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Black Diamond Storm Review

   

Headlamps

  • Currently 4.4/5
Overall avg rating 4.4 of 5 based on 3 reviews. Most recent review: January 29, 2014
Street Price:   Varies from $40 - $50 | Compare prices at 9 resellers
Pros:  Good trail finding and close proximity beam, easy to use, waterproof to 1 meter
Cons:  More expensive and heavier than the Spot that scored higher
Best Uses:  Bad weather lighting
User Rating:     
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  • 5
 (5.0 of 5) based on 2 reviews
Recommendations:  100% of reviewers (2/2) recommend this product
Manufacturer:   Black Diamond
Review by: RJ Spurrier ⋅ Review Editor, OutdoorGearLab ⋅ January 14, 2014  
Overview
The Black Diamond Storm is a robust and full featured headlamp that offers a bright beam, a fully waterproof enclosure, and provides good close proximity and trail scores. It is Black Diamond's most durable headlamp using 4 AAA batteries (the top-of-the-line Black Diamond Icon using 4 AA batteries and is considerably heavier). In our tests, we found it performed well but not as well as its sibling, the Black Diamond Spot that also costs $10 less.

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  • Photos
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OutdoorGearLab Editors' Hands-on Review

Click to enlarge
Spot mode light turned on
Credit: Shellay Glatz
Performance Comparison
Trail Finding
The score of 8 of 10 it top notch, but this light does not perform quite as well in the trail finding as the Coast HL7 or Black Diamond Spot which both cost $15 to $10 less, respectively. The comparison photo below shows the similarity in the beam performance of the Spot and Storm.

Beam Distance Photos


Black Diamond Spot Black Diamond Storm

Close Proximity
A score of 8 of 10 is solid, but behind the Spot (9 of 10) and Coast (10 of 10). Below, you can see how the Coast has a more even beam.

Close-proximity Beam Pattern


Black Diamond Spot Black Diamond Storm

Battery Life
The ANSI measured high mode runtime of 6.1 hours is about an hour better than Spot (5.2 hours) and much better than the Coast (3.3 hours). This battery life vs. beam distance chart shows how the two perform.
Click to enlarge
Uses 4 AAA batteries
Credit: Shellay Glatz

Brightness
The measured max beam distance of 60m is a bit behind the Spot (70m) and well behind the Coast (128 m). The Storm's score, 5 of 10 puts it behind both the Coast (9 of 10) and Spot (8 of 10).

Weight
At 112 grams, this is the 25% heavier than the Spot (93 grams) and just a little lighter than the Coast (124 grams). It's one of the heavier compact headlamps.

Ease of Use
This scored a perfect 10 of 10 for ease of use. This is one of the few places it outscored the Spot, which scored 7 of 10.

Best Applications
This is one of the few headlamps to rated IPX 7 (waterproof to 1m). By comparison, the Spot is IPX 4 (splash proof). This is the more burly and waterproof version of the Spot.

Value
At $50, this is a premium priced headlamp. Both the Coast and Spot performed better for less. This is really for the Spot lover who is willing to pay more for the waterproof features.

Conclusion
The Storm scored in the top 5 but did not win an award because of some stiff competition. The Black Diamond Spot performed better, is lighter, and $10 less expensive. The Coast HL7 has a much more powerful beam and is $15 less expensive. If you are going for a burly weather proof headlamp that shines far, we would get the Black Diamond Icon. The Stom is for Spot lovers who want burly water protection.

RJ Spurrier and Chris McNamara

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OutdoorGearLab Member Reviews


Most recent review: January 29, 2014
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:   
  • 1
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  • 4
  • 5
 (4.0)
Average Customer Rating:   
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  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
 (5.0)

100% of 2 reviewers recommend it
Rating Distribution
3 Total Ratings
5 star: 67%  (2)
4 star: 33%  (1)
3 star: 0%  (0)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)
Sort 2 member reviews by: Most Recent | Most Helpful
Write a Review on this Gear

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   Jan 29, 2014 - 05:13am
Supertramp · Backpacker · Sarasota
I got this headlamp as a Christmas gift in 2012. It replaced my Princeton Tech that I loved which was about 10 years old. I love this headlamp. Very bright at 100 lumens, head strap is very comfortable and easily adjustable, and the lamp stays in position without falling into your eyes. That being said, I wish it was just a little bit lighter than 4oz. With all these features (trail beam, close proximity light, red light, and rainproof) it's probably difficult to cut weight. I also wish it didn't need 4 AAA batteries. But the reliability of this headlamp over shadows the cons so I still give it 5 stars. This headlamp is great for anything you need. Whether it's night hiking or trying to get up in a shelter to use the bathroom, this headlamp will be your best friend in any situation.

Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this product to a friend.
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   Jan 16, 2014 - 10:56am
richnyc · Climber · NY


Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this product to a friend.
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Black Diamond Storm is a high quality headlamp that offer's waterproof functionality, a strong distance spotlight beam, and excellent close proximity lighting in small, easy to use package.
Credit: Black Diamond
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MountainGear $39.94  -  20% off!
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Amazon $42.29  -  15% off!
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