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On tour, you’re grateful for any free space in your backpack. That’s why outdoor and mountain sports equipment manufacturers like to bring combi devices onto the market that save space, make your bags more manageable and are practical. We’ll introduce you to one such device today.
It is a protective case that also provides an upgrade for the headlamp. This product called Noctilight* is the highlight of the French manufacturer Petzl, which is particularly known in the outdoor industry for its headlamps, among other things.
The idea behind it: The headlamp can be stored in the tent in a secure case and thus also function as a tent lantern. How exactly this works and how well the product proves itself in practice, you can find out here.
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Noctilight* is a case for certain Petzl headlamps that protects against damage and accidental switching on. In addition, it can also become a lantern itself. This works by putting the headlamp in the translucent case and switching it on from the outside.
The case can be set up, hung up or attached to the belt or backpack if required. It is a bit unfortunate that there is no room for batteries or spare batteries. According to buyers, they have already managed to stuff a battery into the lower compartment. But the case is not really designed for that.
However, it would have had to be made bigger with an additional battery compartment, and then it would absolutely no longer be handy.
Dimensions and Weight
The weight is 85 g, which looks like a lot at first glance, but actually comes close. It is thus heavier than, for example, the Actik Core headlamp. However, that only means that you have 85 g more in the backpack. Although this can also be decisive from time to time, you must not forget that the weight of a headlamp must be as low as possible for other reasons. Namely, because you have to carry the lamp on your head. The dimensions of the case are 7.6 x 5 x 9 cm.
Texture and Processing
At the top is the lamp compartment made of transparent plastic. It has the shape of a dome. The material is sturdy, but soft enough that from the outside of the switch can be easily operated. At the bottom is the compartment where the headband can be stowed. This is rubberized. A zipper has been sewn between the two compartments. There is also a small strap with a loop to attach the case to a carabiner, for example.
There is also an elastic band with hooks on the bottom compartment, which is wrapped around the case and hooked. The overall finish of the product looks high quality. It is also CE certified. Unfortunately, there is no indication as to whether the case is also waterproof. One has to assume that it is not. That’s a shame, by the way, because most of Petzl’s headlamps are weatherproof and protected against splashing water on all sides, but not completely waterproof. A waterproof case would have been even more beneficial because of this.
The Noctilight can be easily combined with most headlamps of the Petzl Classic, Active and Performance series, including:
It is not compatible with NAO and Myo RXP.
Otherwise, there are probably also headlamps from other manufacturers that can be combined well with the Noctilight. However, it is not designed for this. Therefore, in case of doubt, you should take measurements beforehand or try it out on a friend’s model.
As a lantern, the headlamp pouch combo can illuminate the tent well and even at the weakest level. How bright the light is, of course, depends on which Petzl headlamp you use for it. But since the Petzl models are known to be powerful, it should work well with any model. The dome shape ensures a pleasant dispersion of light.
The light of the headlamp also appears softer and more pleasant due to the envelope. It does not dazzle. In this way, a cozy atmosphere is created. That’s why I don’t think we can understand the criticism of customers who think that the case only takes up space and that you can simply hang the headlamp on the ceiling yourself. Of course, this is also a possibility, but the light is not well dispersed in this way. Besides, the case serves another purpose.
The handling is simple. The zipper of the case is opened and the cap flipped open. The headlamp is now placed so that the power button of the lamp is at the level of the power button symbol of the case cap. There is enough space at the bottom to stow the headband. The zipper is then closed again. The headlamp can now be easily switched on from the outside via the power button.
The light can be regulated well in this way. Nevertheless, the lamp is protected from accidental switching on and off. About the elastic band with hook on the case, you can hang the lantern. To do this, you attach the hook itself to the desired location or to the case itself, forming a loop. If you want to use the case as a standing lantern, you just leave it in its position on the flat side.
The design is not only eye-catching, but also practical. The bright orange on the bottom makes it easy to quickly find the small case among the packed things. Due to its shape, it is handy and can be placed stably as a standing lantern.
The case has a manufacturer’s warranty of three years. Customer reviews have not yet revealed anything about the Noctilight breaking before or the material being susceptible to wear at all.
Advantages and Disadvantages
- Protection against damage and accidental switch-on
- Very easy handling
- Good light diffusion due to the dome shape
- Good workmanship
- appealing design
- various options for suspension or mounting
- No space for spare batteries or accumulators
- not combinable with all headlamps
- apparently not waterproof
The material and texture of a case
A case serves to ensure that the headlamp can be stored safely. All the more important is a dense material such as plastic and high-quality workmanship. In addition, the case should be securely closed. Zippers are particularly suitable here.
With such a product, which can be used in combination with the headlamp, as a lantern, the fit is important. Therefore, you should find out exactly with which models the case is compatible, otherwise it will not fit or turn on the lamp from the outside is not so easy.
What should you pay attention to before using it?
The case should never be used with headlamps of over 350 lumens, even though some models may fit in the case. Such headlamps emit too much heat and therefore should not be enclosed in a case.
The Noctilight case* is a very helpful invention. A combo of protective case and lantern is really practical. Although many Petzl headlamps have a lock function anyway, which protects against accidental switching on in the backpack, but with an additional case you really do not have to worry now when packing.
Especially practical are the various options for placing the tent lamp. With the choice between standing up and hanging on the hook or by loop, there is certainly something for everyone. The light is also very well diffused thanks to the dome shape. The handling is also very easy. Most people complain that there is no room for batteries and rechargeable battery. However, the case is already relatively heavy at 85 g and would probably no longer be handy with an extra compartment.
The material looks high-quality, but it does not seem to be waterproof. At least the manufacturer does not provide any information on this. The case can be combined with various headlamp models from Petzl. Unfortunately, however, not with all.
It’s best to find out if your model really fits before you buy. Otherwise, there may be problems with switching on and off or the case does not close at all. Petzl gives a warranty of three years on the product, which is really fair.
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