Planet Bike Superflash Turbo Tail Light

31 Aug

A few weeks ago I published a review of the Planet Bike Superflash Tail Light. I started using the Superflash last year and liked it so much I bought four of them (one for each bike I own). Well, the folks at Plant Bike have not been resting on their laurels—they’ve come out with the Superflash Turbo, a tail light with twice the power of the original Superflash!

Planet Bike Superflash Turbo Tail Light

Planet Bike Superflash Turbo Tail Light

If you look at the two Superflash units side-by-side you will not see much difference at all—they are the same size and weight and the only difference you will notice is in the color scheme. They both run on two AAA batteries and the batteries will last around 100 hours (in flash mode). If you turn both units on and hold them at arm’s length I doubt that you could tell them apart (they will both just about blind you). The real difference is seen as you get further away from the units. At 100 feet away you can easily tell the two flash units apart, and at 1,000 feet the difference will blow you away!

The Superflash Turbo has two different operating modes: steady (always on) and turbo flash mode. I think the steady mode on any tail light is a waste of time—even a bright light gets “lost” except on the darkest of nights. I always run my tail lights in the blinking mode since it seems to draw a lot more attention. However, the turbo flash mode is not just an on/off mode. The turbo mode is intermittent—the powerful one-watt power main light on top flashes first, then the two LEDs in the lower part of the unit flash in an irregular pattern.

The Superflash Turbo comes with brackets that should allow you to mount this tail light on just about any bike. It also has a clip so you can attach it to you seat bag or jersey pocket.

The Superflash Turbo retails for $35, which is just $5 more than the regular Superflash. To me, the choice between the two is a no-brainer: just buy the Superflash Turbo. The extra $5 gives you twice the light and a better flash pattern.


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8 responses to “Planet Bike Superflash Turbo Tail Light

  1. pathguy

    August 31, 2011 at 11:46 AM

    Thanks for contributing all of the great reviews!

  2. AllSeasonsCyclist

    August 31, 2011 at 1:40 PM

    Pathguy: I enjoy having a chance to write about cycling products I love (and commenting on a few products I don’t like).

  3. Sam

    September 25, 2011 at 12:28 AM

    Another great choice with similar power but also with a built-in high-quality reflector is Radbot 1000 from Portland Design Works. I own a few of both of these and usually ride with the Radbot as it’s at least as visible, but with the ‘fizzZZZZzzzz-POP-POP-POP’ pattern a bit less annoying to your pals on a group ride. Check it out, available on Amazon etc. Also, both use the same mount so if you have both they’re interchangeable.

  4. AllSeasonsCyclist

    September 25, 2011 at 12:55 AM

    Sam, I own two of the Radbot 1000 lights, and you are correct — they are just as bright. I plan on reviewing the Radbot 1000 later. I’m sure you are familiar with Murphy’s law (“Anything that can possibly go wrong, does”). Well, I believe Murphy was a flaming optimist! I always use two tail lights on night rides (one Superflash, one Radbot). I have one light mounted on the seat post and the other on my seat bag — since they have two different flash patterns they really stand out at night.

  5. William A. Kaiser

    April 14, 2014 at 4:28 PM

    I have the Turbo 1watt and the super Flash 1/2 watt cant tell the difference. 1/2 watt looks eather as bright or brighter. Lost the turbo but foune it fell off over a railroad track. I have used the turb for tw years and 8000 miles came apart the Sunday.Best likght for the price.Should be mandatory on all Road rider Bike.Some cars dont move not matter what.But most move over more with the light vs. no light.

    • All Seasons Cyclist

      April 14, 2014 at 8:56 PM

      I now own FIVE Planet Bike Superflash Turbo Tail Lights—I have one on each of my bikes. They ought to be standard equipment on every new bike!

  6. Vic of New York

    August 20, 2014 at 1:53 PM

    …Now, if they could only figure out a way to keep the lens and guts from popping out when riding over rough roads! Hint, a machine screw through the lens and back plate for possitive closure instead of a snap-on lens.

    • All Seasons Cyclist

      August 20, 2014 at 2:14 PM

      I wrap a zip-tie around my taillights after I put them on the saddle bag—it not only prevents the problem you mentioned, but it makes it impossible for the light to fall off on rough roads.


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