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  1. #1
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    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review

    I have been given the chance to review some products from the C&B Seen Ltd range after reading one of their adverts in a MTB mag. The firm was totally unknown to me so I did some background research. C&B SEEN is a UK company which imports and retails some good quality Chinese lights. They also source their own batteries and accessories to bring to the UK cyclists an affordable and reliable high output light package with a proper UK warranty and good and quick customer service.
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-22-.jpg
    This is my first review of a C&B SEEN range product and this is for their 1200 lumens bike light and helmet kit.

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-39-.jpg

    What's in the box
    CABS-1200 bike light and helmet kit

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-img_4515.jpg
    This came in a brown cardboard box with "bicycle light" and stylised bicycle logo printed on it. Included in it is the head light with a single Cree XM-L T6 LED, a waterproof battery pack and securing bag, a charger, a small bag with two glow in the dark securing "o" rings, a one metre extension cable and an elasticated head band. Everything looks good quality and I loved the green anodising! By the way, you have a choice of colours - green, blue or red.



    Initial overview and feel

    The light head has a CREE XM-L T6 LED quoted by the manufacturer to be 1200 lumens.
    The light head supplied for the review was in a bright green and is made of anodised 6061 T6 aluminium and meets the IP65 waterproofing standards.
    The light has a removable bezel, which has to be removed to fit their accessory diffuser lens (if required). As mentioned, this light is bigger (43mm OD x 63mm long) and weighs 136 grams (head/band).
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-55-.jpgC&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-69-.jpg
    Light on the right hand side is their smaller helmet light CABS-1200HMT which I will review later on
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-56-.jpgC&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-20-.jpg
    The head appears to have very good heat dispersion as the whole body warms up on medium or high.
    Their supplied fitting is the common elongated "o" ring method which works well as long as it is very tight on the bar.
    Two different sized glow in the dark "o" rings for different thickness bars or mountings are supplied.
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-66-.jpg
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-67-.jpg
    The CABS-1200 could also be used as a headlamp with the enclosed adjustable headband. I have tried this on a Giro Hex and 661 Recon helmet and, on both occasions, the band would not stay in position unless secured with zip ties this may work on a road helmet as they are generally squarer at the front.
    So if you intend to use this light as a MTB helmet light, I would advise you to buy their helmet mount or convert/adapt the headband.
    The band is fine for normal headlamp use, ie work lamp, but a little heavy and bulky.

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-58-.jpgC&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-61-.jpg

    The 4400mAh battery supplied is enclosed in a waterproof rubber sleeve and is contained in a battery holster with two retaining velcro straps.
    The two strap system gives a positive battery hold to your frame/bar or helmet. The battery pack size is approx 3" x 1 x 1" (88 x 50 x 50mm) and 232 grams.
    The battery is waterproof as demonstrated on their website, so rain should not be an issue.
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-52-.jpg
    A 9V -900mAh
    A UK battery charger is enclosed, which will give a slow charge to the battery pack. C&B SEEN has confirmed to me that the 9V battery charger is perfectly fine to recharge their battery packs

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-65-.jpg
    Extension lead and diffuser lens (not included in kit), all female connectors have a soft rubber shield which give a waterproof and firm connection.



    Manufacturer Data (latest)
    CABS-1200 Lumen Helmet Light Kit



    Product Features

    Operating Environment -20C - +50C

    Operating V. 6V - 8.4V

    Storing Environment 0C - +50C

    Power Output High: 10W / Med: 6W / Low: 3W Pulse: 5W

    Bulb Type XML-T6 LED

    Battery Pack Waterproof 4 x 18650 Rechargeable

    Lithium-Ion in Nylon Web Pouch for 4400mAh Total Capacity

    Approximate Run Times High: 3 hr / Med: 6 hr Low: 10 hr / Pulse: 8 hr

    Charge Voltage 8.4V 0.1V

    Luminosity 1200 Lumens max

    Switch Waterproof button switch

    Bulb Life Span ≈≈ 2500 hrs

    Weight 0.62 Kg

    Material 6061-T6 Aluminium

    Operating Modes

    High100% / Medium 70% / Low 30% Pulse 30& - 70%

    Waterproof Standard IP 65



    Usage Instructions & General Maintenance

    Switch

    : When the light is connected to power supply the switch glows green. It remains green whilst the power balance is

    within the 70 - 100% range. When the balance drops below 70% the switch glows blue. When the balance drops below 40%

    the light glows amber, and then, when balance drops below 15% it turns red, indicating approx 20 mn usage remaining.

    Flashing red indicates imminent power down.

    Modes

    : To turn light on & off hold switch down for 2 secs. Light starts at low setting, single clicks will cycle through medium

    and high settings. Double click in any mode will instigate pulse mode which is constant low with pulse medium.

