10 Best Rechargeable LED Headlamp Reviews

Heather Clouse
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NameCategoryProduct
PETZL – ACTIK CORE HeadlampBest OverallPETZL - ACTIK CORE Headlamp
COAST HL7 305 Lumen Focusing LED HeadlampBudget PickCOAST HL7 305 Lumen Focusing LED Headlamp
Black Diamond Sprinter Rechargeable HeadlampUpgrade PickBlack Diamond Sprinter Rechargeable Headlamp

1. PETZL – ACTIK CORE Headlamp

Our rating: 9 / 10

PETZL - ACTIK CORE Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Good battery life
  • Orbit-lock
  • The tail switch can be useful

Cons:

  • Very expensive
  • The lamp moves around a little

The Petzl Actik is one of the newer players in the LED headlamp scene and is a premium choice with some premium prices. This headlamp features two lighting modes, flood and spot, as well as a red light feature for better night vision.

The unit is very lightweight at only 3.2 ounces and is waterproof with a rating of IPX8, which is considered waterproof up to 60 meters. The lamp is rechargeable via USB cable.

The Actik has some impressive run times. In its most popular setting, the flood mode, the Petzl Actik can run for 50 hours on a full charge. The spot mode, which is far brighter, will only last 16 hours.

2. Black Diamond Storm Headlamp

Our rating: 9 / 10

Black Diamond Storm Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Exceptionally Bright
  • Screen dial dimmer
  • Long Lasting Battery

Cons:

  • One hand adjustability is an awkward reach
  • The on/off button is too easy to accidentally turn on

This is my favorite headlamp for my job. The Black Diamond Storm Headlamp is extremely bright, 300 lumens bright. It offers red light for night vision and a Superbright white LED technology to allow for a long battery life.

The silicone strap is soft and comfortable, and the belt clips easily. This headlamp is lightweight and can easily be adjusted with one hand. The diffused lens sets off the beam nicely.

The battery life isn’t as advertised as it only offers the life of about 7-8 hours. However, this is still more than ample time for most activities. My favorite feature is the sliding brightness dial. It is easy to reach and the bright red light allows you to preserve your night vision so you can keep your eyes adjusted in the dark.

3. COAST FL85 615 Lumen Dual Color Pure Beam Focusing LED Headlamp

Our rating: 9 / 10

COAST FL85 615 Lumen Dual Color Pure Beam Focusing LED Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Great price for the quality of the headlamp
  • Can be used on a hard hat
  • The twist focus has 2 brightness levels
  • Includes safety whistle

Cons:

  • It isn’t the brightest in a dark environment
  • The strap is generic really

4. PETZL – Tikka Headlamp

Our rating: 8 / 10

PETZL - Tikka Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Recharges in 90 minutes
  • Waterproof
  • Can be seen from a distance
  • Adjustable head strap design for a customized fit
  • Comes with 3 different colored lenses
  • 6 hour or 90 minute runtime
  • 3 brightness modes

Cons:

  • Doesn’t charge as quickly in temperatures below freezing
  • Doesn’t work well in foggy conditions

I was really pleasantly surprised by this headlamp. It’s bright, compact, and fits comfortably. The first time I used it, I didn’t take the time to put on the adjustable head strap, and it was very difficult to keep the light where I wanted it. The strap also adds stability throughout your head to keep the beam on track.

The Tikka headlamp has three LED settings: dim, medium, and full strength. While using it in all three settings, I found that I usually only use the dim or medium setting depending on my needs. When I need to see in the darkness, I turn on the full strength, and I feel like I can see everything around me. When I need to get a close up view of something, I turn on the dim setting, and I can see the other person’s facial expressions etc. just fine.

5. Black Diamond Spot Headlamp

Our rating: 8 / 10

Black Diamond Spot Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Great for hiking & camping activities requiring hands free use
  • Value wise, you get some of the best technology on the market for the price

The Black Diamond brand, like REI, is nothing short of reputable for their outdoor gear. I still really love the Spot for its easy to use button, high quality construction, waterproof, and built-in cable management.

There are four brightness levels to choose from: 16 lumens, 40 lumens, 100 lumens, and 250 lumens. You can also choose between two different settings: a spot beam or a floodbeam.

Another thing I love about this headlamp is that it comes with a AAA battery, but you also have the option of limiting/ shutting off the LED light when you still need the battery operated headlamp for emergency purposes.

6. COAST HL7 305 Lumen Focusing LED Headlamp

Our rating: 8 / 10

COAST HL7 305 Lumen Focusing LED Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Lifetime Warranty
  • 305 Lumens
  • Focusing LED Beam
  • Magnetic Clasp

This headlamp is a great value and perfect for a variety of tasks, including running, hunting, biking, and hiking. I’ve never had a headlamp with so many different features, and all of them work perfectly. The adjustable focusing beam has saved me on many camping trips where I needed to find things quickly at night.

The long-lasting battery gives you plenty of time to do the things you love, and it doesn’t take long to charge at all.

7. Black Diamond Icon Headlamp

Our rating: 8 / 10

Black Diamond Icon Headlamp

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Pros:

  • USB charging
  • Reuseable batteries
  • Long battery life
  • Adjustable brightness
  • Bright LED lights
  • Water-resistant
  • Weight: 4.7 ounces
  • Dimensions: 1.6 x 3.5 x 2.8 inches
  • Color: Black
  • Manufacturer: Black Diamond

Like most of the Black Diamond headlamps, the Icon is super bright, loads of features, and has a reputation for being extremely durable.

