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  1. #1
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    Newbie quetion here

    HI ALL,

    As a newbie here, I have some quetion about the bicycle light or headlamp.

    The floodlight or spotlight is for the bicyle night riding, which are all preferrable?

    want to buy a light? but the first time to buy the bicycle light, so want to know which is better for night riding, spotlight or floodylight

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by starthere View Post
    HI ALL,

    As a newbie here, I have some quetion about the bicycle light or headlamp.

    The floodlight or spotlight is for the bicyle night riding, which are all preferrable?

    want to buy a light? but the first time to buy the bicycle light, so want to know which is better for night riding, spotlight or floodylight
    Try not to go with either extreme with a single light. You need a good compromise between the two beam types in a single light unless you're only ever doing very slow riding, then the flood will suffice. Typically, in a two-light setup, the helmet uses a beam tending toward spot, while the bar would be home to the wider beam.
    Cheers

  3. #3
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    Thanks for your reply
    GOOD information for it.
    Are there any more information about the problem

  4. #4
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    Smile

    IANAX but here are some words I found useful when I started down the (single)track towards bike light nirvana.

    Bar light : A light suitable for the handlebars.
    Headlight / headlamp : I light suitable for helmet mounting.
    Lid : Your helmet.

    Throw : This is the ultimate distance a light can illuminate.
     adjectives: Unrivalled (!), Excellent, decent, punchy, distant, unimpressive, lacking, poor

    Hotspot: This is the brightest point of light usually at the centre of the beam. It is important in describing whether a light is ultimately "spotty" or "floody".
     adjectives: Massive, wide, well-defined, tight, narrow, tiny, indistinct, non-existant.

    Spill / Flood: The light, sometimes peripheral, outside of the hotspot. The "floody" part of the beam.
     adjectives: floody, super bright, bright, wide, generous, average, narrow, poor, dim

    Transition: This is the bit of light that separates the hotspot from the the spill.
     adjectives: Jarring, uneven, irregular, sudden, sharp, well defined, smooth, gentle, unnoticeable.

    Cutoff : This is where the spill ends and the darkness begins.
     adjectives: Sudden, Sharp, well defined, smooth, gentle.

    Artifacts: These are ripples or unnatural bands/patterns in the light beam.
     adjectives: distracting, disturbing, annoying etc. visible, irregular, slight

    So, you might get a description such as this for a "spotty" light (in this case an XM-L Magicshine "clone"):

    While the beam has a decent amount of punch, it has a dim spill, with an tight hotspot and a clear transition between them, making this a good choice for your lid only in combination with a flood-light on the bars. There are a few artifacts on the periphery of the beam, but nothing distracting.

    Standard disclaimer:
    This is not an exhaustive list and they are just definitions I have come up with on the spur of the moment, as I see them as a beginner, so YMMV etc.

    I hope it is in some way useful and saves you even a few minutes of head scratching.

  5. #5
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    Characteristics of where you place the light –

    Light on the bars – With the light being below your eyes, it produces “shadowing” of obstacles. The downside of the light being on the bars is the light is always pointed in the direction that you bars are pointed. Can be a problem on tight, twisty switch backs where you want to look around the corner. The other thing is having to make a repair in the dark with your light bar mounted. Almost have to remove it to get the light pointed where you need it

    Light on your head – With the light above your eyes, it tends to “flatten” out obstacles as it doesn’t produce as much “shadowing”. The upside is that your light is always pointed directly where you are looking. Making repairs in the dark in much easier with the light on your head. The downside to a helmet mounted light only is that when you are looking to the sides or around a switchback, you don’t have lighting on the ground (which could be actually visible in your peripheral vision). In snow, fog, and rain, a helmet only light can be difficult. The light reflecting back at you off of the moisture in the air can make visibility very difficult.

    Light on both the helmet and the bars – Best of both worlds. Always have light directly out in front of you and where you are looking. If it gets snowing, raining, or foggy and it is making visibility difficult because of the helmet light, then you just go bar only. All 24hr races require repetitive light systems for safety. I have heard stories of many people that have had their only light die on them and have had to walk out, not fun. I have heard stories of people trying to use the light from their cell phone to get out, brutal. I like running both because I never know what kind of lights other people are showing up with. You never leave a fellow night rider alone with a dead light.



    ****

  6. #6
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    hi granxxor and scar,

    as for your sincerely answers, I extremely want to show my thanks feeling.
    GOOD ANSWERS.
    GRAET.
    LIKE IT.

  7. #7
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    Scar nailed it. I'm a road rider so I ride on roads and light trails at night in the fall/early winter/early spring. For me, the bar light is most important. I need a good combination flood/throw because I am traveling at higher speeds and need to see out further. But most of my roads/trails are straight, so the light mounted on my bars pointing in the direction I'm going is just right. I do carry a helmet mounted thrower (flashlight) for the occasional intersection or twisty section of trail, emergency use or spare in case of main light failure.

  8. #8
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    the light produced by the spotlight is spot or concentrated, which is very used for the headlamp.

    the light produced by the floodlight is very floody, which is very used for the bicycle light.



    The photos for difference are not available, but I thinks some guys in the forums have them and posted some for better explaining the difference.
    Last edited by XecconLight; 12-18-2011 at 11:04 PM.
    Xeccon: Stay Safe, Stay Ahead

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by XecconLight View Post
    HI GraXXoR and all,

    After see the post, I have not real understanding of the definiton about the spotlight and floodylight.

    Could all of you post the some photos about difference between floodylight and spotlight and simply explain them?

    a green hand in these fields.

    Thanks in advance.
    Generally speaking; a flood light is a lamp using a reflector or optic that produces a wider beam pattern. Depending on the optic/reflector the main beam pattern can extend maybe 15 ft. or so to each side. Usually this is enough to light up an entire road ( side to side ) but since the beam pattern is wide forward throw will usually suffer unless the lamp has a very high output or is using more than one emitter/optic combo.

    A spotlight ( or spot lamp ) will have a completely different beam pattern. The optics/reflectors used on these lamps will be designed to shine the light in a much more narrower beam pattern. This will enable the lamp to shine farther but not so much to the sides. These beam patterns will usually have a more intense center spot which give the user better visibility for seeing distant objects.

    A well designed bike lamp will try to give a mix of both flood and throw but it is hard to do if the lamp has only one optic or reflector. Now with all this said, opinions will differ on what beam patterns work best for biking. Personally I like a bar lamp that can have a close in beam pattern that is at least 15ft. wide and yet have at least 100ft of forward throw. For a helmet lamp I prefer a lamp that is mostly a spot beam pattern. Such a lamp needs to throw at least 150ft ( but the more the better ). Still it shouldn't be too narrow. At 75ft the center spot should illuminate the entire width of the trail.

    I use a bar and a helmet lamp but I usually don't turn the helmet lamp on unless needed for sharp turns or faster moving trails or roads. Since the bar lamp I have has good flood and throw characteristics, I'm fine with just the one light 80% of the time.

    Last but not least, all of this is moot if you don't travel at speed or ride trails that have lots of constant turns. Buy the light ( or lights ) that best serve your individual needs.

  10. #10
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    Thanks for your information. what is in your post is very forceful and informative.
    It is very useful for me

    Thanks again

  11. #11
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    good info here....should be a sticky....

  12. #12
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    I prefer a floodlight

  13. #13
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    I use Ayeup flood on the bars and spot on the head.
    Not heavy and good Battery life.

  14. #14
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    Fellow noob here, I was wondering the same thing...thanks for the help!

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