Best neutral white headlamp with red mode.

GoodWoodenMonkey

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Jun 8, 2021
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2
Hi all!
I'm loving all the enlightening information on this forum! Thanks for sharing your experiences!
I'm curious about anyones thoughts on the best all around headlamp with a neutral white led and a red mode.
I have a Fenix hl18r-t which I love. The headband system is super comfy and I like the tint on it, I just really wish it had a red light mode and a lower mode for the flood (instead of sos). I know the hl18r has that lower flood but still no red.
I recently got a hm50r thinking it would be my new perfect go to headlamp but I really dislike the greenish tint to the lower modes. Modes 3-5 are okay tint wise but I mostly use the lower ones with only the occasional bump up if I need to spot something further away. It does actually seem like the bigger hm61r would be my perfect match but I've read it has the same greenish tint issue at lower modes.
I haven't actually had an 18650 headlamp but I think I'd be okay with the size, in exchange for the increased performance.
The red needs to be bright enough to be functional, like a 5 lumen. Some of the other offerings I've looked at seem like the red wouldn't be sufficient.
I do like the direct rechargeable option as well.
My all time favorite light I've had is a zebralight sc62w and I would jump on a zebralight headlamp if they had a red mode (also, I did order one of their headbands thinking I could use my sc62w as a side-wear headlamp but that didn't work out and it's an aweful pain to get the unit in and out of the cradle)
Does anyone have a "holy grail" headlamp or any thoughts about all of these considerations?
Thanks much!
 

Bimmerboy

Flashlight Enthusiast
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Dec 30, 2004
Messages
2,072
Location
Long Island, NY
Hi, GWM!

I could be wrong, but it sounds like the HM50R/61R may be using current control as opposed to PWM (pulse width modulation), thus the progressively greener tints on lower levels. The advantage to that is there is no flicker if you're moving fast during running, biking, etc. With a PWM light, you gain the advantage of consistent tint at all levels, but have to make sure the frequency is high enough where you don't notice it.

If you don't have to move quickly, and/or work with potentially dangerous moving or spinning equipment, PWM wins in my book even though I notice lower frequencies quite easily. I'll take that over green tint. But, if I'm under the hood of a car with the engine on, current control all the way.

Hope that helps in your decision making. Personally, I have not found my grail headlamp yet.
 

Stefano

Flashlight Enthusiast
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Sep 29, 2012
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1,073
Location
Italy
If you like HM61R buy HM61R Amber version (it is neutral tint and has a shortcut for red before being switched on)
However, they are only sold in Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

Otherwise look at Armitek Wizard WR neutral version.

There is the Fenix HM65R "ShadowMaster" model where the flood led is replaced by a red light.
As far as I know it is only sold in the UK and Finland (in Finland it is called HM65R "Sarma")
I do not remember, however, if the ShadowMaster has the main LED with a cold tint or is 5000 K
 

GoodWoodenMonkey

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Jun 8, 2021
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Thanks for the thoughts! Yea the hm61r amber seems amazing! I don't understand why they would only release it in Slovakia/Czech… ah well, maybe it'll be available in the US one day…
The army tek looks great for its modes and features, not crazy about it's form though.
I do love the Fenix styling and build quality, they just gotta get it together with their led options!
I guess it really is two different roles to fill, I do want an 18650 for camping and to fill the bigger light needs. I'll keep looking for the right fit there. I've been reading about vinh and his modifications. Might be worth getting the hm61r and having the main led swapped…
And For the compact general use role, I'm thinking I'll give the nitecore nu33 a shot when it comes out next week. On paper it seems like it hits all the marks. (The nu32 seems like it hits all the marks too, but might as well go for the upgrade!)
 
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Stefano

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Sep 29, 2012
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1,073
Location
Italy
Thanks for the thoughts! Yea the hm61r amber seems amazing! I don't understand why they would only release it in Slovakia/Czech… ah well, maybe it'll be available in the US one day…
Once I contacted the Fenix store in Prague (Kroniun) they ship all over Europe.
I also asked for shipping to the US but now I don't remember the answer.
You can ask (I can't find the old message)

Sometimes some dealers ask the factory for special editions, even in Finland for example there is a special version of the HM65R. In the coming months there will also be a HM70R (it has red light) in a special version but I don't know if it will have a neutral tint or not.

Also the standard version of the HM70R could adapt to your requests, it has a red light of 5 lumens + red flash and two leds, the auxiliary one is NW (about 4500 K)
I didn't mention it before because I don't know if you are satisfied with the auxiliary led only, it is a totally Flood light (400 lumens with NW tint) while the main led is a more concentrated beam but with a tint of about 6000 K
 
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