The Knog Blinder bike lights have a little more charm than your standard bike lights. Knog, an Australian brand, offers a neat twist on the best bike lights, in much the same way as quirky US manufacturer Thousand do with the Thousand Traveller.
Two of their latest products are the Knog Blinder Road 400 and, even more recently, the Knog Blinder R-150 Road Rear. What you get with these two is plenty of illumination, with 400 Lumens on the front and 150 Lumens from the rear. On top of that, you get a slick, stylish, and undeniably practical design and build, which should stand the test of time.
Bike lights can be a mixed bag, but pick the right pairing and you’ll not only be able to see where you’re going, but you’ll also be seen and hopefully stay safe too. While the Knog Blinder Road 400 turns out to offer pretty substantial illumination, anyone wanting more light on the road can also opt to head for the Knog Blinder in a 600 Lumen incarnation. That’s even brighter. So then, are they any good?
400 Lumens front/150 Lumens rear
Four/Eight light modes
IP67 waterproof rating
70 grams front/40 grams rear
Knog Blinder Road: Price and availability
The Knog Blinder range is widely available right now, with the Blinder Road listed on Amazon and its own site. The 400 lumen model costs $69.99 in the US, £75.99 in the UK from third-party retailer Wiggle, and AU$99.99 in Australia. The whole selection of bike accessories from this brand can be found on the Knog website, although UK shoppers need to look elsewhere.
The Knog Blinder 400 and R-150 combo are available separately, so they can easily be purchased as a pair or individually. We’ve not seen any obvious savings from purchasing them as a pair either, compared to some manufacturers like Lezyne or Cateye who offer bundle boxes with the front and rear lights in one package. This can often shave a little off the asking price.
Knog Blinder Road: Design
- Aero compatible
Knog has done a great job with the design of the Blinder 400. It’s compact and reasonably lightweight at just 70 grams, but it’s also been created with practicality in mind. It’s aero compatible, so can be fitted to both standard and aero bars. Better still, the Blinder is 100% waterproof, which is always a bonus if you tend to end up cycling in the rain a lot.
The main body of the light looks and feels solid enough and it’s definitely well made, with the twin LED beams being the most prominent feature. There are mode buttons on the rear of the unit, just above the strap that’s used to mount the light. This also seems nicely constructed, although there is always the worry with flexible components as to just how good they’re going to be over time. So far, so good though.
The Blinder R-150 rear light is a long, thing rectangular design that weighs just 40 grams and is 100% waterproof. It features a USB charging port, as does the front light, while a charge indicator helps to keep you up to date with how the battery life is faring.
- Design score: 4/5
Knog Blinder Road: Features
- Four different light modes on front light
- 150 lumens rear light
- 1.5 times brighter than older variants
The benefit of the Knog Blinder 400 front light is that it features four different light modes. You can choose from Flash, with a three to eight0hour runtime, Dual Beam with a one to 2.5-hour runtime, Wide Beam, with a one to two hour runtime and Narrow Beam with a 1.2 to 2-hour runtime.
More importantly, the latest design is 1.5 times brighter than older variants according to Knog. It’s certainly bright, with the range of beam options proving ideally suited to riding on roads at night.
Meanwhile, the Blinder R-150 is just that, a 150 Lumens taillight, fitted with LED technology for a super bright appearance. You get eight modes with this unit, with a raft of options to suit all types of cycling scenarios.
These range from always on through to a strobe effect. Knog has done a great job at getting the lighting angles right when the unit is working too. It’s easily visible, but doesn’t dazzle others, which is the perfect compromise.
- Features score: 4/5
Knog Blinder Road: Battery life
- Battery life listings are accurate
- Temperature doesn’t impact performance
- Low battery indicator so you’re not caught off guard
We’ve used the Knog Blinder 400 for a while now and it returns very respectable battery life, with close similarities to the figures above. That includes periods of having a bike with the lights attached stored in a cooler outdoor environment, which didn’t seem to be too detrimental to performance.
What is also good about the Blinder 400 is its low battery indicator, which stays on for 2 seconds once you’ve turned off. It’s a handy visual clue to the state of the battery, just so you know for next time. You get that same warning on the R-150 rear unit too and both can be recharged via USB. Usefully, there’s a cable included in the box for getting the job done.
- Battery life score: 4/5
Knog Blinder Road: Performance
- Blinder 400 front light performs well
- Back light a little weak
- Battery life is shorter than it could be
If you’re going to buy these two cycle lights together then pairing them up makes a lot of sense as they share similar characteristics, runtime and also brightness. Granted, the rear R-150 is the less bright of the two, but the forward facing Blinder 400 is hugely commendable for its twin beam LEDs.
Battery life does suffer a little due to the sheer brightness of these lights however, especially the front one. Careful use of the different modes can help to balance that out though.
Overall, this dynamic duo is well suited to everyday cyclists who might bike to work, or anyone who likes to enjoy a day out cycling and isn’t always back before dark. Premium lights generally stand the test of time, so if you cycle regularly it really is the way to go.
- Performance score: 3/5
Buy it if…
Don’t buy it if…
First reviewed October 2022