September 7, 2012

FLO Cycling - Knog Blinder 4V Review


When Knog decided to call their new light the "Blinder" 4V, they weren't joking.  This baby is bright!  The Blinder 4V is a USB rechargeable light showing up in stores this month and Knog sent us an early model to review.  We've been using the light for about a week and our thoughts are below.  

Knog Blinder 4V Overview

The Rechargeable Knog Blinder 4V
The Knog Blinder 4V is a waterproof super slim and lightweight rear light weighing in at only 39 grams.  It has a new clasp that is very quick and easy to use and a convenient built in flip out USB recharge system.  It let's you select between 5 different light modes (Steady, Fast Flash, Organic Flash 1, Organic Flash 2 and Eco Flash) and it's battery lasts 3 hours in "Steady" and up to 50 hours in "Eco Flash" modes.  Yes I said 50 hours!  That means if riding your bike is your full time job, you'll be ready for the weekend 10 hours before your Blinder 4V even thinks about it.  Pretty impressive!  On top of all of that, the Blinder 4V pumps out 44 lumens using what they call "super smart LEDs".  The super smart LEDs produce a 15 degree angle to produce excellent rear visibility at over 800m.  Let's take a look at the full list of specifications below. 

Knog Blinder 4V Flip Out USB Recharge System and Clasp

Knog Blinder 4V Specifications

Below are the Knog Boomer specifications taken from their website http://www.knog.com.au/.
  • BURN TIME:  lasts for upto 3-hours in steady mode, and up to 50-hours in eco-flash mode.
  • Inbuilt USB Recharge system
  • 100% Waterproof (IP66)
  • Steady, Fast Flash, Organic Flash 1, Organic Flash 2, Eco-flash
  • Surface Mount LED lights
  • Silicone strap with stainless steel clip with tool less attachment for handlebars and seatposts between 22-32mm
  • Rechargeable Lithium Polymer battery (via USB)
  • Angled at 15° ensuring maximum rear visibility
  • 8 different models
  • 26 x 76 x 62mm 
  • 39g
  • Industrial grade UV-resistant silicone rubber, polycarbonate housing, anodised aluminium, solid stainless steel.
  • Rechargeable Lithium Polymer
  • 44 lumens (LED Rating)
Aero Seat Posts

While the Knog Blinder 4V isn't specifically designed for aero seat posts, it does connect to slimmer designs.  I personally ride a Felt DA.  I've attached the light to my seat post and included a couple of pictures.  The light doesn't point straight back towards traffic but it is visible to traffic.  If you instead have a wider aero seat post (like a Cervelo P3) you will need to find another place to attach the light.  Here is a picture of the light on my Felt DA.



Knog Blinder 4V on Felt DA Aero Seat Post

Positive Response Switch

The light features a "Positive Response" switch that is located on the reverse side of the light.  It has a red/low light and green/charged indicator and requires a steady 1 second push to prevent the light from turning on in your pocket or bag.   

Additional Features and Options

The Knog Boomer lights come in a variety of colors (black, blue, gold, gunmetal, red and silver ) to ensure your sense of style isn't ruined. 

Conclusion

All in all I think the Knog Blinder 4V is a great light system and I would definitely recommend it to others.  I would give it  5 out of 5 stars because I'm not sure there is much more you ask for from a bicycle light.  The fact that it won't fit on all aero seat posts is a bit of a bummer, but designing a light to do that would likely mean it wouldn't connect to a round seat post.  I think Knog had to pick their battles when designing this light and clearly, designing a light for round seat posts gives them a larger percentage of market penetration.  That said, I would love to see Knog design a light specifically for aero seat posts.  A quick google search doesn't show any results for such a creature so Knog may have a market.  Just my two cents.  Here are my overall pros and cons of the Knog Blinder 4V...

Pros
  • Small
  • Lightweight,
  • Easy to Install
  • Rechargeable Batteries
  • Waterproof
  • Multiple Lighting Modes
  • Really Bright and Highly Visable
  • Crazy Long Battery Life
  • Price is pretty good at $44.95USD.
Cons
  • Wont' fit all Aero Seat Posts  
  • Once the rechargeable batteries loose their longevity, you will have to replace the whole light.
I hope you have enjoyed this review.  What are your thoughts?  Do you recommend any other lights?

I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below.  For more great content, please register for our free monthly newsletter at the top of the column on the right.  We send links to all the articles we post during the month.

All the best,

Chris Thornham

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