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Thread: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

  1. #1

    Default Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    This is a long-term test and review of the Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype. This review and test will be incremental in nature. Content will be added, edited, and moved as the review progresses. This is a prototype unit that was provided by Armytek so the final product may differ from what is in this post.

    I will try to keep this portion of the review strictly factual. The facts that will be posted in this section of the review will either be provided by Armytek (I will not verify their claims but simply post them) and/or my own observations and measurements (that I actually take/observe) along with pictures. I will try to keep opinion out of this part of the review. The purpose of this portion of the review is to give a factual as well as a visual product summation.

    Directly below this part of the review you will find my opinions as well as a journal that documents the different uses, adventures and tests that this headlamp has been subject to. This part of the review will be based on my own personal preferences and opinions coupled with my own personal experiences over the years. The purpose of this portion of the review is just to give MY opinion and interpretation of this particular product offering.

    Since a picture is worth 1000 words here is the Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype next to a NCR18650A for size comparison. The end of the battery matches up evenly with the base of the headlamp in this photo. The headlamp and the battery together, as seen in the picture weigh 101 g.





    Here is a close-up of the TIR optic on the Armytek Wizard Pro.




    Here you can see the same NCR18650A battery fully inserted into the battery tube. There is plenty of room for even oversized batteries in this headlamp. Even though there is plenty of room both in length and width there is no rattle when the tail cap is tightened down. Notice how not only are the threads anodized but also the inside of the battery tube. A 1/4 of a turn is all it takes to lock out the light.





    Here you have an Orbtronic Protected 3400mAh 18650 Li-ion Rechargeable Battery (Panasonic NCR18650B) inside the battery tube with over 1.5 mm to spare. The Orbtronic measures 68.9 mm.





    Here are what the threads on the battery tube look like. Well cut. Smooth and easy to operate. Anodized to enable lockout. Notice the double O-ring seal. Well lubricated from the manufacturer.





    Here is an up close look at the tail cap. Notice how the spring sticks past the end of the tail cap thus guaranteeing positive contact with whatever 18650 battery that is thrown into the battery tube, even unprotected 18650’s. This headlamp has its own protection circuit allowing the user to use unprotected cells safely.




    A better look at the inside of the tail cap.





    Down the battery tube to the business end of the headlamp shows a raised contact point enabling the use of flattop batteries.





    This is how you turn the light ON & OFF, you press the switch (pictured below). It is a fairly firm raised switch requiring considerable pressure (unlikely to be turned on by accident, tail cap lockout is also an option if one is worried). When the switch is not pressed there is no color. Anytime the switch is pressed a bright red color is illuminated through the switch which disappears upon releasing the switch. In “Tactical Mode” (momentary ON) the switch remains brightly lit for as long as it is pressed (bright red color).





    Here is the “State Indication” on the ON & OFF switch blinking once every 4 seconds (this feature can be turned on and turned off at will). It serves a dual purpose, letting the user know everything is okay in terms of battery voltage and temperature as well as a beacon for easier location of the light in a dark environment. It is fairly bright and can easily be seen 20 feet across the room or within a 5 to 7 foot radius when dropped into a grassy field.





    Whenever the light goes into “Warning Level” or “Critical Level” for battery voltage and/or temperature threshold the “State Indication” on the ON & OFF switch will blink once per second when it reaches “Warning Level” and twice per second when it reaches the “Critical Level”. The “State Indication” color at this point is a combination of green yellow orange (faint in nature and a lot lower then normal). The best representation of this is in the picture below (I know it looks more red then anything but that is the best I could do to capture the flickering).




    So before you activate the light you need to put a battery inside. Once you insert the battery (has reverse polarity protection) you need to tell the headlamp what type of battery it is. You do this by following these instructions (from the official manual provided by Armytek http://www.armytek.com/index.php?dis...tachment_id=39).





    Now that the headlamp has power you can get it to do all the things it was designed to do by following these instructions (from the official manual provided by Armytek http://www.armytek.com/index.php?dis...tachment_id=39).





    Let me elaborate on the user interface that is described in the official manual.

    To make it easier lets group the modes into sections.


    • Section 1 is compromised by Firefly 1 & Firefly 2.
    • Section 2 is compromised by Mode 1, Mode 2, Mode 3, and Mode 4.
    • Section 3 is compromised by Turbo.
    • Section 4 is compromised by 2 strobe modes (0.6Hz / 10Hz) and battery voltage meter (decimal). Let’s call these specialty modes.


    So you grab the light to use and are ready to press the ON & OFF switch. At this point you have the following 2 options.

