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Specialized Flux 1250 helmet light review

Does this headlight design outshine rival torch-style lights?

Our rating 
3.5 out of 5 star rating 3.5
GBP £120.00 RRP | USD $140.00 | AUD $260.00
Specialized Flux 1250 - 01

Our review

A strong light that picks up the trail edges well, but with limited throw
Pros: Good design helps pick up the edges of the trail; reasonable battery time
Cons: Not enough power to the spot LED; changing modes isn’t the easiest; a little loose in the cradle
Skip to view product specifications

The Specialized Flux 1250 helmet light features two LEDs side by side, rather than a touch-type light, which most brands use. These are encased in a sturdy aluminium body that has a waterproof rating of IP67.

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This rating claims the light can withstand being submerged in water for up to 30 minutes. This should see you through even the worst downpour.

Specialized Flux 1250 helmet light specifications

Charging is via this side-mounted micro-USB port.
Luke Marshall / Our Media

Specialized uses CREE XP-L High Intensity LEDs. These put out a maximum of 1,250 lumens. There’s a spot optic and a wide-optic LED used to create a double beam pattern that’s intended to offer performance that touch-style lights can’t match.

These LEDs give off a white light rather than a warmer yellow.

The lens extends on the edges of the light, so you get 180-degree visibility

To power these LEDs, there’s a 3,400mAh battery, which is charged through a micro-USB port on the side of the case.

There are three steady modes: High (1,250 lumens), Medium (600 lumens) and Low (300 lumens), which are toggled through by pressing the mode button.

To change to a flashing setting, you need to hold the mode button down for approximately three seconds.

The mode selector button also houses the battery indicator light, which changes through green, amber and red, depending on remaining battery level. All this weighs in at a fairly heavy 183g.

The light clips into its mount securely, even though there’s a small rattle to it. This clip is connected to a GoPro-style Velcro mount that features a wide base and plenty of padding to protect your helmet when it’s fastened up.

Specialized Flux 1250 helmet light performance

Two CREE XP-L High Intensity LEDs give off a maximum 1,250 lumens.
Luke Marshall / Our Media

The mount is one of the better systems out there, even if it has a slight rattle. The wide base and soft padding make sure no damage occurs to the helmet, and the Velcro strap is simple enough to tension and pull tight.

Conveniently, the light body can be clipped in and out in a flash, which is helpful if you don’t plan on removing the whole mount from your helmet each time.

The GoPro-style connection enables you to easily angle the light where you need it. I found the light stayed in place when riding.

There’s a wide base with soft padding to protect your helmet from damage.
Luke Marshall / Our Media

The unit’s fairly heavy weight means you notice it on top of your helmet. However, with a well-fitting lid, I never had any issues with the light trying to pull the helmet around my head, or bouncing it around over rougher trails.

Specialized has done a good job with its wide-optic LED, which spreads the beam pattern far across the trail.

This makes it easy to pick up the the edges of whatever path you’re on, helping you tell which way the trail goes next.

The spot optic isn’t quite as impressive. There is definitely a brighter patch of light focused at the centre of the beam, but it doesn’t have the best throw down the trail.

The Velcro strap is straightforward to adjust.
Luke Marshall / Our Media

I wish Specialized had placed more emphasis on the spot rather than the wide optic to better help illuminate features on the trail, rather than those off to the sides.

This means when paired with a mountain bike light on your handlebars, it helps add to the lumens of that light rather than light up the trail further ahead.

The beam doesn’t show up any significant hotspots, thanks to its wide spread of light. It wasn’t tiring on the eyes.

I managed to get a burn time of one hour, 41 minutes on full power, which is similar to what Specialized suggests.

Specialized Flux 1250 helmet light bottom line

The Flux 1250 does things differently to other lights.
Luke Marshall / Our Media

The Flux 1250 does things differently from most other mountain bike helmet lights. It has two side-by-side LEDs, including a spot and flood beam.

It has a reasonably bright spot in the centre and an extensive spread that helps you pick out the trail’s edges.

The large mount is well padded and secure, although the light has a slight rattle in its cradle.

Throw down the trail is limited, though, and overall brightness is middling even from its 1,250 lumens.

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I feel these get distributed too wide. They’re useful for double tracks, but too many lumens are lost for singletrack, where the lesser output from the spot LED means it’s not the best for highlighting trail features.

How we tested

We put six helmet-compatible lights to the test. With prices ranging from £65 to £265, there should be something for everyone’s budget.

The lights chosen here have an output of 450 lumens up to 2,100 lumens. That covers everything from occasional use or as a backup light, to full-on, high-speed riding.

We tested how each light performs riding back-to-back runs on the same trails, comparing beam pattern, LED colour, ease of operation and, most importantly, light projection.

We also timed them all on maximum power to find out just how long the batteries last, and whether they live up to the brands’ claims.

While many of these lights can also be used as handlebar-mounted units, for this test, they were specifically reviewed for use as helmet lights for off-road night riding.

Head to BikeRadar’s round-up of the best helmet lights for our pick of the bunch.

Also tested

Product Specifications

Product

Price AUD $260.00GBP £120.00USD $140.00
Weight 182g
Brand Specialized

Features

Features Run time: 1hr 41mins (measured)
Battery capacity: 3,400mAh
Light type: Helmet, front
Integrated battery Yes
Output (lumens) 1250