Saturday, September 17, 2011

My Review of Black Diamond Spot Headlamp

Originally submitted at REI

Updated for 2010, the Black Diamond Spot headlamp is brighter than before to punch a hole through darkness while you run, ski, climb, hike and paddle.

Excellent headlamp for the money.

By thelosthiker from Central Kentucky on 9/17/2011


5out of 5

Pros: Stable, Bright, Adjustable Beam

Cons: Not Waterproof

Best Uses: Day trip, Backpacking, Hiking, Car Camping

Describe Yourself: Professional/Guide

Was this a gift?: No

I've had a Black Diamond Night Ray for 7 years or so and it has functioned very well for me through the years. It still works and I still use it quite a bit, but I needed something a little brighter and a little more versatile. The Spot is just the ticket.
I can't really comment yet on the battery life since I'm still on my first set of batteries (the same ones that came with it). I have played around with it quite a bit though and have not noticed any lack of brightness yet, the battery meter is still on green as well. One thing in particular that I'm happy about, is the lack of a regulator. Some people like them, and in theory I'm sure they're great, but every light I've had that contained a regulator has either suffered from flickering or completely failed.
The red light mode is what I was really looking for in a new headlamp. I've gotten tired of blinding myself and my wife when crawling around the tent or truck when camping. The red light is also less obvious to the critters in the woods and doesn't blind me when I'm sorting through stuff in my treestand during hunting season.
The other light modes work very well and the dimming feature is pretty slick. The high output mode really surprised me. The beam was nice and even with no cold spots and had very good reach, it will definitely light up the woods! The low output or flood mode works as expected and puts out good light for work around camp.
The Spot appears to have pretty decent construction, but I'm a bit leery of the lack of weatherproofing. However, from most of the other reviews I've read from other users who have operated theirs in the rain and snow, it doesn't look like I have much to worry about. I will probably still wrap a little piece of electrical tape around the seam of the body and battery door when I know I'll be taking it out into a wet environment.
I will note that if you absolutely must have full weatherproofing, you can spring the extra 10 dollars and pick up the Storm. Had I known that when I bought this lamp, I would have probably picked up the Storm just to have that little bit of extra weatherproofing and the extra 25 lumens, but I'm not concerned enough about it now to go back. It goes well above and beyond my expectations for a $40 headlamp.