When I went on the Dunwich Dynamo I wanted a bike light that wouldn’t mess me around. Plenty of light, easy to install and would last the entire way.
The kind of bike light most people tend to opt for is something around the £10 – £20 mark. This is where I say to you that its wrong and stupid to do that. But its not. Those lights are perfectly fine in most situations. Especially around central London where there is plenty of street lighting anyway and you just want to be seen.
However, if you have various particularly dark spots in your commute or you want to go on a few night rides, such as the Dunwich Dynamo, then you need to take things up to the next level. Now the next level doesn’t necessarily have to be £300 level such as the Light and Motion Seca. Those lights are extreme and only useful if you doing some crazy night mountain biking.
The right level is roundabout the £60 – £80 mark and the obvious light that falls into that category is the Busch and Muller Ixon IQ. This cheeky little number:
So when the guys over at Amba Marketing agreed to send one over to review I was pretty excited.
Luckily, it arrived in time for the Dunwich Dynamo. Installation was so easy even I could do it. My handlebars are fairly thin and I’ve had problems before with lights slipping around but this one accommodated just fine.
I happily rode off to the event with extra batteries in my bag just in case. Setting off at 9pm I used the low power setting. You have two choices. You can either put it on full power or low power. Of course with the latter you get more battery life.
The Ixon IQ light was quite incredible. It provided a decent beam that even as we cycled at high speeds down pitch black lanes I had no problem seeing around me and the road ahead. I found the high power mode largely unnecessary.
There were a couple of features I really liked about the B&M Ixon IQ. For one turning the light on involves holding down the button for a few seconds. This prevents it being accidentally pressed while it is in your bag. A problem that plagues a lot of rear bike lights. The other was the quick release mechanism and also the tool-less release of the bike mount. This is great for anyone who is alternating between two different bikes and doesn’t want their light to be stolen.
Upon arriving in Dunwich the light had coped the entire way. I used the B&M Ixon IQ for maybe around 6-7 hours and the beam was showing no signs of dying out and the unit hadn’t got hot to touch. Since then I’ve also used it a little when cycling around London. Despite not being entirely necessary for most London roads I did like having that extra light power and knowing that I would definitely be seen by pedestrians and drivers.
Here is a quick YouTube video someone else made showing the power of B&M Ixon IQ the beam. It doesn’t entirely do it justice but it is useful to watch:
What I liked
- Bright beam (40 LUX output)
- Good battery life (At lower power setting which was surprisingly bright you apparently get 20 hours)
- Good bicycle mount that doesn’t slip and quick to remove
- Doesn’t get hot
What I didn’t like
- Could have a slightly more compact design
- No blinking light mode
Overall review of the Ixon IQ
At £60 the Ixon IQ is the next step up from most low-priced bike lights. For that you get a very bright beam and well thought out design. A worthy upgrade if your commute involves a number of dark stretches.
Where you can buy one
The one place I managed to find the light at a decent price was Amazon.co.uk
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As seen on The Guardian, BBC and The Independent.