Fenix HM61R ticking all the boxes?

Lynx_Arc

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yee-yee, i do have 2 units of the light. :clap:


and for work jobs i always have the nietcore tm15 with me. that retrieval job was exceptional; usually i wouldn't unclip the headlamp during work. but sure, if i had more work jobs like that, more frequently, i would take the 2nd unit with me as standalone light. good thinking there! :buttrock:
I tend to use work lights myself around a lot and it is very dark and I've become somewhat fond of COB work lights even though the output isn't necessarily the best tint the flood of decent light makes it a lot easier on the head as you can move your eyes instead of your head to see things. I'm constantly looking for interesting and useful work lights and for now my favorite is a $20 2x18650 COB/LED light that the COB rotates about 225 degrees and the light has adjustable output on both modes plus can operate as a power bank if needed. It has strong magnets that can on most metal surfaces can hold it perpendicular while you adjust the COB head.
Over all I think headlamps can do about 80% of the job but at times need a little "help" from other well chosen lights. I often walk around the place with a headlamp on to take the trash to the curb and check on things after a strong storm but at times you need light that isn't mounted on your head but in your hand.

While I like the idea of removable right angle headlamps I find that being easily able to do so presents a problem with having a sturdy holder for the headlamp. I have a Fenix HL50R and like it but wish it were the right angle version they have out now but when I bought it there wasn't that option and it was on clearance at Academy Sports I had to jump through a lot of hoops to get one half off..... about $40 for it costs about $10 more than my Wowtac, performs very close to the same as it essentially I keep it at home and use it for non rough service. I abuse the wowtac a lot and don't worry about it because I can get another one a lot cheaper than a Fenix one and prefer the UI and lack of (to me) useless unhidden red 5mm LED mode.
 

kreisl

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Thank You Fenis.

i've been using the 'rear clip' (i.e. where i clip the tail section of the light) together with the fenis rubber strap. let's recall that the 'front clip' got broken off.
it's been fine like that. but today i undid the strap and then tried to unclip the tail section (single-handedly or not, caht remember, doesnt matter) and clack!, this clip broke off too:
img_20211024_160010pljf8.jpg


And i tried superglue, pattex classic, etc etc, no adhesive is suitable (one could try flaming or acetoning instead) to repair the clips:
img_20211024_155909zqjoa.jpg


Never mind the clips and repairing, the plastic material is just utter cr*p! :poop:
So, no!, i am not gonna use the plastic holder of my 2nd hm61r unit as replacement!!

From now on i'll keep using the nice headband w/ broken plastic holder, securing the light with the original rubber strap only. Let's see how that goes in the long run (stay tuned for updates). Since i doht go jogging with the headlamp, i expect the holder to still be functional and secure for my purposes (work, walks, no running). But my gosh Fenix why couldn't they have chosen a more durable plastic material and construction??
 

3L3M3NT

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I just wonder if by you removing the headlamp with one hand was putting a force on those plastic clips in a direction they weren't designed to bend causing them to snap off?

Sometimes with semi rigid plastic all it takes is a push in the wrong direction and like you found out, they just snap right off.

I know the few times I remember removing the light from the holder I undid the rubber strap and pulled the light straight out while the headlamp was in my hands.
I can imagine if you're trying to remove the light while it's on your head you may not be pulling the light straight forward and are removing it at a slight angle.

You could keep one on your head at all times and use the one with the broken tabs as just a light for the times when you normally would have removed the light, you can just use the other one.

Otherwise you should contact Fenix and see if they'll get you a replacement.
I always say that it never hurts to ask.
 

kreisl

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If my measurements are correct, then it'd mean that a smooth flat bottom could not make contact with the center contact disc, regardless of the brass donut:
img_20201016_133206rpkh8.jpg
i had forgotten that i had taken similar measurements before lol.

anyway, I retook measurements, more helpful ones:
img_20211026_1120439zj8c.jpg


From these new measurements the clearance is a generous 0.5mm. But also note that the distance between the raised parts is somewhat wide with 8.4mm:
img_20211026_112437wgjh7.jpg


It means that the diameter of the raised center section of your battery minus(-) pole must be wider than 8.4mm. For example, a diameter of 10.0mm would be safe enough, and we can assume that all (protected and unprotected) 18650 batteries with a raised minus(-) pole meet this requirement. Instead of taking measurements off of your battery, one can paint the raised center section with a whiteboard marker (whiteboard pen) and then rotate the battery inside the flashlight tube. From the remaining circle mark one can draw some conclusions about the safety of reverse battery insertion of that particular battery model (here: generic protected NCR18650B with button plus(+) pole and raised minus(-) pole):
anim200csh5jpo.gif


