User Review: Petzl Tikka XP
Price Paid: $49
Wonderful, lightweight headlamp. The Tikka XP has the perfect balance of economy and light output. I used it for a 7 hour caving trip on the lowest setting and, when dark adapted (dark adaptation takes the average person about 30 minutes), it was all the light I needed to easily navigate and appreciate speleothems (though there were six of us, three with Petzl Duos). The boost setting does a good job of illuminating big rooms and deep crevices when needed. I used Sanyo 1000 mAh NiMH rechargeable AAA batteries and the XP's battery charge indicator was flashing green at the end of the trip. I plan to try the higher settings on future long trips.
The buttons are easy to feel and use, even when wearing gloves.
About the quality of the light: It has a focused, square-ish beam, much more focused than my Princeton Tech Aurora. And the light is warmer than the traditional white LED. Whereas Petzl's 14-LED Duo has a bluish beam, the XP has almost a neutral to yellow cast. I may buy a Duo in the future if they use newer generation LEDs, but for now I will stick with my XPs (I have two, one as a backup). Just a terrific headlamp.