Sofirn SP40 Hammer rechargeable LED headlamp/pocket torch. 1200 lumens, advanced electronics, blinding value! Customer reviews
Sometimes I wake early and picture myself loping effortlessly through the vineyards near our home in Somerset West, slicing through the pre-dawn darkness on tireless legs… or taking one of my bikes to join the other cyclists who rule the roads before the commuters finish their fried bacon and get into their Beemers.
Then I remember that I was born in 1953, I'm out of shape, and it’s freezing outside, so I roll over and go back to sleep.
But… if I was still athletic I’d be celebrating the arrival of Sofirn’s new SP40 headlamp, big time! I’m calling it the "Hammer" which is what we called going full bore on the bike.
Sofirn’s Hammer is extraordinary! As you can see from the pictures it’s a periscope design, which makes it equally good fitted into a headstrap, clipped to a pocket or nestled in the hand.
It’s extremely powerful, running at 1,200 lumens on “turbo” for over an hour, 450 lumens on “high” for more than four hours, 90 lumens for 14 hours and 5 lumens for over nine days with a 3500mAh rechargeable 18650 lithium ion (Li-Ion) battery.
The beam profile is perfect for outdoor activities with a broad neutral-white hotspot with a range of 153 ANSI metres (50 real-world metres) and very wide spill-beam – exactly what you need for cycling, running, hiking, boating, caving… anything that involves moving around in the dark while keeping your hands free. And it’s just as good for cooking, reading and fixing stuff.
The Hammer has a full-house of features including:
- advanced temperature regulation, which turns the brightness down when the electronics reach 55 degrees, so you don’t need to worry about your torch melting down;
- internal charging (just plug the torch into a USB cable or cellphone power pack) and a battery status indicator so you know when the battery is charged and when it’s not;
- aerospace-grade aluminium housing with Type III military-spec anodising and toughened mineral-glass lens protected by a stainless steel bezel;
- IPX7 waterproof, so you can use it in a rainstorm and wash mud off under a tap as long as you keep your o-rings in good condition (spares are provided);
- a top-quality three-way headstrap with silicone bracket to hold the light steady even in the roughest conditions;
- easy-to-find single-button user interface with mode memory for easy access to four brightness levels, whether the torch is on your head or in your hand;
- and A MAGNET IN THE TAILCAP. This means the Hammer can be attached to a metal surface like a car, a fridge or a knife stuck in a tree, giving you a superb work-light!
But then it gets REALLY interesting!
To build a powerful headlamp involves a trade-off – a bigger battery means more run-time but also more weight, which may be less comfortable for some people. Smaller headlamps take smaller batteries, but this means they won’t run as long at the same brightness level.
The gold standard is the 18650 rechargeable lithium ion (Li-Ion) battery but it can weigh up to 50 grams – about the same as the headlamp itself – while the half-length 18350 Li-Ion is half the size and weight, although it doesn't run as long on a charge.
However the Hammer offers you the choice! It’s supplied with interchangeable battery tubes – one to hold an 18650 and another for an 18350 or 16340, which cuts the weight of the complete light from 110g to 75g! Even with the 700mAh 16340 battery you should get about 45 minutes on “high” and three hours on “medium”.
As a self-defence tool the Hammer can live in your pocket or handbag so you can whip it out and point it at an aggressor (yeah, I see it) in the same way you’d aim a can of pepper-spray. A double click of the button will administer a dose of 1,200 lumens so he won’t see that kick-for-goal coming!
For a beautifully built, powerful and versatile torch like this you'd surely expect to pay north of R2,000? But no, complete with a rechargeable 18650 Li-Ion, USB charging cable and headstrap the Hammer is just R1,250 after a 10% discount for payment by EFT-on-invoice (just drop me a line to take advantage of this offer).
It’s enough to make me want to dig out my cycling gear and take my bike off the garage wall…