REPOST - Owner Review Petzl Tikka Plus
thanks for the reply to my wording. I've finished the edits you
requested. Ignore the Yahooisms including all hyperlinks. I'll have
those working in the html code.
Petzl Tikka Plus Owner Review
Personal biographical information:
Name: Kelli Wise
Height: 5' 0" (152 cm)
Weight: 140 lb (64 kg)
Location: Western Washington, USA
Date: October 16, 2003
Backpacking background: I've been car camping and hiking for 20 years
and sport climbing for 10 years, but am new to backpacking. Until I
discovered lightweight backpacking, the thought of hauling 40 lbs
(18kg) of gear on my back for hours was simply repulsive. I have
since discovered that it is possible for me to backpack with pack
weights below 20 lbs (9kg). My backpacking style is not ultralight
but lightweight and I still hike in boots, not shoes. I have been
going on overnight and short trips with the goal of doing an extended
trip in 2004. The majority of my hiking experience is in Western
Washington so I get a lot of wet weather experience.
Style: Lightweight but not ultralight. Striving for a suitable
compromise between safety and comfort.
· Manufacturer: Petzl
· Product: Tikka Plus
· Year of manufacture: 2003
· Manufacturer's web site: www.petzl.com
· 78 g with batteries
· Weight as delivered: 2.6 oz. (74 g)
Technical specifications :
4 LED Battery Life Distance of illumination
Maximum mode 80 h 15 m
Optimum mode 120 h 10 m
Economic mode 150 h 5 m
Blinking mode 400 h -
· Location or locations where the test was conducted: Western
Washington in summer.
· Description of location: Western Washington locations have included
temperate rainforests, coastal beaches, mountains below 7500' (2286m)
in temps ranging from 35F to 80F (2C to 27C).
· Weather conditions: Cold, rain, and fog.
The Petzl Tikka Plus was purchased as a lightweight replacement for
my Petzl Zoom headlamp. Using LEDs instead of incandescent lamps, the
Tikka Plus only requires 3 AAA batteries instead of 3 AA batteries,
which is a big weight saving, but the lamp itself is more than 92 g
(3.25 oz) lighter and the spare batteries are also lighter. LEDs use
much less power than incandescent bulbs so the LED lamp will run
longer on one set of batteries. As a comparison, the Tikka Plus will
run 80 hours at maximum brightness versus 10 hours for my original
Zoom with a standard bulb.
The Petzl Tikka Plus is the next generation of the Tikka. The
difference between models is the addition of one LED, 8 g (.28 oz) of
additional weight, and selectable brightness settings: maximum,
optimum, economy, and blinking. The Tikka had an illumination range
of 10' which corresponds to the Optimum brightness setting of the
Tikka Plus. The Tikka Plus uses a single pivoting housing for both
batteries and LEDS and a soft elastic headband. The light is not
focusable. The on/off/selector switch is a small, sealed pushbutton
switch on the top of the light housing.
The Tikka Plus is light enough that I can safely hang it on the
ridgeline of my hammock to keep it handy without causing any sag in
the ridgeline cord. It's small enough that it can be used as an
overhead light in this configuration. It's also small enough that it
fits into the side pocket of my backpack or in my pants pocket. Thin
headbands like that found on the Tikka's lightweight cousin, the
Zipka, get tangled in my hair and I tend to lose clumps of hair when
removing them. This makes the thick elastic headband of the Tikka
Plus much more comfortable and worth the extra weight to me. The
headband is adjustable and I've heard reports that it can be adjusted
wide enough to fit around a person's waist. Certainly not my waist,
as age and gravity have had their revenge. The Tikka Plus is also
small enough to be carried in my hand and used as a flashlight.
In use, the different brightness settings have been most appreciated.
I have found that, for most tasks, the Optimum mode is adequate.