    You Press and Release the ON & OFF switch. This puts you into the previous mode used (Firefly 1, Firefly 2, Mode 1, Mode 2, Mode 3 or Mode 4) except for Turbo and Strobe.



    • Now if you decide to press and hold it will go to the next highest level. In one of the following ways (if you release the ON & OFF switch at any moment you will stay in whatever light level you were in).
      • If you are in Section 1 it will increase in level until you get into Section 2. It will go through all of the levels in Section 2 and then jump back down to the lowest level in Section 2 (Mode 1) and then repeat the process for as long as the switch is held down.
      • If you are in Section 2 it will increase in level until you are in Mode 4 and then it will cycle back down to Mode 1. It will repeat the process for as long as the switch is held down.




    • Now if you decide to double-click it will do one of the following.
      • If you are in Section 1 you will automatically jump into the last level used in Section 2 (it keeps the last mode of Section 2 memorized).
      • If you are in section 2 you will automatically jump into Turbo. Now depending on how you double-click one of the following will occur.
        • If you double-click and let go it stays in Turbo.
        • If you double-click and hold it is momentary Turbo and will go back to the last light level used (in Section 2) as soon as you release.



    You Press and Hold the ON & OFF switch. This puts you directly into Firefly 1. Once Firefly 1 is ON you have the following two options.


    • You let go of the switch and you will stay in Firefly 1.
    • You continue to hold the switch and you will start to cycle through all of the modes in Section 1, Section 2, and Section 3. You can stop at any light level you desire by releasing the switch and it will be memorized (except for Turbo). Should you decide not to stop and keep going the light will shut off after reaching Turbo and stay off (this is a feature that Armytek incorporated so that in case the button is pressed by accident the light will not cycle indefinitely and wear out the battery, for example in a backpack).



    At any moment when the light is ON if you quickly click 4 times you will end up in Section 4 (Specialty Modes). It will put you in whatever Specialty Mode that you last used (it memorizes the Specialty Mode). Now you have the following options.



    • If you press and release the ON & OFF switch the light will turn off.
    • If you press and hold the ON & OFF switch it will cycle to the next mode in Section 4. It will continue to cycle through the 3 modes in Section 4 for as long as you hold the ON & OFF switch. When you release the ON & OFF switch it will stop and memorize whatever mode you are in (in Section 4).
    • If you Double-Click the ON & OFF switch it will return to whatever mode you were last in Section 2.



    No headlamp would be complete without a headband. Here it is the way that it comes out of the box in its unassembled state.


    Here you see it put together.



    From another angle.



    The elastic headband is exactly 1 inch wide.



    Now if a headband is not your thing or you just want to EDC the headlamp you have the capability to attach a pocket clip. The pocket clip enables deep carry. It attaches to the headlamp very securely, requiring considerable effort to remove. The way the pocket clip holds onto objects, such as a pocket, is light to medium in terms of pressure. The pocket clip is also reversible as well as magnetic (meaning you can attach magnets to it for additional mounting scenarios). Here is what it looks like attached to the headlamp.





    Here is a close-up shot showing you exactly how deep in the pocket the headlamp can be worn. Notice it is not flush with the top of the headlamp.




    The pocket clip will allow the headlamp to tail stand at pretty much any conceived angle.





    Here are the output levels and there respective lumen ratings (the ratings were provided by Armytek and have not been verified). The indicated runtimes were calculated by me based on a 3100 mAh battery and the current specifications for each light level provided by Armytek.

    Mode 1, Mode 3, Mode 4 and Turbo have now been CONFIRMED by ME and the details of the run test can be viewed below under “Confirmed Runtime Tests:”.


    • Results with “1” were achieved utilizing an unprotected 3100 mAh Panasonic battery (NCR18650A).
    • Results with “2” were achieved utilizing an unprotected 3400 mAh Panasonic battery (NCR18650B).


    Modes, Light Levels, and Runtimes:



    • Firefly 1 = 0.5 lm = 3050 hours or 127 days
    • Firefly 2 = 7 lm = 217 hours or 9 days
    • Mode 1 = 30 lm = 37h 29m CONFIRMED2
    • Mode 2 = 115 lm = 14 hours
    • Mode 3 = 250 lm = 7h 23m CONFIRMED1, 7h 59m CONFIRMED2
    • Mode 4 = 550 lm = 2h 59m CONFIRMED1, 3h 12m CONFIRMED2
    • Turbo = 1010 lm = 1h 08m CONFIRMED1


    Confirmed Runtime Tests:

    For the runtime tests I utilized the same NCR18650A (3100 mAh) battery that had some miles on it and a fresh brand-new NCR18650B (3400 mAh) battery. The results are as follows.


