The Icon is much newer than the Moonlight, reviewed below. The retail price is $50-$60. It features a 3 watt LED, as well as 4 ultra bright LED's. The 3 watt LED has 3 brightness settings. The 4 ultra bright LEDs have 3 brightness settings. The Icon runs on 3 AA batteries, either alkaline or NiMH. The battery compartment is at the rear, and is screwed shut (by hand). All the settings are done via a single waterproof switch below the light assembly. The unit is small, and works well. It is much brighter than the moonlight. In fact, the lowest setting could be significantly lower, and still be useful. The battery pack even has 3 different color LEDs that light up as the batteries get low. It is a wonderful headlamp.
The Moonlight originally cost over $20. I bought one slightly used for about half price. It runs on three AAA batteries which are included at purchase and are kept in a rubber coated pouch at the rear of the headlamp. There is a strap that goes around the head, as well as a strap that goes over the top of the head. The straps are a bit on the small side. It had a simple on/off switch which is very robust and likely waterproof. There are 4 LED's mounted at the front. The switch turns the LED's on and off. The voltage seems to not be regulated. The batteries last quite a while, making the headlamp very useful.
Black Diamond decided to issue a newer version of the Moonlight. It looks identical, except the straps are a bit longer. The new version has three levels of brightness as well as a blinking mode. Clearly the voltage is regulated. The low level is quite useful for walking around in the dark where you just want to illuminate your local surroundings. The batteries last even longer than the original when using the lower levels of brightness. Weight is 4.1 oz including batteries. Rated at 70 hours on high beam, 180 hours on low beam. Highly recommended, but out of production, and not easy to find.
After using the light for about 30 minutes, it failed to turn on at all. I tried three different batteries. I have contacted DealExtreme. Hopefully they will replace it. It took over 2 weeks, and 2 emails (they say their response time is 1 or 2 days, but there was 'spring festival in China') , but DealExtreme said they will ship me another one. Clearly the reliability is poor. Stay tuned.
Well the new flashlight arrived. I put in a trustfire battery, and it lit up. After 30 seconds, it went out. It stayed out. I tried a 1.5v Duracell, but it didn't work either. It is clear that something is failing quickly. I have contacted DealExtreme again. I fear something is wrong with the design of the flashlight. This time, it took them 7.5 days to get back to me. They again offered me 'compensation $7'. I don't understand this, as the flashlight cost $14. I told again that I wanted a working flashlight or my money back. They replied that since it had been so long since I bought the flashlight, it would take them 14 to 21 work days to refund my money. I suspect that the something has very poor heatsinking, causing it to overheat and fail. It is just a guess, but the outside of the flashlight never got hot.
I read some very positive reviews about this flashlight. It uses a single AA or 14500 lithium ion battery. It has three brightness levels and a blinking mode, and a SOSOS mode. It is 20.5mm in diameter and 92.25mm long. It is made of aluminum with what is likely hard anodization. It has a spring wire clip on the end, and no hole for a lanyard. The lens is recessed about 2mm, and the tail button is also recessed about 2mm. It will work with a AA Ni-MH battery, but it is roughly 1/2 as bright as it is with a lithium ion battery. It has a fixed focus reflector. It is very nice to have three brightness levels, as you often don't need full brightness. It is part number 28546, and costs $13.99 including shipping. DealExtreme products are shipped from China and they can take a week or two to arrive. I have had good customer service with all the products I have bought from them.
I also bought a pair of TrustFire protected 3.7v 14500 batteries, item 26124 which cost $5.49 and a TrustFire charger, item 4151 for $8.81. The batteries came charged, and I put one in the flashlight. It is now really bright, significantly brighter than my 1w luxeon flashlight. I am very happy with the flashlight, battery and charger (until it broke after 30 minutes of use). The charger will also work on different sized lithium ion batteries. This is my brightest flashlight. It would be nice to have a nylon belt pouch, and I don't like keeping this in my pocket. It won't turn on accidentally easily, as the power button is a bit stiff, but I would like to not worry about scratching the lens. After having two flashlights fail, I recommend avoiding this brand, and perhaps dealextreme.
This flashlight also is known as the Sipik SK-68 It works with either AA batteries or AA sized lithium ion batteries known as the 14500. Claimed output is about 300 lumens with a lithium ion battery, or 100 lumens with an Alkaline battery. Less with NiMH. It is about 4 inches long, and small enough to easily fit in a pocket. It only turns on and off. One very nice feature is the focus is adjustable from a spot to a flood light. It cost between $5 and $7 including shipping from different vendors. This is a pretty bright flashlight. I would prefer more than one brightness level.
The battery I use for this are called 'Trustfire'. It says it is 900 mAh (milli amp hour) on the side. With a charger, two batteries cost about $10. These batteries are 'protected', which means there is a small circuit board on the negative end which is supposed to prevent over-charging, over-discharge and short circuiting. Lithium ion batteries store a lot of energy, and can blow up under extreme circumstances.
