Head torches can be a great tool for homesteading, emergencies such as power outages, camping, hiking, or any other outdoor activity. There are so many thousands of options available on the market for a headlamp or head torch, so what features should you be on the lookout for to get the best torch for your requirements and get value for your money?
A good head torch should have a power source that provides lasting power and is easily replaced or recharged. The light source must be bright and reliable and increase your field of vision. A red light feature is useful in many circumstances, and the headlamp should be comfortable to wear.
With all the options that present on the market for head torches, choosing the right model with the right features can be a bit of a daunting task. We have compiled a list of the main features that are the most important criteria that you should be investigating when choosing your head torch. These would be must-have features rather than gimmicks to get you to buy the headlamp.
How To Choose A Head Torch
The choice you make in purchasing a headlamp should involve considering the activity that you intend to use the headlamp for and which features in the headlamp make the most sense for your application. There are head torches on the market that are suitable as an emergency light for power outages at home, there are others that are suitable for running or cycling at night, and still others that have features that are good for astronomy activities and map reading.
To negotiate the main, important features that you should be on the lookout for when searching for the ideal head torch, we have listed themain features that should be the focus of your investigations to make sure you are getting a torch that will not only meet your specific activity needs but offer some level of cross-purpose or multi-purpose as well.
Here are the main features that we feel every head torch should offer as a minimum, which will allow for multi-purpose use and versatility and provide a durable head torch that will be reliable and robust.
Power source.The type of power source powering the head torch would be an important feature that bears consideration when you need to have the torch operating for long periods.
Light source.The technology of the light source, the bulb, is ultimately going to provide you with the light that you need. Having a head torch that has good quality, bright light, produced by quality. Long-lasting bulbs should be one of the most important features for investigation.
Red light feature. The red light feature is not a feature that will be necessary for everybody's requirements in a head torch, but it is certainly a feature that will give the head torch multi-purpose use and even provide a safety feature in certain applications.
Field of vision. Sometimes, you need a wider field of vision, which is often a shortcoming with many head torch models. They have a central, focused beam but leave your peripheral vision in the dark.
Head straps and comfort.The way the head torch fits on your head will determine how comfortable you are when wearing it and using it. A headlamp that is uncomfortable or that keeps falling off your head will quickly lead to frustration and dissatisfaction with your choice of head torch.
Let's delve into these features in a little more detail so that you can decide which of these features would be a requirement for what you want in a head torch and which ones are less important to you.
Type Of Power Source For Your Head Torch
The power source of the head torch is what will determine how long the torch will provide you with usable light and how often you would need to change the batteries or recharge them. The run time that the batteries will offer the head torch should be a characteristic that you take note of as well as the battery technology that will best suit your requirements.
There are 3 main power sources for head torches.
Until recently, your only choice of power source for your head torch was single-use disposable batteries. Rechargeable batteries are nothing new, and have been around for quite some time, but early versions were bulky and did not hold their charge for long. Methods of recharging were also cumbersome and impractical for a portable light.
Recent advances in rechargeable battery technology have made these batteries smaller and more compact, and easier to charge. The modern rechargeable batteries also provide a longer run time than their early predecessors.
When you are looking for a head torch with a rechargeable power source, it is best to look for one that has a compartment where you can swap out the rechargeable battery rather than a sealed unit battery.
The sealed unit batteries are heavy, degrade over time so that they hold the charge for a shorter and shorter time, and are more expensive to replace and sometimes difficult to source.
A head torch that has a compartment where you can actually remove the rechargeable battery and replace it with another rechargeable battery would be the better choice. This type of rechargeable battery that is the AA size is more easily sourced and doesn't take as long to recharge. They are also significantly cheaper than sealed rechargeable batteries.
The AA-style rechargeable batteries will also allow you to carry extra rechargeable batteries that are already charged and are lightweight and easy to store.
The charging method used in a rechargeable head torch is also an important consideration. You should have the ability to charge the battery while it is in the torch via a USB cable, which will allow you versatility in charging sources for the light.
