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The Best Headlamp

Updated Dec 10, 2022
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Whether you’re headed into the backcountry or just taking your dog on a nighttime walk, with a good headlamp, you’ll never be caught in the dark. We’ve been testing headlamps since 2012, and after subjecting them to years of late-night hikes, evening runs, and stargazing sessions, we still think the Black Diamond Spot—the latest version being the Spot 400—is the best headlamp. It’s easy to use, with a long-lasting battery and a bright beam to keep your paths well lit, year after year.

Black Diamond Spot 400, the best headlamp

Black Diamond Spot 400

The best headlamp
The Spot 400 is an easy-to-use, bright-enough headlamp that provides long-lasting battery life and reliable performance, year after year.
We recommend
Vitchelo V800, cheap but reliable

Vitchelo V800

Cheap but reliable
Though not quite as bright as our top pick, this headlamp is nonetheless a comfortable, simple-to-navigate option for around-the-house use, at a fraction of the price of competitors.
Budget friendly
Petzl Actik Core, a rechargeable option

Petzl Actik Core

A rechargeable option
The Actik Core has the brightest light with the highest beam quality, and it stays charged for days—whether you charge it via USB or AAA batteries. It’s perfect for backpacking trips.
Another good choice
Black Diamond Sprinter 500, for runners

Black Diamond Sprinter 500

For runners
The Sprinter 500 is a head-and-taillight-laden model that’s lightweight, comfortable, and secure. The front light is brighter than those in previous Sprinter versions and even stronger than our top pick (which is also plenty bright enough).
Another good choice
Black Diamond Wiz, for kids

Black Diamond Wiz

For kids
Rainbow lights make this kids headlamp fun to play with during camping trips or backyard adventures.
Another good choice

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