www.petzl.com | $100 | ★ ★ ★ ★
Gear heads are going to be tweaking and freaking over Petzl’s new MYO RXP. This fully programmable LED headlamp allows you to customize how many lumens you set forth into the darkness.
Powered by three AA batteries situated at the back of the headband, the MYO RXP has two buttons atop the lamp—one for power and another for boost. Turn the light on, and simultaneously press both buttons and the light flickers—shazam, you’ve entered a programmable mode. By pressing either button you can toggle through 10 levels of brightness.
At its brightest setting, the MYO RXP blasts 140 lumens. Holding down the Boost button emits a blazing 160 lumens, enough to melt your partners’ eyeballs out of their skulls. In Boost mode, however, you’ve only got 20 minutes of battery power, so save it for when it’s really, really dark.
The MYO RXP’s other shining feature is its “regulated” output of power. The battery output of non-regulated headlamps decreases along a slow, gradual curve—the light gets dimmer and dimmer until it dies. The MYO RXP “regulates” the battery output so that you get the same brightness for period of time at each of the power levels. When the battery becomes drained, an indiciator light comes on and the lamp drops into reserve power mode, emitting .25 lumens—the minimum “useful” light. Think a full moon on a clear night in an open field. It’s difficult to determine how long the reserve power mode lasts, because it depends on what power level you used most, but you can expect at least an extra 50 hours of reserve light—hopefully enough to get you out of the darkness and to Target for some new batteries. My only beef was how small the power button is—it’s hard to operate with gloves. I also often accidentally entered the program mode without realizing it, which frustrated me when I was merely trying to turn the light off but couldn’t.