    Mode 1 = 30 lm:



    1. At 36 hours and 40 minutes the headlamp flashed 3 times signaling that the voltage is in the “Warning Level”. This was followed by the ON and OFF switch indicator light flashing once every second in a green yellow orange combination. According to Armytek the “Warning Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 3.1 V. At this point the light level has not dropped. There is also a “Critical Level”. According to Armytek the “Critical Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 2.9 V.
    2. At 37 hours and 29 minutes light output drops to firefly mode 2. At this point the runtime test was concluded.



    Mode 3 = 250 lm:



    1. In this mode the headlamp hardly got warm. Maintaining 93°F at the head of the headlamp and about 91°F around the battery tube (these were maximum values recorded throughout the whole test).
    2. At 7 hours and 8 minutes the headlamp flashed 3 times signaling that the voltage is in the “Warning Level”. This was followed by the ON and OFF switch indicator light flashing once every second in a green yellow orange combination. According to Armytek the “Warning Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 3.1 V. At this point the light level has not dropped. There is also a “Critical Level”. According to Armytek the “Critical Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 2.9 V.
    3. At 7 hours and 23 minutes light output drops to firefly mode 2. At this point the runtime test was concluded.
    4. Immediately after the test was finished the battery was removed and checked for voltage and temperature. The voltage was 3.15 V and the temperature was 89°F (for the battery). After about a 60 minute rest the battery voltage was about 3.20 V.



    Mode 4 = 550 lm:



    1. 24 minutes into the test the headlamp feels fairly warm to the touch, but not hot.
    2. After about an hour the headlamp is very hot to the touch and maintains this temperature for the duration of the test. I used an infrared thermometer to measure the temperature. The hottest was 125°F at the head of the headlamp and about 111°F around the battery tube (these were maximum values recorded throughout the whole test).
    3. At 2 hours and 46 minutes the headlamp flashed 3 times signaling that the voltage is in the “Warning Level”. This was followed by the ON and OFF switch indicator light flashing once every second in a green yellow orange combination. According to Armytek the “Warning Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 3.1 V. At this point the light level has not dropped. There is also a “Critical Level”. According to Armytek the “Critical Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 2.9 V.
    4. At 2 hours and 59 minutes light output drops to firefly mode 2. At this point the runtime test was concluded.
    5. Immediately after the test was finished the battery was removed and checked for voltage and temperature. The voltage was 2.97 V and the temperature was 106°F (for the battery). After about a 60 minute rest the battery voltage was about 3.09 V.



    Turbo = 1010 lm:

    Starting temperature for the headlamp is 79°F both in the head and body (same temperature as in the test environment). In the table below you can see the rapid progression and the leveling off of the temperature during the runtime test.



    Minutes into the Runtime Test
    Temperature at the Head
    Temperature at the Battery Tube



    00m
    79°F
    79°F
    01m
    96°F
    NA
    03m
    117°F
    NA
    05m
    130°F
    NA
    10m
    150°F
    131°F
    15m
    165°F
    138°F
    20m
    169°F
    144°F
    30m
    175°F
    152°F
    1h 08m
    178°F
    158°F



    1. 5 minutes into the runtime test the headlamp is uncomfortable to hold. At the 15 minute mark it is unbearable to hold.
    2. At 56 minutes the headlamp flashed 3 times signaling that the voltage is in the “Warning Level”. This was followed by the ON and OFF switch indicator light flashing once every second in a green yellow orange combination. According to Armytek the “Warning Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 3.1 V. At this point the light level has not dropped. There is also a “Critical Level”. According to Armytek the “Critical Level” is triggered when the battery voltage is 2.9 V.
    3. At 1 hour and 8 minutes light output drops to firefly mode 2. At this point the runtime test was concluded.
    4. Immediately after the test was finished the battery was removed and checked for voltage and temperature. The voltage was 2.93 V and the temperature was 132°F (for the battery). After about a 60 minute rest the battery voltage was about 3.0 V.
    5. This headlamp has thermal protection built-in which is supposed to be triggered at 80°C or 176°F. When the thermal protection reaches what Armytek calls the “Critical Level” (80°C or 176°F ) the light output drops to 100 lm. During the whole runtime test the thermal protection did not activate.



    Beam Shots:

    So now that you know what modes this headlamp has and how long they will run for, what about the question, what do they look like? For Firefly 1, Firefly 2, and Mode 1 I had a friend volunteer to help me out. The next 3 photos were all taken at a distance of about 3.5 feet.


    Firefly 1 = 0.5 lm:





    Firefly 2 = 7 lm:





    Mode 1 = 30 lm:





    Night Hiking Shots:

    These were taken during a night hike. The sky was clear and the moon was out. The fallen tree on the ground is about 30 feet long. I purposely took the pictures here as a helpful way to gauge distance.