The Black Diamond Icon Headlamp has been a favorite with backpackers, hikers, cavers, and trail runners for over 10 years. It weighs just four and a half ounces and comes in two colors: orange, or neutrally white.

The quality is unmistakable with the Icon Headlamp. It is stretch-resistant and has extra strong nylon cabling. The silicone faceplate is also remarkably tough and able to withstand a lot of abuse in the field.

8. Black Diamond Sprinter Rechargeable Headlamp

Our rating: 7 / 10

Black Diamond Sprinter Rechargeable Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Rugged and durable.
  • Good for hikes, camping, work and home repairs, and much more.

Cons:

  • Not waterproof
  • Battery takes a long time to charge.

If you want a headlamp that is designed for hands free light, this is a good choice. It is designed to be used with bikes but you can easily use it for working on cars, plumbing, or even hiking.

This lamp can be adjusted to up to 127 degrees, so it will light up the whole surrounding area. This headlamp is powered by a lithium ion battery. A full charge is great for up to 16 hours of continuous use.

This headlamp is completely water-resistant. It will easily accommodate all weather conditions and it is also going to do better than any other lamp in snowy conditions.

9. Princeton Tec Apex Extreme LED Headlamp

Our rating: 6 / 10

Princeton Tec Apex Extreme LED Headlamp

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Pros:

  • You can adjust the light settings
  • The batteries are user-friendly; easy to recharge
  • It turns on very easily
  • The adjustable light lets you focus on the right area
  • Bright light shines up to 600 feet

Cons:

  • Setting up the headlamp is a bit complicated
  • The straps for the battery are in a bad place

What sets this apart from other headlamps is the fact that you can adjust the brightness. This is something that you will not come across in many other brands. It comes with three light settings and you can choose the one that best suits your needs at the moment. You can also adjust the area where you want that extra brightness to shine. Maximum light distance of 600 feet is impressive.

The Princeton Tec Apex is a very user-friendly model. It’s easy to charge and you don’t have to use additional tools. The batteries are perfect for backpacking or any other type of outdoor activity. You will love how easy it is to adjust the brightness of the lamp and you will be very impressed by the quality of light. The straps will ensure that the headlamp is securely fitted to your head.

The battery placement, however, needs improvement. It’s a bit hard to access it and you have to move a few things around to reach it.

10. Fenix HP25R Rechargeable LED Flashlight 1000 Lumen Headlamp

Our rating: 5 / 10

Fenix HP25R Rechargeable LED Flashlight 1000 Lumen Headlamp

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Pros:

  • Heavy duty
  • Rugged
  • Battery works very well
  • You can easily recharge the battery (included)
  • Works very well in a variety of conditions
  • Great for biking
  • Works great as a tent light
  • It has great distance
  • The white light and red light are both strong
  • Heavy duty

Cons:

  • No Cons

(1400 Lumens)

This headlamp is not made in China, but in the USA. Fenix makes a top notch quality product. 1800 Lumens are a lot. This is a tough product. People using this are amazed by the quality.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the best LED headlamp?

I know it sounds like a plot from a James Bond movie, but rechargeable headlamps are actually a fairly recent advancement. A few years ago I wouldn’t have even considered a headlamp as a lighting solution. I was content with my old school handheld headlights. To my amazement, I then discovered that these new headlamps had almost instant on capabilities.

The first time I used one, I was astonished at how efficient I could be with my energy consumption. This is especially true if you know how to use an LED headlamp as a hands free flashlight.

When you use an LED headlamp, the other area you can save energy is with the batteries. Many of the best headlamps are also rechargeable. Instead of changing batteries, you just plug the headlamp in at night and it’s ready to use the next morning.

What is the best headlamp on the market?

The amount of light produced, the quality of light, and the brightness of the light are all variables to consider. Some manufacturers that produce heavy-duty headlamps might not produce the brightest headlamp. This is why our research efforts included hours of reading dozens of headlamp reviews, as well as, hands-on use in the dark, testing each headlamp we buy.

What is the best brightest LED headlamp?

Choosing the best headlamp is a little tricky when your draw a large number of lumens. For instance, the FENIX HP25R outputs 1000 lumens while the Eagletac D25C outputs 1500. The difference in price is also hard to ignore. The Fenix at 70 dollars is 60 more than the Eagletac at 10 dollars.

If you choose to spend an entire day inside the cave, you need the Fenix! But really; what do you need?

We could recommend that you get both, but that involves shipping costs, and most people don’t need to spend that much.

How many lumens do I need for a running headlamp?

The answer to this question depends on how serious you are about your nighttime runs.

Higher lumens are important if you’re going to be running in challenging places. Hiking and mountain running, for example, shouldn’t be done without a headlamp that can put out over 150 lumens.

For the average runner, a good number is 100 lumens or less. This is still enough to get you through your evening run if you’re on a road or sidewalk.

Conclusion

Rechargeable headlamps are a handy light source that can be used in a wide range of activities. Since most outdoor activities take place during the dark hours, a reliable and effective headlamp is an essential accessory. Headlamps are also useful at indoor homes as well. Most importantly, the best LED headlamps are environmentally-friendly, inexpensive, durable, and highly portable.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
PETZL – ACTIK CORE HeadlampBest OverallPETZL - ACTIK CORE Headlamp
COAST HL7 305 Lumen Focusing LED HeadlampBudget PickCOAST HL7 305 Lumen Focusing LED Headlamp
Black Diamond Sprinter Rechargeable HeadlampUpgrade PickBlack Diamond Sprinter Rechargeable Headlamp