This also explains why some NCR18650B battery models with wide plus(+) poles don't work in the flashlight unless you insert a small magnet:
img_20211026_132651sgkg1.jpg


Your turn to guess which batteries work with or without magnets:
img_20211026_132750aaja3.jpg


Runtime graph.
The headlamp was also reviewed in some detail here including runtime graphs:
( NOTE: the blog author measured a "Quiescent Current (mA): 0.83" or 830μA. apparently his unit is defective since in the OP i had measured "4.48μA @ full 18650 battery (3.61μA @ depleted battery)". there is no way that any flashlight maker would accept the release of a flashlight model with ~1mA parasitic drain lmao!! )
 
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kreisl

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if you're trying to remove the light while it's on your head you may not be pulling the light straight forward and are removing it at a slight angle.
dito.

i was clipping'n unclipping at a slight angle. it was my way of clipping'n unclipping the light blindedly AND single-handedly. the unclipping at a slight angle broke the one clip and weeks later also the other clip.

I was unclipping carefully, slowly. Nevertheless it broke the clips.
Clearly, one must unclip (and clip) carefully and slowly straight forward!

Ah never mind. The rubber strap holds the light just fine against the broken plastic, secure enough for my purposes (frequent usage but with no running/jogging/jumping).
 

haro

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Thank You Fenis.

i've been using the 'rear clip' (i.e. where i clip the tail section of the light) together with the fenis rubber strap. let's recall that the 'front clip' got broken off.
it's been fine like that. but today i undid the strap and then tried to unclip the tail section (single-handedly or not, caht remember, doesnt matter) and clack!, this clip broke off too:
View attachment 18628

And i tried superglue, pattex classic, etc etc, no adhesive is suitable (one could try flaming or acetoning instead) to repair the clips:
View attachment 18629

Never mind the clips and repairing, the plastic material is just utter cr*p! :poop:
So, no!, i am not gonna use the plastic holder of my 2nd hm61r unit as replacement!!

From now on i'll keep using the nice headband w/ broken plastic holder, securing the light with the original rubber strap only. Let's see how that goes in the long run (stay tuned for updates). Since i doht go jogging with the headlamp, i expect the holder to still be functional and secure for my purposes (work, walks, no running). But my gosh Fenix why couldn't they have chosen a more durable plastic material and construction??

you may use also the clip from a Armytek Wizard C2 headband; see my foto below, this clip is avialable as spare part from Armytek
IMG_0645.jpg


is fits not 100%, also a O-ring about 30 mm diameter can be used for fastening
 

kreisl

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Con's:
  • none. imho this product ticks all the boxes indeed, gets my Strong Buy recommendation. however there are two things to note/know to save the buyer from possible disappointment in that area.

