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Exposure Lights Diablo LED light – first ride

Exposure Lights have come a long way since they first showed us their original LED light way back in 2005, and recently we’ve been testing the latest incarnation of the Exposure Lights Diablo LED light.

The Diablo is, in essence, a supercharged Joystick and is intended for helmet mounting, either as a main light or more typically an auxiliary light to a main bar mounted unit.

The big news with this Mk.2 version is that it uses three Cree XPG LEDs, rather than the solitary LED of the original version. As a result, this three cluster LED setup offers 900 Lumens (up from 700), impressive output for a unit so small and light.

Battery life in the high setting is 1hr 15min, and we got near enough to that as makes no difference in our testing. Switching down to the medium setting offers a level of brightness that is still incredibly useful on a dark cloudy evening, but more usefully battery life increases to 3hrs, which is probably enough for most regular evening night rides.

The Diablo is a self-contained unit and continues the Cable Free Design that has been a key feature of all Exposure Lights to date. The light unit is CNC machined from a lump of aluminium and houses all the electrical circuits and single cell batteries in a weatherproof housing.

With the Diablo installed on the helmet we hit the trails, and immediately we were impressed. It’s noticeably brighter than the older Diablo, and we tested it side by side with that original just to see the difference. The three LEDs offer a better beam pattern with a smooth consistency from the centre right out to the edges, with a good width to cover the edges of the singletrack. Reach is impressive.

We tried it on the bars and it’s bright enough to serve as your main light, but it’s on the helmet that it really impresses. The only downside that can be noted is that unless you’re running a particularly powerful bar mounted light, the Diablo drowns out your main beam. One way to get around this is to just toggle to a lower output setting and you’ll still enjoy an impressive beam of light and better battery life. And it’s so light you hardly notice it atop your bonce.

The cool packaging includes a helmet bracket and lanyard, so you can use it off the bike – handy for walking around the campsite of a 24-hour event in search of the toilets. The optional Piggyback (£40) can be added to the Diablo to significantly boosting battering life, making use of the novel Smart Port Technology which allows the charging port to be used to power other devices (there’s talk of a mobile phone charging adaptor).

Charging is now easier than ever: Exposure supply a USB lead meaning you can charge the Diablo from your computer, handy while you’re in the office before heading out after work for some night riding fun.

£200 from www.exposurelights.com

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