User Review: Mammut Lucido TX1
Price Paid: $79.95
Almost perfection. After years of looking off and on for a headlamp I thought I'd truly be pleased with, I finally took the plunge on the Mammut Lucido TX1. I'd first heard about it when Backpacker listed it among their Editor's Choices for 2008, and it seemed to have the features I was looking for: relatively compact, long-lasting battery life, useful up-close and campsite-distance modes, and the ability to really pierce the darkness when necessary. In addition, the Lucido offers up the ability to have flashing red LEDs blinking on the back of one's head--a plus when leading a night hike or if using it when biking--meaning that its use could be expanded further.
Upon receiving the light and putting it through some test runs, I found that there are some things the lamp does wonderfully, and others not quite so well.
First, the drawbacks: Like most all LED lamps, the light cast has a blue-gray tinge. Not seriously off-putting, but enough to be noticeable.
Second, the light modes are controlled with two push-buttons adjacent to the lamp itself. It takes a bit of use to remember which activates the up-close light and which the very powerful distance beam, and the buttons are not as easily felt and activated with gloves on as I would like.
Third is a quibble about the flashing red LEDs. When these are activated, the intermittent draw on the batteries causes the headlamp light itself to weaken and brighten in time with the flashing. Illumination isn't terrifically compromised, but it is noticeable, particularly at the periphery of light projection.
Now for the good stuff. It's bright. Very bright. When using the high-beam, it is indeed possible to usefully illuminate something a hundred yards away. The close-up lighting comes from two LEDs focused so as to provide even illumination in a single circle of light, easily adjusted to the angle desired up/down.
And it does last. More than 20 hours of on-time thus far, in various modes, and no noticeable loss of power yet.
Being one who is alone in the woods more than most, dependability is a must, and I trust this light. Also, being a leader of Scout trips and similar outings, it's important to me to have a lamp that provides me with good but not overwhelming work lighting, too. And yes, the red flashing LEDs do come in handy when leading a group at night.
Not perfect, but I'm happy with the purchase.