    Control:




    Firefly 1 = 0.5 lm:





    Firefly 2 = 7 lm:





    Mode 1 = 30 lm:





    Mode 3 = 250 lm:





    Mode 4 = 550 lm:






    Turbo = 1010 lm:



    Last edited by Knight_Light; 06-28-2013 at 07:53 AM.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    This portion of the review is a mixture of my opinion as well as my experiences and facts utilizing the headlamp. It will be incremental in nature and content will be edited, added, and deleted as it progresses.


    ========================================


    Proposed New Armytek Wizard Pro UI:

    I am one of the people that likes the Armytek Wizard Pro UI. But like everything else it has room for improvement (at least to me). Several weeks ago while testing the preproduction model I came up with what I feel is an improved UI that I sent to Armytek as a suggestion for future models. Below you see my rendition of what I believe is an improved UI for the Armytek Wizard Pro.

    The idea behind this UI is that most people either concentrate on lower lumen outputs or higher lumen outputs when trying to perform a certain task. This UI enables the user to focus on either lower lumen outputs or higher lumen outputs for a particular task without losing the flexibility to jump from lower output to higher output when the task either changes or demands it (in essence creating 2 separate headlamps that are both easily accessible). It also has the added benefit of having all of the modes available without turning the light off (which to me is very important especially when engaging in activities such as caving).

    Section 1:

    • Mode 1 = .5 lm
    • Mode 2 = 7 lm
    • Mode 3 = 30 lm


    Section 2:

    • Mode 4 = 115 lm
    • Mode 5 = 250 lm
    • Mode 6 = 550 lm



    Section 3:

    Mode 7 = 1010 lm

    Section 4:

    • Battery Voltage Indicator
    • Fast Strobe
    • Beacon



    UI:

    When the light is turned OFF.


    • Press and Release: Will put you into the last memorized mode.
    • Press and Hold: Will put you into Mode 1.




    When the light is already ON.


    • Double-click: Will switch between the last memorized mode in Section 1 and the last memorized mode in Section 2. Allowing the user to jump back and forth between Section 1 and Section 2 at will.




    • Triple click: From any section it will automatically put you into Section 3 (Turbo mode), if the last click is held, then it is momentary Turbo and will return you to whatever mode you were in from Section 1 or Section 2 upon release. If it is activated permanently (with the last click not being held) then a double-click will put you back into whatever mode you were in from Section 1 or Section 2.



    • Quad click: From any Section it will automatically put you into the last memorized mode in Section 4. Double-click will put you back into whatever mode you were in from Section 1 or Section 2.




    • Press and Hold (if you are in section 1): It will just cycle from mode 1 to mode 2 to mode 3. It will continue in a loop between the 3 modes until the switch is released and it will be memorized.




    • Press and Hold (if you are in section 2): It will just cycle from mode 4 to mode 5 to mode 6. It will continue in a loop between the 3 modes until the switch is released and it will be memorized.




    • Press and Hold (if you are in section 4): It will just cycle from the battery voltage indicator to strobe to beacon. It will continue in a loop between the 3 modes until the switch is released and it will be memorized.



    ========================================


    EDC and Personal Impressions:

    I love headlamps, it is my preferred EDC method for having a light on me and I have been EDCing headlamps for years. For me personally it was Zebra Light with their small form factor headlamps that made it a comfortable reality. So the question is, what is it like to EDC the Armytek Wizard Pro? For those of you that don’t want to read the whole section, let me sum it up by just saying, AWESOME.


    I think the 1st aspect of EDCing anything is how comfortable is it to do so (let’s face it if it’s not comfortable to carry most people won’t). The Armytek compared to similar style offerings from its competitors is bigger in physical dimension (Fenix, Zebra Light, Xtar, to name a few), but despite this fact it rides very comfortably in the front pocket of pretty much any type of pants or shorts that I’ve worn. The extra heft in weight over its competitors (some of which goes towards heat management) is hardly noticed when riding inside the pocket and the benefit is uninterrupted high lumen output that is light years ahead of what the current class of competitors is capable of, enabling the user to run on Turbo for over an hour.


    The beam profile is almost perfect for EDC. It gives a very nice flood, and beyond 2 feet is difficult to notice any type of hotspot. Pretty much everywhere you look there is light. Now if you want just pure flood I still say the Spark SD series is the best in its class but the Armytek comes fairly close with considerably greater throw making it much more versatile.