Note/Know:
  • the hotspot at mode1/mode2/mode3 looks tinted greenish, especially in the lowest two modes; i've seen much worse though, even in my cherry-picked light collection. mode4/mode5 have a bright white hotspot, all good here. mode3 has a creamish-tinted hotspot, not bright white. i doht like greenish CW tints (i rather prefer arctic CW tints and their purplish spills) but since the Pro's really outweigh the poor hotspot tints of mode1/mode2 and we have come to accept the natural tintshift phenomena in current-driven power LED lights, i don't feel bad about the tint performance on the lowest 2 modes. personally, i use the light mostly on mode3 and mode4 and i am not bothered about what the light does on the lower modes. there's so much else to enjoy about the product! btw, for the Czech market Fenix released the HM61R AMBER version which should have a NW-tinted hotspot; i was once interested in getting my hands on that version but honestly don't care anymore. I am a happy satisfied HM61R user, no matter the version!!
  • the electronic switch on the first production batch to hit the market was a bit finicky, not too reliable at registering clicks. when early adopters pressed the button not decidedly or not in the center, they'd hear the clicking sound but not see any effect. Misfired buttons. i also heard that Fenix looked into the matter QA in the meantime. so i can't say where my unit falls into. if i put efforts into making the button misfire, it misfires, yes. but under normal or even casual operation the button is responsive and doesn't misfire. in numbers, i'd say in 95% of my button presses, the switch works as expected, in other words, the switch is a no-brainer on my recent production unit. only mechanical switches can guarantee a 0% misfire rate!
  • okay a third thing. the holder at the headband is made out of hard plastic. since it is not made out of rubber/silicone, one must take care of where/how the headband is handled/carried/stored/etc because the plastic material could crack/break/get crushed in an accident: you step on it, pretty sure it'll be toast yumm. handle with care, and not challenge its fragility. the lens is also made out of plastic and should not be resistant against scratching and harsh chemicals. again, handle with care.
  • Good news. At New Year's Eve party a guy showed me his new unit of the HM61R. The beam had no greenish tint, it looked arctic coolwhite, i.e. artificial bright white with a purplish hue in the spill area: classical coolwhite with no greenishness and no yellowishness and no creamishness whatsoever. I like this kind of CW tint ymmv!
Of course, one cannot know if all recent production units come with this arctic CW tint, maybe he just won the tint lottery. But with his sample as proof, there's now confirmed hope for shoppers who are late in the market and didn't want a HM61R unit with any kind of greenishness in the tint: great CW tints on the HM61R do exist (by now) hooray!
  • His switch registers 100% reliably, so Fenis definitely improved on that compared to inaugural production. "No more misfires" with the button anymore! (If your newly purchased unit misfires sometimes, return it to the dealer, he sent you old production.)
  • The hardplastic holder on the headband is still cr*p, unchanged. It's not meant for rough handling (e.g. stepping on it) or rough operation (one-handed unclipping, that is). The rubber band saves the day, if you crack the plastic clamps.
  • The light is explicitly rated for 2.0m drop impact resistance. However, unlike in Sofirn SP40 headlamp, the battery is not caged\suspended between two springs. Let's not live in false belief that this fenis model can withstand more drops and rough handling than a Zebralight (a company which refuses to employ the ANSI\FL-1 rating) or a Skilhunt or a Sofirn. It probably can't. Afaik Fenis did nothing, implemented nothing, to make this light (the electronics) more robust than the competition, no double springs, no potted electronics. In particular, try to avoid the repeated shocks when you place the light with its strong magnetic tail on a magnetic metallic flat surface; these repeated shocks (of the battery against the driver disc) will cumulate to an eventual electronic defect in the light, and you'd have to go through the warranty procedure. If you bought the light from an authorized Fenix retailer (best: the Fenix importer in your country), then you will have no problems with the Fenix 5 year FREE warranty service. I did exchange the protective tape from no-name tape to original T-REX duct tape which is thicker and firmer; it should provide effective protection against scratches, dings, dents, shocks:
collage_kf2lrjsw.jpg
 
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Stefano

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I got this headlamp today. I bought it on Amazon at a very low price thanks to a temporary offer.
I bought it only to have a Headlamp Cool Withe to use combined with the PD36R and have the same tint color.
It seems I was lucky, my PD36R has a good tint (I have seen other examples of PD36R with a very blue tint) the tint of the HM61 and the PD36R seem to coincide. For the moment I have only tried it in the dark room, the HM61R tint is good, the switch looks ok.
I found the low_red light much better than the HL60R, I don't have an interest in it but it can be useful.
I will soon change the support with a rubber one and with a Zebralight band.
Much perplexity for the battery, I measured the voltage before charging it and I found 3.91 V (I usually find lower voltages on new batteries)
But the battery is a 3400mA ARB18 and not a 3500mA one I looked at the descriptions on the sales page, watched a lot of Youtube videos and I always see a 3500mA battery.
I wonder if I haven't received a used flashlight that someone bought and returned with a 3400 battery keeping the 3500 battery for themselves.

What battery did you find inside, 3400 or 3500?
Thanks
 

kreisl

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welcome to the owners' club, and congrats to the good tint and good switch. as mentioned by me, those two former (2019) issues should not exist anymore, we're in 2022 and production quality of our model has matured to final top quality stage; no doubt fenis became aware of dissatisfactory tint and switch thru early adopters' criticism right after the release in 2019. Good idea to xchange the holder (from plastic to rubber)! i like the headband itself though, which is why i continue to wear it (with the broken plastic holder).

i found inside 3500mAh (Fenix ARB-L18-3500 12.6Wh), and the ANSI FL-1 specs were made with this battery. Seeing a brandnew 3400 inside would puzzle me too. hope you can figure it out.
 
