In a Four Headlamp Shootout, Foxelli is great quality and the best value
Reviewed in the United States on 25 March 2017
I recently compared four LED headlamps across a range of prices, all rated very highly on Amazon. I'm using these for work around the house in dark places, so red or green lights, flashing options, etc are not particularly important to me. Mostly I'm just looking for a nice clean bright white light while running wires, or working in the ceiling, or even plugging things in behind a computer that you don't want to move.
Headlamp 1, the "Shining Buddy" LED Headlamp, was $12.97, and had 4.8 stars from 2509 reviews. Physical quality seemed fine, but from the moment I turned it on, the "Shining Buddy" had a relatively dim LED, even on the highest settings, and it had a very blue tint (a very cool LED color). It was dim enough that I found it wanting for most tasks and the color made it unpleasant to use. I didn't use it for long.
Headlamp 2, the Foxelli Headlamp at the same price ($12.97) also had good reviews - 4.7 stars from 1082 reviews. In contrast, the Foxelli was a rockstar!. It had a much brighter and had a very clean, white light. It compared favorably to the two other lamps I reviewed which were 2x and 3x the price. It has dimmable lights, flashing lights, and red color as most do. The only nitpick is that one must cycle through all settings to turn off. The last setting, before turning off, is a VERY bright flashing setting. Wow. Mezmerizing! But annoying to have to cycle through each time. This would be my choice for a go-to work light in the future. Great price, clear white light, nice quality.
Headlamp 3, the Black Diamond Spot Headlamp, was $25.99, and 4.6 stars from 352 reviews. It's an excellent performer and seems to be very high quality. It's a bight brighter than the Foxelli, and has a somwhat more uniform light. It also has a moderately bright but very wide uniform light setting. This is a really nice feature that I didn't have on an old Black Diamond light and I like it. Although I mostly use the bright spot setting, I could see it being useful in a close up place, or for finding things in the dark as it really illuminates gently but all around. It seems to have a nice closure mechanism (a bit nicer than the Foxelli) which seems durable. The Tap-For-Extra-Bright option is really cool too. There are more settings (red, flashing, etc) and the method for getting to them is a bit complicated, but it means that you can (more or less) get tot the setting you want and keep it there without a lot of cycling through unwanted settings. Great lamp, and definitely nicer than the Foxelli, but for work the Foxelli is good enough and half the price, so buy two and still have one when you can't find the other. If you're camping, or hiking, the Black Diamond Spot might be more up your alley and it is still a good bargain.
Headlamp 4 was the Black Diamond Storm Headlamp, at $31.93, with 4.5 stars from 186 reviews. This is really a premium headlamp. Fit and finish was similar to the BD Spot, but with a much better cam lock closure and superior gasket sealing for the battery compartment. This lamp is even brighter than the bright BD Storm, which was even brighter than the Foxelli. And then you could use Power Tap and it was really really bright. It also has the wide angle, gentle uniform light setting which I liked so much on the BD Spot. Add green to the red and flashing options, and you get a very complicated control system (all from one button) but with a nice guide and quick reference card to rescue you. This is really the nicest headlamp of the four, but only a bit nicer than the BD Spot at a bit of a premium. This light uses 4 batteries, which is nice because what do you always do with that other one from your charger anyway?
All in all, three of these lights were awesome. All come with batteries, but I use Eneloop rechargables in my headlamps because they go through batteries pretty quickly when you have them on bright all of the time. I'd buy the Foxelli again in a heartbeat. For my purposes, the BD Spot is also a great light, with the higher quality and wide angle setting worth the extra. It turns out that I didn't really need the extra features of the BD Storm. A camper or hiker might find them invaluable though!
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