If you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to go through all the reviews and buying advice compiled by our researchers but you do want to find the best headlamp money can buy, this short paragraph should tell you everything you need to know. Some activities require you to be able to see clearly and keep your hands free and since this requires a specific type of light we have read through expert reviews, feedback from consumers, followed social media activity, and compared price, value for your money, and brand quality so we could gather the information we need to find the best LED headlights. While there are several models to choose the Streamlight 61052 caught our attention due to its seven bright LED lights that can be adjusted to three levels of brightness, along with its comfortable strap and ability to tilt 90 degrees to help prevent painful neck fatigue. While we do think this is the best LED headlamp, especially considering it can run for up to 120 hours on three fully charged AAA batteries, we also understand that it might not be exactly what everyone is looking for. If this headlamp is out of your price range or simply not easily available we also recommend the Energizer 6 LED model which is also capable of providing you with the extra light you need to accomplish your tasks, even though it is not adjustable and has a shorter running time.
How to Select a New Headlamp
Sometimes it is just not possible to hold a flashlight and safely move around in the dark, which is why a headlamp often comes in handy. The brightest headlamp will safely light a trail at night or illuminate a dark attic, while leaving your hands free. There are several factors to consider before you choose a headlamp, and the informative tips included below can help you pick the right one for you.
Type of Beam
LED headlamps are the most common due to its long lasting and energy efficient design. While this ensures that you have a strong, bright and steady beam, there are still a few other aspects to consider. The type of beam will determine the best use of the headlamp, and there are three main types to choose from. Wide or flood beams are ideal for close up views, and are not designed to be used for seeing items at a distance. Narrow, focused or spot beams emit a tight stream of light that will clearly illuminate a trail in the dark, and are also a great choice for seeing things at a distance. Flood or spot beams can also be adjusted for added versatility.
The type of beam will also determine brightness, which is measured in lumens, along with the distance the light is able to penetrate.
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Run time and weight
Most manufacturers list the average run time for the light bulb in the product description, and it can vary dramatically between models. The run time for a headlamp is determined by how long the bulb is capable of producing the same amount of light at 2 meters as the moon, and if you plan on using the headlamp on camping trips or for exploring dark caves you want to make sure that the model you chose has a relatively long run time.
The weight of a headlamp is another important consideration, especially if you plan on wearing it for long periods. Most basic models weigh on average around 7 ounces with batteries, but you can find some higher priced headlamps that weigh a little less. Extra battery packs and chargers can also increase the weight. The best rechargeable headlamp will be light enough to wear comfortably, while still having a long running time.
Inexpensive headlamps typically come with two modes for adjusting brightness, but there are models that come with more. Being able to adjust the level of brightness allows you to use the headlamp in a variety of situations. Strobe or flash mode can be used as an emergency signal, and some headlamps will even let you adjust the speed of the flashes. Walking around at night or accomplishing basic tasks generally require less light, and using a lower mode can help conserve battery power. Models that come with a “middle” mode have a little more versatility, and higher settings ensure that you have plenty of bright light when you need it. You can also find high end headlamps with a “boost” setting, and while it is nice to have a short burst of bright light for a few seconds this mode can quickly drain battery power.
Headlamps often come with a few extra features that can include convenient carrying straps and extra battery packs. Carrying backup batteries is always a good idea, even if the ones you are using are rechargeable. It is not uncommon for batteries to run down, and you might not always be able to use a charger when you are hiking or at the campsite. Power switches that can be locked into position can prevent the headlamp from being accidentally turned on in your backpack, and being able to tilt the angle of the beam is always convenient.
If you plan on using the headlamp outdoors you will probably want to choose one that is water and weather resistant, and durable. You can also find headlamps with a “red light” mode that can make it easier for you to see clearly in the dark.
While we can’t choose the right model for you we can help you make an informed decision, which is why you will find the best headlamps showcased below.
Top rated headlamps in 2016
According to the latest statistics and user testimonials it seems that the Streamlight 61052 Septor LED headlamp with strap is one of the best headlamps in 2016, in terms of quality and functionality. This model comes with seven, ultra-bright white LEDs and three levels of lighting perfect for a wide range of delicate applications. The Streamlight has a precise 90-degree tilt mechanism that reduces the neck strain and focuses the light where you need to place it. This is the reason why comes as no surprise to see so many people use with confidence the Streamlight 61052 model.
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A growing number of the latest top rated headlamp reviews coming from thousands of satisfied users and experienced technicians underline the efficiency of Energizer 6 LED headlight, a product very popular in the United States of America and Canada. The Energizer 7 includes four light modes, a very solid and pivoting water-resistant head and more importantly a comfortable headband that doesn’t irritate the skin. The headlight is water-resistant and its flexible headband gives you the possibility to adjust the model to your liking.
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The TIKKA is often considered the best Petzl headlamp, and it is not hard to see why. It has a 110 lumen output, and comes with innovative technology that ensures the beam will stay consistently bright even when the battery is losing power. It is compatible with disposable and rechargeable batteries, and is also designed to be water and weather resistant for long lasting durability. The TIKKA is also backed by a 3 year warranty so you can feel confident about your purchasing decision.
The push button design allows you to control the power and adjustable settings even when you are wearing gloves, and you will appreciate being able to choose from several different operating modes. There are settings for the beam designed to for movements and close up viewing, along with ones for distance and maximum brightness. Designed for comfort and safety, this headlamp from Petzl may be just what you need the next time you are trying to move around in the dark.
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Most of the latest top rated headlamp reviews written by satisfied users and technicians underline the efficiency of the Energizer 3 LED headlight, a product bent on delivering the exact quantity of light you need during any activity. The 3 LEDs of the model can deliver up to 30 lumens of light and run for 28 hours straight on 3 AAA energizer Max alkaline batteries that have proven their quality. The head of the device can be tilted by up to 90 degrees which allows you to aim with precision the light where you need it to.
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Considered by thousands of people as the best headlamp in 2016 regarding quality and efficiency, the Petzl E91 Tikkina 2 was designed with attention in order to accommodate all kind of needs. The E91 can help the user obtain the best results in virtually anything that arises during a typical work day. The Tikkina 2 has two lighting modes (maximum and economic) that adapt with ease and require no additional adjustments. Furthermore, you should know that Petzl E91 is equipped a new and improved LEDs that work very fine at a single push of a button.
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Products which are no longer available
Petzl E93 Tikka 2
The majority of the latest top rated headlamps reviews, drafted with attention by thousands of satisfied users and technicians underline the fluid functionality of the Petzl E93 Tikka 2 model, a product that delivers high performance every time it is used. With a versatile and modern design, the Petzl E93 can be used with ease and without any limitations. This headlamp from Petzl has four LEDs that can deliver up to 40 lumens and can shine to distances of up to 29 meters. To this extent, seeing E93 Tikka 2 headlamp among the top products today comes as no surprise.