    On the 30 lm mode you can see most things in an indoor environment while getting over 37 hours of runtime. However my all-time favorite mode on this light is the 250 lm mode being fairly bright for both indoor and outdoor use and getting almost 8 hours of runtime (if you think about this it is a pretty amazing achievement in efficiency). The Turbo mode, although rarely used, is just simply WOW (and unlike the competitors, it is only time-limited by the battery capacity).


    So what is the electronic switch like? To say that you need a firm press would be an understatement, requiring some finger pressure to activate the light. Some people may not like it, I definitely like it, but be warned if you have the finger strength of a toddler this may not be the headlamp for you. One thing is for sure I have yet to accidentally turn this headlamp on.


    The electronic switch also acts as a Status Indicator. I think it is great that it will tell you when to change the battery along with the voltage of the battery. It will also alert you to critical temperature and battery scenarios. As far as blinking every 4 seconds as some sort of beacon I personally find this feature annoying, luckily it can be turned off (which is what I do) without affecting the other wonderful aspects of the Status Indicator.


    Don’t get me wrong, it definitely will help you locate the light in a dark room from 20 feet away, but take that into an outdoor setting and you will be lucky to see the light from 5 to 7 feet away if dropped into a grassy patch. My preferred method for some sort of beacon or locator for a light is just to leave it in one of the firefly modes (.5lm indoors and 7lm outdoors). I cannot stress how important I think it is to do that in an outdoor setting if you want to have the best chances of finding your light should you drop it (even locating it in a backpack becomes simplified in the dark).


    So what is the UI like? For the most part I think it is great and pretty well thought out. It gives you access to the firefly modes directly when the light is off (which I think is crucial). It has a few very unique mode memorization features that are fairly useful. For instance if you are in Section 2 and you double-click you automatically end up in Turbo mode. If you are in Section 1 (the firefly modes) and you double-click you end up in the last memorized mode of Section 2. If the light is off and you just click it on you end up in whatever last mode you used in Section 1 or Section 2. It even memorizes the specialty modes so that if you use the battery voltage indicator the most, it becomes fairly accessible fairly quickly.


    So is the UI perfect? Absolutely not. So what do I think can be improved about this particular UI? That was addressed in an email to Armytek as a design suggestion for future renditions of this headlamp and can be seen below under the title “Proposed Improved UI:” (stay tuned it’s coming). By reading this section I think most will be able to infer what I feel the shortcomings are of this particular UI as well as how to possibly improve it (what’s the point of complaining if you can’t offer a solution).


    The pocket clip that comes with the Wizard enables fairly deep carry. It attaches very securely to the headlamp while still retaining the ability to tail stand and ceiling bounce. The other added benefit of the pocket clip is that it is magnetic (most are so I wouldn’t say that it is a competitor advantage) enabling you to utilize magnets for a whole new world of hands-free operation. You can even make the magnets semipermanent by slipping heat shrink tubing over them and the pocket clip (actually works really well if you want a permanent magnetized solution). I personally have one pocket clip with magnets and heat shrink tubing and one that is just stock. If you go for the permanent solution keep in mind that magnets will mess with your GPS and compass.


    If you do decide to use the pocket clip, be warned, it will mess up the finish on your headlamp at the attachment point (fairly quickly I might add). In this regard I think the pocket clip could have been designed a lot better. Speaking of pocket clip improvements, I think it should have been designed a little bit longer to allow even deeper pocket carry (although it is fairly deep) as well as slightly wider to give it better stability when tail standing.


    My preferred EDC method for this headlamp is not utilizing the pocket clip, nor the headband, but a hybrid that I created utilizing a simple piece of cord (I use shoelaces but you can use paracord or whatever). This method utilizes 2 attachment points (which is my preferred EDC method for non-outdoor settings) and mimics the headband fairly accurately, allowing for the light to be adjusted up and down (it will actually rotate inside the knots just like with the rubber holder that comes with the headband, and a lot smoother I might add) and holds the headlamp in a horizontal plane just like it would with a headband. The large loop enables the headlamp to be worn like a necklace but operate just like if it was in a headband holder (except that the light is below eye level instead of being above). This design is very stable and the headlight remains rocksolid and does not flop around. If adjusted properly there is no glare into the eyes whatsoever. Individuals EDCing headlamps (or those wishing to) should really try this method, as it gives all of the benefits of the headband without actually having to tote 1 around.







    The small loop in the above picture can be utilized as a holder by slipping 2 fingers into it (similar to the way the Quark’s holder functions for those of you that are familiar). It can also be utilized as a point of attachment to a carabiner (or whatever else) as well as keeping the longer cord secure once wrapped around the light (for transport or storage).


    Here is a close-up of the 2 knots used. Notice how the cord exits from the same point on the 2 knots, this keeps the light from moving around, while being held rocksolid (if you want to know what kind of knots are used read the “Alternative Carry Solution:” portion of the review). The worn off anodizing is not from this method of carry but is from the pocket clip.





