Hands-on Gear Review
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Street Price: Varies from $14 - $20 | Compare prices at 7 resellers
Pros: Lightweight, small size, great price.
Cons: Much less brightness and battery life alternatives.
Best Uses: Life around camp, keep on hand around the home or bring as an emergency light just in case...
If weight and price are key considerations, then the Black Diamond Gizmo may be just the ticket. It's not bright, but has low price and great battery life. If this doesn't make it into your climbing pack, consider one for the glove box of your car. It stands just behind the similar priced Petzl Tikkina 2, our Best Buy winner. The Tikkina is a better trail finding headlamp and is brighter. The Gizmo has a better close proximity beam and is 25 percent lighter. So for $20, depending on your needs, the Gizmo may actually be the best headlamp value for you.
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review
This is not the best trail finding headlamp - it just doesn't have that much umph - and only gets a 3 of 10 score. This is the main advantage of the Energizer 3 LED (4 of 10 score) as demonstrated by the side-by-side photos below. Neither is inspiring compared a heavyweight like the Coast HL7 (8 of 10 score). However, the Energizer is passable where the Gizmo is not recommended for serious nighttime hikes and rides in the woods.
This is the Gizmo's strongest feature. Not only did it score well with an 8 of 10, it scored better then some headlamps that cost 3 to 5 times as much. Check out the photo below, the Gizmo casts an even beam where the Energizer just has a spot in the middle. The Energizer therefor is likely more tiring on your eyes and makes it harder to find items when they are right around you.
The battery life is above average, scoring 8 of 10. It had a measured high mode run time of 25 hours compared to the Energizer with 27.3 hours using the ANSI scale (learn more about the ANSI scale in the headlamp review. Keep in mind that this is not the best apples to apples comparison: the Energizer last a little longer and does so with a high beam mode that shines 22 meters to the Gizmos 13 meters. The Gizmo has great battery life, but keep in mind this is at a very beam output.
This was one of the least bright headlamps we tested. It shined just 13 meters in high beam mode and got our lowes score, a 1 of 10. By comparison, the Petzl e+LITE, which is less than half the weight of the Gizmo and not exactly a beam-throwing powerhouse, shined almost twice as far with a 24 meters.
More comparisons: The Spot shined 70 meters, the Tikkina 2 went 27 meters and the Energiver high beam was measured at 22 meters.
At 62 grams this was one of the tope four lightest headlamps in our review. It is not nearly as lightweight as the Petzl e+LITE (26 grams) but it also costs less, is easier to use and had a better close proximity score.
Ease of Use
Does't get much easier to use than this one. One easy to use button that intuitively moves through the few options out there.
This is the ideal headlamp for around home and around camp. It casts a soft, even light which not only makes it easy to find things, you won't be blinding your fellow campers. It is not the headlamp you want for following difficult and confusing trail at night or going cross country.
This is one of the best values in headlamps we have seen and was a strong contender for the Best Buy winner. The Energizer 3 LED beats it out because of beam power and a lower cost, but the Gizmo is lighter and has a much better close proximity beam.
If you're looking for a budget headlamp, the Black Diamond Cosmo offers 70 lumens for $30. While this is a good headlamp, we implore you to spend another $10 and get the Black Diamond Spot which has much better beam brightness and quality combined with a very respectable battery life.
While this is not quite the Best Buy winner, we highly recommend it. It is just so compact, easy-to-use, and exceptional at close proximity applications. If you're doing more trail finding and hiking at night, then we recommend the Petzl Tikkina 2 or upgrade to the Black Diamond Spot, our Editors' Choice winner. The spot is another $20 but is a powerhouse and makes up for all the Gizmo's shortcomings with great brightness and trail finding.
— RJ Spurrier and Chris McNamara
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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews
Most recent review: January 11, 2014
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