Mar 4, 2013 at 6:30 pm #1300001
Hello. Following up on the excellent thread from December (http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=71457), I'm wondering if anyone has tried the H600. I made my way over to the candlelight forums, but I already fell down the BPL rabbit hole, and don't think I can handle another. :)
I'm looking to replace my BD Storm, which has been nice but I now find too bulky. I know the H51 is probably the most popular, but wanted to take a look at all options. I do like the red light mode of the Storm, but I'm okay loosing that feature. I'd rather have a spot over a flood, though most of my use is camp chores (seems like a low light mode on any of the models is sufficiently floody). I'd also love to hear feedback on neutral vs. soft white and any other options. If I end up buying a steripen (that's a thread for another day), I may opt for the model that uses the same batteries.
Thank you.Mar 5, 2013 at 6:18 am #1961635
All 18650 base lights are HEAVY. I have H60W and SC600.
I like very much H31W. Not narrow, not wide, just universal.
Warm light is much nicer, even if a bit less powerfull.
I have also H51R (red), but don't use it a lot.
The winner is H31W. Very universal, CR123 based.Mar 5, 2013 at 6:31 am #1961637
I love my H51. The output settings are really nice, and really let me dial in my needed amount of light.
It's very powerful and reasonably light. If you're also getting a Steripen, then I see how the CR123 model would be attractive. A word of caution about that though… Bring extra batteries for the Steripen!Mar 5, 2013 at 7:39 am #1961671
Most all of my electronics use AA batteries, Sterpen and Zebralight included.
CR123 may be smaller and lighter, but you are going to probably carry more spares. This is especially true if your resupply options aren't so great.Mar 5, 2013 at 7:50 am #1961673
well, not a problem with H31W:
High: H1 189 Lm (0.9 hrs) or H2 103 Lm (2 hrs) / 4Hz Strobe
Medium: M1 37 Lm (12 hrs) or M2 21 Lm (23 hrs)
Low: L1 4.3 Lm (3.7 days) or L2 0.4 Lm (21 days)
I usually use M1/M2, 12/23 hours for camping is a huge amount of time, so one CR123 for a 1-2 weeks trip is just ok.Mar 5, 2013 at 7:59 am #1961680
@pgasbyLocale: North Carolina
I long ago dropped into the CPF rabbit hole – and have too many lights to prove it.
Anyway – relevant to this forum – the H31W is fantastic. I went through a AA consolidation phase but just didn't like the available lights as well – or their form factors – so I'm generally a CR123 light person in flashlights and in this case headlamp (I use a handful of Photons – but have a bunch of other 2016/2032 devices mostly bike computers so I don't have to buy a bunch of different cells).
I mostly use RCR123 rechargeables – ability to use them is one but not the only factor in my light choice. I do us 18650 cells in a couple larger lights in place of the 2xCR123 form factors (mostly a modded Surefire 6P) – but it is a big cell and heavy as well. I can't see using a headlamp with one.
I also have a Steripen that uses CR123 including rechargeables. I haven't as of yet gone on any long hikes – so battery power is less of an issue – but the benefit of rechargeables is that I can top them off and know they are at full strength before I leave for a trip.
The H31W for me is about ideal – 6 great levels of light – super small and light form factor – comfortable headband. It's hard to beat I think.Mar 5, 2013 at 9:20 am #1961701
I have the H51, and the light is a little harsh when it manages to get in your eyes (or your girlfriends). Yet, I don't know if I would want to go with anything more subdued and lose trail visibility. Thinking about making some type attachment to diffuse the light, and take it off when I need the unadulterated beam, but I'll probably just continue to think about it.
Went with the AA, because the only other electronic device I take is a GPS that uses those… also really liked the high potential availability of that battery (especially in my junk drawer for use in power outages).Mar 5, 2013 at 12:10 pm #1961755
@tauneutrinoLocale: Upper Galilee
I think this makes sense.
AA batteries –> gps model, mp3 model, water treatment, headlamp
CR123 batteries –> gps model, mp3 model, water treatment, headlamp
And for hardcore UL:
CR2032 batteries –> Photonlight, …
May be this will help to choose electronics for backpacking…Mar 5, 2013 at 12:34 pm #1961762
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
"AA batteries –> gps model, mp3 model, water treatment, headlamp
CR123 batteries –> gps model, mp3 model, water treatment, headlamp
CR2032 batteries –> Photonlight, … "
However, none of this applies to the Zebralight H600 headlamp, which is the topic of this thread.
–B.G.–Mar 5, 2013 at 12:44 pm #1961764
FWIW, my Eagletac 18650 weighs in at 47 grams.
Energizer lithium AAs are spec'd in at about 15 grams.
As someone mentioned, 18650s, which are used to run the Zebralight SC600, are heavy. Relatively speaking.Mar 5, 2013 at 1:25 pm #1961780
But the whole sc600-135g
Whole H31w with headband-72gMar 5, 2013 at 1:48 pm #1961791
Thanks for the insights. I definitely want to stay consistent with my batteries. The good news is that I haven't bought a Steripen yet.* I thought all Steripens used CR123 batteries, but I now see that they do have AA models available. Starting from scratch and having the option to choose a battery standard, is it safe to say that the AA is more sensible because of the availability despite the weight penalty? Or is CR123? I know the internal USB recharge option on the Steripen is probably not a good idea…
*Btw, I'm in the Sawyer/Steripen rabbit hole as well. I'm planning an international trip so I thought a Steripen would be helpful to handle international water treatment issues. But that is a thread for another day.Mar 5, 2013 at 2:02 pm #1961800
I have the adventurer with CR123 batteries but it's easier to find AAs obviously when you are hiking or traveling overseas.
