Petzl

Best Headlamps and Torches for Outdoor Adventures

Headlamps and torches are essential tools for outdoor enthusiasts, hikers, campers, and anyone who needs a reliable source of light in the dark. These devices provide hands-free illumination, which is particularly useful for activities like setting up a tent, cooking, or navigating a trail. A high-quality headlamp or torch can also be a lifesaver in emergency situations.

When choosing a headlamp or torch, there are several critical factors to consider. The first is brightness. You want a device that is bright enough to illuminate your path but not so bright that it blinds you or drains the battery quickly. The second is beam distance and width. A headlamp or torch with a long beam distance is useful for spotting things in the distance, while a wide beam is better for illuminating a broader area. The third is battery life. You want a device that will last long enough to get you through your activity without running out of power.

We spent countless hours researching and testing ten headlamps and torches to identify the ones that provide the best combination of brightness, beam distance and width, and battery life. In this article, we’ll share our top picks and explain why they are the best options for different activities. Whether you’re a serious hiker, a casual camper, or just need a reliable source of light for your next outdoor adventure, we’ve got you covered.

 

Best Headlamps and Torches

We know how important it is to have a reliable source of light when you’re out in the great outdoors, whether you’re camping, hiking, or exploring. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best headlamps and torches on the market. Our team has extensively researched and tested each product to ensure that they meet our high standards for quality, durability, and performance. With our list, you’ll be able to find the perfect source of light for your next adventure.

Black Diamond Equipment Spot 400 Headlamp, Graphite

Black Diamond Equipment Spot 400 Headlamp, Graphite

We highly recommend the Black Diamond Equipment Spot 400 Headlamp for anyone looking for a reliable and high-quality headlamp.

Pros

  • The red light function is extremely useful and the wide angle/flood beam is perfect for use indoors and at short distances.
  • The spot beam is great and bright enough to illuminate most anything you’d need to see at night, and can be adjusted down.
  • The headlamp is lightweight and waterproof, making it perfect for outdoor activities.

Cons

  • The controls can be a bit difficult to use and the instructions provided are not very helpful.
  • The power button is small and the headband is narrow, which may not be comfortable for everyone.
  • The headlamp does not come with a rechargeable battery and charger, which may be a downside for some users.

We found that the Black Diamond Equipment Spot 400 Headlamp is a great product that is both reliable and durable. The red light function is a great feature to have, especially for outdoor activities where you don’t want to disturb others. The wide angle/flood beam is perfect for use indoors and at short distances, and the spot beam is great for illuminating objects at a distance. The headlamp is also lightweight and waterproof, making it perfect for outdoor activities.

However, we did find that the controls can be a bit difficult to use and the instructions provided are not very helpful. The power button is also small and the headband is narrow, which may not be comfortable for everyone. Additionally, the headlamp does not come with a rechargeable battery and charger, which may be a downside for some users.

Overall, we believe that the Black Diamond Equipment Spot 400 Headlamp is a great product that is definitely worth considering for anyone in need of a reliable and high-quality headlamp.

 

Petzl Swift RL Rechargeable Headlamp

 

Petzl Swift RL Rechargeable Headlamp

If you’re looking for a headlamp that adapts to your needs, the Petzl Swift RL Rechargeable Headlamp is a great choice.

Pros

  • The automatic brightness adjustment is a game-changer, as it senses light levels and adjusts the brightness for you.
  • The headlamp is powerful and lightweight, with 900 lumens in just 100g.
  • It’s easy to use, with a single button to turn it on/off, switch light modes, change brightness, and lock when not in use.

Cons

  • The battery life on higher settings could be better.
  • Some reviewers have noted that the maximum brightness isn’t quite 900 lumens.
  • The price point is a bit high compared to some other headlamps on the market.

We’ve been using the Petzl Swift RL for a few months now, and it’s quickly become our go-to headlamp for trail running and hiking. The automatic brightness adjustment is a huge plus, as it saves battery life and ensures that we always have the right amount of light for the situation. We also appreciate how lightweight the headlamp is, which makes it comfortable to wear for long periods of time.

One thing to note is that the battery life on higher settings isn’t the best, so you’ll want to keep that in mind if you’re planning on using the headlamp on its brightest setting for extended periods of time. Additionally, some reviewers have noted that the maximum brightness isn’t quite 900 lumens, although we haven’t noticed this to be a major issue.

Overall, we highly recommend the Petzl Swift RL Rechargeable Headlamp for anyone looking for a high-quality, adaptable headlamp for outdoor activities.

ThruNite TH30 V2 Headlamp

ThruNite TH30 V2 Headlamp

We highly recommend the ThruNite TH30 V2 Headlamp for anyone in need of a powerful and reliable headlamp for outdoor activities.