Maximum mode is good for reading cooking directions, fiddling with
small items such as stove setup, or finding some small widget I've
managed to drop. Economy mode is bright enough to keep me from
tripping over things when I'm wandering about in a camp at night it
isn't so bright as to disturb my camp mates but is sufficient to get
me to a spot to take care of business and get me back. With
reflective guy lines on my hammock tarp, there is enough light in
Economy mode to light up my hammock setup and get me back to bed. In
maximum mode, the light reflecting off the guy lines is even more
striking and can be seen from a good 50' (15 m) away even in a thick
fog. I have no vision problems but, like many people, I find that it
takes a while for my eyes to adjust to a sudden change in ambient
light and this is all the more obvious when I'm in the wilderness
when there is no moon. Economy mode isn't so bright that I lose all
of my night vision after I switch it off. It is also low enough that
it isn't painful when switched on in the dark. Unfortunately, to get
to Economy mode, I have to switch from Maximum to Optimum to Economy
and I found it best to close my eyes while doing this. Economy mode
was handy when getting up in the middle of the night.
While I haven't measured the distance of illumination with a tape
measure, I would agree with Petzl's specs. The beam cannot be
focused, but there is a significant bright spot in the center of the
illuminated area which is noticeable on the ground in front of me,
but is less noticeable when doing close up work. The light is white,
with a bluish tint, rather than the yellow cast of incandescent
light. This can be a bit harsh when reading on paper that is bright
white, but I haven't found it to be too bad for an hour of reading or
I spent one weekend camping on the coast of Washington and a heavy
fog rolled in during the night. I woke up during the night to find my
campsite dripping with moisture and my sleeping bag and hammock
awfully wet. In Optimum mode, I set up my rain fly, wiped up the
excess moisture from my hammock and sleeping bag, and checked on my
bear canister. Call me crazy, but it was a lovely evening with no
moon and I had never wandered around tide pools on a dark, foggy
night before so I decided to go for a walk down the beach. I tried
all 3 brightness settings in the heavy fog. When worn around my head,
Maximum mode gave me a lovely view of the individual droplets of
moisture hanging in the air but my visibility was limited to under
10' (3 m). Optimum mode made individual droplets difficult to make
out and visibility was much improved, probably about 20' (6 m). In
Economy mode, the fog was just a blur of, well, fog, but the light
output wasn't enough to cut through the fog and visibility was down
to about 10' (3 m). By holding the Tikka Plus in my hand and just
about waist level, I found that visibility in Maximum and Optimum
modes was greatly increased due to less interference from reflection,
similar to what you experience while driving a car in the fog. The
ability to carry the headlamp as a flashlight was a big plus.
The headlamp is not waterproof but it is water resistant and I have
used it in a light drizzle and heavy fog, but one of the driest
summers on record has limited my testing in a heavy downpour. While
washing salt spray off all of my gear, I decided to test the Tikka
Plus' wet performance. I turned the headlamp on and held it under a
free running tap while washing salt residue off of the housing. This
is much worse than any rainstorm and the light output held steady and
the inside of the housing was dry after the test. I won't worry about
how it will perform when my next hike comes up during the rainy
The tilting range of the headlamp is not very great, but has proven
to be adequate for all my needs to this point.
The biggest shortcoming of the Tikka Plus is changing batteries. The
housing requires a tool or coin to open. If you have large, very
thick fingernails you might be able to open it without a tool, but I
was not able to despite several minutes of trying. Once I had the
battery housing open, getting the batteries to sit in the housing
with the case wide open is difficult. The 2 hinges of the housing are
a thin rubber, similar to a small gasket, and they interfere with the
seating of the battery closest to the hinge. It took a couple of
tries to get the batteries to sit in place long enough to get the
housing closed. Thankfully with the long battery life of LED lamps, I
won't have to be changing batteries very often. I have been using the
Tikka Plus all summer, plus a few times at home, on the first set of
batteries and I still haven't seen a drop off in light output.
If I had one wish for the next generation of the Tikka, I would add
one red LED and a mode that illuminated this LED only to further save
my night vision.
I haven't had to make use of the blinking mode, yet.
I'm very pleased with the Petzl Tikka Plus. It's lightweight, rugged,
easy to use, and versatile.
- Hi Kelli
Thanks for re-working your Owner Review. I only have one minor edit for
you. Once done, please upload to:
or Reviews > Lighting > Headlamps - LED > Petzl Tikka Plus.
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Chief Edit Moderator
At 08:34 AM 06/11/2003, you wrote:
>Petzl Tikka Plus Owner ReviewEDIT:> Just need the metric equivalent here, i.e., 3 m.
>The Tikka had an illumination range
>of 10' which corresponds to the Optimum brightness setting of the
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