Black Diamond Spot Headlamp
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- 1 Triple Power LED, 2 Single Power white LEDs and 2 Single Power red LEDs emit 130 lumens (max setting)
- Power Tap Technology allows fast, simple transitioning between full and dimmed power, momentarily increase illumination distance and proximity modes
- Red night vision mode has proximity and strobe settings, activates without cycling through white mode; Sleek, low profile design uses 3 AAA batteries
- Three-level power meter shows remaining battery life for 3 seconds after switching on headlamp
- Protected against splashing or sprayed water from any angle (IPX 4)
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Powerful and fully featured, the 130-lumen Spot offers our convenient Power Tap Technology, which allows for quick, on-the-fly brightness adjustment with just a finger tap to the side of it's touch-sensitive housing.
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So what are the differences between the Spot 130 and the Spot 90?
-- How about an additional 40 lumens of light!! And you can really tell the difference between the two.
-- When you power on the Spot 130 it defaults to the high intensity beam. To get to the low power beam, you have to push the button twice rapidly. When the Spot 90 is powered up you randomly get low or high power, depending on which mode it was on the last time you were using it. If the 90 does not power up in the mode you want, you have to press once for off, then once more to turn it back on for the correct mode. I like the new 130 defaulting to high intensity beam - most of the time it is the mode I want. On the Spot 90, it is annoying to potentially have to press it three times to get it there - obviously someone at Black Diamond agrees!
-- The hinge system on the new Spot 130 seems to be beefed up and more substantial - on the Spot 90 it just seemed to loose.
Comapring tee Spot 130 to the Petzl line of headlamps from a cost perspective - consider the Petzl XP 2 retails for $59.99 and gives you about 80 lumens of light. And to surpass the output of the Spot 130 in the Petzl lineup, you are going to shell out $89.99. Petzls are FINE lights, I own 4 of them of different types, but with the price / per lumen and the quality level of the Black Diamond Spots, my last four headlamp purchases have been the Black Diamonds.
Here is what I like about the Spot 130:
-- The quality - these lamps are well built, and built every bit as good as a Petzl. My Spot 90 is over a year old, has seen heavy use and looks like new.
-- The large on / off button - although still not perfect with gloves on, it is easy to operate and does not require too much pressure and fumbling around! The Petzls I own have a smaller button, and sometimes it takes just the right pressure to turn it on, and can be a little harder to locate instantly.
-- The fact it has a red / night light mode - I like to do astronomy, and this is invaluable to maintain night vision!
-- The head band - good adjustability, comfortable.
I am still trying to find out what I don't like about the Spot's - for the price, it is hard to find anything wrong with this headlamp. I guess maybe three levels of brightness instead of just two - high and low.
I use my Spot 90 (and now will use the 130) for MANY uses, including:
-- first, for night bike riding. We have a handle bar mounted Cygolite for the main light source, and the Spots for the head lamp. When you are riding, and turn your head to the side of the trail to look, you want to be able to see what you are looking at. Handle bar lamps always point straight ahead...
-- Camping - of course... when there are no city lights, a bright headlamp is a must!
-- Daily chores around the house - my 50 yr old eyes constantly need a back up when doing virtually every chore. I always have one close by, for even the simple chores of more light to read fine print, etc. An invaluable tool, and have made my flashlights obsolete!
From a technical spec perspective, the Spot 90 and Spot 130 are very similar:
-- Both weigh 3.2 grams;
-- Both have a rated burn time of 50 hours on TriplePower LED, 200 hours on SinglePower LED;
-- Both have a rated distance of 75m on TriplePower LED, 15m on SinglePower LED;
-- Both run on 3 AAA batteries, both have a 2 LED red light mode
-- One has 130 lumens, the other 90 lumens max output
Now I will see how these pass the test of time, and how they hold up!! I will update the review later if there is anything of consequence to report...
Thanks for reading!!
Positives: Turns on at 75% power, so doesn't blind you. You can vary the light similar to a dimmer switch by holding down the button. There are spotlight, LED, and red light settings, both steady light and blinking. All of the light settings can use the dimmer functionality. The strap is thicker/more robust than the Tikka strap. The Spot also protrudes less from your head. (see picture). The Spot is 94 grams, the XP2 is 85 grams (with all three batteries).
One thing that I like about the XP2 that is not on the Spot is the light diffuser, which distributes the light in a soft pattern rather than a spotlight. When looking at someone with a headlamp and they have the diffuser on it helps reduce the blinding light. This is also useful around animals, such as when walking the dog.
- Many settings. Everything adjusts with one button which could be mildly confusing, but I find it simple to quickly adjust for your needs. The dimmer feature is gradual so you can customize the brightness/dimness to your liking, not just 2 or 3 brightness levels. I think it's called "infinite" brightness level, or something like that.
- Very sufficient brightness for any low-light use.
- Attractive look
- Strap is about as comfortable as I imagine it could be.
- The locking "off" feature protects it from accidentally turning on while in a pocket or bag.
- Low battery indicator lets you know if the battery is at high, medium, or low charge
- Sturdy. It feels pretty solid when closed.
- Yellow spot. As at least another reviewer noted, there is a yellow spot in the center of the beam, so if you are walking in snow, you think you're constantly about to step in dog pee. It doesn't hinder vision, but is kind of annoying and I think unnecessary.
- Battery life. Considering that much of the time I used the light, it was on strobe, red, or proximity setting, I would expect longer battery life
- Red setting brightness. It's not as bright as at least one other brand.
- Battery enclosure, though tight, has thin plastic that requires a little fingernail usage to open. It is secured by some type of plastic ribbon for a hinge.
- I'm not sure that the product description on Amazon was written by a human. One of the features in the description was that this product was "man made." Are any headlamps naturally harvested or mined? I had assumed that most electronics were man made.