Remember when bar-mounted headlights required a massive battery strapped to the frame only to produce a lackluster yellow spot of light? Or when we’d tinker with LED’s and homemade housings to try to get a few hundred lumens (and that would impress our friends)? My how times have changed.
One thousand lumens may not sound like a lot these days, but the slim form factor and impressive battery life that Ravemen’s able to fit it into shows just how far bike lights have come. If you’re looking for an affordable way to hit the roads less travelled in the dark of night, read on…
I’ve reviewed Raveman’s single-beam CR900 and a dual-beam model in the past, but this model ups the ante for brightness and features. Ravemen may not be a household name, but their lights tick all of the right boxes – small footprint, brightness, good battery life and more.
Here’s how they describe their new CR1000 headlamp:
“With a 4,000mAh large battery and max 1,000 lumens, CR1000 is designed for road cyclists that ride at night at fast speed and long distance. Featuring Ravemen’s new anti-glare optical lens, CR1000 creates a T-shaped beam, illuminating the road with flood light for close-range distance and bright spotlight for far distance which has no dazzle to other road users. With battery run time extension, CR1000 could also be used for long-distance riding or racing.”
I didn’t review this product on the road, but the slower speeds of gravelly road riding make this light a perfect candidate.
Ravemen CR1000 Features & Specs
Pictured above is Ravemen’s second generation anti-glare lens featuring their T-shaped beam for close-range flood but with plenty of projection from a long-distance spotlight.
Inside the package you receive the light body, a super easy to use handlebar strap mount, micro-USB cable and optional remote. If you caught my earlier Ravemen reviews, the remote has not changed – it still connects to the light’s micro-USB port to perform its intended function.
The handlebar strap fits bars 22.2 to 35mm in diameter. It is a simple slide in and out affair, listen for the positive click to ensure the light is locked into place.
Charging duties are accomplished via a micro-USB port hidden from the elements, protected by a small rubber flap.
The single button at the rear of the light turns it on and off, and switches the light between its various modes:
- High – 1,000 Lumens – 2 Hours Runtime
- Mid – 600 Lumens – 2.7 Hours Runtime
- Low – 350 Lumens – 5.8 Hours Runtime
- Eco – 100 Lumens – 25 Hours Runtime
- Pulse Flashing – 500 Lumens – 43.5 Hours Runtime
- Rapid Flashing – 150 Lumen – 45 Hours Runtime
There’s also an Emergency mode which punches out the same lumen count as High. A little redundant? The light will remember the last mode used when powered on for next use.
A vast improvement from the original CR900 model is the ability to plug in an external battery to extend runtime.
This option legitimately opens up all-night rides.
Ravemen states extending the runtime as above will drop lumen count to about 800 max. Handy enough to brightly light the road ahead (beamshots below).
Above, size reference. The Ravemen CR1000 alongside a Garmin 1030 Plus and Wahoo Elemnt Roam. The CR1000’s body is IPX6 water resistant (can resist high-pressure, heavy sprays of water) and constructed from a durable anodized aluminium body. In fact, I tested the resilience of this unit in a rather unique way, more on further down.
Claimed weight for the CR1000 is 140 grams. Don’t you love it when the product weighs less than manufacturer spec? Win!
With the required mounting strap to make the light useful, a total of 154 grams is added to your bike.
Additional Tech Details:
- LED – 1 x Cree XM-L2 with an approximate lifespan of 50,000 hours
- Battery – 4,000 mAh/3.6V rechargeable Lithium-ion
- Headlight Dimensions – 104mm L x 29mm W x 32mm H.
Beam Shots and Run Time
High – 1,000 Lumens:
Above, I have no way of determining if claimed lumen counts are accurate, but the improved lens does a splendid job of flood and projection with a nice spot. The light features a thermal management circuit to prevent overheating the LED.
Mid – 600 Lumens:
Low – 350 Lumens:
Eco – 100 Lumens:
In my opinion, Eco mode is best saved for road-side / trail-side repairs, finding your keys and so on.
The Resilience Test
This part of my review mostly came about by my own stupidity. Due to an inordinate amount of crap atop my handlebar one evening, the Ravemen light was going to be a tight squeeze. In my haste to split from the regular work gig and ride, I installed the light but not all the way into the handlebar mount, i.e. no positive click into position. This is purely my own fault, not a design flaw. The handlebar mount has otherwise proven solidly reliable.
What happened next? At some point on a gravelly road, the light was jettisoned from the mount, but I was distracted at the time poking a GoPro camera at the review wheelset on the bike. I never noticed the Ravemen CR1000 going on walk-a-bout until I realized I had no Ravemen light some five minutes later.
This is where luck kicks in. I captured the light launching from the bike in the scene above, and caught sight of the fenceline and house number on the letterbox. From this intel, I knew mostly where the light might be located.
I hurriedly drove back an hour later to find the light firmly encrusted into the road’s surface. It wasn’t turned on at the time of the drop, but the light survived several vehicles driving over it… and it still works, perfectly. No damage whatsoever. I was stoked to say the least.
The Ravemen CR1000 takes the experienced garnered by this manufacturer to a new level with a light of this size. Run times are accurate, the new and improved beam pattern is really, really nice, the Cree XM-L2 is so bright, and the ability to charge on-the-go, brilliant. The wireless remote is a nice touch, but I never found myself desiring that functionality, but still, a nice option for some. My own stupidity proved the light is resilient with a simple design that gets the job done.
This is the third Ravemen light I’ve reviewed, they keep getting better and better with each release. Pricing for this light is set at €69.95 or $US69.95, a veritable steal. Purchase at this link.
Article by Gravel Cyclist. Jayson O’Mahoney is the Gravel Cyclist: A website about the Gravel Cycling Experience.