SIGMA POWER LED Evo PRO 900 LUMEN FRONT LIGHT408g £199.99
The Sigma Power LED EVO Pro 900 lumen front light is a four mode helmet or bar mounted unit delivering a trail friendly 900 lumens in top, though three other settings ensure it’s also practical for commuting and general road riding.
A penny shy of £200 seems comparatively steep given there’s a tsunami of sub £100 official imports boasting 1,500lumens plus. However, the Evo pro is superbly engineered throughout. Build quality is stereotypically Germanic, so I wasn’t surprised that ours passed my five minute hose-pipe torture test and accidental submersion.
Inside the beautifully machined and extremely water tight 6061 aluminium alloy shell lives a precision reflector, unique lens and their “multi-chip technology”.
Sigma have been very coy with the specifics but would tell me the LED contains several tiny chips, which are mounted in close proximity aboard a main unit. This achieves a powerful, consistent beam pattern, which is particularly important for high speed trail riding.
Sigma has bucked the trend for rubberised doughnut type mounting straps; opting instead, for a ratcheted resin design with rubberised jaws. Simple to fit and port between bars of varying diameters; its vice like grip spells an end to slippage. On the flip side, this also rules out minute tweaks while riding along.
While its Li-on cell is relatively compact and perfectly secure when tethered tight beneath the top tube, it seems biased toward helmet mounting. Talking of which, extension cabling is ample and the cell hasn’t bounded about like the proverbial Labrador puppy when occupying jersey/jacket pockets.
Sigma has also shunned USB in favour of old school plug in chargers. Zero to hero refuelling takes a full four hours but run times are quite impressive for a big-gun.
Depressing the lamp's huge, weatherproof switch for two seconds unleashes “Power”; that’s the full 900. Subsequent prods staircasing downwards to standard, low and flashing. Intuitive to use, it’s sufficiently jolt proof to rule out accidental power-ups.
Power lives up to its moniker and vastly superior to budget blasters boasting twice the lumens. Helmet mounted and paired with another high end 800 lumen model adorning the bars, I was able to slice through sweeping singletrack at around 23mph with ample warning of tree roots and other potential hazards.
Used as my only light source, this setting allowed me to tackle pitch black backwaters with similar enthusiasm-even when letting rip at 28-30mph; that combination of spot and flood gave 10-15metres notice of gaping holes, glass and similar nasties.
That said; its best saved for the trail- I was frequently dipping down to avoid dazzling oncoming vehicles. Ours consistently returned 3hrs 7minutes, regardless of temperature and other factors, which is similarly impressive.
Sigma don’t quote figures for standard but general consensus suggests in the region of 550-600lumens, which is ample for rural contexts at 20-25mph. Striking he right balance between power and economy, its returned 5hrs 23 from a full charge, which is considerably better than that offered by torch types with integral Li-on/polymer cells.
Entering city limits, energy saving delivered just the right balance of performance and economy when navigating the concrete jungle. A decent pool of light, broadly on par with commuter 220lumen commuter torches and won’t dazzle oncoming traffic, which seems a common problem with sub £100 fare.
Again, this sipped reserves to the tune of 5hrs and 26minutes - adequate for a week's middle distance commuting, assuming of course you didn’t opt for the higher settings and some backroad scratching after work. It’s also come in handy when tacking punctures and other roadside mechanicals.
Flashing is every bit as captivating as it is frugal and my default for dull, overcast afternoons. Friends suggest I was visible from 500 metres, nearer 650 along pitch-black lanes and ours has run for 10hrs 56 minutes without waning before completely drained, which could be an absolute life-saver in the event of accident, or having forgotten to charge the battery.
Pros: Beautifully made
Generous run times
Cons: Relatively expensive, Frame mounted carry sack would be welcomed.
Verdict 4/5:; Superbly well-made light offering plenty of useable power.
PUBLISHED DECEMBER 2016