    When I don’t need to utilizes this feature I simply wrap it around the headlamp and tuck it through the small loop.





    So now on to the cosmetics. What is the fit and finish on this particular headlamp? It’s breathtaking when you 1st get the headlamp. Even anodizing. Flat matte finish that doesn’t show fingerprints. With your eyes closed you would swear that the light is textured, when in reality it is not.


    Now EDC this particular light for a while and you start to see some noticeable flaws in the finish. The headlamp will start to develop chips on some of the sharp edges. In certain areas where the pocket clip attaches the anodizing has completely worn off. To me these are badges of honor in actually having used the light (and I use it for hours everyday). However, I do take good care of all of my equipment and it would be nice to see a harder anodized finish in the future.


    So even with all of the flaws that the light may possess, I still feel this is the next evolutionary step in this particular space of headlamps, and head and shoulders above the competition. Yes I will still use the Zebra Light H51 (for its small size) and H600 (just because it’s an awesome headlamp) along with the Spark (for the modular capabilities along with the best pure flood beam out there). However, the Armytek Wizard Pro will remain my primary EDC, and most notably outdoor headlamp until it is dethroned.


    ========================================


    Alternative Carry Solution:

    Although the headband and the pocket clip are fairly well-designed sometimes an alternative is needed. Maybe you forgot the headband or it broke. Maybe you don’t want to use the pocket clip because it will ruin the finish on your headlamp (and it will). Maybe you just feel silly putting on a headband if you are just running down the driveway to take out the garbage.

    One of the shortcomings of the Armytek Wizard Pro is that it doesn’t have a lanyard attachment. Here is something that I came up with for the Armytek Wizard Pro that lets you attach a lanyard and/or utilize a different carry method (let’s call it the Ironman method).

    Having a climbing as well as an outdoor background I started thinking what would be the best way to accomplish securing my favorite headlamp (to date) so as not to lose it during some of my favorite activities. I tried all sorts of different hitches and knots, and this is what I came up with.

    In the picture below you have a regular shoelace (you can use para cord with the inside taken out as well but I like having extra shoelaces just in case mine break on the trail) fixed around the headlamp utilizing a constrictor knot*. The loose ends are then secured utilizing a double fisherman, creating a loop.
    *I also sometimes will utilize a clove hitch, it is a lot easier to undo if you need to remove the headlamp but it is not as secure (although in my opinion plenty secure).

    Now you can wear this around your neck or clip it to a carabiner or attach it to a shoulder strap of your backpack (or whatever other way you can dream up). When worn around the neck the headlamp is forced (for the most part) to aim forward, resembling the Ironman miniaturized arc reactor.





    What I like to do is raise the headlamp so that the sternum strap of my backpack rest across the headlamp (demonstrated in the picture above with the 1 inch webbing), this prevents the headlamp from bouncing around. This is a very secure and comfortable way to navigate the trails hands-free at night without having something on your head.


    Here is a close-up of the constrictor knot. As you can see it is very secure. It also prevents the headlamp from spinning and for the most part points the headlamp straight ahead (because of the way the shoelace exits the knot). The beauty of this setup is that you still have access to the battery compartment without removing the lanyard maintaining a secure hold on the headlamp during a battery change.




    ========================================

    Battery Selection and Runtime: 3100 mAh (NCR18650A) vs. 3400 mAh (NCR18650B)

    After performing runtime tests on the 550 lm (Mode 4) and 250lm (Mode 3) levels utilizing 2 different unprotected Panasonic batteries with different capacities here are my summations and my observations and conclusions.

    • The Panasonic NCR18650B ($16.29) is 23.4% more expensive then the Panasonic NCR18650A ($13.20).
    • The Panasonic NCR18650B offers 9.7% more capacity then the Panasonic NCR18650A.
    • The Panasonic NCR18650B offers 7.3 % longer runtimes then the Panasonic NCR18650A at 550 lm (Mode 4).
    • The Panasonic NCR18650B offers 8.1 % longer runtimes then the Panasonic NCR18650A at 250lm (Mode 3).


    For this particular headlamp my advice is buy the cheaper 3100 mAh (NCR18650A) battery unless you absolutely need the maximum amount of runtime.

    ========================================

    Subfreezing Test:

    Before I take any kind of gear with me on any kind of excursions I like to test it as much as possible in a controlled and safe environment. So as a data point what better way to test cold weather performance then by chucking it into the freezer.

    So I took the Armytek Wizard Pro and put it in the freezer for a 12 hour period. At the end of the 12 hours the following was recorded utilizing an infrared thermometer.