This flashlight says Small Sun ZY-T04 on the side. It uses two 18650 lithium ion batteries, which are a common size for powerful flashlights. It has high, medium, low, strobe and SOS modes. It is a bit on the large size, being about 8 inches long. One very nice feature is the focus is adjustable from a spot to a flood light. It cost about $22 including tax. This is a very bright flashlight. The lowest setting is plenty bright for almost all uses. I would prefer to not have the strobe and SOS, and have 2 more brightness levels, but that isn't commonly available. I am sure the brightness is less than 1200 lumens, but it is certainly very bright.
The batteries I use for it are called 'Ultrafire'. Though they say 3000 mAh (milli amp hour) on the side, many think they are over-rated and closer to 2400 mAh. With a charger, two batteries cost about $12 shipped from DinoDirect. These batteries are 'protected', which means there is a small circuit board on the negative end which is supposed to prevent over-charging, over-discharge and short circuiting. Lithium ion batteries store a lot of energy, and can blow up under extreme circumstances.
Features the XM-LT60 emitter. It uses one 18650 lithium ion battery, which are a common size for powerful flashlights. It has high, medium, low, strobe and SOS modes. It is a about 4.6 inches long. It cost about $11 including tax.
The Petzl Micro uses either a standard light bulb or an optional halogen bulb. It runs on 2 AA batteries which are mounted in the front, right behind the bulb. It turns on by twisting the bulb housing, which also adjusts the focus. There is a strap that goes around the head, as well as one that goes over the top of the head. It included a spare bulb in case the bulb burns out. Weight is 5.2 oz including batteries. Battery life is rated at 7 hours using alkaline batteries at 70F, 8.5 hours using lithium batteries at 0F. The light works well for walking at night. I used mine to hike for about 5 hours on a very dark night. Perfect for reading a book at night.
The Petzl Zoom is the big brother to the Micro. It uses either a standard light bulb or an optional halogen bulb. It is designed to run on those silly french 4.5 volt batteries, and has an adapter to allow it to run on 3 AA batteries (which are much easier to come by). The battery compartment is mounted behind your head. It turns on by twisting the bulb housing, which also adjusts the focus. There is a strap that goes around the head, as well as one that goes over the top of the head. It includes a spare bulb in case the bulb burns out. Weight is 10 oz including batteries. Battery life is rated at 22.5 hours using alkaline batteries at 70 F, 9 hours using the halogen bulb at 20 C. The light works very well for walking at night.
The Petzl Duo is the big brother to the Zoom. Mine came with two bulbs, a low beam, and a high beam which is a halogen bulb. (The new ones have the low beam powered by LED's). You can turn on either the low beam or the high beam separately. The switch is much improved over the Micro and the Zoom because it is now separate from focusing the light, and can even be 'locked out' to greatly reduce the chance of accidentally turning on. It runs on 4 AA batteries. The battery compartment is mounted behind your head. The focus is adjusted by twisting the bulb housing. There is a strap that goes around the head, as well as one that goes over the top of the head. It includes spare bulbs in case the bulb burns out. Weight is 10.5 oz including batteries. I bought an upgrade kit to convert the low beam to 5 LED's. There is also an upgrade kit to convert the low beam to 14 LED's. Battery life is rated at 65 hours using the 5 leds and 4 hours using the halogen beam and alkaline batteries at 20C. It is rated as being waterproof to 5 meters. It is good that Petzl finally figured out that people need more than one brightness in a light. Highly recommenced.
The Photon fusion is a headlamp and/or a bicycle light. It is powered by 3 AA batteries which mount right behind the LED's. There are 6 LED's. There are two switches that control the functions of the Fusion. They glow slightly in the dark making them easier to find. There are several levels of brightness and some blinking modes to the Fusion. I have a hard time remembering all the functions of the Fusion, because I don't use it regularly.
I bought several Taskforce 1w Luxeon flashlights at Lowe's recently because they were on sale. The Taskforce comes with 3 AA batteries. The light is not regulated. The case is coated with a rubbery material which does a good job being grippy. There is a lanyard included with the flashlight. There is an external 'o'-ring sealing the head of the unit (the only opening). It is a bit bulkier than a 3 AA flashlight needs to be, but not annoyingly so. Highly recommended.
The Luxeon LED's have revolutionized LED lighting. There are now several good 1w and 3w headlamps using these LED's. The good ones have regulated output (constant light as the batteries drain, until the batteries get really weak). Another very important feature is multiple levels of brightness. 1w is really more than you need to do simple tasks like walk around without tripping, or reading a book. And yet there are always times when a really bright light is very useful. I have heard that Princeton Tec makes really good Luxeon based headlamps, but I haven't gotten my hands on any yet. At 3w and above, it is necessary to keep the LED from overheating (even LED's generate heat). If I was buying a new headlamp, I would really want a Luxeon based one.
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