Jake Dyson task light

A gorgeous piece of engineering from Jake Dyson

Image: Hugh Threlfall

In a recent Technopolis, I mentioned male-grooming matters that I’ve become rather particular about in recent years – decent haircuts, teeth, spectacles and T-shirts among them. Moving on from attire, another thing I could have touched on was lighting. I can’t exaggerate how much I despise horrible lighting, from fluorescents to cheap, roasting-hot, patchy desk lights. And most modern lighting with eco-bloomin’-friendly bulbs stinks, thanks to that miserable, cold, flickery glare exuding all the joy of a chilly room on a December night in a low-budget motel.

I am particularly delighted, then, by this eco-matey but gorgeous desk light from clever Jake Dyson, illustrious son of James – who himself is on a roll these days with those bladeless fans and the DC35 multifloor vacuum, one of my top products of the year. Jake is a lighting specialist and a seriously talented engineer, and this, the Csys (pronounced “c-sis”) Task Light is, for me, simply the best desk light ever – as well as being a fascinating piece of mechanical and electrical engineering. I can’t think of anything I would be happier to receive this Christmas than a Csys, especially in the blue colour pictured.


A Csys, as you will obviously know, is the system of co-ordinates that defines an object’s position in the X, Y and Z axes. But last things first before the science bit. The perfectly directed pool of light the Csys throws down is superbly bright and of a proper, warm, incandescent colour. It’s dimmable by a satisfying finger touchpad. And with just 8.8W of power, it runs at such a low temperature that the eight LEDs in the head are guaranteed for a slightly eccentric 37 years. This figure is based on a 160,000-hour minimum life. You may better that, if you live to tell the tale.

The light’s mechanism, based on a combination of a construction-site crane and a drawing board, is both smooth and pleasurable, and allows for meticulously precise placing of the light. The most significant of the many techie virtues of the Csys is the heat-pipe technology, derived from satellites, which sucks heat away from the LEDs and spreads it harmlessly along that horizontal strut. The strut ends up gently warm to the touch, the bulbs themselves just cool… like the Csys itself.