Tell me about your Lucifer headlamp experience.

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I really want a Lucifer headlamp. I don't need one, but I want one.

For those of you who own one, could I persuade you to tell me about your experience with these lights? It would be helpful if you also identify which model you own. Thanks.
 
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Wow...87 views and nobody has any experience with the Lucifer line of headlamps? Astonishing, for this forum at least.

With that fact in mind, I ventured afield into the mountain bike and orienteering forums where a surprising number of reviews are posted for Lucifer products. Almost all of the reviews are positive, with many suggesting niggling criticisms and/or slight improvements to the design or functionality, but not to the basic design or engineering (the headlamps' engineering get especially high marks from the orienteering crowd).

Having identified separate communities of experienced users of this brand of headlamp, my curiosity is satisfied. Fee free however to post any experience of your own to share. 🔦
 

borrower

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S2X, here, and it is my favorite headlamp ever. (Follow my links for an early look.)

I'm still positive, maybe more so. The interface is awesome, light output is excellent, burn time is surprising. Honestly, the only barrier is price.

Edit to note that this thing has gotten a lot of use... it varies by time of year, of course, but a typical week has me running 4 days between 5 and 6 o'clock. Right now, that's all headlight, all the time. In the summer, it isn't. So you could probably split it down the middle to say 2 days/w x 1 hour x 100 weeks = 200 hours.
 
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Random Dan

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Never heard of these before. I'm intrigued though. Wish there were more emitter options, particularly high CRI, but at least 4500K is pretty good.
 

sirpetr

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Wow...87 views and nobody has any experience with the Lucifer line of headlamps? Astonishing, for this forum at least.
With that fact in mind, I ventured afield into the mountain bike and orienteering forums where a surprising number of reviews are posted for Lucifer products.
Its because flashoholics use more flashlights, headlamp section is not popular here. Also our largest customer groups are orienteers, mt bikers, runners and 24h races competitors, they do not come here much.

You can read some Google reviews when you search "Luciferlights", most Czech but few international also. Also there are reviews on all headlamp product pages, all are from our customers and we really do publish all reviews. One review from a finnish mt biker was recently added into our www.MTBR.com thread. Long time ago there was also review of M6 and L in british orienteering mag, one from multiple world champion in Rogaining from Australia and also one review of S2X is on youtube. Links are on our pages.


Random Dan: Actually, we do have HiCRI option (LH351D, 5000K, CRI93) for most lamps, can be ordered by adding item found in EXTRA category. But personally, I really like standard XP-L2 LED option and its hard to see large difference compared side by side. XP-L2´s 4500K paired with optics is really superb and so is its efficiency, thats why we made it "standard and recommended option". Few years ago, we even offered 3000K,4000K,5000K along with standard/HiCRI options but just few customers benefited from that range of LEDs and now it would be nearly impossible to stock all that options.
 

knucklegary

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Dave, as an option to 'Lucifer',, have you checked out this latest distance headlamp from Black Diamond?

BD are based in Salt Lake City, UT.. affordable shipping and CS right here in USA

Wife owns the 450 Storm used daily during Fall/Winter, for about one year now with no issues.

 

sirpetr

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knucklegary: Joke? Similar prize and weight as our M6 lamp but only 1500mAh cell vs. 7000mAh. Made in china vs. our lamp made 100% in EU. 1500lm setting can be turned just for 10s? Really? It looks its made from plastics, it can become brittle over time. We CNC mill all lamps from aluminium, they withstand everything. BD tells its constant brightness but its very unlikely to have 300lm with 8h constant runtime from a 1500mAh cell. It is not possible in this universe to produce 300lm with 0.675W of energy, thats 444lm/W, breaks current law of physics. They even write different runtimes on product page and in the downloaded manual. Its annoying, same marketing bullshit over and over again. Thats exactly why I started making my own lamps 9 years ago but I feel like marketing still wins over real parameters.
 
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Thanks for the recommendation as to the Black Diamond line of headlamps. After reviewing the specifications and reading reviews, I'm of the opinion that for my purposes the Lucifer M6 headlamp is likely to be my purchase, presenting the optimum balance of output, runtimes, and rugged reliability.
 

kerneldrop

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Yes, I developed all our drivers, they are either buck or boost based on input/output voltage. You can find old thread here when I developed our second headlamp back in 2015.
https://www.candlepowerforums.com/threads/small-powerful-headlamp-1xxml2-1x18650-li-ion.406802

That's cool stuff.

