Headlamps are certainly handy when it comes to engaging in night-time outdoor activities, but some models do have their limitations. The Spanish-designed Carbi is designed to address those problems, plus it has a few interesting bonus features.
First of all, many headlamps suffer from the “tunnel effect,” in that they only light up a narrow path in front of the user. And while the Carbi does have a spotlight setting, its wider floodlight setting is augmented by what’s known as remote phosphor technology. This involves utilizing an ultraviolet LED to illuminate an overlying phosphor-coated panel. That panel in turn fluoresces, giving off a wide, even beam of visible white light.
Additionally, not all headlamps work well when doing double duty as bicycle headlights. However, if wirelessly linked via ANT+ to an accelerometer-equipped third-party device such as a cycling computer, the Carbi automatically adjusts its beam according to the present speed – that beam is wide when the cyclist is going slower, but sharpens to a farther-reaching spotlight as they go faster. Garmin’s Varia headlight, along with some others, does the same thing on its own.
Specs-wise, the aluminum-bodied Carbi has a 150-meter (492-ft) Spot distance, a 210-degree Flood width, it can be immersed to a depth of 20 m (66 ft), it’s impact-resistant to a drop height of 5 m (16.4 ft), plus it has a battery life ranging from 48 hours at 45 lumens to 1 hour and 40 minutes at its maximum output of 1,500 lumens.
The charge level of the lithium-ion battery can be checked via an LED display on the battery itself, or via a free iOS/Android app on a Bluetooth-linked smartphone. That app can additionally be used to change settings, remotely turn the lamp on and off, and perform other functions.
The headlamp weighs 73 grams, with the hard-wired battery adding an additional 128. For added functionality, the Carbi is GoPro-compatible, meaning that it can be used with existing GoPro chest, handlebar or other mounts (although a neoprene headband, a helmet mount and an elastic bike mount are included).
Should you be interested, the Carbi is currently the subject of an Indiegogo campaign. A pledge of US$179 will get you one – when and if they reach production – with the planned retail price sitting at $358.