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Stefano

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I wonder why you'd get the HM61 today when the HM65R-T is lighter and brighter?
I already own a special edition HM65R (both leds with 5000 K tint) it has a constant stabilization better than the standard HM65R and the HM65R-T
I bought this HM61R because it has the same tint as the PD36R, theoretically even with HM65R-T I would have had the same tint but only with the main led (SST40) the other flood_led would have been with a warmer tint.
The weight difference between HM61R and HM65R-T is minimal (only 8 grams difference)
In my experience an L-shaped flashlight is more comfortable carried hanging around the neck or in a pocket.
When I'm not using my Headlamps I wear them hanging behind my neck, with HM65R I have a different sensation of bulk, I only use it on a few occasions.
For everyday transport I prefer the L-shape such as Zebralight, Armytek or the HM61R
 

n2mb_racing

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I already own a special edition HM65R (both leds with 5000 K tint) it has a constant stabilization better than the standard HM65R and the HM65R-T
I bought this HM61R because it has the same tint as the PD36R, theoretically even with HM65R-T I would have had the same tint but only with the main led (SST40) the other flood_led would have been with a warmer tint.
The weight difference between HM61R and HM65R-T is minimal (only 8 grams difference)
In my experience an L-shaped flashlight is more comfortable carried hanging around the neck or in a pocket.
When I'm not using my Headlamps I wear them hanging behind my neck, with HM65R I have a different sensation of bulk, I only use it on a few occasions.
For everyday transport I prefer the L-shape such as Zebralight, Armytek or the HM61R

Interesting. I use mine for running, so I'm always looking for the lightest and brightest. I only need about 1.5 hours run time. The HM65R-T is good, but the dimming after a short period of time is annoying. I'd prefer it to stay brighter and run through the battery quicker.

I also have a Zebralight H52 with a 1050 mAh li-ion battery, which I love. But, the run time can be a bit short when it is cold (~45 minutes) at 300 lm. But, it is only 70g with the battery and strap!
 

Stefano

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I briefly tried the HM61R outdoors.
My initial evaluation is positive I think it's a good headlamp, Fenix did a good job.
I was expecting a different beam, it is wide but it is not like that of Armytek Wizard/Elf models (TIR lens) I am used to.
There is a fairly visible central part, it is quite reminiscent of the Zebralight Frosted lens (Zebralight Frosted lens produced after 2015)
At first this thing bothered me a little but after I had to admit that the result is good, the HM61R has a good balance between throwing and flooding, I would not have expected it to have so much to throw but I should have guessed it by looking at the cd on the technical specifications .
The first two levels have a slightly darker tint (too cold) but this is normal on lights with this SST40 led, however the level of 5 and 50 lumens with this cold tint give me a feeling of low light (this by using the headlamp on the outside) normally I use 4000 K tint and I'm used to that color tint.
150 - 400 and 1200 lumens give a lot of satisfaction, the beam is good and there is more throw than I wanted but keeping a good side view and in front of the feet, this will appeal to most average users who often tend to complain of headlamp with wide beam and little throw.
With an outside temperature of around 4 C° (39,2 Fahrenheit)I used the Turbo for about 2 or 3 minutes without seeing visible changes in brightness.
Good red light on all three positions, maybe 5 lumens is not enough to water the garden in the summer, we will see in a few months if it is true that the red light attracts fewer insects.
The 5 lumens of red light are comfortable for wandering around the house, the intermittent red light is very visible even if it has a slow flashing frequency (for the benefit of autonomy), maybe I would have liked a slightly faster frequency.
I would have liked a switch with a deeper travel similar to that of the HL55 / HL60R to have a distinct click and greater ease of use with gloves.
The charging cable seems to be working fine, when the indicator light turned green I took out the battery and checked the voltage it was only 4.09 V.
I reinserted the battery and struggled a bit with the magnetic cable until I could see the red again and the charging started again. I don't think this is a flaw as it happens with all the headlamps with magnetic charging that I have seen so far (Wizard, Wizard Pro including the recent ones that have a new 1A charging cable) The magnetic charging of all the headlamps of the various brands not always foolproof, sometimes you need to make a few attempts to get a red charging light.
Difficulty in varying the inclination using the Fenix support but this will change when I remove it from the original support to use it with that of another brand.
Hope it's understandable enough (I use Google Translate)
Now I just have to understand if I received a headlamp with the original battery or not, I don't understand why I found a 3400 mA battery inside.

Edit: I recharged the HM61R after the outdoor test, when the indicator light turned green I took out the battery again and measured 4.17 V Here too, in my experience, everything is normal, it is rare to see the full voltage of 4.20 V with a magnetic charging cable This non-total recharge involves a greater elongevity of the battery (and offers a good margin of safety against accidents)
 
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Stefano

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welcome to the owners' club, and congrats to the good tint and good switch. as mentioned by me, those two former (2019) issues should not exist anymore, we're in 2022 and production quality of our model has matured to final top quality stage; no doubt fenis became aware of dissatisfactory tint and switch thru early adopters' criticism right after the release in 2019. Good idea to xchange the holder (from plastic to rubber)! i like the headband itself though, which is why i continue to wear it (with the broken plastic holder).

i found inside 3500mAh (Fenix ARB-L18-3500 12.6Wh), and the ANSI FL-1 specs were made with this battery. Seeing a brandnew 3400 inside would puzzle me too. hope you can figure it out.
Thanks for the information, I asked Amazon for a replacement, let's see the specimen that arrives at the weekend what battery it has inside.
A second specimen allows me to evaluate even if I get a better tint, I did other tests and I found that there is a slight difference in the tint .. the HM61R is slightly colder than my PD36R but it won't be easy to get a tint equal, with the PD36R that I got for me I was lucky, all the ones I saw previously were very bad as a tint at low levels.
 