You could charge it with a power bank, your car cigarette lighter, or even a laptop computer. This type of versatility is important in a rechargeable head torch.
Many head torches available on the market will use replaceable battery technology. These are batteries such as alkaline, lithium, and nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) batteries. These battery technologies come in various shapes and sizes, such as the AA or AAA sizes or CR2032 batteries, which are thin round batteries.
If the head torch that you are interested in uses these battery types, it would be best to look for one that has a battery type that you could easily source, even in fairly remote locations. Most stores, even gas stations, will stock AA and AAA size batteries, but the CR2032 batteries are less common in many rural type locations.
Head torches that are powered by a wind-up mechanism may seem like a good, green alternative, but this technology does have its limitations.
Winding the handle will charge either a capacitor in the torch or a small short discharge battery. Typically, these torches will have a short run time of between 20 to 30-minutes before they will need to be recharged by winding them up again. They will also usually have a limited brightness to make the wind-up power last longer.
These torches would be good as a backup head torch but not recommended as your primary head torch.
Light Source For Your Head Torch
LED technology is found in most of today's headlamps, and for good reason! This incredible light source has a ton to offer, from being lightweight and non-breakable with long battery life and offering superior, bright illumination!
A characteristic of LED technology is that the LED bulb will stay bright throughout the life of the battery. There is no dimming of the LED light as the battery runs down. When the battery can no longer power the LED, the light will simply go out. This has the advantage that you have a usable light for the duration of the battery life, but the disadvantage that there is no warning before the battery gives out.
The brightness of each head torch will usually be expressed in Lumens, and it is advised that you buy one with at least 150-200 lumens for optimal performance.
The illumination is the most important part of the head torch, which means that the model that you choose should offer you the most versatility of all the features of the head torch. In some circumstances, you want a focused spotlight-type beam, and in others, wider-angle floodlight-style lighting would be preferable.
Many single-LED head torches incorporate a magnifying lens housed in front of the LED, magnifying, or increasing the light that the headlamp puts out. This means that lower power LED bulbs can be used to minimize the drain on the battery but still provide hours of good quality light very efficiently.
Red Light Feature
A red light feature on a head torch may not seem like a prominent feature that you would use very much, but if you want to preserve your night vision while reading maps or practicing astronomy and looking through a telescope, the red light feature comes in very handy.
The red light not only has application for preserving your night vision but also has the safety aspect of allowing you to be seen in the dark if you are running or cycling or even walking at night.
Some activities involving working with animals at night, such as beekeeping, require a red light since this disturbs the creatures less than what a bright white light does.
Field Of Vision
Many head torch models only have a central beam that acts as a spotlight, which restricts your peripheral vision at night. While you may want this particular type of lighting if, for example, you are fishing at night, you may want a wider field of vision in other applications such as around the campsite at night.
A head torch that offers you an adjustable field of vision will make it more versatile and applicable for multiple situations.
Head Straps And Comfort
For a head torch to be useful, it needs to be comfortable to wear. In many cases, the torch at the front of the strap at your forehead places all the weight of the torch in this location. This makes the torch want to fall off your head the moment you lean forward or look down.
A good head torch should have not only good technology in the lamp itself but also where thought has gone into all aspects of the design, including how the lamp conforms to the shape of your head and how well it is held in place.
An uncomfortable head torch will be one that you are reluctant to use because it will be cumbersome to control and keep in place and maintain the light focused where you need it to be.
A good head torch should have a well-balanced design with adjustable head straps that will make the torch feel comfortable to wear over long periods.
The STKR Concepts FLEXIT Headlamp Range
At STKR Concepts, our focus is to solve lighting problems with innovative and well-thought-out designs. Lighting solutions that actually work! Our products are not intended to follow the crowd and deliver what every other product out there is delivering, but offering a product that will stand head and shoulders above other products due to its innovative designs and features.
