China-based Olight has been developing some of the best headlamps, outdoor lights, tactical lights, bike lights and more for over 15 years and the Olight Perun 2, we think, is an underrated torch that deserves to be shouted about.
LED Color: White
Brightness (Lumens): 2500 lumens
Runtime: 2 minutes - 12.5 days, mode dependant
Weight: 5.6 oz / 161g
Waterproof Rating: IPX8
Battery Type: 21,700 tailored lithium-ion (included)
There are three means of using this light hands-free — with the provided head strap, attached to something magnetic using its magnetic base, or using the pocket clip to attach it to clothes or bags. This makes it helpful for a multitude of different uses. Use it on treks, for lighting up your tent, working on your car or in your workshop, on fishing trips or simply as an excellent quality EDC (Every Day Carry) torch in case of unexpected situations.
We have used the Olight Perun 2 for over a month, and we quickly found it became our go-to light, even when we had alternatives at our disposal. Read on to see what we made of it.
Olight Perun 2 headlamp review
OLIGHT Perun 2: Design
- Multi-functional headlamp
- Hands-free usability
- One-button operation
The Olight Perun 2 is a headlamp meets flashlight combination. Use the supplied durable headband to wear it as a headlamp or a hand-held flashlight, attaching the lanyard provided if you wish. It also has a pocket clip for attaching to your clothes or a bag.
The LED light being set at a right angle allows it to be used as a headlamp and flashlight. It measures just 4.75 x 1.3-inches (120.7mm x 28.6mm), so it easily fits in the palm of your hand or pocket. Although this is small for a flashlight, wearing it as a headlamp will likely almost span the width of your forehead, so it isn't the most discrete or 'cool' looking headlamp on the market.
Compared with regular 'large' flashlights, the 5.68oz /161g weight is obviously pretty light. That said, this is significantly heavier for headlamp use, where most models on our best headlamp guide sit between 70g and 90g. Olight has mitigated the 'problem' of added weight by supplying a round-the-head and over-the-head combination strap (you can't separate the two straps). This helps to disperse the weight around your head rather than it all being carried at the front. Though this helps the lamp stay in place and is acceptable for walking the dog, across festival sites, working underneath your car or setting up camp, it's certainly not a headlamp you'd want to go running or cycling with. The strap is long enough to fit over a helmet.
A series of rings cut out from the battery tube/handle has been incorporated, along with a cross-hatch pattern. This gives an interesting and rugged aesthetic and makes it more grippy. The grip is handy should you carry the torch while wearing gloves or holding it with wet or sweaty hands, though should you drop it, the anodized aluminum will provide incredible protection. We dropped it from around 1m high onto a hard floor (this was an accident and dropping the product doesn't usually form part of our reviews!), and we think the floor came off far worse! Protection-wise, the Olight Perun 2 has an IPX8 waterproof rating which means it is suitable for continuous immersion in water and will also keep dust out of the electronics. It will last for many years.
The Olight Perun 2 only has one button. This makes operation easy, though given this one button activates five different lighting modes, activates the shut-down timer, enters SOS mode, locks and unlocks the device; it takes a bit of getting used to what button press or combination of button presses does what. We found ourselves frantically pressing to get to the desired output on a couple of occasions when we first started using it.
The Olight Perun 2 is available as standard in black, dark green, tan or blue. Olight very occasionally sells special runs of unique colors such as an attractive purple gradient and clover (green) gradient — apparently, there are such people as 'Olight flashlight collectors' who would be particularly keen to get their hands on these special additions — each to their own!
Olight Perun 2: Performance
- 544 ft / 166 m light projection
- Handy proximity sensor
- 3.5-hour charging time
The maximum beam distance of the Olight Perun 2 is 544 feet / 166 meters, and with a maximum output of 2500 lumens, it is exceptionally bright. The beam maintains its cool white color throughout all of the beam settings rather than changing the hue as some models do. During our hands-on review, we were able to light up a completely pitch-black field with two quick button presses. It's so bright on 'turbo mode' we feared we'd wake up the whole campsite — we spent most of our time using the lower brightness levels which were more than adequate for finding our way around.
