Black Diamond Icon Headlamp, $80,www.blackdiamondequipment.com
The Good: Obscenely bright and good battery life.
The Bad: Bulky battery supply.
The Ugly: The faces behind the creepy glowing eyes on my favorite trail.
The Icon Headlamp is a half-pound LED headlamp chalk full of power and chalk full of the batteries to provide it. The Icon has three main lighting functions including a 200-lumen output spotlight (illuminating 100-meters), 35-lumens of task lighting and dual red LEDs that preserve your vision at night. The extra niceties include:
- Strobe and dimmer in every function
- Waterproofing: IPX7 Rating (Immersion in 3-feet of water for 30-min.)
- Lock Mode
- Utilizes four (4) common AA batteries. Means you can easily steal the batteries from the annoying kids’ toys or your roommate’s TV remote.
I tested the Icon a number of times while running my favorite 5-mile loop near my home and while on the yearly company fish-out at Shasta Lake. At first I was skeptical of the Icon’s bulky battery pack, but during the night runs I learned that the battery pack quickly settles down, remaining relatively motionless. The spotlight gave me way too much confidence as I found myself directing it at oncoming cars and overhead police helicopters. Though I couldn’t turn a ghetto bird, I loved having the extra power.
The Icon’s intuitive controls make it easy to access all of its lighting features while in the middle of an activity, though I would review the included Quickstart Guide to steepen the learning curve.
While camping I found the red light function very useful. My fellow campers were glad that I didn’t have to toggle through a blinding white light function to get to the red light function (simply hold the button for 3-seconds and you get red).
The Icon is a bit much for casual around-the-camp use, though; I felt a little silly having three straps and a 2” by 2” square on the back of my head when others were using pen lights to avoid trip hazards outside of the fire light. But if you’re going someplace where the sun don’t shine and you need to see, the Icon will definitely light the way for you.
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Author: Andrew Borgic