Cateye's EL-120 is designed as a backup or town light. To that end it doesn't have the brightest beam but the light it does put out is well-focused and useful and certainly enough to get you home.
Side visibility is addressed in the design but to be honest it's pretty average; other Cateye units fare much better in this area. If you regularly dart out of junctions at night you might want something with a bit more peripheral light.
Where the EL-120 does score is in its simplicity. The rubber band clamp isn't as secure as other mounts but it's literally a five second job to fix the light on your bars and when you remove it you take the mount with you. If you've got multiple bikes it's a godsend, just bung the light in your bag and you can ride without worrying about which mount is where.
The light comes supplied with 2xAA batteries, after six weeks of regular commuting they're still going strong so no worries on battery life. Weather sealing is up to wet riding but it's not a light you'd want to leave outside as it's certainly not watertight. There's no need to, however, as it's so easy to fit and remove.
Does the job as a town light although side visibility isn't great. Where it really scores is when you've got more than one bike, the band mount is simple and effective
If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website
Make and model: Cateye HL-EL120 Front Light
Size tested: n/a
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes, most of the time
Would you consider buying the product? Maybe, though I'd generally go for something a bit brighter
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Maybe, if they had a lot of bikes!
Age: 36 Height: 190cm Weight: 105kg
I usually ride: Schwinn Moab, urbanised with 700cs My best bike is: Trek 1.5 with upgrades
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb, Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling
Dave is a founding father of road.cc, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.