LED Headlamp Suggestions Sought

Hi,
I'm in the market for a good quality LED headlamp.
I'm here looking for suggestions as to good build quality, bright
'flood' illumination that renders colors correctly, long battery life (preferably from 2, not three cells) and resistance to 'real world' dirt/crud, water & mechanical shock.
Any and all suggestions, comments, warnings etc are more than welcome!
Thanks all,
Erik
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Erik wrote:

Suggest also posting to rec.bicycles.tech.
I don't know if it will start a religious war, but one can always hope. :)
Were it me, I would follow this guy's lead and make an elastic / velcro strap for the ubiquitous and useful LED Maglite: http://goo.gl/JAQVd
--Winston
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wrote:

Check Peter White's (the New Hampshire wheel builder) site. He has extensive comparisons of various lighting systems, including photos of the beam coverage.
--
John B.

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I really like the Petzl brand for stuff like climbing a tall mountain at night.
http://www.petzl.com/us/outdoor/headlamps/allheadlamps
OTOH, DX has cheap-ass (< $7) ones that are okay for riding a bike at night once in a while or dealing with raccoons in the attic.
http://www.dealextreme.com/p/1-watt-headlamp-479
I'm not sure any of them has color rendition as a priority- white LEDs are pretty dubious.
I have a Petzl 'hybrid' that has both LED and halogen bulbs that would be okay for color rendition, but it sucks batteries pretty fast in the halogen mode, and it's not particularly inexpensive.
(Amazon.com product link shortened)17681149&sr=8-1
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On 10/3/2011 3:42 PM, Erik wrote:

Somebody already mentioned the Petzl headlamps.
I looked a while back for a water-proof (or resistant) headlamp and there were only two: one resistant to about three feet for ~10 minutes, and another resistant to ten feet for ~30 minutes. Both of these were pretty expensive, $50-$75 IIRC. Mountaineering-equipment retailers will have them.
Also I will warn you that if you ever get OIL or other petrochemicals on an elastic (latex) headband (commonly used on typical headlights) the elastic will quickly fail.
--

Another way is to get a small waterproof headlight and wear it on a
non-elastic headband. This is not as ideal as a specific-purpose
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Well, you'd have to provide the strap, since this is designed for "real" waterproof applications where you will have a mask strap handy, but it is "really" waterproof (500 ft rated, I'll stick to 130 myself)
http://www.uwkinetics.com/products/mini-q40-eled-plus
However it's 4 cells, so not what the OP is looking for.
--
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Please don't feed the trolls. Killfile and ignore them so they will go away.
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On 10/3/2011 3:42 PM, Erik wrote:

And doesn't blind the guy you are looking at?
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http://www.surefire.com/SaintMinimusHS2-A-BK
This one is pricey, but it purely kicks butt for task lighting where tasks are at arms' length as opposed to hiking -- although it does OK for that too. It's amazing.
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snipped-for-privacy@NOSPAMgoldengate.net says...

