The Cateye AMPP800 has a quality feel to it straight out of the box. The body of the light is aluminium and anodised to help protect against scratches. The light is impressive in both distance and visibility, utilising Opticube lens technology allows the beam to be seen from the side, enhancing your chances of being seen.
The beam shape isn’t a circle but more of an ellipse and with just a single Cree LED it’s surprising how much you can see. While it may not shine as far in front of you as other lights, it will undoubtedly enable you to see more of what’s around you helping to avoid any obstacles.
There are five light modes to choose between: –
High – produces 800 lumens
Medium – 400 lumens
Low – 200 lumens
Daytime hyper constant (flashing) – 200 lumens constant / 800 lumens flashing
Flashing – 200 lumens
While I like having the light on the brightest setting, I found that unless you’ve angled the light down other road users would start to flash me. I mainly used the light on either the medium setting; this setting is more than ample to see in the dark and be noticed by other road users.
The daytime running was ok, and I think the light’s flashing at 800 lumens certainly got other road users’ attention. I never had vehicles pull out on me, and they all seemed to see me coming up the road.
As with all rechargeable light’s the battery never lasts as long as stated due to the fact, you’ll never be able to reproduce the test conditions. That said this light’s battery lasted longer than I expected on max power; it was only 16 minutes less than the stated 1.5hrs. Considering the size of the light, this was impressive.
On the medium setting, the battery lasted just over 3.5hrs, not the stated 4hrs; this was good enough for three days of commuting to work before charging the light. Obviously, if you run the light in different modes and different conditions when cycling, the battery times will differ.
There’s a three-level battery indicator that tells you when you get below 50% power by turning the light on/off button from blue to amber. Once the light drops below 30%, it turns red, giving you ample warning that your light will be starting to run out of electricity.
You get a USB cable in the box although its a bit on the short side you may need another longer cable. To charge the light, remove the silicone tab from the micro-USB connection then connect it to either a power outlet, power bank, or a computer. Charging times will vary and depends on the amount of charge your device is sending to the battery, on average I found that the light takes around 4hrs from less than 30% to fully charged when connected to a laptop
Connecting the light to your handlebars is simple enough with the flextight clamp. It uses a nut to screw it down tight. I’m not a fan of this clamp and swapped it out for another clamp I used on a previous Cateye light. The reason for this was I didn’t believe that it would stay done uptight. Now I may be wrong, but considering the light’s price, I wasn’t prepared to take the risk. I did try the original clamp on a set of Aero bars and found that it didn’t fit the tail of the clamp needed to be about another two centimetres longer.
The light does detach from the bar attachment making it easy to take with you; it’s small and fits into a pocket easily. If you use the original clamp removing the whole setup only takes a few seconds. This would be an advantage if you keep changing between bikes and want to take the light with you.
Overall, the Cateye AMPP800 is a great commuter light giving you all the options you could want on a ride. I wouldn’t recommend this light as your primary off-road night riding light as it wouldn’t last long enough. However, it could make a great addition, especially with the wide beam to avoid obstacles.
The light is a bit expensive, but the light’s build quality is excellent, it’s just the clamp I feel lets the whole package down as it has the feel of being done as an afterthought.