First of all, this is not a paid review. Although I asked ThruNite if I could get a discount for reviewing the TH10 – they refused.
I need more power and…
I have been using my old Silva L1 headlight for several years now. It’s a very comfortable headlight powered by 2xAA batteries. But its rather weak in lumens, it uses simple LEDs. Back then there were no CREE LEDs. It served me well for my outdoor and camping trips. But as the winter season kicked in and it started to get dark right after I finish my job, it was pretty hard to do work on the homestead in the night. Although I had my Silva headlight, I realized I need something with more power. Especially for working outside where you need more light and that is somehow usable for camping.
I needed a headlight that fulfills following criteria:
- Powerful light
- Somewhere comfortable to wear
- Not a focused beam of light/spot, rather flood
- Easy to charge or refill batteries
I already have a ThruNite mini EDC keychain light that is powered by one AAA battery and I am pretty satisfied with the output power. Also, it has a clip so you can attach the lamp to your hat if needed. Which actually works quite well. All in all, ThruNite is one of my favorites regarding lightning equipment because they make very good products and are not expensive at all.
The ThruNite TH10
The TH10 is the bigger brother of the TH20. In the first place, I eyeballed the TH20 because it’s so small and is powered by one AA battery, hence it’s much lighter than the TH10. Also the TH20 is much more suitable for camping with the small size, light weight, and continuous dimmer. But I need a headlamp that is suitable for homestead work, cutting wood in the forest at night, attaching devices to my tractor, maneuvering the tractor in the dark etc…
Ok let’s talk some specs (from their website):
LED: Cree XP-L LED with a lifespan of 20+years of run time.
Mode & Runtime (NW parameters is 10% off):
-Firefly(0.3 lumens, 65 days）
-Low(15 lumens, 107hours）
-Medium(202 lumens, 9 hours )
-High(590 lumens, 178 minutes)
-Turbo(825 lumens, 118 minutes)
-SOS(825 lumens, 270 minutes)
Battery Applicable: 1×18650 battery, 2x 16340 batteries.
Working voltage: 2.7-12 V.
Reflector: Orange Peel.
Peak Beam Intensity: 6238 cd
Beam Distance: 158 m
Dimension: 77.8 mm(H) * 53 mm(L) * 32.2 mm(head diameter).
Weight: 135 g(without battery).
Waterproof: IPX-8(2 m)
Impact Resistance: 1 m.
Material: Aircraft grade aluminum body structure with premium type III hard anodized anti-abrasive finish.
Accessories: O ring, Spare inner switch cap.
I took the model with the charger as I did not have any 18650 batteries back then. There is not much to say about the lamp itself, it’s high-quality aluminum built and it’s waterproof. I have used it on my homestead in the dark evenings when I was hauling soil from the homestead in my tractor. I got an old tractor with weak lights on it so the headlamp really came in handy for lighting out the dark spots while maneuvering the trailer in the woods. The turbo mode is really powerful. Although it is still tending to be more like a spotlight, the flood is still there and does light up the corners of your view. Somehow I did not manage to make any pictures of the light beam to show, but there are a lot of YouTube videos out there and pictures of the beam, so I guess it is not necessary to do that stuff again. If you are interested in this lamp then you will surely read several reviews and watch several review videos on YouTube before buying it.
When the battery is almost drained the light starts to flicker a bit. Every now and then it turns itself off and on again in a blink of an eye, signaling that it is time for a recharge. I could work all the evening long with the headlamp on turbo almost all of the time. The next evening we worked too and right before the end, the lamp started flickering. So, on high and Turbo it surely can endure two evenings constantly on.
Now I have to say that. The lamp is not really comfortable to wear all evening long. After several hours on the head, the rubber plating in front makes severe imprints on your skin on the forehead, no kidding. After I took the lamp off, those imprints were visible almost for an hour later. It ached a bit but yeah, I am a man, I can take it. Also, the straps are too short for us Europeans. I got a bit bigger head with 59cm size around it. I had to extend the straps to the max and when wearing a cap in the winter and pulling the lamp over it, there is a more tight fit than you are asking for. It really squeezes your head a bit. I’d prefer longer straps, I mean who the hell will use the straps on the minimum settings?! I doubt anyone has such a small head, they could have extended the straps for that. Big minus here!
The rubber plating makes a good impression and could last long, also it gives the possibility to remove the lamp from the rubber carrier and use it as a normal flashlight. With the lamp, you also get two reserve rubber gaskets for the battery compartment and an additional rubber lamp carrier just in case. A USB cable for the charger sums it up.
I have to say, if you buy those 18650 batteries from ThruNite, they are really expensive! So I suggest you take some on eBay. I chose that kit because it was on Christmas and they had really good discounts.
Last but not least, don’t take the cold white version, rather the neutral one. Neutral white is more efficient in the natural environment because the red color wavelengths reflect back more (red is more common in nature) and the efficiency of the lamp is better. Don’t nail me on that one, I read that somewhere but in the end, cold white was always lousy compared to natural white/warm white. That’s my experience too.
Let’s sum it up:
- Good built quality
- Strong light
- Very useful for homesteading and working outside
- Considerably cheap
- expensive batteries
- more spot / less spot beam
- too short head straps
- leaves imprints on skin and forehead. Depending on head size, it can be painful
- can’t be used for sports activities where your body jumps (e.g. jogging), due to the weight of the lamp. It would bounce too much.
All in all a great light for doing work in the dark. It’s not a camping or a bushcraft headlamp. If you want a light for camping I suggest you get the TH20. The TH20 is also on my list to get. Due to the weight of the TH10 it is also not suited for sports, it’s so heavy it would constantly bounce on your head. For that I again suggest the TH20. But if you need serious Lumen power outside when doing physical work and labor, or moving machines and stuff, that’s the best choice! Best bang for the buck I’d say.
All the best,