    • Freezer Temperature was 6°F or -14.4°C
    • Headlamp Temperature was 6°F or -14.4°C


    After quickly taking temperature measurements I grabbed the headlamp and clicked the ON & OFF switch. The switch worked in the usual manner without any sticking and the headlamp turned on immediately without any hesitation at the last memorized level (250 lm).

    I then decided to unscrew the Tail Cap to see if it would be possible to do a battery change under these conditions. The Tail Cap unscrewed without a hitch but needed a little bit more elbow grease due to the thickening of the lubricant.
    Last edited by Knight_Light; 07-24-2013 at 04:43 AM.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* KDM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    I'm very interested in the wide neutral version. I hope it turns out to be a nice piece.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by KDM View Post
    I'm very interested in the wide neutral version. I hope it turns out to be a nice piece.
    I do not have the wide nor the neutral version but the initial impressions are very positive to say the least. The cool version actually appears a lot warmer than I thought it would be. The beam is nice and wide. I recently took it on a night hike and will be posting my comments soon in the review.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* tobrien's Avatar
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    subscribed. nice man!
    aka Edgar Allan Bro, Brosama Bin Liftin, Walter Crunkite, Bro Namath, Teddy Brosevelt, and the Tomahawk Crunkmissile.
    my lights - review of PrecisionWorks - that's Gucci Mane in my avatar

  6. #6
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Head can be unscrewed?

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* Changchung's Avatar
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Zebralight Spark Princeton Inova Petzl Maglite Bushnell 4 XM-L MagMod and a lot of Cree XM-L Lights Nitecore i4 Intellicharger Intl-outdoor 3400 Panasonic 3100 Bare and protected Samsung 3000 Sanyo 2600
    Please, respect the planet, dont kill animals...

  8. #8

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by tobrien View Post
    subscribed. nice man!
    Thanks. I will be posting more pictures soon. If you have any particular questions just ask.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by Romanko View Post
    Head can be unscrewed?
    I've tried with reasonable force and it did not unscrew. But I also didn't push it that far. Also since they only give you two O-rings as a replacement and the tail utilizes a double O-ring seal I would say it does not unscrew.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    GREAT mode spacing! Please show us the headband when you take more photos. Thanks!
    GOOD TINT!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by markr6 View Post
    GREAT mode spacing! Please show us the headband when you take more photos. Thanks!
    I will get you some pictures of the headband. I just need a few days. I just uploaded more pictures of the light and should be updating the review. But for those of you who were wondering the headband does have a top strap. It is light grey in color with yellow logo writing.

    The mode spacing on this light is very good and well thought out. However you almost can’t tell the difference between Mode 1 and Mode 2. The only time you will notice a sizable difference is when your eyes have totally adjusted to the dark. Like after waking up in the middle of the night. I have talked to Armytek about this and we have discussed the possibility of pushing Mode 2 out to 115 lm. It will give the user a more perceived output level of light. Remember this is not a spot beam.

    I have spent many hours utilizing this headlamp and will be posting my opinions on all of the light levels soon. Both for indoor use and for hiking camping scenarios.

  12. #12
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    How long does Turbo run before stepping down, about 100 seconds?

  13. #13

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelW View Post
    How long does Turbo run before stepping down, 100 seconds?
    I don't know because I have not pushed it to that point. What I can say is that it ran 7 minutes in 85° weather. The part that houses the emitter got very hot so I stopped the test. This headlamp has thermal management and will let you run Turbo for as long as the temperature stays within a certain range. Obviously during my test that range was not exceeded.

  14. #14
    Flashaholic CamoNinja's Avatar
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Thanks for the review so far. Outdoor beam shots in the future ?

  15. #15

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by CamoNinja View Post
    Thanks for the review so far. Outdoor beam shots in the future ?
    You're welcome. As far as outdoor beam shots I will post them if I can get them to get an accurate representation of what I see. I took some pictures while hiking with the headlamp and it just looked horrible. Sorry I am not much of a photographer at night. If I can get a buddy to help me that is into photography I will post them. The stuff I did on my own was not pretty. lol

  16. #16

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by markr6 View Post
    Please show us the headband when you take more photos. Thanks!
    Headband photos added.

  17. #17
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Wow. If Mode4 needs to dissipate ~2.5 watts, Turbo is going to need to dissipate ~7.5 watts.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Kindly tell us about the user interface. Do you think the protected NCR18650B, 69.4 mm, will fit in the tube?

