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August 2019 Issue
Home / Gear reviews / Headlamps

Black Diamond Spot 325



Our Rating:

At a glance
Powertap, brightness memory, battery indicator, double button operation
Minuses: Not rechargeable.

325 lumens / 80m / 86g

Features: Three light modes – two white lights and a red light. There’s a large on/off button and a second smaller button which cycles between the three light modes. It’s powered by thee AAA batteries, offering a run time of 4hr on high (8hr on medium, 200hr on low).

There’s also a transport lock and a strobe. Holding the large button dims and brightens the light. The PowerTap function allows you to tap the side of the lamp to instantly go back to full brightness. Tap again to revert to the dimmed setting.

A battery indicator shows remaining battery life and an IPX8 rating makes it waterproof to 1m.

Comfort: With the batteries housed in the lamp, it’s a front-heavy model but any bounce is not pronounced. The headband needed to be tightened more than I would like to keep it in position and this meant, over longer use, it started to feel uncomfortable. The headband is easy to adjust on-the-go.

In use: The large on/off button is easy to find and the separate mode selection button means you don’t have to instantly decide which light you want to use as with single-button lamps. It also means you don’t need to turn it off and then back on to quickly cycle through the modes if you wish to change from your current light setting. The light conveniently switches on in the last-used mode and light brightness.

The Powertap feature is excellent, but I did find it often took a few attempts to hit the right spot on the housing to get it to work.

The high beam has a decent range, but it was the low beam that I most frequently used. Without tilting the lamp down, the light fell to the ground immediately in front of me. It also spread wide, to encompass my peripheral vision.

The battery life is excellent – throughout my testing, I didn’t need to replace the batteries – but rather than cut out when flat, the light gradually fades as batteries wain.

Value: Fantastic features and ease of use make this headlamp a worthy buy. If it had a rechargeable battery, it would be the perfect headlamp.

Verdict: With a long battery life and convenient double button features this is a simple-to-use headlamp suitable for multiday trips.