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Petzl Reviews

PETZL IKO & IKO CORE REINVENTING THE HEADLAMP

by Melanie Mitchell

Learn about the new Petzl IKO Core and Petzl IKO running headlamps, a new standard for hands-free lighting in 2020. They feature a ground-breaking headband, designed to remove pressure points, as well as an essential option for using a rechargeable or regular battery.

PETZL IKO & IKO CORE: LIGHTING THE WAY FOR NEW ADVENTURES

Petzl is the go-t0 pioneer for lighting the way for adventures in low- and no-light situations. Inventors of the first modern headlamp, their next-level headlamps have supported the growth of outdoor activities. Everything from caving, mountaineering and, of course, running have benefited.

What started with three basic components in 1973: a lamp body, a battery pack and and an elastic headband, has turned into a mission. Petzl’s goal is to make headlamp better, to light the way while being more comfortable, more effective and less intrusive.

In 2020, Petzl has launched an innovative new series – the Petzl IKO Core and the Petzl IKO – to shift the headlamp paradigm forward. They wanted to establish a new standard for hands-free lighting.

CHALLENGES IN HEADLAMP DESIGN

Careful headlamp design means paying close attention to the relationship between the lamp, the strap and the battery.

In the history of headlamps, as battery technology and lighting technology improved, battery packs and the lamp itself were often combined. However, a simple headband can only comfortably support so much weight.

This requires a smaller battery or more support. Take your pick!

Mounting a higher-capacity battery in the rear can help a powerful lamp last longer. However, it also means dealing with a bulky pigtail wire and carefully balancing the design with a bulkier headband.

Shrinking the elastic strap to a tiny shock cord can make a lamp comfortable, lightweight, and packable — but you won’t be able to pair it with an extremely powerful lamp.  

For more than forty years, headlamps have been constrained by this triangular push and pull. How do you balance a headlamp to simultaneously be powerful, long-lasting, and comfortable?

Enter the Petzl IKO CORE and IKO providing solutions to the challenges above:

  • The AIRFIT headband is a completely new concept that avoids the limitations of an elastic strap; 
  • Each IKO headlamp in the series has array of seven LEDs in a tiny lamp body for extraordinarily optimized light output
  • The IKO and the IKO CORE feature an advanced hybrid concept power system and accepts both AAA batteries as well as the Petzl CORE rechargeable battery.
IKO headstrap

PETZL IKO CORE HEADLAMP

The rechargeable Petzl IKO CORE headlamp represents an innovative leap forward in headlamp design.

Firstly, let’s talk headbands. There’s a reason that elastic headbands are so common; there has never been an alternative. The new Petzl AIRFIT headband side-steps the elastic band entirely and draws inspiration from crowns and tiaras. Yes, it does.

Made of hydrophobic and semi-rigid materials the Petzl AIRFIT headband doesn’t absorb rain or sweat. It is easily adaptable right out of the box into a freestanding lantern and is collapsible for storage. 

Weighing only 79 grams, the IKO patented headband requires considerably less contact area and compression than a standard elastic strap. Being almost imperceptible on the head, this is a game-changing upgrade in the world of the running headlamp.

LIGHTWEIGHT HEADLAMP

The thin lamp body of the Petzl IKO CORE rotates 180 degrees for better light positioning. It features seven LEDs that produce a clean and uniform beam and delivers a whopping 500 lumens of maximum brightness.

The Petzl IKO CORE is optimally balanced because of the rear-mounted battery pack and doesn’t require a bulky pig-tail cable. 

IKO CORE battery

IKO CORE: A BETTER BATTERY SOLUTION

More light needs a more powerful battery, which adds more weight, which adds more stress on the headband.. the list goes on.

Sold with the CORE rechargeable battery, the IKO CORE is designed around the hybrid concept allowing standard AAA batteries to be used without an adapter.

Also available is the Petzl IKO headlamp, featuring all the benefits of the IKO CORE design, but comes with a three standard battery pack.

Petzl IKO Running Headlamp

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