Anybody looking for anything that resembles a flashlight might be interested in <http://www.candlepowerforums.com .
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Good luck on the 2 cell bit, most lights that use white LEDs will take 3, if not 4, alkalines. Only way around the voltage requirements of white LEDs is to use lithium cells or a more formal inverter power supply($$$ and heavier). Also good luck with accurate color rendering, most are somewhat bluish in cast.
Have a look at what Bass Pro and Cabela's carries. I've seen some at the local Sportman's warehouse, most only had 3 LEDs at most, hardly "floodlight".
I've got an HF flashlight that I bought on special and with coupon that has 100 LEDs, that one qualifies for "floodlight". Uses 4 AA cells, though. Could be rigged with a head harness, have seen those for use with regular flashlights. Good enough for looking for downed deer after dark.
Sounds like what you want is a hat covered with LEDs.
Stan
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It uses three AAA cells, but my wife & I have several of these kicking around:
(Amazon.com product link shortened)- Strap/dp/B00064YL7S
They work very nicely, aren't over priced, and the top strap makes them a lot more secure than some. We've been re-insulating the attic, and they have gotten a really good workout. The batteries last a good long time, the lights are pretty bright, and the color isn't too far off.
If you shop around, you can frequently find deals on them, or at least free shipping from places that sell them for less than Amazon. I linked to Amazon because they have a lot of good reviews.
Doug White
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Hi all,
I'm the original poster...
First of all, thanks to all for the good information.
I decided to go with, and bought this one:
(Amazon.com product link shortened) f=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid17972340&sr=8-1
It was on sale at a local camping place (A-16)... $64.95 - 25% for a total of $48.71 (before tax/lic).
It does use 3 AA's but I'll live. I much prefer battery powered devices that use even numbers of batteries, as they come packaged that way, and that extra battery always bugs me.
The unit has 4 small LED 'side lights' for close range flood lighting, that can be adjusted high, medium or low. Once you eyes are acclimated to the dark, even the low position is fine for walking around. (There is also some silly emergency flash mode for the floods.) Around mirrors and shiny stuff, even on low these'll leave spots in your eyes...
I quickly discovered that the med and low flood settings are accomplished by rapidly 'strobeing' (sp?) the LED's, and will require caution around moving equipment.
The center 3W spot LED is extremely brilliant & well focused, and also sports three power levels, with med/low attenuation accomplished same as the floods. The spot does not have the silly emergency flash mode. and is painfully blinding around mirror's & shiny stuff.
The floods and spot cannot be both energized simultaneously, nor does it (so far) seem necessary.
It has three tiny battery level indicator LED's, green/yellow/red mounted to the side of the battery compartment.
Manual is just 'ok'. It had no mention of how to assemble the top strap, and it took a day or so to figure it out.
Comes with a 3 year warranty, and they claim parts are available.
Thanks again all!
Erik
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That beats Amazon's $54 price, with free shipping. Good deal.

You buy the expensive way. I usually buy in even increments but get the large economy packs, usually 20 or 24 for $7 (Eveready Gold alk) v. $4-5 for 1-2 pair in most stores. Our local BiMart is cheaper than HD, Lowes, or Wally World.

It may seem silly now, but you wouldn't think the emergency flash mode on low was a bad idea if you broke your leg 4,000' down a cave and had to wait a day or two for a rescue.

Interesting. I wonder how much battery life that saves.

I'll bet.

I wear my headlamps while on my back quite often and have always bought the style with the back of the band free of obstructions. They're all much lower powered than your new one, but I can see why some mfgrs put the battery box on the back: for better balance.

No comment. <titter>

G'luck with it.
-- I merely took the energy it takes to pout and wrote some blues. --Duke Ellington
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Larry Jaques wrote:

Whoa! That happened to me on Tuesday! How did you know?
(Wait a minute, now I remember. I barked my shin on the coffee table instead.)
:)
--Winston <-- Should have turned on the light.
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wrote:

The little guy from Notre Dame said "Call it a hunch."

Whew, CLOSE!

Ayup. Or used the rods in your eyes to get around. Look askance and walk wherever you like, Winnie. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eye
-- I merely took the energy it takes to pout and wrote some blues. --Duke Ellington
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Larry Jaques wrote:
(...)

'What hump?'
--Winston
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Winston wrote:

Every Wednesday.
--
You can't have a sense of humor, if you have no sense.

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    [ ... ]

    Sometimes, you can find them packaged six to a pack, which should solve your problem for the moment.
    I'm using something made (or at least branded) by Eveready, with a mixture of central spot, multiple floods, both at once, or red narrow floods. It is somewhat ligher than what you got, apparently, as the three AAAs which it uses live in the front compartment with everything else.
    It is sold by Home Depot (probably among other places, but that is where I found mine -- right by the checkout counter where I could not resist it. :-)
    The lamp assembly hinges down so you can point it to workbench surface if you need to.
    I haven't checked it for strobing yet, as I use it on unpowered equipment in tight places, or when doing detail work on electronic repair, not mechanical.
    Enjoy,         DoN.
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