How to pick the perfect headlamp for you and your customer?
"Autumn is a beautiful time to get outside, but early sunsets will force you to spend many hours in the dark on your next camping excursion unless you plan on going to bed at 6 PM.
If you want to have a bonfire after dark or simply intend on pitching your tent after dark, you'll need your own source of illumination. While lanterns are ideal for relaxing inside your tent, if you're going to be chopping wood and socializing under the stars, you'll require a hands-free headlamp."
I believe most of your customers are probably thinking the same thing.
There are many alternatives available, so I put up this simple headlamp buying guide to assist you in deciding which one is ideal for you or your customer's needs.
The first thing you'll want to consider is a more wide-ranging question, and it's this:
What do you intend to use your headlamp for?
Is it for business?
What type of work do you perform?
This is a significant issue to consider since you may need to think about explosion-proof headlamps if you work in an industry like oil and gas or industrial maintenance.
Will it be for leisure or work? If so, what are your plans? Hiking? Climbing? Caving? Headlamps with specific characteristics may be required for all of these activities, such as a longer run-time, a stronger light, or an over-the-head strap.
It's time to get down to business when you've decided what you'll use the headlamp for.
ANSI has set standards for headlamps. I'll look at the ANSI standards for headlamps first, but I'll also look at other significant elements and features that characterize headlamps to search for later.
ANSI Performance Standards
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) developed performance standards and symbols to effectively communicate a headlamp's characteristics and advantages. These are the first things to consider while considering your alternatives in headlamps.
The total luminous flux is the light output. It represents the total quantity of emitted overall light energy as determined by integrating the whole angular production of the portable light source. Lumens are used to measure light output in this standard.
The Run Time is the length of time from when the light output value first starts – 30 seconds after the device is switched on with new batteries – to when the light output has dropped by 10%.
The distance between the device and the light source is measured in millimeters. The beam distance is the measurement from the device to the light source at which the emanated light beam reaches 0.25 lux (approximately equivalent to solar radiation on a clear night in an open field).
PEAK BEAM INTENSITY
The peak beam intensity is the most incredible luminous intensity found in a cone of light's central axis.
The value is indicated in candela and does not vary with distance.
The degree to which a product protects against damage from being dropped on a solid surface is Impact Resistance.
IPX4 WATER PENETRATION RATINGS
IPX4 - Water-resistant
Water splashed against the device from any direction will have no harmful effects.
IPX7 / IPX8 WATER PENETRATION RATINGS
IPX7 - When the enclosure is temporarily immersed in water under defined pressure and time conditions, harmful effects shall not be induced by the water ingress in quantities that may cause damage.
IPX8 - It is more severe than IPX7.
The light output is another important aspect of a headlamp, which is the degree to which light is bright. I express it in Lumens to measure this light output or brightness.
Lumen is the amount of visible light received by the human eye from a lamp or source in all directions. This implies that the greater the lumen count, the brighter the flashlight.
Anything over 50 lumens is generally sufficient, but depending on the activity you'll be doing with your headlamp, 100 or even 200 lumens might be ideal.
For example, if you'll be using it in the world's deepest, darkest caves while cave diving, you may require a headlamp with a higher lumen count.
Conversely, because many professional headlamps have a lower lumen count than those designed for general use, they must be used in environments where the risk of igniting is significant.
A lumen level of about 30 is atypical for explosion-proof headlamps to meet requirements.
In the end, you'll want to decide how bright you need your light to be. One thing to think about is the time the light will operate before the battery runs out.
Some headlamps may offer a variety of brightness settings, allowing you to cycle through low, medium, and high levels. The number of lumens produced will vary according to the mode used.
PEAK BEAM INTENSITY
Another measure of light power is peak beam intensity. It's sometimes overlooked, but it may still be necessary. This is the maximum luminous intensity usually observed along the central axis of a cone of light.
This indicates and measures the light's brightest area along the beam. Peak beam intensity, unlike light output, is measured in Candelas and does not vary due to distance.
LUMENS VERSUS CANDELA
Let's clarify one thing right away: the term "lumen" refers to the amount of light a device emits, while "candela" refers to the intensity of that light. They are simply two different ways to quantify the brightness of a device's illumination.
Candelas are similar to lumens, although they measure the amount of light emitted in a specific direction. The lumens measurement will most likely be sufficient; however, as it is a part of the ANSI standards, we considered that Peak Beam Intensity measured in candela might also be helpful.
We should now examine the beam distance, which measures how far the light will travel. The beam distance is the distance that light travels in a given direction. It's calculated by determining how far the light beam will shine before it fades to the level of moonlight.
The beam distance varies based on the previously mentioned light setting you have the headlamp set to and the beam type setting you have it set to, such as flood or spot mode. Later in this post, we'll talk about these mode types.
If you need the headlamp for close-up work, such as machine maintenance, or an outdoorsman or marksman who needs to be able to see far off in the distance while trekking rugged terrain at night, the beam distance may be a factor to think about.
Another detail to think about is the run-time. Although this appears to be straightforward, calculating the run-time is more complicated. It's calculated by taking the duration for the light output to drop to 10% of the rated work on new batteries and rounding it down to the nearest quarter-hour.
