LED Lenser Head Light Review
Flashlights are a great bit of gear when you need an easily portable light source, but if you’ve spent a lot of time outdoors you’ll have experienced that sudden realisation that you need two hands for what you’re doing and don’t have one spare for the flashlight. Holding a heavy lump of cold metal between your teeth gets old in a hurry, and that’s when you wish you’d bought a head light. We’ve recently been trying out some flashlights from LED Lensers, and we took the chance to look at two of their H Series range of head lights too.
Let’s start with the H3. This is a small, very compact head light. The light unit itself is a plastic moulding, with a circular face holding three LEDs. These are mounted in small but effective reflectors, giving a useful beam out to over 20 metres. LED Lenser rate its output at 60 lumens and we’re not going to argue; it’s pretty powerful for its size and – more importantly, if you’re going to be strapping it to your head – its weight. In fact it weights 119 grams, which is pretty light. Power is supplied by three AAA batteries, which live in a plastic box round the back of your head. The batteries should give you up to 60 hours of use. Both the lamp module and battery box are mounted on a simple, adjustable nylon strap. The H3 is a neat little unit that you can easily stuff into a pocket and forget about until you need it, or wear comfortably for long periods.
The H14 is a much more serious looking piece of kit. It weighs 346 grams, not enough to make it uncomfortable but it does benefit from its more elaborate harness. As well as the main strap going round your head there’s a top one as well, which does a nice job of stopping it slipping down round your ears. This strap also helps support the battery box, which is quite a bit larger because it holds four AA batteries. These last about ten to twelve hours, because they’re feeding a much larger lamp. The H14 has a substantial light unit with a single high power LED, putting out 210 lumens. It also has a fully adjustable focus system so you can change from a flood to a spot. In spot mode this will let you see for well over 100 metres, which is pretty good for a head light. Despite its weight we found that this is still comfortable enough to wear for a long time, so if you’re into caving it would be ideal. It’s also great for reading in camp at night, or just doing general tasks.
Head lights really are useful things to have, especially if you need to do a lot of fiddly tasks outdoors. Either of these two is small and light enough that you can carry one as well as a good LED flashlight. They’re also very well made and have great performance, so they’re highly recommended.