Thursday, September 12, 2013

Gear Review: LED Lenser SEO5 Headlamp

When it comes to LED lights, most of the time, they are usually really bright but don't shine or illuminate for very far distances. Most of the LED flashlights we own have this problem and they have somewhere between 3 - 9 LED bulbs in them. The same goes for some headlamps we own. However, I have to say that the LED Lenser SEO5 headlamps is more than just hype. It's LED Illumination at the best I've yet to see.

When I received the SEO5 Headlamp, I was excited to get it out and play with it. After all who doesn't love to play with flash lights? Unfortunately it was the middle of the day and our Wee Little One was up and about. So I was only able to get it out of the package and get quickly familiar with its one button operational modes, how to focus and spray the light, and how to swivel the head of the light up and down (really that was a no-brainer).

The one button operation is pretty easy. One click and the light is on at full power, a second click puts it in low power (still pretty bright when focused in. Oh and clicking and holding that second time will allow the light to adjust it's brightness on low power to whatever level works best for you at low power). A third click puts the light in strobe mode. By clicking and holding for a two second count from off to on will put it in night vision mode with a red beam of light being emitted. Doing the same click and hold for 2 more seconds will put it back to regular operation. Click and hold for up to 5 seconds and you lock the light in off position which will prevent the light from being accidentally turned on while stowed away in a pack or in our case being turned on and blinded by an 18 month old who finds it hilarious to watch your blinded reaction. The same 5 second click and hold unlocks the torch.

I've used the lamp quite a few times and am very impressed with it's ease of use, comfortability on my head, and it's lighting capability, especially on the trail running in low/no light conditions. Running on the trail is no easy task especially when it's fully light out. Make it a dark or low light trail run and it becomes exceptionally harder. However, equipped with the SEO5 headlamp, and the trail lights up like a Christmas tree, well not exactly but I can see the trail and what's in front of me without any problems. Even in low light, dusk/dawn heavy canopy situations on the trail, I can see every rock and root on the trail that might otherwise cause some serious issues for a trail runner.

The battery life on the unit is rated at 7 hours on high power and more than 24 hours on low power. Using just 3 AAA's that's a pretty good run for the light if you ask me. The headband is adjustable, removable, and machine washable. The casing for the light makes it waterproof to IPX4 standards (loosely translated as: splash resistant or better yet it can be rained on, but if you dunk it in a stream, creek, river, etc. you can pretty much guarantee the light isn't going to work, at least for a while if ever again).

Suggested MSRP for the LED Lenser SEO5 headlamp is around $57.00. Searching the interwebs, I've found prices as low as $42.75. For the price it's a great torch with many functions and great specs. You won't be disappointed with this light.

Specs/Features for the Gearheads

  • 3 high-end white LED bulbs 
  • 1 glare-free red LED 
  • light Smart Light Technology with high power, low power and signal modes 
  • Advance Focus System for a wide up-close beam or powerful long distance spot 
  • Transport lock 
  • Battery life of 25 hours on low and 7 hours on high power 
  • Adjustable, exchangeable, washable, comfortable head strap 
  • Rotating head for flexibility 
  • Carabiner hook for easy transport when not in use 
  • Light Output (on high): 180 lumens 
  • Beam Distance (on high): 120 meters 
  • Run Time (on high): 7 hours 
  • Light Output (on low): 20 lumens 
  • Beam Distance (on low): 40 meters 
  • Run Time (on low): 25 hours 
  • LED: High End LED 
  • Weight: 3.7 oz / 105 grams 
  • Battery: 3 x AAA
This is indeed one helluva light and what's even better is it comes with a 5 year warranty. Now that's confidence in your product.

Happy Trails,
Tim and Robin

Disclaimer: Tim received the LED Lenser SEO 5 Headlamp for review purposes only. Appalachia & Beyond is in no way being compensated by LED Lenser for this review. The opinions expressed above are Tim and Robin's independent thoughts and experiences.