Power of the edits..

While I always like to process images as little as possible, if at all, some times it’s a requirement of every shot.

Here, for instance this shot taken from my Spark. It lacks depth and colour. Visually, it just didn’t stand out.

However, a little time spent in the Google Photos editor tweaking exposure, clarity, saturation and blacks improve things.

Shadows have a bit more depth, the colours are less muted but still hold the autumn setting.

You don’t take a photograph, you make it

Ansel Adams

So, don’t be afraid to play with the sliders, just don’t overdo it, and keep it realistic and you’ll do just fine.

Different strokes

I thought I’d just make a quick post about the difference in the rear lights in these two images.

The top image is the See.Sense Icon+, and the bottom one is the Exposure TraceR react. Both lights are Set to their maximum output, although the Icon may of limited its power as its stationary. However, the difference here is notable. The TraceR directs alot more light back, and spilling further out, whereas the Icon spits light out in almost every direction.

So, which light is better for visibility on the road? While they both do a superb job, the Icon is more eye-catching, and dispite not casting light as far back as the TraceR, it is just, if not more visible, than the TraceR.

I’d certainly feel safe with either light on the rear, but would nearly always reach for the Icon when heading out.

One bonus of the TraceR is that mount. It takes up alot less space on the post than the Icon, so if space is an issue, such as running with a saddle bag the TraceR fits better.

Exposure TraceR

While my Icon+ is away being repaired under warranty, I’ve been using a Exposure TraceR.

And truth be told, it’s a fantastic light.

Pumping out 75 lumens, for its size is remarkable. Visible from a distance, and with its daybright settings very noticeable during the day, but unlike the icon, the flash pattern is the same, one long flash and two rapid, whereas the icon seems to be more random, with increased detection of the surroundings. The tracer is constantly lit however, which gives drivers the ability to judge distance in the dark.

Runtime is good, with 6 hours on the high flash, is more than enough to ride for a good week before recharge. Which brings me onto the only issue I have. The charging port is covered by a silicon band, and that is incredibly hard to move but does make for a very watertight seal.

The react built into the light works in a similar fashion to the see.sense, but I think the see.sense is more adaptable to the environment, and noticeable to those behind.

What both lights share, is pain for those riding behind you. Even on the lower settings they distract, and in some cases are quite painful to ride behind. At least with these lights you’ll be sent to the back, and never have to have a turn on the front.. Well, that’s my excuse anyway 🙂

Will it replace my icon+ as my favourite? It’s close, but no.

New toys

So, Ive gone and got myself a couple of new toys to play with. With doing more and more dark rides, I decided to up the lighting game and bought a diablo and tracer light. Neither of which I really need, but hey, why the hell not.

The tracer is to complement the see.sense rear, which having recently died a death is being replaced under warranty. I really didn’t want to be stuck with the cateye rapid x should things die again. Although it’s a good light, it isn’t the most powerful light.

The diablo will mostly be used mounted on the helmet to complement the Volt 800. Not on road, but definitely down the cycle paths. The diablo is certainly a beautiful piece of engineering, light and yet solid with its solid metal construction. Only issue is a short battery life on full blast. I don’t envisage running it on full much, if ever. So one of the lower power settings should do just fine,with occasional blasts of 1500 lumens.

Targets

This year, I’m planning to ride at least 2018 with my strava plan being set to 2500, which works out to 50 miles a week. But already the plans have been scuppered by the storm, and I’ve only got 19 miles down. Hopefully I’ll get a couple of 20 milers done before Monday. If not, it’ll be added onto next week’s totals. So long as I get more than 2018 miles or more this year I’ll be happy.

I tend to wimp out for heavy winds,rain and old I can deal with, but winds are my limit. With gusts approach 40mph and more, it would be stupidity on my part to ride, especially since most of the routes I ride this would equate into a side wind for most of it,and that dos’nt make good conditions to ride in.