Headlamp Reviews 2018 [Black Diamond, Petzl, Fenix, OLight]

Headlamp Reviews – Top Headlamps

Roughly in order as to how much we like them (Favorites at the Top)

  • Petzl DUO S (Pre-Review) – 1,100 lumens – potentially the best headlamp for everything. Multiple LEDs and beam profiles.
  • Petzl Ultra Rush – 760 lumens – the ultimate headlamp in our opinion (until the DUO S is released).
  • Petzl Nao+ Plus – 750 lumens – lightweight and great for runners, hikers, campers, fishing, literally everything.
  • OLight H2R Nova Cool White – lightweight and nice features, including a blistering 2,300 Lumens burst mode (lasts 1 minute, then drops to 750 lumens for 110 mins.).
  • Petzl Nao 2 – 575 lumens – lightweight and ideal for runners, camping, everything.
  • Petzl Myo – 370 lumens – lightweight and ideal for runners. Ordered – waiting for delivery.
  • Petzl Actik Core – 350 lumens – good for many activities. Safety whistle; Red light; Red strobe.
  • OLight HS2 – OLight is a company you may not have heard of. Great headlamps!
  • Fenix HL60R – 950 lumens – nice light, strong, and decent battery life.
  • Fenix HP25 – 360 lumens – great long-range spot beam for hunting.
  • Black Diamond Icon – 500 lumens (for 20 mins.) Good feature-set.
  • LedLenser – 3 headlamps – expensive, tough, rarely seen.
  • Petzl BINDI – super lightweight, 37 grams and 200 lumens
  • Petzl DUO Z1 – 360 lumens with ATEX 1/21 explosive environments rating.
  • Petzl DUO Z2 – 400 lumens with ATEX 2/22 explosive environments rating.
  • Petzl TIKKID – for children, 20 lumens – a small, lightweight headlamp for small kids.
  • Petzl Ultra Vario and TRIOS Helmet Review – for caving!
  • Energizer Hard Case – 325 lumens. Hard case. We bought this one basically to show you that you shouldn’t buy it, and choose another headlamp. Really, it’s quite bad. At least Energizer has finally started using LED instead of tungsten bulbs! Ordered – waiting for delivery.

NOTE – unlinked headlamps are new items and we’ve ordered them already. When they are delivered, we’ll create comprehensive headlamp reviews for each. Bookmark this page!

Our Comprehensive Headlamp Reviews

We started Headlamps101 after buying dozens of flashlights and running and herping headlamps over the years. What is herping – right? Looking for reptiles at night in the tropical rainforest in Southeast Asia! Anyway… after buying hundreds of dollars of lights over the years, I finally found a good headlamp company. Petzl. Since then I’ve spent over $1,000 on Petzl headlamps, and I’ve sold hundreds of Petzl and other headlamps here on this site using Amazon.

There are currently only a few companies that we trust enough to make a recommendation to you to buy: Petzl, Fenix, Black Diamond (1 headlamp), OLight, Coast.

That’s it. You won’t find “Energizer” headlamps spoken of well here. You won’t find any of the other no-name companies online who are selling $4 headlamps from China on Amazon as $29.99 headlamps.

Our headlamp reviews are comprehensive. We cover everything about a headlamp you could possibly want to know, and more too. We really go into it. I’m so fanatical about headlamps and what they can do, that I put a lot into my reviews. You’ll see that as you browse through the most comprehensive headlamp reviews in existence.

Headlamp Review Factors

We look at these factors for each headlamp and give you as much information as possible to help you come answer the question – “Which headlamp is best for…”

  • Price – huge differences in cost from least to most expensive.
  • Weight and Balance – we don’t recommend headlamps which are out of balance, or too heavy.
  • Availability – we have Amazon links to where you can buy today.
  • Brightness – important, and yet the beam shape and color balance are also just as important as lumen strength.
  • LED Beam Shape – very important for whatever activity you use your headlamp for.
  • LED Beam Color (white balance) – super important, and yet overlooked on all other headlamp sites.
  • Settings – general settings so you can operate your headlamp.
  • Special Features – red lights, strobes, boost beams.
  • Battery Life & Replacement Cost
  • What the Headlamp is Best for – running, hiking, fishing, caving, etc.
  • Headlamp Photos – from different angles.
  • Headlamp Review Videos – covering normal and atypical use.
  • Comparison Videos – we compare headlamps to show you the differences in beam strength, shape, color, size, etc.

Best Headlamps 2018 (all on one page) >