  19. #19
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Looks great Knight_Light. Im very much liking your review. Tidbits every day to start the morning makes it that much enjoyable.
    J.L.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelW View Post
    Wow. If Mode4 needs to dissipate ~2.5 watts, Turbo is going to need to dissipate ~7.5 watts.
    So far I have managed to run it for 7 minutes straight. That in itself is pretty impressive to me. Next I will be pushing it beyond 10 minutes while monitoring the head with an infrared thermometer.

  21. #21
    Flashaholic* sbbsga's Avatar
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    Default Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Awesome review, looking forward to the rest.

    Do you have a photo of the switch? Thank you.


    Sent from mobile device.

  22. #22

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by syracuse View Post
    Kindly tell us about the user interface. Do you think the protected NCR18650B, 69.4 mm, will fit in the tube?
    I am working on the user interface portion so please bear with me.

    I just updated the review which shows an Orbtronic Protected 3400mAh 18650 Li-ion Rechargeable Battery inside the battery tube with over 1.5 mm to spare. The Orbtronic measures 68.9 mm and utilizes the Panasonic NCR18650B.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by jonathanluu2 View Post
    Looks great Knight_Light. Im very much liking your review. Tidbits every day to start the morning makes it that much enjoyable.
    J.L.
    Thank you I am glad that you are enjoying it.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelW View Post
    How long does Turbo run before stepping down, about 100 seconds?
    How does 1h 08m continuous sound to you?

  25. #25
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by Knight_Light View Post
    How does 1h 08m continuous sound to you?
    Holely Cheese Batman! How does 178F sound! Your light could serve as a backup stove with that kinda temperature! I hope that the non-metallic components (like the switch I assume?) are designed for cyclical temperature fluctuations that extreme, especially if there is a 10yr warranty on it. Knowing you can utilize the turbo for an extended period without it stepping down effectively increases the versatility of the light (assuming you are okay with a small stove on your forehead).

    So that makes me wonder... did the box come with a warning label like "do not use the turbo mode if you have long hair"?
    Last edited by jonathanluu2; 06-14-2013 at 05:33 AM.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Sweet bejeebus!
    sounds like an awesome headlamp!
    I'll buy one when its available....I've read the thread from Armytek looking for input. Looking good!!

    Sent from my SCH-S720C using Tapatalk 2

  27. #27

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by sbbsga View Post
    Awesome review, looking forward to the rest.

    Do you have a photo of the switch? Thank you.


    Sent from mobile device.
    Thank you for the acknowledgment. Pictures of the switch and “State Indication” light posted.

  28. #28
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    This needs combination heatsink/knurling on the tailcap, and more heatsinking on the body & head.

    80C seems like a battery cell protection, which it can't reach with today's capacity 18650s Looking at the NCR18650B technical specs, it says maximum of 60C ambient temp for discharge. I wonder how hot the junction temperature of the LEDs gets? Could this provide 2nd degree burns to the epidermis?
    Heat dissipation wouldn't be a concern if this was your winter only headlight. Maybe if they turn the wick down; say 500 lumens for Mode4, and 750 lumens for Turbo.
    Last edited by MichaelW; 06-13-2013 at 09:36 AM.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    That is an incredible run time on turbo for such a small light. Must have some decent heat sinking!

    I'd never let a small light run that hot for so long but it is nice to know you can if you have to.
    the harder I work, the luckier I get.

  30. #30

    Default Re: Armytek Wizard Pro Prototype Long-Term Testing

    Quote Originally Posted by jonathanluu2 View Post
    Holely Cheese Batman! How does 178F sound! Your light could serve as a backup stove with that kinda temperature! I hope that the non-metallic components (like the switch I assume?) are designed for cyclical temperature fluctuations that extreme, especially if there is a 10yr warranty on it. Knowing you can utilize the turbo for an extended period without it stepping down effectively increases the versatility of the light (assuming you are okay with a small stove on your forehead).

    So that makes me wonder... did the box come with a warning label like "do not use the turbo mode if you have long hair"?
    I don’t know about the light acting as a backup stove but it would probably serve well for steeping tea.

    The switch really never got too hot. One of the things I was talking to Armytek about was the importance of customer service. So as long as the light is utilized as it is designed they said they would honor any warranty claims (whether this happens or not is yet to be seen but the intent is there).

    Let me start by saying that I have a lot of faith in this light already but there is no way that I would ever run this on turbo over 5 minutes while wearing this on my head.

    You mentioned “effectively increases the versatility of the light” I would agree with this to some point because at the 10 minute mark you cannot hold this headlamp comfortably with your bare hands. Nonetheless I think this headlamp is light years ahead of (pun intended) all of the production offerings in this particular price range.

    There were no warnings on the box because this is a preproduction sample. But that is a good suggestion which I will point out to them for the retail product.

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