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on November 11, 2009
When I first heard various rumors about this light's pending appearance on the market, I was *really* worried someone was pulling my leg, because the specs read like a dream come true: a compact, self-contained, quick-release headlight that could throw a beam bright enough to truly see *by*, rivaling some batteries-go-somewhere-else units, using merely a pair of garden-variety AA alkalines (I have a *much* better alternative to those, which I'll get to shortly), and coming in at well under a hundred bucks. My local dealer not only confirmed the 2-watt light's existence, but said he could order one for me if I'd like. (*Would* I!)

I've been using the light a good deal for the better part of two weeks, and it does the business. It's the same size as the 1-watt version, save for its jet-black finish. Like all the Planet Bike lights I've bought, build quality is great, the now-renowned quick-release mounting system remains unchanged, which is a good thing, because (1) it's fantastic as it is, IMO, and (2) it allows quick interchange between two of my bikes, one using Planet Bike's Beamer 5 (itself an excellent urban light). You can purchase the quick-release mounts separately, allowing the moving of one light between several bikes quickly and easily.

Short of extreme, high-speed, off-road night-patrol rides, you're not likely to "over-drive" this headlight, allowing for safer road cycling on streets and roads. I don't have to try and remember the surface irregularities when rolling fairly quickly down a particular side street or path I don't often travel; the light offers a reliable heads-up, reducing the need for sudden evasive maneuvers (and pretty much eliminated the possibility of a snakebite flat, dented rim, or worse).

But perhaps the real surprise is the SuperFlash function: if you think PB's SuperFlash taillight is an amazing performer (and it is), you simply *need* to check this headlight out. When using the SuperFlash function at dusk (it's been recommended by some that you do *not* use this function after dark, where it might be potentially blinding), on more than one occasion I've actually had motorists *pull over* to the side. Never experienced that before. I'm definitely a believer in "safety in candlepower."

Battery life appears to be more or less as advertised. But here's a hot tip: forget loading this up with alkalines. Do your wallet (and, as a nice coincidence, the planet at large) a favor, and buy a Sanyo Eneloop battery-and-charger kit, which comes with four rechargeable AA batteries and battery charger. What makes these rechargeables different from other is that, once charged, Eneloop batteries retain 85% percent of their charge for upwards of a year. In other words, their discharge rate is about as good as typical store-bought alkalines. No more "surprises" when you reach to switch on your light which you haven't used in three weeks. You can trust these batteries the same way you trust alkalines, except that when these run down, you recharge them rather than chuck them. They make a great match with a headlight like this, which understandably uses up a pair of batteries somewhat faster than lower-powered lights.

So, we have a winner here: a true high-powered headlight that's as easy to live with as most any other self-contained bike light, and priced well within the means of many more cyclers than wildly-expensive, multi-piece lighting systems. If you're the sort for whom a high-speed downhill run in the woods is a big part of your "balanced" riding repertoire, you might need one of the pricier HID numbers for your ride (good luck with that!). Otherwise, the Blaze 2Watt is likely all the light you could ask for. (By the way, it obviously makes a killer flashlight when needed.)
1212 comments| 225 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 22, 2010
Remarkable little thing. I've been using those toy 2 C battery lights for years and this 2W LED light is wonderful. For those older riders who just want to cruise around and get some exercise in the cooler summer evenings this is the perfect light. Reaction time is adequate at 15mph and under. If you are a serious cyclist and putting down 18 to 22mph in the dark you will need the brighter heavier lights.
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on September 3, 2010
This is my first foray into lighting for my bike.

I got this light specifically to be able to ride a rails to trails trail near my house in the early mornings. Had it mounted and on the bike within a minute of opening the box. The first ride was at 4:15 a.m. under a mostly moonless sky through my neighborhood and then onto the trail.

This light is more than adequate for cruising around and/or commuter biking. On the trail I found the beam to be narrow, but with enough spill to illuminate the wide trail sufficiently. The trail is all dirt with some minor bumps and ruts - mount and light didn't slip or move around at all. There is an appreciable difference between the brightness on high and low settings. I kept mine on low because I felt I had a little better vision to the sides without the real bright spot. I don't really have a need for the strobe, but it will definitely get you noticed.

I could see a racer overdriving this light, but it worked well for me at approx 10-15 mph on a familiar, wide trail. This works perfectly for what I wanted it for. I would look at other lights for night riding on tight singletrack or fast downhill descents, although this might be a nice helmet mounted light (perhaps a little bulky)to complement a bar mounted system. Planet Bike does sell a helmet mount accessory.

I do like that it runs on 2 AA batteries. I can always have backup power supply in my pack or pocket.

This is a good light at a great price. I'm glad I found it.