    Waterproofing

    : If water or dust is ingression the light body then replace sealing 'O' ring with provided spare. To prevent the

    lens holder sizing to the light body thread should be lubricated twice a year with light lubricant.



    Settings

    A two second press of the switch is required to start the light in low mode - a single press will cycle you through the modes low/medium/high.
    The flash is a hidden mode and is accessible once the light is on by quickly pressing the switch twice.
    The flash, is a very effective pulse mode, giving you a constant low output with a medium pulse (none of the annoying strobe/fast flash often found on Chinese lights)!
    Reverting back to a constant mode from the flash only requires one push of the switch. Turning the light off will require a two second push of the switch.
    The light has no memory, so it will always start in low. The mode spacing I believe are 10w - 100%, 5w - 50%, 3w -30% and the pulse is a constant 3w with a 5w pulse


    Riding with CABS-1200

    The light was tried on two different bike handle bars a 31.8mm and a 25.4mm.
    With the smallest "o" ring fitted on the smaller bar, the light moved every time I changed modes, which did not happen on the bigger bar with the bigger "o" ring, so this just down to sizing and this is just a matter of how tight the band is!
    This can be easily sorted by increasing the OD of the bar with black PVC tape or a piece of inner tube!
    A better option is to get a quick release mount. C&B SEEN list one in their accessories list, which I will review shortly.

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseen-36-.jpg

    See their QR clamp

    The CAB-1200 for a single led light does give a wide and bright beam due to the size of the light but I decided to fit their diffuser lens to see what impact it had on the beam.
    At first, I found their smooth bezel a little hard to unscrew due to a lack of grip on it,
    which would benefit from grooves or flats to allow for better grip. Once the glass lens was swapped for the diffuser lens, I found the diffuser to be a good option in that it gave me a broader light without losing to much output.
    The CABS-1200 still works well without it, so this is a personal choice.


    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-img_4519.jpg
    With diffuser lens
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-beams.jpg
    Light with diffuser is on the left
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-img_4518.jpg
    I tried the battery pack under the stem and attached it on the top bar of my frame and on both instances this was secured firmly by the two strap system.


    The CABS-1200 was also used as a bar light on the road during my commuting to work and did give good result.
    The pulse mode is very good and is ideal for day light or night riding in lit up areas.
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-imag1570.jpgC&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-imag1571.jpg

    Trying to replicate what the eye sees at night via photos is not easy, so to help a little with your perception of the light performance here are the setting used during the beam shots.
    Canon PowerShot SX110IS & SX320HS
    Manual setting
    ISO: 200
    Exposure: 1.6 seconds
    Aperture: F4.0
    Focus: Manual
    White Balance: Daylight
    Quality: Jpeg High

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseeng1.jpg
    low
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseeng2.jpg
    medium
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cbseeng3.jpg
    high
    The grey item in the middle of the track is my rucksack 25ft away and the small tree/fence are 50ft away

    Photos below are from the CABS-1200 with diffuser and CABS-1200HMT with standard lens.
    I know that they are two different lights, but the beam is quite similar in their standard configuration and you can see what difference the diffuser makes!

    Note both lights are fitted on the bar CABS1200 with diffuser and their smaller CABS1200HMT helmet light.
    The reflective item in the middle of the track is my rucksack 25ft away and the small tree/fence in the back ground are 50ft away
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cabs1200ldif.jpg
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cabs1200hmtl.jpg

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cabs1200mdif.jpg
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cabs1200hmtm.jpg

    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cabs1200hdif.jpg
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-cabs1200hmth.jpg



    Home test
    The C&B Seen Helmet bar light was tested with my home made light sphere and a cooling fan was used between the readings
    (please note there will be a small margin of error for the readings as the light was removed and repositioned on the sphere for the various readings).
    As this is a home-made integrating sphere, I cannot make any true claims as how close my result would be to results coming out of a lab integrating sphere costing thousand of pounds,
    but this does give a rough idea as how the light performed and enables you to monitor the output versus runtime.

    The ambient light measured in lux in my "kitchen (lab)" was showing 88 Lux, position on work top 1.4 metre from the ceiling


    The test/monitoring was started 3mins after initial turn on, which is in line with ANSI method of testing flashlights.

    all bellow readings are in LUX and x 100 (ie 406 = 406000 lux)
    C&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-graphgr.jpgC&B SEEN CABS-1200 1200 Lumen Bike Light & Headlamp Kit review-runtimegr.jpg
    During my rides and while commuting, I got normal battery light indicator function, ie green, blue, yellow, red and flash but this was not a continuous test, the light got switch on and off over a few days.
    During my home tests, ie switch on high and monitor until the light switch itself off.
    I did record some inconsistency this why, I have not mapped the time and the sequence the warning light did change.
    All I will say is I had about 25mn left when the light start to flash red.

    As you can see the discharge line is a flat so you output virtually will remain the same during your ride!

