CatEye HL-EL340 Lights


The CatEye Econom HL-EL340 Headlight is a battery operated bicycle headlight. The lights Reverse Offset Lens (ROL) technology is able too produce 1,000cd, which makes the rider visible to motorists and other riders. The light comes with two AA batteries


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[Dec 07, 2012]
Gregory Clift


bright light, far reaching beam, light weight, ease of battery change


control button

I am a big user of Cateye lights. Always have been.

I got this light on sale for a really good price to replace a EL530 that just quit all of the sudden. I was very happy with the bright beam on that light and this EL340 was speced to be even better.

I bought the light for my rain/Winter bike, so it sat unused mostly for a months.

Then I remembered that all Cateye mounts are inter-operable with their requisite lights (front or back). That meant that I had an extra mount from the EL530 that I left on the rain bike and then put the other mount for the EL340 on my "super commuter".

So I've been using the EL340 a lot and can say I am very happy, and feeling stupid that I let it sit around all Summer & Fall.

Holding down the on/off button for about 1.5 seconds activates the light. If you tap the same button once, a dimmer beam is projected. If you tap it a few times, the blinky setting is activated. Holding down the button turns off the light.

The light came with batteries which are never super-energized. This allowed me to see what happens when the batteries die. A red LED turns on under the on/off button and then your light shuts down. This leaves you without a light so, not the end of the world, but a little troubling.

I replaced the batteries and the light works as great as ever. Because it is only 2 AA batteries, it is pretty light. A problem I had with the EL530 was the 4AA batteries it used. It was heavy and one time even popped out of the bracket and went skipping down the road next to me. The mounting interface with the EL340 is very secure. Combined with the light overall weight of the light, I foresee no troubles.

One minor issue I've had is with the control button. It is very easy and intuitive to use when standing next to the bike, but using it while riding has not been perfect for me yet. Switching between a constant and flashing beam requires tapping the button while going down the road. My only gripe is that sometimes I have to have a few tries before I get it right.

I ride through a park to and from work. A lot of the street lights are dim so it is good to have a bright light to see road obstacles, branches, raccoons, etc. When I get back to city streets, I like that you can switch to flashing to extend battery life and still be seen.

I can report that automobiles can see this light. A person was backing out of their driveway on a downhill near my house. I had the light on solid high setting. They saw me coming, stopped, and even put the car into gear to go back into their driveway to get out of the way. Now that's bright.

I have not gotten the light out on an early fitness ride scenario to see if the light is bright enough to ride down rural unlit roads, but from what I can interpret from my park riding, it should suffice for everything except fast descending in the dark.

Overall, great value, great utility, great light!

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