UPDATE 11/25/11: Have had and used this light over a year now. Still working fine, but I've gotten much faster and found I needed a brighter light. This is particularly true for riding "real" mountain bike trails, not just forest roads and wide bike paths. Am now using the light for a commuter light and a backup light only. Initial review stands - good light at great price. Excellent value for casual riders and commuters.
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on September 29, 2012
I've owned this light for over a year. After a year of near-crashes (many due to not seeing objects like foxes and down tree branches outside of the narrow lighting window) and slowing down to 5mph every time I make a slight turn, I finally mustered up the common sense to toss this in the trash and replace it with a real light.

All three lights in the video had fresh batteries.

*** EDIT a year later ****
Several commentators have insulted me for posting this video and having the nerve to donate my time to provide a helpful review to some. I appreciate the maturity of such individuals.

I realize that these bike are not comparable in price, but if I'm not mistaken, they are supposed to do similar jobs: to provide lighting to bicyclists. The point of the video is that the Planet Bike light is not a functional light. Period. At any price. It's no more functional of a bike light than is a pad of sticky notes. I wish other reviewers had been as frank as I am being about the limitations of this light, which would have saved me the wasted $50 (or whatever I paid at the time) and the year of unnecessarily risking my life with an unsafe bike light, because it took me that long to get over the frustration of the $50 sunk cost and throw it in the trash to replace it (that's my fault; I should have realized it sooner).

So yes, if you want to save $50 over the cost of a real bike light, then by all means, buy this toy, which is as functional as a pad of sticky notes, but consider yourself forewarned.
1313 comments| 99 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 17, 2010
I got this light with high anticipations. I spent the extra money to get this 2 watt unit after reading the reviews. The bottom line is its not enough light for me.... I have realized that i need a lot of light to ride at night. Objects in the road come up to fast for me to safely use this light in the darkness. however, riding to work with street light around the superflash is excellent.

I have to bite the bullet and get a much more expensive unit.
1515 comments| 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 16, 2012
The Bike Blaze headlight is made of two parts: the back section which attaches to the bike, and the front section which contains the bulb and lens. Unfortunately, the button to turn the light on and off is on top of the front section, a design flaw that causes the front to gradually loosen and eventually separate from the back section. This happens because pressure is placed on the front section every time one turns the light on or off. Over time, the pressure causes the front part to loosen until it completely separates from the back part. I've had my light about six months now, and it popped off completely last night. I pushed it back on, but (1) I don't trust it now to stay dry in rain, and (2) I shouldn't have to be doing this for a $50 light I've owned less than a year.

If the on/off button were only on the back section of the light, this wouldn't be an issue. Why didn't anyone think of this at Planet Bike before putting the light into production?
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on February 9, 2012
This is a very bright light. I use it for my 5 mile commute at dawn and at night. The flashing setting is very visible! I got rechargeable batteries because the high setting uses a lot of power (but I really don't use high very often).

The mount worked fine for a week. The threaded adjusting piece isn't very long and so the nut doesn't have much to hold. After a week of riding, the nut worked loose and fell off. This is how I fixed it. I got a M4-.7 x 40mm hex bolt and a wing nut (90 cents total). I took out the original threaded piece and threw it away. I screwed the new bolt through the round silver adapter, wrapped it around the handlebar, pulled it shut, and screwed on the nut. Perfect- and the wing nut makes it easy to hand- tighten before each ride.
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on June 8, 2012
This product does not stay put onto the handlebar very nicely.. and even after tightening it completely, it still slides loose after going through a few bumps, and once it's loose, it will obviously roll over and face down.

The LED lights are strong, but since it doesn't remain stable on my bicycle, it's of no good use.
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on December 16, 2012
I've been in enough close calls on my bike that I don't mind investing in a good, bright bike light. This light delivers on the lumens! The two different lighting levels are good, with the bright being plenty sufficient to navigate dark streets and gravel paths. I've used this both on pavement and offtrail and I've never felt like I needed more light.

And Planet Bike customer service is the best. The whole company, in fact, is great. It advocates for bikers. It also offers a wide range of replacement parts for nearly every product it offers. After a crash, I had cracked the rear part of the housing that mounted the light to the handlebar adapter. I checked the Planet Bike website, but couldn't find this piece. I gave them a call just to be sure and the rep managed to turn one up for me. And he only charged me for shipping! Honestly, a great company.

The product is great and the company is great. Planet Bike is at the top of my list whenever I need to buy bicycle components for these reasons.
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on July 27, 2011
Works as advertised. The flashing mode gets the attention of everyone without exception. This is a good thing as there are to many distracted drivers on the road but it is not a cure for those idiots who don't pay attention to their surroundings. The beam is a little spotty with very little side lighting unless you are driving in a pitch black enviroment. I think it works better in a very dark area because a little bit of light goes a long way when it is very dark. You can then see low hanging and side intruding branches much better. All in all I'd say it is a good light but I will be looking for something better because that's the way I am. If you don't plan on going over 12-15 mph you should be fine on a straighaway but if your riding a curved trail forget about going fast because it shines where your handlebars are pointing not off to the side. Build quality seems fine and battery life so far seems good. Overall a good light for the casual rider.
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