Most helpful positive review
77 of 77 people found the following review helpful
Great for Running
on January 10, 2013
The Remix headlamp has 2 light sources to choose from - a single Maxbright LED (the brighter one) or 3 `ultrabrite' (wasn't that a toothpaste?) LEDs, and each light source has 2 brightness levels - high and low. The large pushbutton switch located on the top of the headlamp is fairly easy to push with gloves on and/or while running. You push it once to access the Ultrabright LED, and HOOOLD it to access the Maxbright LED- but it's not intuitively obvious as to why it's set up the way it is, and can be a bit annoying.
Run times and beam distance for the Remix:
* single white Maxbright LED
28 hours in high (100lumen), Distance 73m
51 hours in low, Distance: 51m
* 3 Ultrabright LEDs
61 hours in high, Distance 29m
200 hours in low, Distance 13m
Coming from a little 4-LED CR2032 powered cap light, and other older or inexpensive headlamps- this is a huge improvement and a real pleasure for running. I've used it a few days now, and have finally figured out how to push the button to get the light level that I want. Here's my take on the 4 different light choice levels:
Ultrabright Low: This is the lowest of the 4 choices and claims a distance of 13m. It's not bright enough to light your way for running, but fine for checking your watch, looking through your sock drawer, reading in the tent- that sorta' thing. I'm glad the Remix has this low level, as you don't always want a bright light. Oh- if you push the button once... this is the light that comes on.
Ultrabright High: Perhaps now is a good time to say a few words about the claimed distances. Can you see 29m with this light as claimed? Maybe. But the light at 29m is equivalent to about moonlight level. So, basically it's close to the minimum level at which you can see anything. If you want to know how far you can see well enough for running- perhaps change those meters to feet. That is- if its spec'ed at 30m- you can see well enough about 30 feet ahead. So, depending on your running speed, about 3 seconds in front of you. I'd say this level is pushing about 45 lumens, and floods an area plenty wide enough for running. To get to this setting, you press the button twice within 1.6 seconds.
If you're comparing this light to the less expensive Fuel headlamp, the Remix has 3 of these LEDs whereas the Fuel has 4 and a max of 70 lumens /40m distance and a burn time of 50hrs. 45 lumens is good enough for road running, but more is nicer.
Maxbright Low: Here's where the Remix gets good. The Maxbright LED. The Fuel ain't got one. While Princeton Tec calls this a `narrow' beam, it really isn't much narrower than the Ultrabright 3-LED pattern and casts a beam plenty wide enough for running. It will light up a 6ft wide trail in front of you, a full road lane, or two- depending on how far out you're looking, and the step up in lighting from the Ultrabright level is noticeable and pleasurable. You get a big jump in your ability to see (from 3 seconds ahead to 5 seconds ahead), for not much reduction in available burn time (61hrs to 51hrs). The color of the Maxbright LED, while still very white, is warmer than the very blue/white Ultrabrights. The distance spec on this level is 51m, which is a very nice step up from the Ultrabright High of 29m or the less expensive Fuel's highest setting of 40m, so for just a little more coin, you get a noticeably brighter light that will burn just about as long. Sounds fair. Getting to this setting is easy, as it just requires holding down the button for 3 seconds - and you're there. Each headlamp will have its own `go to' setting. The one that you prefer and always use. For the Remix... Maxbright Low is it.
Maxbright High: Spec'ed at 100 lumens, 73m distance and 28hr burn time- this is the Remix's highest setting. Frankly, it's only marginally different than Maxbright Low, let's say- 1 step brighter. For the mostly road running that I'm doing, the extra light level is not only unnecessary, but it illuminates the reflective road signs so much that they get annoying. It's also a little harder to `get to' this setting, as you need to first hold down the button for 3 seconds, and then press it again within 1.6s. You may need to do it a few times to get it right. For trail running- well, brighter is almost always better, but I'd think that this would be more than sufficient for most conditions.
So- there you have it. A small, reasonably priced, bright, long lasting running light. Perfect! Some prefer a rechargeable headlamp, but with the 50hr spec burntime of the Remix, why bother. Plus- if you're out in the wilderness for long periods of time, it's easier to carry some spare AAA's than to find a tree with an electrical outlet in it. I have only two minor complaints. 1. I'd like a `blink' mode, for running at dawn/dusk when I want to be seen by cars, and 2. Getting to either of the High settings or switching settings is a bit confusing or tricky with the combination of the right button holding and pushing, and you end up turning the light completely off in order to make it a step brighter. It's a little annoying. Would have been easier if the button presses just cycled through the 4 modes and the hold is to turn it off.