Compact hunting headlamp

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ajh
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Compact hunting headlamp

Hi, I’m looking for a rechargeable, light and compact hunting headlamp. I hunt a lot of different pieces of public land and sometimes scout my way in in the morning or on my way out. Walks can be an hour + and longer if I need to track and drag out a deer. I like to bring as little as possible with me and I mostly pack stuff in my pockets so I only want to bring one compact light. I’d like to keep it around $30 but if it’s really worth it I may up that a little. I have been looking at the wowtac h01, thrunite h01 and the skillhunt h04 mini rc for the compacts but I’m not sure if they’ll have the runtime or light I’ll possibly want for tracking a deer. The others I’m looking at are the wuben h1, sofirn sp40, wowtac a2s and thrunite th20. Should I look at a certain light temperature for wilderness settings like this or is that more personal preference This will be my first decent light. I am coming from a aaa ozark trail light with like 175 lumens and am getting tired of changing batteries often. Any other good options I should consider? What do you guys think?

Zappaman
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I LOVE Sofirn’s D25s- take two high capacity batteries along and you’re set for the day (early morning walk-ins and dressing a deer after dark) I’ve never needed more than one 3400mAh battery for the full day out (few hours of good light)- but take a spare if your thinking many hours of hiking with higher output.

$15 shipped from sofirn.com (well, minimum order is $21 so buy TWO Wink

  • and they have a good online special now if you load up!

https://sofirnlight.com/search/?Keyword=d25s

ZappaMan

zoulas
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I think if you can see the deer , the deer can see you.

Quadrupel
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For blood tracking you need hi-cri (R9>80) diode. Take H04RC hi-cri 18650 version but not mini or better Zebralight ;))
Oli
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There was a pretty lengthy blood tracking thread a year ago here. A lot of opinions. I did some testing 3 months ago (mid leaf season) and concluded that it depends upon the color of the leaves or material that the blood is on. On some leaves a slightly cool white light showed the blood better and on other leaves a warm light worked better. But no matter what the color, the more light the better. So I would say a warm headlight with a wide flood pattern for walking/working, and something handheld with a tighter beam for tracking. I don’t like cool white anywhere but especially in the woods. So you have to have two lights to play in the dark.

You can't compare the big flashlight in the sky to the little flashlight in your hand.

Lightbringer
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zoulas wrote:
I think if you can see the deer , the deer can see you.

Yeh, some deer even have that on bumper-stickers…

 

Was gonna add, if you get a headlamp that uses 20mm TIR lenses, you can get an assortment of lenses from 5° through 25°, 60°, even 90° or wider, for cheap, and try ‘em to see which ones you like best.

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ajh
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That d25s looks pretty solid to me. Definitely considering it. How does it comare to the sp40? It’s also on sale. Are there any hi cri’s with 20mm tir lenses out there that are a little cheaper? I really don’t want to bring an extra light with me if possible but may consider it if it’s really the best route. I never felt like I was at a disadvantage blood trailing deer with my cheap headlamp, just hated that it would dim pretty fast if using it on high a lot. I actually bring a power bank with me for my phone quite often so I could recharge it during the day. So something around 4000 or lower would be best? Thanks for all the replies, I really appreciate it.

ajh
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zoulas wrote:
I think if you can see the deer , the deer can see you.

I agree but it’s either the deer see my light or hear me tripping over everything in the woods without one, ha.

pennzy
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Deer actually have poor eyesight. They see motion well but can’t focus. They see light well but most times they don’t run from it which is part of the reason they freeze in the car headlights.

Zappaman
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ajh wrote:
That d25s looks pretty solid to me. Definitely considering it. How does it comare to the sp40? So something around 4000 or lower would be best?

I have several SP40s… also fine lights (and also well priced right now). If I need the magnetic tail cap and shorty (18350 tube), the SP40 is really nice for working on the car off the side of the road. But for HUNTING headlamp, the D25s is the better light for JUST headlamp use. Both lights have about the same run time, but the D25s has a wider beam (but about the same throw). The D25s also just seems to not be as much there (on my head) as much as the SP40 weight wise too. It’s a tight, symmetrical design that has worked well for me for six years (when it was a “Boruit D25” until Sofirn improved the driver/led).