    For:

    Good throw
    Good output level
    Fully regulated giving over 2 hours 20 minutes of steady constant high output
    Hidden flash mode
    Very useable pulse mode
    Easy interface
    Choice of colours
    Price

    Against:

    On the battery supplied, my run times where a little shorter than advertised but still very respectable
    Lower than expected lux readings (on my home home made IS)
    no diffuser included

    I could not achieve the run time quoted, but again for a fully regulated light running on a 4400mAh battery the run time achieved is good for a mid range light. From experience,
    I know that in real life cycling you will get much longer run time as you are very unlikely to keep the light on high for the full duration of your ride.

    Like many bike lights, I believe the lumens output is more a theoretical one and despite the fact that the CAB-1200 is bright,
    I very much doubt if they are getting 1200 claimed lumens out of a single XM-L T6 LED, but again, who is, as most manufacturers are over inflating their Lumens output!

    So to sum up the review, this is a capable bar light (for me better with the diffuser ) available in funky colours and able to give you a long enough run time with a CONSTANT high output for a decent price all that with the backing and guarantee of a UK business.


    RRP 55 including UK postage (14/12/14)

    Light send to me for review by C&B SEEN

    Skyraider59 ( UK )
    Last edited by Skyraider59; 12-21-2014 at 09:41 AM. Reason: upload of photos

  2. #2
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    2011 called, they want their light back.

  3. #3
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    Thanks for your feedback Varider, I don't think their light claim to be the latest design and output! The XM-L T6 is a well proven LED in a solid design with a proper UK warranty/after sale (not the usual ebay 45days, may help you but after you are on your own type!) I have cheap and expensive lights and I think for a fully regulated light at this price, the CABS-1200 has a good place in 2014 and 2015.

  4. #4
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    BS!

    I pretty much hate these corporate-shill reviews. I think they should be banned. They sent you a light with the understanding that you will post a review here or maybe on the popular flashlight forums. It's free advertising for them and in my book it makes you untrustworthy. There's a reason on one is commenting on your threads, it's because they scream FAKE FAKE FAKE. I think I've even seen one of your youtube reviews of another light, you seem like a decent fellow to me.

    At the end of 2014, there's no way in hell you should be advising anybody to buy a light with a single xm-l led light for 86.56 US Dollars from a previously unknown seller. You can get a magicshine 808 with an xm-l2 from action led for nearly the same price. That's a proven light from a reputable seller and it comes with a warranty.

    This thing is a big ugly overpriced relic.

    That's the last time I feed the trolls.

  5. #5
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    Thanks Varider for your comments. I suggest that with your wealth of knowledge and expertise you put your energy into writing reviews for the benefit of the cycling community instead of posting unfounded defamatory comments on other people reviews for items that you have no knowledge of, have not tried and which is very unlikely to be sold in your country knowing how much world wide shipping costs!

    You are entitled to your own opinion regarding my review, the look of the light or the use and sales of single led lights in 2014 or 2015 and as we live in a free world I respect your opinion, but PLEASE before you state anything do your own research correctly !

    For example:
    The MAGICSHINE 808 contrary to what you have posted is not $86.56 here in the UK (England) but is advertised here for 89.95 which is about $140, this is over a third more than the light I have reviewed. And as regarding buying from Action Led , I agree, a great firm, well again, for a UK buyer, this is not such a great option due to the fact that shipping fee will be added to the price of the light, then import duties and VAT will be added by the British custom often resulting in a light costing more than the usually higher UK prices!

    You are just right on one point ! I am a decent fellow who has a passion for cycling and anything LED with a battery and who spend a lot of his spare time writing a few independent reviews on lights (that I have tried) to share with other cyclist what I have experienced.

    I do my reviews as accurate and fairly as I can and I do tell it as I find it, I do not have any connection with the various manufacturers/retailers and do not receive any financial gains from the reviews. If you bothers to thoroughly read my review, you would have found that I have highlighted a few negative points on the light, which is part of my ethos, tell it has I find but be fair with it.

    If you don't like it, this is your problem!.

    I could carry on, but I have neither the time or the inclination do dedicate more time to such unsubstantiated and defamatory postings!

  6. #6
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    For those in the UK interested by a single LED small helmet light, I have posted my review of the second lights that I received from C&B Seen, the CABS-1200hmt. Like the first review, this has been done after trying the light on forest trails during clubs rides. I have tried to give you a fair review of the light, I am not pretending that they are the best money can buy, but I think they deserve a look specially if you ride in the UK and are looking for better quality lights than some of the Chinese ebay one!
    Their price is higher than the cheap ebay one but cheaper that some of the entry level lights! I would encourage you to do your own research and check C&BSeen warranty!
    The beam photos where taken on farm trails not far from where I live as I do not carry my photographic equipment while riding in the forest which is 30mn drive from home !

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