What driver component is typically added that allows both a boost and buck like on some of the AA/14500 lights?
Or is there something like a resister added before the booster so that it takes a 3.7v battery and resists it down to a 1.8 voltage before it gets b boosted?
 

sirpetr

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kerneldrop: I wrote we use either Buck or Boost, we do not do Buck&Boost just because its more complicated and require more space on pcb. Often its made as cascaded topology, first Buck and then Boost. You can built it from discrete components, but mostly its one IC which takes care of converting voltage. Its synchronous, more or less integrated, can have integrated switches (mosfets) for low power applications or external switches (mosfets). There are many ICs out there, each one with different number of required components, different driving capibilities, you have to go through datasheets to find one for your requirements.

www.google.com/search?q=buck+boost+synchronous+converter+IC
 

xcandrew

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I don't have one yet, but as a person that fits the target market (run/ski/orienteer/mountain bike), Lucifer has made some of the most interesting lights to me since they first turned up as prototypes here. I've only not tried them yet because I've tended to go with bike light setups with US distribution or budget alternatives. (But now separate battery pack bike lights have mostly gone extinct, and can't really be modified to be used on headstraps anymore.) Headlamps built for moving fast in the forest have different design goals than most flashlights or headlamps mentioned in flashlight forums. In particular, no-nonsense constant-light settings (all levels should be sustainable with cooling from a walk/run); good light patterns that always combine distance for navigating/watching out for large animals as well as foreground for seeing your footing and map; durable in terms of vibration cycles (I probably accumulate 3 million running footsteps or similar cycles of swaying/bouncing in other activities in each dark/winter season); and balanced, stable, and comfortable for running.

Lucifer does claim a good track record for durability, and in particular for their cables which are also cold weather rated, so those are big pluses. I've killed or had to replace cables for all my bike light based headlamps (original Magicshine from a dozen years ago, 3 gemini lights, 1 Yinding) and the drivers have also tended to die after a year or two - all probably due to vibration, so the durability claim is a big draw.

@sirpetr Have you considered doing a 21700 battery tube for the S2X?
 
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sirpetr

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I've killed or had to replace cables for all my bike light based headlamps (original Magicshine from a dozen years ago, 3 gemini lights, 1 Yinding) and the drivers have also tended to die after a year or two - all probably due to vibration, so the durability claim is a big draw.
In my 9-14yrs of experience in this field I can tell you its usually design issue (not enough testing) or low voltage rating of some components, especially considering a year or two years of timescale. Smallest integrated IC´s can fail overtime with frequent temperature cycling just because their soldering joints are very tiny. For this reason I prefer as much as possible (sometimes not possible) IC with leads that are visible, in our tracks they give us best longtime reliability and when there is any failure, its very rare (like 0.05% over 4 years) and sometimes even cannot be easily tracked to one particular smd component.

There are however other things that can go wrong and look like electronics failure, like proper housing build/assambly, any pressure or bend together with high temperature can destroy pcb tracks overtime. Parts must fit straight.

Vibration during your runs shouldnt matter much, you have lamp on your head and you naturally smooth footsteps with your whole body.

Preproduction testing is exhausting, we have our own testing routines and with every new model its vital to go through numerous tests beacuse they give you confidence. When you provide 4yrs of international warranty, you need to have confidence in your product.
 

xcandrew

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l was guessing on the driver failures not able to diagnosis root causes of that type. Your guess is probably better on that side.

I think my experience with cables failing can be divided into two scenarios - battery in a jacket pocket vs. battery on the head strap. There definitely is a rhythmic cable movement with each stride and torso rotation when the cable goes into a pocket off your head. When I was modifying my Princeton Tec Eos 20 years ago (and talking about it here), my most useful but failure prone modification was adding a remote battery pack that I kept warm in a jacket pocket. The wires would fail about once a week, and I'd try to remake it better each time (using heat shrink for protection/strain relief). The cables on my original Magicshine also only lasted about one week, using it with the battery in a pocket. More recently, I was watching the UTMB streaming this summer, and Zach Miller, the American runner who finished second, was describing his Moonlight headlamp cable rhythmically and loudly banging on his pack, making it sound like someone was running behind him. That amount of cable movement can't be good for cable reliability.

The Gemini cables lasted longer before failure, more like a year or two, because the cables were moving a lot less since I kept the battery pack on the head strap. But they always eventually failed after about a year or two, even trying to bend them as little as possible. Maybe that was more a strain relief than vibration issue from unplugging for charging 100+ times per year.

I'm guessing cable reliability is one of the reasons why bike lights have moved away from battery cables and to self contained battery designs. Yet cables are necessary for the larger class of headlamp, allowing balance, more battery capacity, and ability to hide the batteries from the cold. Lucifer looks attractive for someone with my experience, since you are the only brand to really tout your cable durability and cold resistance.
 

sirpetr

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xcandrew: You seems to have lot of experience with headlamps and I would be glad to make you one headlamp which I am sure will survive all other lamps you had. Because our typical customer is somebody who use it a lot, exactly like you. We do not plan now to use 21700 as they do not offer any weight/capacity ratio advantage over 18650. Weight would be close to M6+ lamp, so it does not make sense to have so many similar options. Even now, customers are asking all the time for an advice whether they should buy S2X or M6+.

borrower: Thanks for posting here, Im sure there are more users here, but none of them wrote. I found your old review thread here: https://www.candlepowerforums.com/threads/lucifer-s2x-headlamp-first-impressions.479934/
 
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