My input for your future thread (I'll take the liberty of going off track since you are the author of the OP) is that you'll need to do something in addition to filtering water (UV or chemical). Pakistan KOd me for a solid month and I was hit to a lesser degree for ~ 1 week after catching a stomach bug in Cambodia from drinking re-bottled water from a restaurant (some people would call this a run on sentence but hey, go big or go home.)
Germane to the OP, CR123 is fine for my travels which are ~ 1 week whether it's in the woods or overseas. If I was taking off for a through hike or an extended trip overseas where the water is questionable, AAs all the way.Mar 5, 2013 at 2:06 pm #1961802
I have had the H51 and H600, and I can say they are different tools for different uses. The H51 is super versatile and puts out a bit of light when you need it but the H600 is in a completely different ball park and allows you to actually enjoy walking at night rather than just getting by (with the H51).
With the H600, I have gone night time skiing and mountainbiking, which I simply wouldn't attempt with the H51.Mar 5, 2013 at 2:07 pm #1961803
The thing that moved me towards AA battery as my standard was tha fact that I was often stuck having to resupply at places where AA and AAA were the only options. Many gas stations and remote convenience stores carry a limited choice of batteries, and often only in an alkyline version.
So it depends on where you hike and how long you are going to be out.Mar 5, 2013 at 2:19 pm #1961806
Steripen or boiling are probably the safest way to treat water in many places. Filters do not block viruses and chemicals take a very long time to work on some of the bigger parasites.Mar 5, 2013 at 5:05 pm #1961868
Thanks for all of the feedback.
Sounds like AAs are the way to go, making the H51w a logical choice. What is the difference with between the H51 and the H502?Mar 5, 2013 at 7:43 pm #1961923
My guess, maybe it is just a newer version of the same thing. Primarily little lighter, and they recessed the switch to help prevent accidental power drain.
Record breaking 260Lm ANSI from one AA Eneloop (more output with Energizer L91 lithium)
Record breaking 3 months runtime at min output (longer runtime with Energizer L91 lithium)
All levels are current regulated.
Battery capacity indicator (LED flashes 1-4 times. 4 short clicks to start)
Low battery alert when the light is switched Off (LED flashes every 80 seconds if the battery voltage is below 1.06V)
Programmable M2 and L2
LED driver circuits sealed completely from the battery chamber
Unibody design (improved from the H501, similar to the H51)
Recessed switch (improved from the H51 and H501)
11 mm shorter than the H51 and 7 gram lighter than the H51
GITD 'reflector'Mar 6, 2013 at 8:45 am #1962076
@andysLocale: Midwest USA
I have a Zebralight H600 and love it, but it is overkill for general backpacking. I also found it a bit heavy… not as in too heavy to pack/carry, I can deal with that, but too heavy to hang well on the provided strap, which is a simple, but nice, elastic headband. Tight enough to not keep slipping down my forehead is tight enough to give me a headache. I ended up using a spare Zebralight strap to add a top strap front to back.Mar 6, 2013 at 8:56 am #1962083
@brendansLocale: Fruita CO
Note that the runtimes/ouput for the H51/H502 are with a rechargeable eneloop while the H31 is with non-rechargeable lithium batteries. Specs note that H31 runtimes are much lower with rechargeables. Even though I usually carry a steripen, I still went with the H51 for this reason.Mar 6, 2013 at 9:07 am #1962093
Thanks, Brendan. Is there any advantage of the CR123 Steripens over the AA ones? Seems like the CR123 ones are more popular.Mar 6, 2013 at 9:09 am #1962094
CR123 Steripens are lighter.Mar 6, 2013 at 9:14 am #1962096
Thanks, Steven. That makes sense.
I don't see an H502 version of the H51W. Is the H502c High CRI Neutral White similar? Seems like the only 502s available now on the Zebra site are flood…Mar 6, 2013 at 12:58 pm #1962220
Well this thread has turned into a battery discussion, but I do find the comments "illuminating." I connected offline with BPL member Ben who travels extensively internationally and uses a Steripen Adventurer. He says one set of CR123 lithium batteries can last him 1.5 to 2 months of daily or near daily use.
While Brendan raises a good point about the superior runtime of the AA model Zebralights (the same applies to the AA Steripens that last twice as long), I do wonder if the smaller form factor and ability to carry a spare battery favor the the CR123 models.Mar 6, 2013 at 5:18 pm #1962377
@pgasbyLocale: North Carolina
I'll say as a flashaholic that the cr123 cell has a significant following in the light world mostly because in the size/power equation it is the best cell. The brightest and lightest lights almost always use them. Some of that stems from surefire who dominantly use the cr123. And high end lights like mcgizmo as well.
None of which necessarily translates to lightweight backpacking other than cr123 lights will generally be smaller lighter and brighter than single cell aa lights (14500 compatible lights excepted). The cost is usually runtime as the larger aa has a higher power density. Of course an 18650 has even more power reserves and output… but much larger.
Ultimately you need to pick what you are comfortable with based on your needs. I'd likely not through hike the at with a cr123 light but am comfortable in week long settings – my modded Novatac will run for more than 30 days at the lowest level which is fine for around camp activities if not hiking.
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