However, when selecting the best headlamp for you, there are a few factors to consider. First and foremost, keep in mind that a headlamp's run-time is measured in hours; therefore, you'll want to consider how long you'll need your headlamp for one usage. This may be an important consideration depending on the purpose of your headlight.
In most cases, the run-time is determined by the brightness setting. The longer a light will last before its battery dies if you set it to a brighter light setting.
Impact resistance is measured in meters and evaluated by dropping the light from a particular height onto a concrete surface with all attachments and batteries. After the drops, they must be completely functional and free of cracks or breaks at each height tested to be labeled impact resistant at various heights.
Depending on the headlamp's impact-resistance rating, it might make a massive difference between a short-term investment and a long-term one. So please remember this while doing your study. Do you want to invest in a high-quality headlamp that will last a lifetime? Or are you prepared to sacrifice durability and dependability for a lower price? It is entirely up to you.
Headlamps are frequently used outside, and, as a result, the elements such as rain, sleet, and snow may come into touch with your headlamp. As a result, a headlamp will be able to resist water to some extent more often than not. There are various levels of water resistance given by the Ingress Protection (IP) rating system, which will impact.
Just for a refresher on the IP rating system, it determines whether a device is water-resistant. A headlamp with an IPX4 rating will be able to avert disaster if it is splashed with water, but only an IPX7 or 8 headlamps will keep the light burning after being fully submerged in water.
If you're using a headlamp for an extended time outside, it's essential to consider its use. Some or all water may come into direct contact if you intend to utilize your headlamp for outdoor activities like trekking, hunting, climbing, or even caving.
However, if you're a maintenance worker or a mechanic, water resistance isn't as significant since you'll presumably have a roof over your head.
Other things to think about
When selecting the ideal headlamp for you and the ANSI standards, there are various other elements to consider.
The headlamp's bulb type is, as you would expect, the type of lightbulb in the headlamp. Despite the many different types of lamps available, advances in LED technology over recent years have made other lamp types nearly obsolete.
Because of its energy efficiency, run-time capacity, impact resistance, and brightness level, a decent headlamp will almost always include an LED bulb (or bulbs).
The most typical beam types for headlamps are three. Many will come with any of the three distinct beam kinds as an option.
A flood beam will spread the light, making it more comprehensive. The light will be less potent; nevertheless, it will illuminate a larger area.
A spot beam focuses light on a considerably smaller size. As a result, the light will be much more powerful and brighter, concentrating on that specific location.
Adjustable beams can be adjusted from one side to the other. Some headlamps may have such a feature.
DOWNCAST AND RED LIGHT
Downcast LED illuminates everything below in a wide diffused pattern, providing safe pathways, decorated reading spaces, and allowing for non-blinding face-to-face talks and the main LED bulb, which illuminates everything in front.
This is an option included with some headlamps, and if you want to use this headlamp outside at night, it may be helpful to illuminate both what is immediately beneath you and the route ahead.
Some headlamps include red light, an alternative to white or blue light. Our eyes will dilate in low light so that more illumination enters them. When using a headlamp in the dark, conventional light will constrict the pupils and limit the amount of light entering them. When you switch off a headlamp at night, your eyes may adjust to darkness when you turn it off.
With red light, however, this is less of an issue because it has a lesser effect on the pupils and keeps the eyes adjusted to the dark even with the headlamp on.
Some headlamps will require the use of disposable batteries. The most frequent sort of battery is AA or AAA cells.
Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries are likely to be found as well. Typically, they may be charged by USB. The rechargeable battery option may be more appealing since you won't have to go out and buy batteries on the spur of the moment.
MODES AND SETTINGS
In addition to the location above, color, downcast lighting, and water damage repair service, a headlamp may also come with other expected brightness settings that I've previously covered in brief.
There are three brightness settings available: low, medium, and high. These settings may be quickly changed using the on/off button by tapping it repeatedly.
There's also a blinking mode, which is typically included in a headlamp to allow the user to have the light switch on and off swiftly. This is more useful as an emergency signal to notify people that you need help.
PIVOTING HEAD AND TOP STRAPS
A convenient function is its ability to move or tilt the head. It allows you to aim the light where you want it to go. A tilting head, for example, is quite useful when reading.
Some more robust headlamps will have a battery pack at the rear of the headlamp. Because it is heavier and bulkier, this feature adds weight and bulk to the overall design. On some headlamps, a top strap from the back of the strap to the front that is meant to go over your head is also popular.
MATERIALS AND WEIGHT
The materials used to make the light and its weight are the final items you should think about. The light's construction materials will significantly impact its longevity. Still, they will also influence how hefty it is, which may be a factor depending on what you need the light for.
With all of these things in mind, Maytown has you covered.
However, as you can see from the above, a headlamp, however tempting it may appear, is anything but straightforward. In that case, you must carefully evaluate any alternatives before deciding for you and your customers.
Now that I've covered what you should be looking for in a headlamp, I'd be negligent if I didn't mention that there are many types of headlamps on the market with various features and functions.
Don't hesitate to get in touch with us if you'd like to learn more. Maytown is a firm with over ten years of expertise and carries headlamps for everyone, from experts to novices.
Looking for a flashlight supplier for your project?
Maytown has been a professional flashlight & headlamp manufacturer in China since 2011. We offer a one-stop solution for your OEM project. Request a quote today!
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.