While lighting technology has vastly improved, I am still a bit behind the curve. The small rechargeable lights are nice for the occasional after dark roll. I still like having a dyno powered light on one of my bikes. The world of dyno hubs has become a big market and the tech has improved tremendously.
One would think that jumping into the pool would be a natural for somebody like me, but I can't seem to make the leap. What seems to be the best of the lot is the SONdelux which is the lightest I could find and still adds 390 grams to the bike. That's about 1/2 the weight of the popular Shimano dynohub. Compared to the weight of regular 105 hub and maybe 100 grams for a tire driven dyno it's a lot. Then there is the drag, the dynohubs create additional friction even when they are disengaged, the tire driven do not. Then there is the price. The SONdelux is nearly 3 times as expensive as the best tire driven dyno and a decent hub.
Dyno-Hub BM tire dyno
Cost $300 $95 (w/105 hub)
Weight(est) 400-700 g 250 g (w/105 hub)
Drag disengaged yes 0
tension adjustment no yes
Versitile between bikes? maybe yes
compatible with all light bramds no yes
I guess the best way to decide is just look at your needs. If you commute everyday in the dark, or are preparing for the next Paris-Brest-Paris, a dyno hub might be a good purchase. I don't think this is a symptom of a Retro-Grouch, I recognize the viability of new tech (I even installed a threadless headset once)I just don't see a practical application for it. The hub dynamos are all anybody wants to talk about, but I just can't see it because I don't have a daily need for lighting.
By far the best source for information is going to be Peter White Cycles. Peter is the importer for the best systems and his website provides a wealth of comparative data concerning the latest products.
This is a shameless attempt to save the the most advanced civilization in
history from imminent self destruction by eliminating carbon emission,
dependence on foreign sources of fuel,obesity, hypertension and diabetes.
Cycling accomplishes all those things at once and helps us develop a better
understanding of ourselves, each other and our relationship to the cosmos.
Oh, horse puckey!
I like to ride bikes, have been doing it all my life.
The rest of that crap is just a fringe benefit,
and the blogosphere gives me a chance to share my interior
monologue with virtual rather than imaginary friends.