On 4000 or lower??? (kelvin maybe?) I’d take 6.5k for ANY outdoor work where I want to see OUT there. But if your in more woodsy terrain (and distances are short) then 5k would be great. Just remember in ANY light that… the lower the kelvin rating, the lower the throw (and the more natural the light- true that!) It’s a trade-off for sure.

Good luck!

ZappaMan

ajh
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Some of this stuff is still a little confusing. I’m going to get a d25s and I figured as long as they have a couple of sales going I’m going to try a sc31 pro or a if25a as well. I’m looking at the 31 because then I’ll have a 2 lights that take 18650 batteries and I like the idea of shortening it and using a 18350 with it. If I were to get the 18350 tube for it could I use the same charger that comes with the 31 pro? Do you know if there is a clip that can fit on your pants and also your hat that would work on it? I hunt everything from extremely tight woods to huge open marshes. So for something that covers both bases would you go with 6500k or 5000k? I do like the idea of 3800 lumens with the if25a but I don’t know how runtimes would compare. Sorry for the noob questions and I know there is a lot of info on other threads but I’m having trouble finding some specificish answers. Thanks again for the help.

Quadrupel
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why D25s? cheap electronic low cri leds no stabilization and quit heavy . Better get D10 In D10 you can swap led in d25 impossible

ajh
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I’m pretty new to all this so I don’t know much about the different models yet. I would definitely consider the d10 too. How much lighter is it over the d25s and how are the electronics better? I’m a little nervous about buying from aliexpress. Not sure I want to give them my card info and it doesn’t look like they offer paying through paypal. Is there another place to buy one?

Oli
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You should be nervous. You haven’t done nearly enough research. Do the lights you’re looking at have a moonlight mode? If the answer is no, then keep looking. Watch some YouTube videos of some armytek headlamps and any other light you’re going to consider. And spend some more time reading slightly older posts here in the headlight section.

You can't compare the big flashlight in the sky to the little flashlight in your hand.

Quadrupel
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https://budgetlightforum.com/node/58827 and D25 have same driver , only D10 is more modding friendly, you can swap led , optics and driver
WUBEN H1 for 30$ looks good too

Bruno Burski
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I think the Sofirn D25S, Boruit D25, and Boruit D10 are all good budget lights. I like the ratchet style holder. It’s easier to adjust the angle on this type of holder versus the rubber ring style. Used my D25S twice this week to blow snow at 4:00 am before heading to work. Lights up the whole driveway.

idahofarmer
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I think buying a cheap headlamp is a bad idea.

You go hunting once per year. Great planning and expense. High cost and great reward. Why cheap out?

Did you buy a 50 dollar rifle and 10 dollar scope? Did you buy 12 dollar boots? How about used pawnshop clothes?

Get my point? Buy once cry once. Buy the best you can afford!

My favorite 2 lights are the armytek wr and the fenix 61r headlamps. Forget tiny lights. They wont run long enough. Get a nice 18650 light. Zebralights have long run times also. But for me the tir optics in the wr along with red and magnetic charging make it my favorite.

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I hunt year round and often at night. I’ve used many headlamps over the years from AAA to Koehler Wheat Lights. (mining lights) I have several D10’s and D25’s and always recommend them. Don’t let the price bother you. They’re bullet proof. I have many higher priced lights, but the Boruit/Sofirns get the most use by far. I like the light in the center. They’re light weight and cheap enough to have several around, lend out or give away. No matter what you choose, get a D10 to check out too. I buy on Ali and the other Chinese sights with Paypal.

idahofarmer
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Plotthound wrote:
I hunt year round and often at night. I’ve used many headlamps over the years from AAA to Koehler Wheat Lights. (mining lights) I have several D10’s and D25’s and always recommend them. Don’t let the price bother you. They’re bullet proof. I have many higher priced lights, but the Boruit/Sofirns get the most use by far. I like the light in the center. They’re light weight and cheap enough to have several around, lend out or give away. No matter what you choose, get a D10 to check out too. I buy on Ali and the other Chinese sights with Paypal.

Sorry but that light reminds me of ccc (cheap chinese crap). It also weighs 120g. Like a brick strapped to your head. I prefer quality over junk.

Funtastic
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Quadrupel wrote:
https://budgetlightforum.com/node/58827 and D25 have same driver , only D10 is more modding friendly, you can swap led , optics and driver WUBEN H1 for 30$ looks good too

He’s mentioned he’s new to all this so he isn’t going to start modding anything

Piercing The Darkness YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/c/PiercingTheDarkness

Funtastic
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The Sofirn D25S has poor waterproofing since there’s no gasket to seal it. It’s great but not sure if it can take a heavy downpour, not to mention surviving submersion.

