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How To Choose A Headtorch

Facewest sells a huge selection of headlamps. Unless you have experience of a particular model or have be given a recommendation then it can be quite a job finding the right lamp for you. Before you look at the actual lamps you need to decide which features are important to you. The main considerations are power, weight, battery life and cost.

Power Think what you will use the lamp for and what will be the maximum distance that you will want the beam to reach. If you do a lot of night navigation you will want a good beam, but for general camping then it is not really necessary. Power is very closely linked to battery life, a longer beam means more battery drain. There is also the issue of regulated or unregulated LEDs. Regulated LEDs provide a constant beam length for a shorter time while unregulated LEDs provide a gradually diminishing beam range for a longer time. Some torches have a Reactive light mode (eg: Petzl Nao) which allows the torch to automatically adjust the output so that it is always providing the optimum light.
Battery Life (burn time) Battery life is more of an issue for those going on long trips where fresh batteries will not be available rather than those weekend camping. Long trips require an energy efficient lamp. Replacement batteries cost money so burn time is a factor, although this can be greatly reduced by the use of rechargeables. Many lamps now come with bespoke lithium batteries, especially the more powerful ones.
Weight Adventure racers and climbers will be looking for the lightest lamp that fulfills their needs whilst car campers will not be as concerned with weight.
Cost Everybody cares about the cost, and hopefully you will get the right features for your budget by reading this.

Once you've thought about which features you really want from the torch, look at the table below to link to a power category.

We also have a comparison table so that you can easily see the main features available on every headtorch we sell - Click Here for our features comparison chart.

Power/Range Pros/Cons Explanation Category Link
Low Power Torches - Up to 75 Lumens Strengths - size, weight, battery life, cost

Weaknesses - beam range
Compact and light weight with small batteries. These lamps offer long duration LED light. Enough light for walking in the dark on a track, reading and looking for things close by but no real beam.
Low Power Headtorches
Medium Power Torches - 76 to 200 Lumens Strengths - all round versatility

Weaknesses - combined battery and light unit can bounce when running.
This type of lamp is fairly compact, has excellent burn times and a beam of up to 100m which is more than enough for most users. A good choice for climbers, mountaineers and most people. Mainly regulated but a couple can be unregulated as well. Medium Power Headtorches
High Power Torches - over 200 Lumens Strengths - beam range, size & battery life Weaknesses - cost LED technology constantly evolves to produce brighter, more focused and more efficient LEDs. The battery unit and light unit are normally separate which gives a more balanced unit on the head and less bounce when running. Normally using custom rechargeable batteries and having multi mount options. These lights are popular with bikers, runners and adventure racers. High Power Headtorches

Once you have decided on your headlamp please read How to choose the right batteries for my Headlamp.