Stefano

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Interesting. I use mine for running, so I'm always looking for the lightest and brightest. I only need about 1.5 hours run time. The HM65R-T is good, but the dimming after a short period of time is annoying. I'd prefer it to stay brighter and run through the battery quicker.
With the standard HM65R the brightness drop would have been even worse, the R-T version has an acceptable brightness drop.
For this I bought the SuperRaptor version which has constant brightness, leds with the same tint and an additional brightness level (600 lumens)
It now seems finished (there is a limited production reserved for the Nordic countries) but the SuperRaptor 2 is available which is based on HM65 R-T.
HM65 is a great headlamp, maybe Fenix should make a clone of it but with 21700 battery
 

n2mb_racing

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With the standard HM65R the brightness drop would have been even worse, the R-T version has an acceptable brightness drop.
For this I bought the SuperRaptor version which has constant brightness, leds with the same tint and an additional brightness level (600 lumens)
It now seems finished (there is a limited production reserved for the Nordic countries) but the SuperRaptor 2 is available which is based on HM65 R-T.
HM65 is a great headlamp, maybe Fenix should make a clone of it but with 21700 battery
Where can you get the super raptor 2?
 

n2mb_racing

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With the standard HM65R the brightness drop would have been even worse, the R-T version has an acceptable brightness drop.
For this I bought the SuperRaptor version which has constant brightness, leds with the same tint and an additional brightness level (600 lumens)
It now seems finished (there is a limited production reserved for the Nordic countries) but the SuperRaptor 2 is available which is based on HM65 R-T.
HM65 is a great headlamp, maybe Fenix should make a clone of it but with 21700 battery
And have you seen a runtime plot of the SuperRaptor 2 in turbo? How does it drop?
 

Stefano

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And have you seen a runtime plot of the SuperRaptor 2 in turbo? How does it drop?

This discussion on this page is moving towards OT, if you need more information about the HM65R Super Raptor model the page dedicated to HM65R would be better.

Searching I found a graph that shows the Turbo runtime chart which seems to show a 1700 lumens (but I don't understand why, I remembered that using two LEDs together the power is limited to 1500 lumens total)

When I use the Super Raptor 1 my preference is 400 spot + 400 flood or 600 spot + 400 flood.

I have no idea if if the HM65R Super Raptor 2 is steadily regulated as version 1, reading some tables it would seem not ..(700 lumens for 3 hours or 500 lumens for 4 hours).
For this reason I preferred SuperRaptor 1 (I don't know if it is out of stock) I like more version 1 (with spot led XM-L2) because it has a flood light with 130 lumens instead of 70 lumens.
Also consider that on version 1 the tint is identical for both LEDs (both 5000 K)
On version 2 I don't know if this is maintained or if they are different.

You can buy it on any Finnish website, a Google search gives you many possibilities.
I asked the official Finnish Fenix importer who, however, could not ship due to constraints (they can only ship to Finland, an authorization from my local Fenix dealer would be required to ship outside that country)
I found a Finnish sporting goods store that wasn't subject to those limits and bought there (paying a ridiculous price despite international shipping)
 

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Stefano

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i found inside 3500mAh (Fenix ARB-L18-3500 12.6Wh), and the ANSI FL-1 specs were made with this battery. Seeing a brandnew 3400 inside would puzzle me too. hope you can figure it out.
I received a quick response from Fenix to my request for HM61R battery information, this removes any doubt about my Amazon purchase:

"Due to the shortage of ARB-L18-3500 cells, the battery of HM61R was changed from 3500 to 3400 in the second half of 2021.
So there are two versions of HM61R on the market, HM61R ARB-L18-3500 and HM61R ARB-L18-3400."
 

Lynx_Arc

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In reality most battery makers and companies providing batteries use the idea that a battery has to be within a certain range + or - of percentage of what capacity is listed. If a 3500mah battery is within 5% of capacity that is within 175mah of that number or from 3325 to 3675 mah which includes 3400mah easily.
 
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