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Petzl Tikka XP Review

Petzl Tikka XP
Price:   $55 List | $34.89 at Amazon
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Pros:  Great battery life, solid close proximity score in a small package
Cons:  Expensive for its brightness
Bottom line:  Compact with strong battery life, this model is a bit more expensive than similarly bright options.
Editors' Rating:   
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
 
Manufacturer:   Petzl

Our Verdict

The XP delivers a great close proximity beam quality in a compact package. It represents a nice progression for the Tikka line, one of the first compact LED headlamps, that has been steadily improving for over a decade. As exceptional as it is, it now faces tough competition. The Black Diamond ReVolt scored higher for trail finding and brightness and costs about the same. The Coast HL7 has a much more powerful beam with better beam control for $20 less.

New Colors - 2016
The Tikka XP has been updated with new available color options and a new transparent lamp body. Keep reading for more detailed information.


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Our Analysis and Hands-on Test Results

Review by:
Jediah Porter
Review Editor
OutdoorGearLab

Last Updated:
Sunday
November 6, 2016

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Updated color options for 2016


The Tikka XP has new color options for 2016. In addition, the lamp body is now transparent, designed to emit a pleasant light when it is lit. The new colors include, black, orange, and turmeric.

Check out the side-by-side comparison below, with the latest version of the Tikka XP pictured on the left in orange, and the older version shown on the right.
Petzl Tikka XP
Petzl Tikka XP
 

Hands-on Review


The Tikka XP has, in many ways, become Petzl's flagship headlamp. It is simple, clean, and reliable. The performance and functions are tuned to serve most users. However, Petzl makes other headlamps that are perhaps more useful and certainly a better value, and other manufacturers make products that truly maximize the performance to value ratio. Considering this, the XP sits in a funny place in the market.

Performance Comparison


The Tkka XP is a bright  high scoring model from Petzl.
The Tkka XP is a bright, high scoring model from Petzl.

Trail Finding


The trail finding score for the XP is good, but below its less expensive competitors. The beam comparison photo below shows how the ReVolt casts a further reaching beam.


Beam Distance Photos


Petzl Tikka XPBlack Diamond ReVolt

Close Proximity


The score here is an excellent 7 of 10, matching the ReVolt. The ReVolt has a nice, relatively smooth beam pattern in its close proximity mode. The Tikka XP has a distinctly less even beam, but it offers another level of brightness over what is shown in the photo below, so you have your choice of the mode shown, or a slight step up in brightness, which is brighter than the ReVolt in its most bright close proximity mode. In contrast, the ReVolt has a variable dimming feature, which can be useful to save batteries or avoid blinding your campmates when less light is needed.


Close-proximity Beam Pattern


Petzl Tikka XPBlack Diamond ReVolt

Battery Life


The XP has a solid but not exceptional battery life. It lasted 3.1 hours in the measured high mode runtime ANSI test (read the Headlamp Review for more info on ANSI). The former award winning Black Diamond Spot is not that far behind with a measured high mode runtime of 3.7 hours.

We did not measure low mode run time, but Petzl claims the Tikka will go for 190 hours, which is on par with the Spot's claimed 200 hours.

All Tikka headlamps come with the option of adding the Core rechargeable battery for another $25.

The Tikka XP take three AAA batteries.
The Tikka XP take three AAA batteries.

Brightness


The brightness score of the XP is good, but not up there with the competition. Interestingly, our testing shows actual beam strength that exceeds Petzl's claims. Its measured max beam distance is 60 meters compared to the ReVolt with 56 meters and the Coast with 128 meters. The image below shows just how much more powerful the Coast actually shines than the XP.


Beam Distance Photos


Petzl Tikka XPCoast HL7

Weight


At 82 grams, this headlamp delivers a lot of performance for its weight. It is not a featherweight like the Petzl e+LITE (30 grams), but it fits easily in a pocket.

Ease of Use


Like all Tikka lights, this is very easy to use. It has one intuitive button on top which scrolls through the lighting modes. It scored above average for gloved use.

The Tikka XP in action in an early season Utah snowstorm.
The Tikka XP in action in an early season Utah snowstorm.

Best Application


The XP is a perfect headlamp for general camping use.

Value


The Tikka XP is $15 more than two headlamps that scored higher, the Coast and the Spot.

Conclusion


This is the highest scoring light in the Tikka line. It delivers solid battery life and great close proximity illumination. If you are a die hard Tikka fan, then this is the one to get unless you want the latest and greatest Petzl Tikka RXP. It would be a contender for Editors' Choice if it weren't for the Black Diamond ReVolt, which is brighter, has almost as a high battery life and is the same price. The Coast HL7 is nearly $20 less expensive and has a much more powerful beam but with less battery life.

Other Versions


Other Versions


Petzl Tikka Plus
  • 140 Lumens
  • 100hr battery life
  • Flood light mode only
  • Compact, lightweight and durable baseline Tikka model
  • $40

Petzl Tikka RXP
Petzl Tikka RXP
  • 215 Lumens
  • 2.5 hour high mode run time
  • Rechargeable via USB
  • Super bright, Reactive technology that adjusts beam based from flood to spot mode.
  • $100

Petzl NAO
Petzl NAO
  • The brightest most advanced petzl light
  • Excellent for trail finding and close proximity light
  • Re-Active Technology
  • Rechargeable batteries
  • $185
Jediah Porter and RJ Spurrier

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Most recent review: November 6, 2016
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:   
  • 1
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  • 5
 (3.0)
Average Customer Rating:     (0.0)
Rating Distribution
1 Total Ratings
5 star: 0%  (0)
4 star: 0%  (0)
3 star: 100%  (1)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)


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