Of course, one important thing missing from this light, as sky watchers and astronomers, is a red LED. This isn't a torch with night vision preservation in its remit.
We noticed that on 'turbo' and 'high' modes the unit heats up fairly quickly. Since you'll likely use 'medium' or 'low' for day-to-day use, this shouldn't cause you any problems.
There are five different brightness levels. 2500 lumens for what we call 'turning night into day,' 500 lumens for nighttime walks, 120 lumens which is probably where you'll 'sit' for most of the time, 30 lumens — ideal for reading in the dark or finding your things inside your tent, and five lumens for lighting up a tiny amount of space without dazzling yourself or others around you. There isn't a dedicated strobe light, but there is an SOS mode for summoning help.
Olight Perun 2: Functionality
- Vibrates when the battery is low
- Useful lock mode
- Shut down timer
The battery takes 3.5 hours to charge from empty to full. A little indicator on the charger itself (unusually) turns green (from red) when the battery is full. One thing we aren't keen on is that you need to use the Perun 2's proprietary cord to charge it. This is just one more thing to forget to pack in your kit bag (which we did on the first few outings). We understand that using a USB-C or micro-USB would affect the waterproofing (though some models, such as the Knog Bilby 400, make it work), but using our existing wireless charging pads and cables would be nice. Interestingly the Olight Perun 2 vibrates once every 30 seconds when the battery is lower than 10%.
Another clever function of this headlamp meets flashlight is the proximity sensor. The beam automatically dims if you hold it close to an object, such as a map or sign, so the light won't bounce back and dazzle you.
There's also a 'timer' function; we didn't realize this until we returned from our first camping weekend (always read the instructions first, hey!). It would have been helpful to know for instances like we had it attached to our tent pole before bed — you can set it up to turn off after either three or nine minutes. We remembered for future trips, so we didn't have to leave our comfy sleeping bag to turn the light off.
Like many headlamps and flashlights, there is also a locking function to prevent the light from accidentally turning on in your pocket or kit bag. It's easy enough to do — press and hold to turn it on and the same to turn it off. If the button is pressed in lock moded, 'moonlight' mode will be momentarily activated.
Should you buy the Olight Perun 2?
Simply put, we really like the Olight Perun 2. Despite taking a couple of headlamps on our camping trips, we actually found the Olight Perun 2 to be our preferred means of getting around. It feels solid and secure in the hand, and we liked that we could attach it to our clothing to walk hands-free and not have to have anything strapped to our heads. Of course, the head strap is provided if you'd prefer.
We will definitely be keeping it in our car and using it on future nighttime excursions, but we'll also be keeping its designated charger with it so that doesn't get misplaced — that's the only real downside to this flashlight.
If it's a headlamp specifically you are looking for, there are better options available on our best headlamps list. Although, as a headlamp, this model 'does the job.' It's neither the most comfortable nor practical for extended periods of time or for any activities that require a lot of movement due to its weight.
That said, it's excellent as a compact flashlight or working light, and its rugged and well-built demeanor makes it perfect for outdoor or at-sea adventures.
If the Olight Perun 2 headlamp isn’t for you
If you're looking for one of the best headlamps, we have tried and tested some fantastic models. One of our favorites is the BioLite HeadLamp 425 which is excellent value for money with a number of astro-friendly features such as a red floodlight for preserving night vision, a wide temperature use range, great battery life and pass-through charging.
If you're looking for an all-weather headlamp, consider the unique-looking Knog Bilby 400, which has an impressive IP67 waterproof rating. The band is made from medical-grade silicone, which won't absorb moisture or sweat and is inherently wipe clean. You can even use a desktop-based app to create custom light shows or enable modes like 'knight rider' and 'let's party' — fun!
If it's a flashlight specifically you're after, you'll find our top picks in our best flashlights guide. The top choice on this list is pretty similar to the Olight Perun 2 but comes with a red filter — necessary for preserving night vision during skywatching sessions. You can also break glass with its 'strike bezel,' though we're pretty sure you could with the Olight Perun 2 if you meant it!