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Spaceshot II
Gear Review

Spaceshot II

 

Page Type: Gear Review

Object Title: Spaceshot II

Manufacturer: Black Diamond

Your Opinion: 
 - 2 Votes
 

 

Page By: pjc30943

Created/Edited: Mar 9, 2004 / Mar 9, 2004

Object ID: 1033

Hits: 3157 

 


The Black Diamond Space Shot 2 is the ultimate Integrated Hybrid alpine lamp. The SpaceShot2 is chock-full of cold-weather-friendly features including a battery system that can be worn close to the body for increased efficiency.



This digitally-controlled lamp has three power settings for on-demand brightness control. The Black Diamond SpaceShot2 is equipped with a six-volt back-up battery for the LED—very handy for battery changes.



When a long-lasting light source is important, have confidence in knowing the LED will run for over 1000 hours when powered by the main battery. Comes with a Super Bright Bulb and spare Bright Bulb. Long Life Bulb is optional. Tested to IPX waterproof standards.*



Awards:

Popular Mechanics Great Stuff for 2001 - SpaceShot Headlamp

Features & Benefits:

Ultimate alpine or expedition headlamp

Integrated Hybrid lamp with three power settings

Compatible with avalanche transceivers

Weighs 452 g (15.9 oz) with batteries; 295 g (10.4 oz) without batteries

Waterproof to IPX-4 Standards:



*This lamp has been tested to the IPX-4 waterproof standard. It will continue to function when subjected to water spray at any angle. This does not include salt spray or high-alkalinity fluids. It is normal for water to enter the lamp and battery housings. Battery life will be diminished, however, the lamp will function. If properly dried, this wetness will not affect the lamp.


Reviews

Viewing: 1-3 of 3

pjc30943Untitled Review

Voted 5/5

This light is an excellent all-around light. If you are looking for a lamp that you can quickly just strap on, this is probably not your light; we'll talk more about that.

First of all, let's talk about the price. Yes, it is very steep, but I believe it to be worth it. In the future, if pure LED "spotlights" are close to as powerful, this may not be as good of a deal: it is not as crucial to conserve battery power with LED lamps, so a detachable battery pack (that can be kept warm) will not be as much of an issue.

Note: all photos of the Spaceshot II are wrong. As of last year, the regulator (small black box) is not on the back of the headband, as in the photos, but rather goes alongside the battery pack in the "waterproof" pouch. The advantages of this are several. First, the 6V backup LED stays warm at all times, since it is inside the regulator assembly. Next, the circuitry (and regulator) housing is much more protected inside a jacket, then exposed. Finally, one can lay down comfortably without taking off the lamp! there is nothing in the back to get in the way.

Now, the positives:

The lamp is very light on the head, due to the detached battery pack. The advantage of detaching is that the batteries stay warm near the body. I found the cable to be flexible, but also tough. It is *just * short enough that I can't just slip the pack into a pocket while wearing the lamp; however I am 6' 2". To use the pack, you either have a chest pocket in jacket or shirt, or a belt (not good with a backpack), or you hand it using the strap.

The Xenon lamp is very powerful, and battery life is excellent, especially if one gets the optional extra BD rechargable battery pack. The single LED has been replaced with 2 LEDs in the newer models, I think, but even the one LED is plenty for most things. The lamp comes with two bulbs.

The strap system is easy to adjust and very versatile. The cable is routed well through the strap system, with adjustable loops to customize its exit point to the battery pack.

Also, the button is shielded from being accidentally pressed in a pack, due to the way the map can be folded during storage. This is designed perfectly, and the light indeed snaps into its protective storage angle.

The battery case is high-quality, and is easy to use. I was pleasantly surprised when I saw actual well-designed hinges and thumbscrews held that closed the box lid.

The ability to switch between three brightness levels for LED and Xenon lights is awesome and works smoothly.

Finally, while it is true that the backup 6V LED battery automatically kicks in when the main supply is interrupted, I found that this only happens when the person was already in LED mode. When in Xenon mode, the light simple shuts off if the pack is disconnected.


Now, some drawbacks:
There is only one button which cycles through both LED and Xenon; this can be annoying, but not enough so to not give five stars.
Next, the adjustable battery pack strap has only one buckle on one side. This is most likely so that the strap never becomes totally seperated from the pack, but I'd like to have two buckles, so that the strap can be removed from the pack. I am going to cut the strap and add another buckle on the other side.
As with all lights with seperate battery packs, the cable must be routed through clothing layers, etc, when preparing for a long trek through cold weather. This takes time, and can be cumbersome--but it is expected, and a normal tradeoff.
Lastly, the pack is heavy: it takes 6AA batteries, or the BD rechargable battery pack, and this is aside from the regulator box. The advantage is the long battery life for LED and Xenon.


Bottome line:
If you just want a simple and quick light to strap on for most adventures, this may not be your light due to its added complexity and cost. But, if you are looking for a more serious light with seperate battery pack and high-quality construction, the BD Spaceshot 2 is certainly one to strongly consider.


UPDATE NOV 2004:

This lamp has served well, even now. The review above is accurate. The only thing I'd add is that the batteries drain after a few days, if they are left in the lamp (when it is turned off). The LEDs still work fine even mostly discharged of course, but the Xenon suffers. Perhaps the new version they have out this year does not have that problem.

After many more trips of using this light, I've decided to upgrade to the new lithium-ion-battery lamps that do not suffer significant capacity loss from cold. Dealing with the cable is no longer worth the amount I'd spend on a new lamp with no cable, and battery pack directly on the light. With no battery performance loss in cold weather, there is nothing to loose--except money:)
Posted Mar 9, 2004 3:23 pm

James CUntitled Review

Voted 5/5

Good Headlamp. The bright setting is of course very bright, but the blue setting (I dont know what type of light that is) not good enough. The Battery box has a nice little bag that has a sling for your neck, and can attach to your belt. The box however, when I put in the batteries in, and tried to screw it shut, the screw broke and half of it is stuck in the threading. This does not matter much due to the bag for the box. And the screw breaking almost is a favor due to changeing the batteries in the bitter cold and unscrewing it with you hands would be almost impossible. This is also very comfortable on your head, I didnt even feel it after hours of use.
Posted Jan 4, 2006 5:01 pm

Viewing: 1-3 of 3