Black Diamond Voyager Review
Cons: Unstable at times, hard to open sometimes, flashlight mode has low distance
Manufacturer: Black Diamond
Our Analysis and Test Results
This light is the mighty mite of this review. It's not going to blow anyone away with its output, but that doesn't really seem like what it was meant to do.
The Voyager does well in most metrics but lacks the maximum brightness of many other models, quantitatively putting it towards the bottom of the bunch.
At 140 lumens in lantern mode and 50 lumens in flashlight mode, the light quality of the Voyager is lovely. It has just the right amount of light for camping adventures with a partner. It is bright enough to use to cook or play cards. As a flashlight, it does a fine job illuminating the path ahead.
If you are in a large group and need to provide light for everyone to do separate tasks, or if you need a super bright light for emergencies, then you will want to look elsewhere.
The Voyager has above average durability. Like all the Black Diamond products we tested, it is manufactured with well-made, strong materials. It has some rubberized coating, but not as much as some other models. Even so, we never had any issues with it during testing and have anecdotally heard that this light can handle some pretty gnarly falls.
It has an ingress protection of IPX4, meaning that it has been rated to withstand splashing water from all directions. Its flashlight slide feature likely limits it from total waterproofness, but in reality, this little light did just fine in our tests.
This lantern has some cool features that set it apart from the others. It has two lights that can be turned on either individually or in tandem. The first light is a normal 360-degree light pattern, while the second light is on the bottom and acts as a flashlight. There are also metal hooks on the top for easy hanging and a rubberized base for stability. This product also conveniently offers the Black Diamond NRG2 Rechargeable Battery Kit, sold separately.
It comes in process blue and matte black.
Ease of Use
This lantern, like all the Black Diamond lights we tested, is very easy to use. This one is a favorite amongst the kidlets because it is small, light, and easy enough for them to operate. The battery compartment is in the bottom; unscrew it and snap in four AA batteries. Pushing the power button once turns on the lantern; holding it down dims the light until it is released. Pushing the power button again turns off the light. When the power button is pushed a third time, the lantern goes into flashlight mode, which also has a dimming option if the power button is held down. There is a third option as well. It takes a double click on the power button to illuminate both the lantern and the flashlight modes at the same time. There is also a small light above the power button that shines green when the batteries are fresh, and red when they are about to run out.
Like many of the other Black Diamond models, the Voyager has two metal hooks on top than enable it to hang from an object like a branch or a clothesline.
The base has a pretty small diameter, which can make it a little hard to position at times. If you know you're going to be on rough or uneven terrain, you may consider getting the larger Editors' Choice Award-winning Black Diamond Apollo that has legs with rubberized tips, allowing you to position it in some pretty funky spots.
The Voyager measures 4.5" tall when in its closed position and 6.25" in open position with the power button exposed. The base is 2" in diameter and the top is 2.5". By our calculations, it weighs half a pound with four AA batteries installed. Light and compact, the Voyager can easily fit into most jacket pockets and can even fit in the back pocket of jeans.
The Voyager has fairly average value for a lantern. With its good durability, it will probably last for many years. If you need a little more brightness, the Black Diamond Apollo is worth the extra dollars, but this is a lantern that does a good job in many situations.
This versatile lantern can fit just about any individual or small group need. It is great for camping, can be bright or dim as needed, can hang on trees, and can guide you in the dark with its flashlight mode. We became so attached to this little light that when we misplaced it once or twice we nearly had a panic attack at the thought of having to do without it.
— Ben Applebaum-Bauch