The Petzl Strix IR Headlamp combines incredible quality and function with the ability to have infrared capabilities all in an affordable package. It doesn’t matter if you are an electrician on a construction site or an Infantryman deployed to a combat zone, a good quality headlamp that can be used in multiple configurations can be a life saver. Anything that can illuminate your surrounds while leaving both of your hands free is advantageous.
Petzl isn’t a new name in the world of headlamps, in fact we have covered their lamps before. There are several things that make this particular lamp more appealing to military members and law enforcement officials. The Strix comes from the Petzl Tactical Series, and before you roll your eyes about the word Tactical lets look at the facts and the user demographic that Petzl is aiming for. All of the products in the Petzl Tactical series, which includes five different head lamps and a host of rigging equipment, to include ascending and descending climbing gear was design with maximum input from both military and law enforcement personnel.
Now the Petzl Strix isn’t your normal headlamp that you would strap on when you take the dog for a walk or go for a morning jog. The Strix is the headlamp you would be grabbing for if you were going out to do dangerous things in a dangerous place. As we mentioned before, it’s purpose built and has some rather unique features that enhances the users safety and operational effectiveness. There aren’t many headlamps that can say that honestly. So lets look at why we are so excited about the Petzl Strix IR headlamp.
Model: Petzl Strix IR
Weight: 3.5 Ounces
Battery type: AA (One used)
Length: 3 1/2 ” Long
Width: 2 1/2 ” Wide
- High Setting :40 Lumens for 4 hours 30 minutes. Visible 40 meters
- Medium Setting: 15 Lumens for 20 hours. Visible 20 meters
- Low Setting .4 Lumens for 65 hours. Visible 3 meters
Available Color Modes:
- Red (20 Hours runtime)
- Blue (17 Hours runtime)
- Green (17 Hours runtime)
- Close Range Runtime : 20 hours
- Movement Setting Runtime: 5 hours 30 minutes
- Flashing/Strobe Setting: 40 hours
The infrared capabilities of this light is what really separates it from other lamps on the market. In the last decade the use of infrared technology to distinguish friend from foe in combat situations has no doubt lead to less loss of life and more destruction of our enemies and their capabilities. The engineers at Petzl have learned these lessons and added three different infrared settings to this head lamp.
The three Infrared settings Petzl designers added to the lamp have three different and distinct uses. The one that I really want to focus on is the flashing or strobing setting. It is ideally suited for being used as an emergency beacon for search and rescue or turning on while patrolling so you can be identified by friendly forces. This feature crosses over from the military world to the civilian world. If you are lost in the woods or mountains, chances are any civilian or military rescue group will search for you using FLIR or Forward Looking Infrared. Having a lamp with that capability might be the difference between walking out and being carried out in a bodybag.
There is more to this light is more than just its infrared capabilities. The head of Petzl Strix IR uses what is known as a biaxial adjustment system to allow the head to rotate 180* horizontally and 120* vertically. This extremely wide range of movement allows you as the user to adjust the beam to almost any angle you will need. The addition of being able to select other colors such as red, green and blue in addition to the natural white light adds to it’s versatility both in the field or in everyday use, but there’s more.
The Strix light has several mounting options that are available to further fit your mission or personal needs. It comes with the standard elastic band and harness to allow it to be worn around the neck or head. In addition the body of the light can be removed from the harness and attached to a load bearing vest or plate carrier with a metal clip that is manufactured into the back of it. Petzl also manufactures optional accessories that allow this light to be mounted to virtually any sort of tactical or kevlar style helmet.
Safety and Durability
This light at first glance seems to have a whole lot packed into it and I’m sure users have some questions as to how a light can work with both infrared and regular light capabilities. It’s simple Petzl has made both styles of lighting integrated into one head but it uses two distinct operating controls. The visible light settings and controls are actuated by one control and the infrared light is operated by a separate rotating dial on the top of the light head. In another safety control Petzl made this light so that if the infrared settings are on that the natural light controls are locked out and not functional. So you can’t accidentally have the “new guy” fumble with his head lamp and use the wrong control and compromise your position.
Most of the general public won’t be able to fully utilize the infrared features of the Petzl Strix IR. However members of the military or certain law enforcement communities should most defiantly give the Strix IR a good look over and see if its at the right tool for your unit. it could end up making things easier and safer while enhancing your units capabilities.
Civilians users or people just not interested in a headlamp that has infrared capabilities, have no fear the crew at Petzl also make the Strix VL which stands for Visible Light. It contains all the same appearance, features and quality control of the Strix IR minus the infrared control knob.
Hope you enjoyed this look at the Petzl Strix IR headlamp, we have been impressed with the field tests we have performed so far with this little light, but this weekend is the real test. This light is being loaned to a few members of the local national guard infantry unit as they go out on maneuvers this weekend. If there is one thing I learned in life its that if you want to test how well something works, give it to the rank and file Infantry guy and tell him to have fun. In all seriousness the members I have selected are going to attempt to test the infrared strobe capabilities on night maneuvers and get some documentation.
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