Specialized Stix Sport Combo lightset review
We've tested Specialized's Stix Sport Combo lightset, a compact good value pair of lights to be seen with when out on the road. They're USB rechargeable and don't get in the way when riding. Note that Specialized has recalled all Stix and Flux lighting products due to overheating problems. These could result in burns or a fire. See https://sbc-media.s3.amazonaws.com/Lights%20-%20Rider%20Notice.pdf
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A neat, compact set of lights to be seen by, with good output and reasonable battery life, although the flashing LEDs can be distracting when recharging
Neat, sealed design
Don't get in the way when riding
Good battery life in flashing modes
USB plugs get mucky
Flashing lights are distracting when recharging
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For commuters and other riders wanting “to be seen” lights, Specialized’s Stix front and rear lightset is neatly designed. The lights are particularly unobtrusive, with a rubber strap at the end of each light to attach it securely to the bars and the seatpost. This allows you to position the front light in front of your stem faceplate, so that it’s well out of the way and doesn’t take up any space on the bar tops.
There are a total of six different modes and the lights flash quite brightly, with a claimed output of 70 lumens for the front and 14 lumens for the rear light. It’s plenty to get you seen, but not enough to ride by, although Specialized (opens in new tab) also sells a three LED version of each light if you want more output – up to 105 lumens for the front light and 20 at the back.
I found that in constant mode both lights give up after less than three hours. Select a flashing mode though and there’s more than enough staying power for longer rides.
>>> Buyer's guide to rear lights
The rear mount tends to leave the light pointing down, although this isn’t such a problem as the two LEDs are visible from quite a wide angle. The mount isn’t really designed to attach to a saddle pack’s light loop or other luggage though, so putting the light anywhere else but the seatpost is a bit tricky.
Flip up the end of the strap and there’s a USB plug beneath, allowing the light unit to be pulled out for recharging while leaving the strap in place. One problem with this arrangement is that the USB plug can get quite grimy – particularly at the back. If you just try to plug it into a USB socket without cleaning it, this can result in poor contact and the lights not charging up.
>>> 3300 lumen Lumicycle Apex light review
I found it was easy to rinse off the grime and wipe the USB plug with a paper towel though, as the units seem to be well-sealed. This got the units charging effectively. When they’re charging, the LEDs on the lights flash to indicate the charge status. This gets a bit distracting if you are using your computer: I covered them up with a sheet of paper.
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Paul started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2015, covering cycling tech, new bikes and product testing. Since then, he’s reviewed hundreds of bikes and thousands of other pieces of cycling equipment for the magazine and the Cycling Weekly website.
He’s been cycling for a lot longer than that though and his travels by bike have taken him all around Europe and to California. He’s been riding gravel since before gravel bikes existed too, riding a cyclocross bike through the Chilterns and along the South Downs.
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