I highly recommend the Skilhunt H04 RC full size, it’s lightweight and has a great headband mount you can swivel the angle easily.

The Sofirn SP40 has very stiff rubber loops on the headband making it very stiff to alter the angle, you’ll need two hands to do it.

Piercing The Darkness YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/c/PiercingTheDarkness

pennzy
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My D25 has stood up to some pretty rough treatment and still works great. I didn’t abuse it but it didn’t get babied either.

Plotthound
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idahofarmer wrote:
Plotthound wrote:
I hunt year round and often at night. I’ve used many headlamps over the years from AAA to Koehler Wheat Lights. (mining lights) I have several D10’s and D25’s and always recommend them. Don’t let the price bother you. They’re bullet proof. I have many higher priced lights, but the Boruit/Sofirns get the most use by far. I like the light in the center. They’re light weight and cheap enough to have several around, lend out or give away. No matter what you choose, get a D10 to check out too. I buy on Ali and the other Chinese sights with Paypal.

Sorry but that light reminds me of ccc (cheap chinese crap). It also weighs 120g. Like a brick strapped to your head. I prefer quality over junk.


Reminds you? Have you tried one? Where are your quality lights made? They’re good lights. Don’t take my word for it even though I’ve spent nights in the woods all over the country (including many in Idaho) in every weather possible. Here’s a quote from Jasonww who has 12788 posts here on the BUDGET LIGHT FORUM and forgotten way more than I’ll ever know:
“Are people hatin on the boruit? Don’t do that. This is like the best bargain headlight on the market. If somebody wants to hate, they can go hate on all the the truly crappy headlights out there.” The OP’s going hunting for deer, not musk ox. I hope he gets a Zebralight and a D10/D25s
Funtastic
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I agree, the D25S is quite light, not sure why he thinks it’s like a brick.

Quote:
It also weighs 120g. Like a brick strapped to your head. I prefer quality over junk

Lightweight often means cheap, not quality. These headlamps are affordable and work well, if you want top quality then you’ll be paying for it.

Piercing The Darkness YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/c/PiercingTheDarkness

raccoon city
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The Boruit D10 is really nice, especially for the price.

My headlight of choice is the Lumintop HL3A.

It's kinda pricey, but I like stepless ramping and the neutral white tint is very good as well.  :BEER:

Funtastic
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idahofarmer wrote:
Sorry but that light reminds me of ccc (cheap chinese crap). It also weighs 120g. Like a brick strapped to your head. I prefer quality over junk.

120g is including everything though, so it’s actually very light

D25S = 56g
Headband = 22g
Battery = 44g

Total = 122g

Piercing The Darkness YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/c/PiercingTheDarkness

Lightbringer
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Get one-a these…

The headband even says “LED HEADLIGHT” in case you forget.

(Neckbrace not included.)

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pennzy
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Thanks for the laugh.

ajh
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I really don’t know if I’ll ever even want to mod to be honest. I’m going to give both the d10 and d25 a shot. I’ll use the one I like better and keep the other as a backup. Can’t really beat the price of $25ish for both of them. This will at least get my feet wet. I can’t imagine my ozark trail headlamp was waterproof and I never had an issue with it. So I’m not too worried about it. Who knows, maybe I’ll be ready to buy a good light in 5 to 10 years after I finish reading all of the threads, lol. I will definitely be looking into the more expensive options in the future. Looking on aliexpress there are a few different boruit stores to chose from as well as the fastdeng store. The boruit stores state theirs has an XML L2 led, has an ipx4 rating and also has the option between cold white and yellow light. The fastdeng says it has a T6 led and has an ipx6 rating. It only says theirs is a white light though. Which one would you guys go with?

Funtastic
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The Sofirn version of the D25S is what you’re after, it has a nicer UI and updated SST40 leds. We aren’t talking about the original version.

Type in Sofirn D25S or visit Sofirn’s store sofirnlight.com

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I’m tempted to do a Sofirn D25S with Quadrupel driver and swap the LEDs. I know he said it’s impossible, but I don’t see a reason Arctic Alumina and/or pressure from swapping a TIR in can’t hold a pair of Noctigons in there. And it’d be easy enough to wire the second one parallel from the first.

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