What is the best headlamp for running?

Y

Yavox

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I am looking for something:

- with a strong floody beam
- as compact and light as possible
- with a comfortable headband keeping it at proper place and maintaining the angle at which the lamp was set

Any suggestions?
 
The_Driver

The_Driver

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The Armytek Wizard is very, very good for running. Is has a special TIR-lens, thats gives it a perfectly smooth, but somewhat focused floodbeam (imagine a "carpet of light"). Many cheap lights have the "bouncing spot effect" and cause tunnel vision. With the Armytek this effect is greatly reduced. This lens is the reason why I think they are better for running than the headlamps from Zebralight (which use reflectors, sometimes together with a diffused lens). Even compared to the Zebralight models with an "F" in their name, it produces a more even beam of light.

It doesn't really matter which version you get. The more expensive "Pro"-Versions stay in regulation longer in Turbo-mode (the other modes are the same) and have additional firefly-modes (not needed for running). There are different color temperatures available. I would reccomend getting the normal, "warm" version (in reality it's a 4000K neutral white). There is also a new variant of the light with Cree XHP-50 that is much brighter in the highest mode. If you often need the light for 45min oder less, the XHP-50 version would be a nice option.

All Wizard lights use single 18650 batteries. They have over-discharge protection, so you can use unprotected batteries (cheaper than protected ones and you can get specific, high-quality cells). They all have an overtemperature protection. They will never get too hot.

The normal Wizards with Cree XM-L2/XP-L LEDs produce 600-900 otf Lumens in the highest mode, the new ones with Cree XHP-50 around 2000 (EDIT: 1600) otf lumens.

EDIT:
In general I would recommend getting a light that uses one 18650 battery instead a light with AA- oder even AAA-batteries. You get much more Energy in a still rather compact form factor. If you get the right type of cell it will also work much better in the winter, when it's cold outside.

I would also generally recommend to use a rather bright setting if you are a faster runner, are older with vision getting worse, run on difficult trails or just want to feel safer. I would never sacrifice my own safety because someone else thinks they have better eyes and decide to use a dim light. Too bad for them! But that's just my opinion.
Also: who wants to waste time waiting for their eyes to adapt to the darkness of a sub-100 lumen light?
 
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A

Azhobo

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The zebralights are still the lightest relative to their batteries. I use the floody, warm 18650 size. The h600f. The 602s don't reach far enough for me unless I run them on full power. The AA versions are nice too and nearly weightless but l miss the lumens and run time of the 18650. Use the top strap on the harness.
 
sidecross

sidecross

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I hope you run alone and with no others running towards you. :caution:
 
S

scs

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The Armytek Wizard is very, very good for running. Is has a special TIR-lens, thats gives it a perfectly smooth, but somewhat focused floodbeam. Many cheap lights have the "bouncing spot effect" and cause tunnel vision. With the Armytek this effect is greatly reduced. This lens is the reason why I think they are better for running than the headlamps from Zebralight (which use reflectors, sometimes together with a diffused lens).

It doesn't really matter which version you get. The more expensive "Pro"-Versions stay in regulation longer in Turbo-mode (the other modes are the same) and have additional firefly-modes (not needed for running). There are different color temperatures available. I would reccomend getting the normal, "warm" version (in realiyt it's a 4000K neutral white). There is also a new variant of the light with Cree XHP-50 that is much brighter in the highest mode. If you often need the light for 45min oder less, the XHP-50 version would be a nice option.

All Wizard lights use single 18650 batteries. They have over-discharge protection, so you can use unprotected batteries (cheaper than protected ones and you can get specific, high-quality cells). They all have an overtemperature protection. They will never get too hot.

The normal Wizards with Cree XM-L2/XP-L LEDs produce 600-900 otf Lumens in the highest mode, the new ones with Cree XHP-50 around 2000 otf lumens.

At most 1600 otf as estimated by some, the xhp version.
also, it gets hot, 140 F.
perhaps if the ambient air is cool enough, and one runs fast enough, it stays cooler.
 
LeanBurn

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Ever considered the Fenix HL10 ?
 
sidecross

sidecross

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What is the alternative if it's too dark to run without a light?
Any light where you can control the direction of the light without moving your head.

Any light at head height, this would also include people on bicycles, should use care when using 1000 lumen lights that could shine directly in the eyes of others. I am surprised that this needs to be even explained on a forum like this. :caution:
 
A

Azhobo

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If your worried about it, you can wear any of these lights as a belt.
 
Tre_Asay

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How fast are you running to need 300 lumens? I suppose if you don't bother looking at the ground tripping is a concern. IME >50 lumens of somwhat directed light is plenty, even less if it is high CRI.
 
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Azhobo

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Between 7 and 8 minute miles. I get your point though. A full moon is enough to run with depending on where you are. My lights is usually around 100 lumens. With 300 I can tell the difference between a javelina and a mountain lion at a more relaxing distance. Also 300 is way better while biking. I've never owned a light that put out to much light.
 
Tre_Asay

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I get your point, I ran and hiked a lot in a small wilderness area in California and at one point I stepped on a large rattle snake. I learned to keep my eyes on the ground nearby and only look at a distance for short times.
Maybe for running a floody light for just a few feet and a more powerful thrower for looking down the trail would work.
 
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Azhobo

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I had one bounce his nose of my bare calve 15 years ago(no bite). To this day, I'm fixated on that bush every time I run by it.
 
stephenk

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The Fenix HL10 is my favourite light for running (<6km) I've reviewed it in this forum. Very lightweight, bright enough to see ahead, but not too bright to blind motorists, decent tint and CRI, floody beam, and comfortable to wear.
 
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Lumenwolf

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Are there any decent rechargeable variants that come with a battery?
 
livingsurvival

livingsurvival

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There are several lights such as the black diamond spot or thrunite th20 that have variable brightness so you can set it at whatever you like. keep in mind brighter more tactical style headlamps from fenix, nitecore or thrunite will have less runtime and typically be heavier on the head. Petzl and Black Diamond make very light headlamps that may be better suited for running.
 
L

Lumenwolf

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There are several lights such as the black diamond spot or thrunite th20 that have variable brightness so you can set it at whatever you like. keep in mind brighter more tactical style headlamps from fenix, nitecore or thrunite will have less runtime and typically be heavier on the head. Petzl and Black Diamond make very light headlamps that may be better suited for running.

Thank you for the advice
 
sidecross

sidecross

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I get your point, I ran and hiked a lot in a small wilderness area in California and at one point I stepped on a large rattle snake. I learned to keep my eyes on the ground nearby and only look at a distance for short times.
Maybe for running a floody light for just a few feet and a more powerful thrower for looking down the trail would work.
+1
 
A

Azhobo

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The zebralight AA is brighter, lighter, longer running and sits closer to head than the other lights mentioned. And can be had in hi-cri with your choice of tint. They are more expensive and sometimes out of stock. For running, I would make weight and distance from your head a priority as those factors will effect comfort.
 

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