concern, does not pay back any additional time on the planet.
It depends on positioning relative to the viewer and other angles. Being substantially lower than a car, a ‘bent is easily hidden and can pop into a driver’s view quite suddenly. That doesn’t fit within my parameters of “visible enough to not be hit,” but you’re absolutely correct that this is all roll-of-the-dice stuff and we all take our chances regardless of precautions.

It’s also certainly an impolite, OT diversion to discuss here, so let’s dead it now with my acknowledgement you may be right that it won’t matter, and my best wishes to you.
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Old 10-24-21, 12:30 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
No flag on a ‘bent is gutsy…or foolish. Depends on where you ride, I reckon, but if I were raking one on the road, I’d be inclined to put daybright lights on the flag pole
I've ridden a recumbent (a particularly low-slung one) coast to coast—without a flagpole. The only times I've been hit by motorists or even had near-misses, I was on diamond-frame bikes. Although there was one time on my recumbent when a motorist pulled around me, pulled over, waved me over, and chewed me out to let me know he couldn't see me. Which I thought was funny.
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Old 10-24-21, 01:10 PM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by adamrice View Post
I've ridden a recumbent (a particularly low-slung one) coast to coast—without a flagpole. The only times I've been hit by motorists or even had near-misses, I was on diamond-frame bikes. Although there was one time on my recumbent when a motorist pulled around me, pulled over, waved me over, and chewed me out to let me know he couldn't see me. Which I thought was funny.
Cool story, bro. I’m sure most of us have ridden a lot more miles than that and never been hit. You should start a thread about it.
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Old 10-24-21, 01:12 PM
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Old 10-31-21, 08:44 PM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
I don't have trouble with taillights coming loose, but do think that a desire for easily-removed lights is at odds with secure mounting. Just commit!
By flexible mounting I mean more options of mounting method beside seatpost mount. My seat stays are very near horizontal, so those seat stay mountings don't work. Clothing/bag clips often make the light dangling loosely and also easy to lose.
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Old 12-16-21, 07:59 AM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Or maybe I would reword that: more than enough is too much. Sometimes more is better, but EVEN MORE is not necessarily EVEN BETTER.

I get annoyed by the argument "hey you noticed me so it works, right?" Uh, no. Well, yes, but a punch to my face makes me notice you, but is it a good idea?
Bikes with overly bright lights annoy other drivers. Just like kids with their bright headlights lights and loud music.
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Old 12-17-21, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by sknhgy View Post
Bikes with overly bright lights annoy other drivers. Just like kids with their bright headlights lights and loud music.
Annoying: Yes, bright lights can be annoying. The solution or part solution is to adjust the light to the proper angle. But there is one observation.

Police cars and other emergency vehicles with blinking red or blue light -- all shine intentionally at the drivers, no matter what. I'm not saying a bicycle rider is the same as an emergency vehicle, but all this needs to be put in perspective. Bicycle riders are extremely vulnerable and that has substantial consideration.

Here in the States we drive on the right and supposedly ride on the same right side. A bike rider does not want to aim the beam directly to the traffic lane to his left.
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Old 12-17-21, 01:14 PM
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By the way, Cygolite is located in Irvine, California. And before that, Santa Ana, California.

The company has never been outside of the United States. Now, the parts like the plastic lenses, the LEDs, the straps and mounts, may be from out of the U.S. But the engineering and design and assembly are all done here in California. When you call for product issues, it goes to their office in Irvine, California.

How do I know? I know the owner. We're both from Orange County. Before I purchased their product, I walked into their factory and spoke with the owner and personnel.
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Old 12-17-21, 01:32 PM
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Old 12-17-21, 01:45 PM
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Timely thread as I'm looking for a backup, current light is quite old.
I had 2 PB Superflash fall apart. Been running a Nashbar branded Superflash knock off for years. Unfortunately it looks like they quit making it. 2AA's, nice and bright, simple, it's either ON or FLASH or off, no zillion modes. yes it's aimed a bit down and to the right. Additionally a Cateye reflector light on the stay.
The combo gives great visibility and gives drivers a frame of refence so they can tell what they're looking at. A single big bright blinding blinky can be confusing to the eyes imho, can't tell how far away it is.
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Old 12-19-21, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Garfield Cat View Post
By the way, Cygolite is located in Irvine, California. And before that, Santa Ana, California.

The company has never been outside of the United States. Now, the parts like the plastic lenses, the LEDs, the straps and mounts, may be from out of the U.S. But the engineering and design and assembly are all done here in California. When you call for product issues, it goes to their office in Irvine, California.

How do I know? I know the owner. We're both from Orange County. Before I purchased their product, I walked into their factory and spoke with the owner and personnel.
did you happen to ask the owner if they have or plan to make a more sleek (flush) mount for the light? From my use, the stack height of the design makes the contraption rattle & brittle in the cold weather. I also noticed the battery life is reduced by about an hour when temps are not between 39F & 75F.
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Old 12-19-21, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by msalvetti View Post
Is there such a thing as a rear light that is too bright, especially at night? I just wonder if some of the more powerful rear lights might have a lot of glare and cause a driver to have to look away. Especially us older drivers that might be more sensitive to glare.

Mark
Paradoxically, you do not want the brightest tail light – especially if it is flashing - at night. That will dazzle drivers. You do need more brightness for the light to be visible on a sunny day, though.
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Old 12-26-21, 01:44 AM
  #71  
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Originally Posted by vol View Post
There are 150, 250, 350, do the brighter ones have shorter life (either on one full recharge, or lifespan-wise)?
Usually the bigger and brighter lights have bigger batteries too. If you dial them back to match the smaller ones the battery will last much longer. For that reason a bigger light might make sense even if you dont want or need the high lumen.
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Old 12-27-21, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
Usually the bigger and brighter lights have bigger batteries too. If you dial them back to match the smaller ones the battery will last much longer. For that reason a bigger light might make sense even if you dont want or need the high lumen.
This is generally true, and I have given the same advice. But I will note that my fairly new Cygolite 350 (I think it's called the Hypershot?), even with the intensity dialed back a bit, seems to have a shorter battery life than my four-year old Cygolite 150. I suspect it has something to do with the 350's design, which has TWO lights in one enclosure.
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Old 12-28-21, 08:10 AM
  #73  
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How long has the cygolite lasted for you on low?
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Old 12-28-21, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by acroy View Post
Timely thread as I'm looking for a backup, current light is quite old.
I had 2 PB Superflash fall apart. Been running a Nashbar branded Superflash knock off for years. Unfortunately it looks like they quit making it. 2AA's, nice and bright, simple, it's either ON or FLASH or off, no zillion modes. yes it's aimed a bit down and to the right. Additionally a Cateye reflector light on the stay.
The combo gives great visibility and gives drivers a frame of refence so they can tell what they're looking at. A single big bright blinding blinky can be confusing to the eyes imho, can't tell how far away it is.
those mudguards look like they've been around the block a few times & are holding up. what are they?
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Old 12-28-21, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
How long has the cygolite lasted for you on low?
Not sure who you're asking...is it me?
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