BioLite’s headlamp 425 looks unique thanks to straps that are moulded into the front lighting unit. This makes them very comfortable to wear. This is the only torch tested with a rear-mounted battery pack; it’s pretty small and doesn’t affect comfort. Like most BioLite torches of this design, the rear battery has a button for activating a rear-facing red strobe (great for staying visible) and the battery indicator.
The downside is that the internal 1000mAh rechargeable cell offers relatively poor run time. I was unable to achieve the claimed 60 hours on low setting (unspecified lumens), and got more like 48. On high mode it drains very quickly, within about 2 hours. Again, this is a pre-production sample and performance may be better on production units. On the plus side, there’s a USB-C port, and it works with all my cables.
I wear glasses on the hill, and the main LED of this torch protrudes from the casing, with no lip to prevent downspill. This means that I get severe glare – a real problem that affected my ability to see. I can’t recommend this if you wear glasses.
Due to its strap comfort and rear red strobe, I think this torch is best suited to short trail/road runs. It would work ok as a general summer torch, but there are better units at this price.
Want to see more head torches like the HeadLamp 425? Check out our guide to the best head torches for hiking