Pros

  • The 2nd generation of CREE XHP70 LED makes output up to 3320 lumens and max beam distance of 185 yd, illuminating a large area like the daytime.
  • Equipped with micro USB C charging port and a high power capacity rechargeable IMR battery, and could be used for incredibly 29 days in firefly mode.
  • A single on/off button allows you to operate the headlamp with just one hand. Easy to change brightness modes (Firefly / Low / Medium-low / Medium / High / Turbo / SOS).

Cons

  • The headband may feel a bit tight for some users.
  • The headlamp may get a bit warm after extended use.
  • The button may be a bit difficult to press with gloves on.

The ThruNite TH30 V2 Headlamp is an ultra-bright and lightweight hands-free flashlight that weighs just 5.76 ounces (163.5g including battery), making you feel nothing while wearing it on hand. The headlamp is multifunctional and can become an essential tool and gadget when you’re going on a backpacking trip, walking the dog in the evening, car camping with friends or family, hiking, cycling, or hunting.

The headlamp’s long-lasting battery life is impressive, and it can be recharged easily using the included micro USB C charging cable. The headlamp is also easy to operate with just one hand, thanks to its single on/off button. The button allows you to change between brightness modes quickly and easily, making it a convenient tool to have on hand.

Overall, the ThruNite TH30 V2 Headlamp is an excellent investment for anyone in need of a powerful and reliable headlamp for outdoor activities. Its long-lasting battery life, easy operation, and ultra-bright LED make it a top contender for the best headlamp on the market.

Nitecore NU35 Headlamp

Nitecore NU35 Headlamp

If you are looking for a headlamp that is versatile and provides a long runtime, then the Nitecore NU35 is a great option.

Pros

  • The NU35 has triple light sources, including an auxiliary red light and high CRI white light, making it ideal for various working environments.
  • It comes with amazing features like an 80 adjustable tilt, a flexible headband with reflective safety strips, a non-PWM constant beam, and physical protection against accidental activation.
  • With 5 LEDs, this jam-packed light offers a range of 460 to 1 lumens of white illumination, a high-CRI beam for reading, three red lighting modes for preserving your night vision, and both beacon and SOS functions.

Cons

  • The NU35 is a bit heavier than other headlamps on the market, which may be uncomfortable for some users during extended use.
  • The headband is not adjustable, which may make it difficult to find a comfortable fit for some users.
  • The charging cable is not very long, which may be inconvenient for some users.

We have used the Nitecore NU35 headlamp on several occasions, and we have found it to be a reliable and versatile source of light. The triple light sources provide ample illumination for any situation, and the adjustable tilt and flexible headband make it easy to find a comfortable fit. The physical protection against accidental activation is a great feature, as it ensures that the light will not turn on unexpectedly and drain the battery.

The NU35’s long runtime is also a major selling point, as it can provide up to 170 hours of uninterrupted illumination. The non-PWM constant beam ensures that the light is stable and flicker-free, which is important for those who use the light for extended periods of time.

Overall, we would highly recommend the Nitecore NU35 headlamp to anyone in need of a reliable and versatile source of light. Whether you are camping, hiking, or working in low-light conditions, the NU35 is sure to provide the illumination you need.

Buying Guide

When it comes to choosing the best headlamp or torch, there are a few key features that you should consider. In this section, we’ll discuss those features so that you can make an informed decision.

Brightness

One of the most important factors to consider is brightness. The brightness of a headlamp or torch is measured in lumens, which is a measure of the total amount of light emitted. The higher the lumens, the brighter the light. When choosing a headlamp or torch, consider the environment in which you’ll be using it. If you’ll be using it in a dark, outdoor environment, you’ll want a higher lumen output.

Battery Life

Another important factor to consider is battery life. The battery life of a headlamp or torch is determined by the type of battery used and the brightness level. Look for a headlamp or torch with a long battery life if you’ll be using it for extended periods of time.

Beam Distance

Beam distance is another key factor to consider. This is the distance that the light will travel before it starts to fade. If you’ll be using your headlamp or torch for outdoor activities like hiking or camping, you’ll want a longer beam distance.

Durability

Durability is also important, especially if you’ll be using your headlamp or torch in rugged outdoor environments. Look for a headlamp or torch that is made from durable materials and is designed to withstand the elements.

Comfort

Finally, consider comfort when choosing a headlamp or torch. Look for a headlamp or torch that is lightweight and comfortable to wear for extended periods of time. Adjustable straps and headbands can also help ensure a comfortable fit.

By considering these factors, you can choose the best headlamp or torch for your needs.

 

View the comprehensive listing of the Best Tactical Flashlights here: