Knog are an Australian brand made up from a team of creative designers and engineers who refuse to conform to anyone or anything. They have huge passion and a ferociousness to smash the mould, challenge the status quo, and revolutionise the way we think about lights and locks. I’ve been a huge fan of the brand for a while, they have a great ethos behind them – being environmentally conscious but also constantly innovating and improving their products for the better. Knog Blinder review
The original Blinder 4 lights rarely left my bike, being dependable and bright enough to be seen in London’s traffic. The built in USB port was a stroke of genius, meaning they could always be charged up ready to go. There were a couple of minor issues with them, the silicone band could eventually snap if your bars were oversized, and the USB port was a little tricky to squeeze in some computers. That aside, the actual lights have been flawless. So, too has been Knog’s customers service. Sending replacements with no questions asked when the silicone band eventually snapped on mine with the new, updated versions. The one I’m reviewing here is the Blinder 4 Eyes – but they all share the same specs (more or less).
LEDs : Surface Mount (SMT) LED designed to provide maximum brightness level for up to 90% of the battery burn time for each mode.
BEAM ANGLE : 35°
BAR DIAMETERS : Fits bars / posts 22-32mm+ and aero.
INTEGRATED USB PLUG : Designed to be exposed to the elements, is waterproof and will not be damaged by exposure.
CHARGE TIME : 4 -5 hours (charge LED will turn green)
BUTTON : Longer button push on (0.75sec) prevents accidental turn on. Short presses switch modes continuously.
STORAGE MODE : Light can be placed in storage mode if not used for a long time (see instructions for full details).
STRAPS : Replaceable straps for tool-less attachment
100% WATERPROOF: The Blinder MOB is IP67 Tested and 100% waterproof against all elements
They’ve addressed the minor details to make the Blinder range pretty much perfect. One major issue that plagued the previous model was the silicone band, it was a weak point and once it snapped, you had to replace the entire light. Knog obviously listening to feedback here, and redesigned it to be replaceable. The lights even come with 2 sizes, hopefully eliminating the problem entirely.
The USB port now forms part of the structure, in the previous model the USB plug was on a hinge and popped out from the rear of the light. This means that it’s now much easier to plug into your laptop/wall plug. My only thoughts about this new design is that the USB connections are now exposed to the elements, but Knog say that these are corrosion resistant and won’t affect the connection. These lights are 100% waterproof to IP67. Just make sure that it’s fully clean and dry before sticking it into your laptop!
The power output for both front and rear lights has remained unchanged, with 80 lumens on the front and 40 lumens on the rear, this is already very bright for ‘be seen’ lights. However, Knog have used more efficient LED’s and added lenses with a focus of 35°. This means that the lights appear much brighter, and do a much better job of lighting your path in dark areas with no street lighting. Knog say the lights can now be seen from 1000 meters away, up from 800 on the previous model.
There are 5 different lighting modes, which can be cycled through with the push of the (only) button:
- Steady high (front: 2.5 hrs rear: 2.6 hrs)
- Steady low (front: 5.1 hrs rear: 6 hrs)
- Strobe flash (front: 5.3 hrs rear: 4.4 hrs)
- Fancy flash (front: 23 hrs rear: 20 hrs)
- Eco flash (front 62 hrs rear: 55 hrs)
I pretty much keep mine on strobe flash, as it’s the most noticeable and brightest in both daylight and darkness. When the battery gets low, a little red LED lights up next to the button. If I’m far from home, I usually switch the mode to the eco flash which gives a few hours to get home safely.
There’s now a huge range of different models within the Blinder range, offering varying beam angles and styles to suit your needs. One of the reasons I love the Blinder family is their compactness and the fact that you can pop them on and off when needed, and of course the USB charging port.
Some of the improvements over the previous model include:
- Replaceable silicone bands (2 sizes included)
- Redesigned USB port – allowing more room to fit in computers and chargers
- Improved battery life – 62 hours in eco flash mode (up from 50)
- Increased range from 800 meters to 1000 meters
The new version improved on what was already a very decent light, resulting in one of the best light sets you can currently buy.