Although not all of our products are geared around lighting, we have a wide range of lighting products that we are we are proud of. We believe our lighting solutions that make use of modern LED technology are some of the best in the market and will make life easier for our clients.
Our head torches are no different, and we believe that our products in this range will more than meet your expectations in a great head torch!
Our products are designed to work hard and take everything that the outdoors or rough work can throw at them and keep on providing excellent illumination.
We have two models in the headlamp or head torch selection that we believe will tick all your boxes for not just a good head torch, but a great one!
One feature in particular about both our head torch products is that the battery compartment is located on the head strap at the back of the head. This provides good balance and prevents the headlamp from wanting to fall forward when you lean over.
The FLEXIT Headlamp PRO
The FLEXIT Headlamp PRO is the perfect solution for all your hands-free lighting needs. Whether you're looking for something to light up your campsite, hike, or just find your way around in the dark, this headlamp has got you covered. The FLEXIT Headlamp PRO will give you a total of 650 lumens of light to work with which is more than what you will need for most outdoor activities.
It's lightweight and comfortable, so it won't weigh down on your neck or give you a headache after hours of use. Another plus it that it is waterproof, so there are no worries about getting caught out in the rain!
The 240° halo lighting improves your peripheral vision in the dark, and it’s also equipped with a red night mode, this FLEXIT Headlamp PRO will be sure to meet all of your needs. The lights for the halo lighting as well as the main light and rear red light can all be controlled separately so that you can completely customize the lighting for the situation! This headlamp can also be used as an emergency signal when paired with its strobe function.
The mounting that the central light is on is adjustable up and down so that you can direct the powerful 350 Lumen beam where you need it the most. The 350 lumens allow this light to project the beam far into the darkness, giving you good distance vision, even on the darkest of nights.
The low profile design features side-mounted C.O.B (chip on board) flood LEDs that deliver 240° halo lighting which illuminates peripheral vision from all directions while eliminating tunnel vision.
This LED layout eliminates any chance of eye strain because there is no direct beam shining directly into anyone's eyes, plus, it comes equipped with 3 different lighting modes.
The FLEXIT Headlamp PRO battery will give you 55 hours of runtime and has the option for the COB LEDs to provide red lighting and a red safety light on the rear battery panel that can be a fixed tail light or flashing. The red light capability makes sure that you are visible at night from every angle!
The FLEXIT Headlamp 2.5
The FLEXIT Headlamp 2.5 is an innovative design for those who like to be hands-free but still want the best possible visibility in all conditions, especially nighttime scenarios.
Weighing only 0.3lbs and sporting a low profile that contours to your head with plush padding on both sides of its body, it’s incredibly comfortable while being lightweight enough not to bother anyone when they wear it around their head at night!
With 180° halo lighting from side-mounted LEDs illuminating this light's wide area coverage will improve your peripheral vision awareness so that you'll always know what’s coming or going before you take any steps into unknown territory.
The FLEXIT Headlamp 2.5 provides 250 true lumens of light, is weather-resistant, and gives up to 12 hours of runtime on the three AAA batteries that are housed in the rear battery compartment.
The FLEXIT Headlamp 2.5 is hard hat compatible with the specially designed hard hat clips that we sell separately. These clips will clip onto the rim of most hard hat types and will allow you to mount the torch directly to the hard hat.
If you are looking for a good head torch, then the products we offer at STKR Concepts are sure to meet your demands and quite possibly exceed your expectations, especially if you compare our products to other offerings that are in the market.
Our head torches are designed to be robust and durable and incorporate features that are simply not found in many other head torches.
We believe that our headlamp products can offer you all you need in the way of good power source options, efficient and bright light source, red light feature, significantly improved field of vision, and a comfortable fit!
Anything can happen at any moment in time. Being prepared can make a major difference in how safe you remain during an emergency. It’s recommended that everyone has an emergency kit ready so that they are prepared anytime that the unthinkable happens.